Because of the differences between summer and winter tyres (also known as cold weather tyres), it's important to have the right ones on your car at the right time of the year. To ensure your tyres are in the best condition when you need them, you need proper winter wheel storage during the warmer months.
Whether you use a tyre storage service or want to look at other options, here are some tips for winter wheel storage, as well as the difference between the warm and cold weather compounds.
The difference between summer and winter tyres
The difference between the two tyre types goes much deeper than the tread. Winter tyres have a higher natural rubber content, which keeps them supple even when it's cold. The softer the tyre, the more able it is to grip the road surface. Summer tyres tend to harden quite quickly in cold weather whereas winter tyres perform best at temperatures lower than seven degrees Celsius.
Winter tyres also have thousands of grooves throughout the tread blocks, which disperse water to prevent aquaplaning but also bite into snow, slush and ice.
The deeper tread on the winter tyres also provides a cavity for the tyre to pick up snow as this intensifies the grip effect of the tyre, helping your car to retain traction. If you'd like to find out more about the Bush Tyres winter range, click here.
Summer tyres don't need to be quite as soft as the air and road temperatures are enough to help them adhere to the tarmac. This allows manufacturers to use harder rubber compounds to improve durability.
It's important to look at temperature when considering when to swap your tyres. Summer tyres work best at temperatures above seven degrees so when the weather begins to warm up, take your car to a professional who can swap over the tyres.
As well as looking at temperature, look at road conditions too. If it's beginning to warm up but it is very wet or there's the threat of frost, consider keeping your winter tyres on for another week or two.
When going from summer to winter tyres, keep an eye on the frost in the mornings and pay attention to the weather forecast, which will give you advance warning of when it'll start to get colder.
How to store your winter tyres
To protect the integrity of the rubber and extend the life of your winter tyres, make sure they are stored correctly. You have a number of options here from self-storage at home to a professional tyre storage service (these facilities are often known as tyre hotels).
Don't leave your winter tyres unused without proper storage for more than a month, this goes for the tyres sitting on your car, as well as those that have already been removed. Leaving the tyres outside when they're not being used can negatively impact their performance in the future.
Before storing your tyres, give them a clean with a mild car shampoo to remove dirt and salt. You don't want this sitting on your tyres while they're in storage as it could degrade the rubber. Make sure to rinse the tyres thoroughly and dry them too.
Your storage spot should be dry, cool and out of direct sunlight. For example, a metal shed, or garage with a big window might not be suitable but a wooden shed or garage in a shady spot would work nicely. You also need to make sure your tyres aren't too close to hot pipes and generators as these can also affect them.
Exposure to any of these elements can damage the rubber in the tyres causing them to crack. If you want extra protection for your tyres, you can buy special bags that will protect them from any substances that could deteriorate the rubber.
Be careful when stacking your stored tyres as these can present a safety hazard if they fall. Ideally, you'll store your tyres on a rack but if that's not possible, try not to make your stack higher than waist height as this means you'll be able to move the tyres more easily with less risk of hurting yourself.
Tyre storage in Lincolnshire
If you want a professional to take care of your winter tyres during the summer months, look for tyre storage in Lincolnshire. Bush Tyres can store your winter tyres at its branches after swapping over to your summer wheels. Customer tyres are kept separate from other stock are stored according to manufacturer guidelines in a secure area that has 24-hour alarmed security. This gives customers peace of mind that their winter tyres are going to be properly prepared and stored safely over the summer.
Not only that, but Bush will remind you when you're due to swap so you don't need to keep too close an eye on the weather forecast.