Studded tires have been one of the most dynamic tire technologies of the last century. For years, there was no comparable alternative to tire studs, and even now it’s hard to beat the traction and reliability of a good studded tire on ice and packed snow. Despite their advantages, these tires are not bulletproof, and there are certain things to keep in mind before hitting the road. Here are some helpful tips to help you get the most out of these tires.

When starting to use studded tires, it is important to know the laws that apply to studs in your area. Each state and province has its own set of laws governing the use of these tires, and in some states, tire studs are only allowed during certain times of the year. This makes it even more important to be aware of studded tire laws if you are planning a road trip across state or provincial lines. Take a look at our complete list of North American studded tire laws and regulations, or check with the appropriate transportation departments for the most up-to-date information.

For vehicle safety and control, it is always important that the tires are inflated to the correct air pressure suggested by the manufacturer. This is especially the case when knobby tires are used, as a lack of pressure in the air cavity can deform the tire and cause the knobs to lose their stiffness, resulting in impaired traction performance. For this reason, it is a good idea to carry out frequent tire pressure checks during the winter season.

Depending on your vehicle’s drivetrain, many car owners use studded tires only on the front or rear wheelset. Although this is cost effective, it can cause a number of unforeseen safety hazards. This occurs because running studded tires on a single axle causes different sets of wheels to experience drastically different levels of traction, which can cause automated or driver-assisted driving and braking systems, such as traction control. and ABS are not working properly. For example, if studded tires are used only on the front axle of a front-wheel drive vehicle, the rear tires can easily lose traction when cornering and lead to a dangerous fishtail.

Although the knobby tires provide superior traction on ice and packed snow, many people are surprised to learn that knobby tires are actually less effective than normal tires when driving on dry pavement. This is because each stud that sticks out creates a small area where the tread does not touch the road. With less rubber touching the ground, there is less friction between the tire and the road and consequently less traction for the vehicle. As a result, it is best to use studded tires only when you are likely to encounter snow- or ice-covered roads.

The principles that apply to winter driving on normal tires also apply to driving on studded tires. Remember to drive slowly when you encounter snow or ice and begin applying the brake pedal slowly and steadily at least 50 yards before you intend to stop. Avoid sharp accelerations or sharp turns, which can cause you to slide and lose control of the vehicle. When climbing steep slopes, try to turn the wheel gently from side to side to allow the tires to grip and gain traction. Due to the limitations of winter driving that exist even when using studded tires, the best advice is to simply perform all driving functions, including cornering, acceleration and braking, a little slower during winter than in winter. other ocasions.

Whether you’re traveling, cruising down the road, or just enjoying a winter trip, with these helpful tips there’s nothing standing between you and a safe, reliable, and hassle-free adventure on studded tires.

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