Are Your Tires Ready for the Winter?

The snow is about to start falling! While you may have lived in the Harrisburg, PA area for many years and see the white stuff as nothing more than a nuisance, it’s important to ensure your vehicle is ready to tackle wintery weather.

See a Penny, Pick It Up Tread Test

Having tread that is ready to tackle slushy roads is important in maintaining control in a blizzard. A simple way to determine if it’s time to replace your tires is the penny test. Take a penny and ensure Lincoln’s head is pointed down. Slip it between the treads of your tire.  If you can’t see his head anymore, your tires have good tread. If you can see the tip of his head, it’s time to hit the tire store.

Check For Cracking and Weathering

If you don’t tend to put a lot of miles on your car, you may think your tires will last forever. Not true! Rubber degrades over time. In general, tires over five years old can fail due to age.  If the sidewalls of your tires are cracking or discolored, it’s an indication they need replacing. Winter weather puts even more stress on old tires. Don’t wait for them to pop!

Use Snow Tires? How Old Are They?

If you switch from summer to winter tires, it’s a good idea to check on the age of the winter ones before you mount them. The old rubber that is stored in one place can deform, causing the tire to go out of round when mounted.  Which can lead to tire failure when at speed? And of course, ensure they are properly inflated for the best traction and performance.

Once you have good tires on your car, you are almost ready for the Harrisburg, PA winter! Don’t forget to put a shovel, blanket, and flares in your trunk as well. Talk to your local auto insurance agent for more maintenance tips to help protect your car and yourself.