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One of the most important considerations for safe and comfortable driving is summer tyres that have good performance values for passenger cars. The tyres must withstand high loads, should contribute to low fuel consumption and ensure a comfortable ride on every street.

A good quality summer tyre should be inexpensive and provide you with the necessary traction to warm dry surfaces, as the tyre warms from driving it will grip the surface of the road better, giving you better control and handling on corners.

When should you switch to summer tyres? The rule of thumb is at Easter put the summer tyres on.

Most manufactures have tyres for summer in almost every size, price, and performance classes.

Can summer tyres be inexpensive and yet have good quality too?

Car tyres, which are available on the European market must undergo pre-market approval of strict quality controls. Even the pre-production prototypes are put through rigorous testing before they get put into production. This process ensures the highest quality.

In addition, the tyre market is worldwide sharply contested today which for motorist this means that summer tyres can be both cheap and high quality. That is good news for everyone who wants to be safe and comfortable on the road in the summer while staying within your budget.

For a passenger car you can use any number of comparison portals to find summer tyres to buy, quickly, easily and safely.

What makes a good summer tyre

Whether Goodyear, Pyrelli, Michelin and Continental, all of them rely on the latest and most secure technologies in the production of tyres for passenger cars and must follow certain rules in order to pass quality control in order to put tyres on the market. Of particular importance to the quality and skills of summer tyres is the material from which they are made. This allows good performance at high temperatures. It is also a reason why summer tyres wear out more slowly at higher speeds than is the case with winter tyres.

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Summer Tyres Guides

What makes a summer tyre safe and comfortable? How much profile does a summer tyre need? How do I know how old my tyres are? How can I distinguish between the different manufacturers? Our large Tyres.Net summer tyre guide gives answers to all these questions - and many more. Catch up on summer tyres!

Summer is just around the corner - high time for a change of tyres! But is it really necessary to bring up new tyres in summer? Are winter tyres really bad? Many people think that summer doesn’t make harsh demands on the tyres like winter does but the heat of summer can cause a number of safety problems, from aquaplaning to poor stability and handling in corners.

So a summer tyre should provide the following benefits:

  • Resistance to high temperatures
  • Shorter braking distances in dry or wet conditions such as rain
  • Good aquaplaning resistance
  • Stability and improved handling for cornering
  • A smooth ride

The materials used to make the tyres are what provide the benefits of safety and stability providing grip and resistance to aquaplaning. Before renewable raw materials came into play in the manufacturing of tyres they were made to a large extent from rubber and oil. Depending on the rubber compound selected, the tyre stays flexible at low temperatures or withstands warm summer temperatures well.

How do the tyre characteristics change when the weather gets warmer? If the rubber compound is for winter, when the temperature rises the tyre becomes very soft and changes the rolling resistance causing more fuel consumption. When you put summer tyres on you will get better performance and lower fuel consumption and emissions.

It makes more sense to store the winter tyres for the summer weather as they will last longer than if they were to be driven during the hot weather.

Much more important than the financial aspect is the question of security. Because the harder material of a summer tyre guarantees him a greater stability and a firmer grip, so a better grip.

Another issue of using winter tyres in summer is braking distance, up to 16 meters longer for winter tyres than summer tyres and in a critical situation the shorter stopping distance may possibly save a life.

The profile of a summer tyre

Its special profile helps the summer tyres perform safely. And not just in the shorter stopping distance: even when wet a high quality tyre should not lose traction. A sudden summer thunderstorm can bring a few liters of water without warning, a good tyre should not let you down in this situation. A good summer tyre will provide for better resistance to aquaplaning.

To circumvent the danger of aquaplaning, the profile of a summer tyre is optimized so that the edge will effectively disperse water away from the tyre.

The profile for summer tyre is specially designed for driving on wet and dry surfaces. The rubber compound also keeps the tyre from becoming too soft in higher temperatures. 

What is the minimum tread depth for summer tyres?

A summer tyre is requyred to have a minimum tread depth of 1.6 millimeter, according to road traffic regulations. If your tyre does not have that much it must be changed otherwise you could get fine or worse be involved in an accident. 

But how do I know if my tyres have already reached the minimum tread depth? It's simple: Each tyre carries a so-called wear indicator. The sign is located high on the side wall and consists of small triangles and the symbol for TWI Tread Wear Indicator. Once there continuous webs can be seen, it is bald and should have a new tyre mounted before you either have an accident or get fined. 

