Winter driving presents an entirely different set of challenges. Freezing temperatures, snow, and ice affect tire performance in a completely different way as opposed to summer times and even most all-season tires. Therefore, if you live in an area with particularly harsh winters, you ought to buy yourself a set of proper winter tires.
However, buying a perfect set of tires for your car is not the easiest thing in the world as numerous factors need to be addressed beforehand. Be that as it may, we can’t ignore that price isn’t the most important factor of them all, especially if you own both a summer set and hopefully a winter set of tires. So, how much does a proper winter tire cost?
Winter Tire Cost
When it comes to tires, you need to be aware of different pricing groups. First of all, budget/economy winter tires are likely going to set you back up to $100 per tire as that is the price most people are willing to pay for such tires. Mid-range tires and budget winter models from premium brands can be found in the region of $100 to $200 per tire.
If you want high-end premium winter tires that offer unparalleled performance, you are most definitely going to have to spend upwards of $200 per tire for those. Obviously, a set of premium tires is the best, but those tend to cost way too much. Thankfully, you’ve come to the right place as we are going to tell you a few money-saving tips so you can get that premium winter set after all.
How Can I Save Money While Buying Tires?
- Consider buying used tires
- Install the tires yourself
- Check if your insurance carrier offers any discounts
- Buy winter tires during the summer
- Don’t mix and match tires
- Look for online coupons and sales
Should I buy Used Winter Tires?
Winter tires tend to wear out faster than most all-season and summer tires which is why it is more difficult to find pre-mounted winter tires without too many miles on them. However, it makes perfect sense to go for a set of premium used winter tires because that enables you to save up to 50% of the original price without making too many compromises.
Buying used winter tires does require you to inspect those tires thoroughly and make sure that they are in adequate condition. If you want to know where you can buy used tires, click here.
Can I Install Tires Myself?
It does not take a genius to change a tire which means that everyone can install their own tires these days if they have enough space and proper know-how. If you aren’t too familiar with how this process goes, you ought to go online and watch a few YouTube videos as the entire process can be done really fast and really easy if you come prepared.
The only thing you have to do is check your tire tread every time you swap out your tires just to be sure that you have enough tread left on them. Click here if you want to learn how you can do that as easily as possible.
Do Insurance Carriers Offer Tire Discounts?
Not many people know this, but many insurance carriers either offer discounts for winter tires or can even lower your monthly premium if you buy a set of proper winter tires. Because winter/snow/ice tires significantly increase your overall safety and controllability on the road, the risk of damaging your car is significantly lowered as well.
Therefore, insurance carriers are often willing to pitch in if necessary as that benefits them too. So, be sure to give your insurance provider a call and see if anything can be done on that front.
Why Should I Buy Winter Tires During The Summer?
The laws of supply and demand are the primary catalysts that push tire prices up depending on the time of the year. If December rolls up around the corner and the forecast predicts heavy snowfall for the rest of the month, many people will instantly want to buy winter tires which will inevitably push the price up for everyone.
However, if you shop for winter tires during the summer when the demand for winter tires is at its minimum, you are likely going to get a much better price as a result.
Should I Mix And Match Tires?
Mixing and matching different tire brands, types, or even sizes comes with many serious drawbacks. Doing so in the winter when traction is difficult to achieve is even more serious. Either way, if you do mix and match different tires, your tires will not be able to last as long as they usually would.
This will typically require you to replace all four of them because they will not wear properly and because they will not be as good as a perfectly balanced set.
Where And When Can I Find Tire Coupons And Sales?
Tire sales typically take place every few months and most retailers and big-box retail advertise upcoming sales either through e-mail, at their facilities, or on their websites. This means that you should subscribe to most big-box retailers, tire centers, and tire dealerships so you can plan your purchases beforehand.
You can often find year-long coupons at most established tire centers, many of which always have a few tires readily on sale throughout the year. The key here is to be prepared, don’t wait for the very last moment to buy your tires, do that when the right deal pops up.
How Are Winter Tires Different?
Winter tires are, as the youth might say it – built different. This means that designing and making winter tires is completely different as opposed to designing and making summer or all-season tires. Because all the challenges that come with winter driving are different, winter tires need to be built to sustain those challenges without losing their performance or wearing out too fast.
First of all, the tread pattern is different as snow and water need to have properly sized treads and grooves on the tire itself so they don’t cause aquaplaning or loss of traction. If your treads and grooves have a larger volume, it means that the tire can dig into snow, water, and slush more which ensures traction no matter what.
However, the main difference between winter tires and all other tires are compound materials from which the tire is constructed. These compound materials are designed to stay soft no matter how cold it gets which is not something you can get from summer tires which are designed to stay capable during extremely hot temperatures.
Smaller tire blocks that come with winter tires help chew up snow and prevent it from sticking to the tire. As such, proper winter tires even have self-cleaning properties in which the tire is designed to repel both snow and rocks away from the tire.
Do I Really Need Winter Tires?
It depends on where you live. Some places like California and Florida don’t get substantial amounts of snow which is why people living there aren’t too fussed about buying winter tires. On the other hand, if you live in an area that does get snow seasons and one where the temperatures can fall drastically, you should invest in proper winter tires.
The easiest way to know if you need winter tires is: “If you can clearly see your breath regularly while out and about, you ought to be on winter tires”. There is a common misconception out there that those with AWD systems don’t require winter tires because AWD systems can virtually replace a set of good winter tires.
This is not true as AWD systems only maximize the traction you already have, an AWD system can not MAKE additional traction or improve it in any way. It’s the same story with ABS and all other active safety systems. To be completely honest, those who drive AWD cars without winter tires tend to be too confident in their abilities which can prove to be a huge mistake.
Do I Need Ice Tires?
Ice tires are not the same as snow tires. Snow tires are designed to dig into snow and repel it away from the contact patch while ice tires are designed with more incisions that maximize traction while on the highway. As such, ice tires are particularly designed for those who spend a lot of time driving on icy highways as ice tires are designed to combat ice specifically.
There are many similarities between snow and ice tires in the way that they use similar compounds because they tend to operate at similar temperature ranges.
At the end of our “Winter Tire Cost” article, we can easily conclude that a common winter tire is likely going to set you back by about $100 to $200 per tire if you are only interested in buying budget and mid-spec models.
However, if you want to go for premium tires, you are looking at $200 per tire at a minimum. It does make sense to go for premium winter tires, but be sure to consider our money-saving tips so you can get those shiny winter tires at a more reasonable price.