Vehicle owners usually think of their winter tires as a different option from their all-season and summer tires. It is because they have different treads and rubber compounds as well as different rules on maintenance. As a winter tire owner, you might wonder if you have to rotate your tire. As with summer tires, the best winter tires wear evenly. In terms of rotations, the same rules apply to both kinds of tires.
Reasons for Rotating Winter Tires
Winter tires must be rotated to promote even wear and extend the life of the tires and improve their performance. Tires that have good tread depth and even wear provide better steering response and handling. Rotation is necessary as the front line on the majority of vehicles experience more stress, wear, weight, and cornering forces. Thus, when you swap them to the back at regular intervals, your tires can have the chance to wear at the same rate.
If you own an all-wheel-drive vehicle or AWD, your tires may even wear a little faster in the front. Also, these vehicles can have sensitive sensors so you have seriously worn tires on the back, the drive components and sensors will work overtime.
Those who own rear wheel drive vehicles should know that these vehicles exert a little more force on the back tires. This can result in accelerated wear on the back and front.
When to Rotate the Tires
Winter tires must be rotated every 8,000 to 10,000 kilometers or based on what the tire manufacturer has recommended. Those who stick a bit closer to their house in the colder months can get away with once every year. This means rotating at the beginning of every winter season as you need to change over your tires. Moreover, rotations allow service people to find any problem with alignments which are quite common in the winter because vehicles deal with snow-hidden curbs, potholes, and other issues. In some cases, drivers will not feel slight misalignments at the steering wheel. However, these issues usually show up as uneven wear on tires and vehicle owners must take care of any suspension problems early on.
Rotations Follow Some Patterns
Depending on the drive system of your vehicle and your tires, rotations tend to follow some patterns. But, winter tires are usually called uni-directional or directional. This means the tread pattern rolls only in a single direction. Rotating uni-directional tires can be done front to back. Also, studded tires follow this rotation pattern.