As a mum, I am always a little obsessive about safety – especially in the car. Sam has Autism, and car journeys can be really hard for him. (And me, for that matter). I like to make sure the car is well maintained so I only have to worry about the journey we are on, not what hasn’t been done on the car. It’s fair to say I am a bit of a stickler when it comes to choosing the right tyres, too. I refuse, point blank to consider budget tyres, as the treads tend to offer very little grip, making it all too easy to skid in rainy or icy conditions.
We upgraded to a shiny new car on New Year’s Eve, and one of my first questions to the dealer was, “Which tyres are on the car, please”? Choosing the right tyres is THAT important to me.
Choosing The Right Tyres
For me, it’s important to get tyres which are well suited to the make and model of the car you drive. (If you drive a Fiat, for example, it’s pointless opting for the same tyres your friend with a 4×4 drives). It’s not difficult to find suitable tyres for your car. You can even select Fiat tyres from Point S website now. See – easy peasy!
If you only drive in the City, and never venture into the countryside or off road, standard tyres will be fine. However, if you live somewhere more off the beaten track… Where roads don’t always get gritted in Winter, you’ll want to opt for a suitable tread.
Find your Tyre Size
The first thing you need to do is find out the size of your car tyres. You can find this information printed onto the side wall of the tyre. When you are looking for the size, you will see that it is made up of a series of numbers and letters….
The photo above shows 255 / 35 / R19 / 96Y. This translates to:
255: Tyre width of 255mm.
35: A tyre profile of 35. (This is the height of the tyre sidewall as a percentage of the tyre’s width. In this case 35%. It is also known as the aspect ratio.
19: The diameter of the tyre’s inner rim in inches.
96Y: Speed Rating. This indicates the maximum speed for the tyre when the car is fully loaded.
You need to input this data when ordering replacement tyres online, to make sure you get ones which fit your make and model of vehicle.
Once you have put your existing tyre info into the website, you have to choose the tyres you want. Tyres are graded like this…
For me, the wet grip is most important when choosing the right tyres for my car. I do a lot of motorway and country lane driving, so I need tyres which grip well. Next, I consider the fuel efficiency. Finally, the exterior noise. Personally, I won’t consider anything below a grade B in wet grip, as Manchester is definitely rainy! I guess if you’re lucky enough to live somewhere dry, this is less of a factor though.
Don’t panic about ordering car tyres online… They are sent to your local garage, where you drop in to have your new car tyres fitted. That’s all included in the price you pay online, too – winner!
Thankfully, we don’t get much ice or snow in this part of the world, so I haven’t yet had to consider adding chains to my tyres… Have you? If you enjoyed this post, why not check out more of my motoring blog posts here.