Best Tires for Spring Driving Apr 4, 2016 by Cedric (Driver Weekly)
Spring is here and, if you haven’t done so already, it is time to replace your winter tires. Most drivers use the same set for both spring and summer, and these tires are known as summer tires. There are lots of great tires available and each company claims to have the best ones, so you will have to do some research before settling on your tires for spring driving.
Summer or All-Season
It should be pretty obvious that you don’t want to use winter tires for spring driving. These tires aren’t designed to be used the entire year and will start to lose their grip on the road once the temperature rises above 45 degrees Fahrenheit. They will also wear more quickly at these temperatures, decreasing their useful lifespan. Because of this, you want to stick with either summer or all-season tires. All-season tires are designed to give you a bit of grip in snowy weather while summer tires were made for warmer weather in particular. In winter, you would be better off with all-season tires, but summer tires will do better on slightly damp spring roads than all-season ones.
What About Spring Rains?
One of the biggest challenges for spring driving is the rain. When the road is wet, it doesn’t matter if you have summer or all-season tires; it is the tread that matters. You want to stick to tires with a softer, stickier compound as this will do well on damp or dry pavement. If you plan on driving at high speeds, in deeper water, or want to be able to handle the spring rains, look at the tread pattern. Pay attention and make sure the tread pattern of the tires you choose will disperse the water.
The Best Options
Now that you know your ideal tires for spring driving will be “summer tires” with a particular type of rubber and tread pattern, you can start looking at your options. Pirelli P Zero tires are great for traction in the spring and summer. Their 220 tread-wear rating indicates that they are soft, providing a great grip. They have the top traction and temperature ranges, making them work well this time of year. The Michelin Pilot Super Sport is a similar option from another tire manufacturer and has a 300 tread rating. These tires excel in temperature and traction tests and even come with a 30,000-mile tread-life guarantee. If you want tires for high-performance spring driving, then consider the Bridgestone Potenza RE-11. Other good choices include the Firestone Wide Oval Indy 500 and the Goodyear Eagle F1 Supercar G2. Just remember to consider how wet it gets in your area and whether you plan on normal or high-performance driving.