However, experts unanimously advise to not wait with summer tyres until the legal minimum tread depth is reached. After all, the balder it is, the worse the grip is. That is why summer tyres should be replaced at a residual profile of 3 millimeters. How can I know whether the tyres still have enough profile? The TWI does not help here because it only shows the minimum legal tread depth of 1.6 millimeters. However, there are profile gauges that can be borrowed at any gas station, also, in a pinch a simple euro coin will work. Place the coin between the tread: Is the edge of the tread covered, the tyre has enough profile.

Here again is the most important data for tread depth at a glance:

  • Tread depth should be minimum 1.6mm
  • TWI on tyre wall
  • Tyre should be replaced at 3.0mm which can be determined with a profile meter or euro coin

The tyre change

But even when there is sufficient profile you may need a tyre change. In addition to a worn profile and the change from winter to summer tyres the following reasons may make the old tyres unusable:

  • The tyre continually loses air pressure
  • Mixed tyres of any kind is strongly discouraged, the combination of radial and cross-ply is an example of mixing tyres
  • If the tyre is too old

You do not have to go to the tyre shop to switch from winter tyres to summer tyres, if they are mounted on separate wheels; you just need a few simple tools to quickly and easily change the tyres. 

Summer tyres Guides: tyre change

How do I know the tyre age? How can the age of a tyre be notice at all? A closer look at the tyre you will see that on one side of it you will find the DOT number, a long sequence of numbers and letters. The DOT number reveals the expert view of manufacture and date of the tyre.

The last four digits are of importance for the tyres age, they tell the calendar week and year that the tyre was manufactured. Thus it can be quite accurately determine how old a tyre is.

The two circled numbers at the end of the DOT number stand for calendar week and year of manufacture.

Used and retreaded summer tyres

Used tyres are as a rule cheaper than mint condition, but the savings often are at the expense of safety. Summer tyres are usually longer in use than winter tyres, thus they are exposed to more wear. If you want to try to save by purchasing a used tyre for summer use, you should look closely to see if the tyre is in good condition.
Another way to save money when purchasing tyres, is the choice of a retreaded tyre. These are prepared from old tyres when the tread of the carcass is released and exchanged for a new tread. Even with this method, as shown by independent tests, you are likely to have significant loss of quality.

Summer tyre test

The EU tyre label gives a brief overview of the tyres properties; these include information on energy efficiency, wet grip of the tyre, and pass-by noise. It shows the evaluation of the criteria that has been met and how the tyre does in those tests which are carried out by independent bodies.

If you want to definitely have a safe trip Tyres.Net advises you to take up one of the test winner summer tyres. For the top tyre the best mark of 5 stars are awarded in all 21 Test and we can only wish you a good trip.

Which tyre sizes I need for my car?

Before ordering, you have to know which dimensions of the tyre you need.

There are two ways to determine the proper tyre dimensions: on the registration papers or the tyre itself. Each tyre carries a tyre designation. On this hand stamp on the sidewall of the tyre letter and number sequence, the dimensions of the tyre can be read. The first three digits are relevant. Enter tyre width in millimeters, profile cross section in percent and rim diameter in inches.

An example: The tyre dimension 175/65 R14 often comes in big city-compatible small cars such as the VW Polo, the Ford Fiesta, the Fiat 500 or the Opel Corsa.
Now what are the individual figures? The tyre is 175 millimeters wide, which is revealed the first three numbers. The cross-section profile amounts to 65% - in other words, the height of the edge is 65% of the width of the tread. The rim diameter in our sample tyre measures 14 inches. The letter R in front of the customs declaration represents the type of carcass, in this case, the radial type.

In addition to this information for the tyre size designation also provides information about the load capacity and speed index.

If you do not want to read from an old tyre, you can look up the information in the vehicle documents. In the old registration document it can be found at paragraphs 20 to 23, in the new registration certificate, Part I under the number 15. Alternatively, is also the EC certificate of conformity, the customer when buying a new car by the vehicle manufacturer or get handed dealers information. Here even all permissible tyre sizes are listed, while only mentioned in the registration certificate a.

Now the summer is coming - with our detailed tips and technically competent information on the subject of summer tyres you and your car are well prepared for the great time of the year.


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