All-Season vs. Winter Tire Differences

It would be great if you could just put any set of tires on your vehicle and be set for years. Unfortunately, the demands of the road and the severity of weather in places like our hometown here in Calgary call for specifically-designed tires that are primed for the major season. Fortunately, though, tire technology has come so far that all-season and winter tires offer fantastic advantages for their specializations. Both winter and all-season tires are a bit more complex than their names suggest, so follow along with us here at Jack Carter Chevrolet Buick GMC as we outline the differences between the two types and their advantages.


All-Season Tire Advantages

All-season tires may seem like the perfect choice for year-round use given their name, but it’s a little misleading and more complicated than that. Sure, all-season tires have decent ability to combat the different elements of winter and summer weather, but nowhere near the level that specific tires can do for those seasons. While driving all-season tires year-round may be okay in a location that rarely sees much weather change over the year, here in Calgary it’s a much different story. All-season tires are fine to use in our Alberta weather when there isn’t snow touching the ground and temperatures are above 7 degrees, but for this month and months on end when snow and ice covers our road, you’ll need winter tires for the best in traction, control, performance and safety. All-season tires are highlighted by:

  • Hard rubber material
  • Tread design that provides a great fuel efficiency, quiet drive and low roll resistance
  • Tread style will push water to the side, such as from rain
  • Built from durable sidewalls for a great mix of maneuverability and comfort

Winter Tire Advantages

Winter tires may not cover as broad of the gamut of seasons a city may see, but what they do provide is especially specific control, safety and performance for tough winter driving, which we see a ton of here in Calgary. Winter tires are made from a soft rubber, with detailed treads and sipes to hold up to the cold weather and to still provide durable traction on snow and ice-covered roads. Winter tires are specific to the cold weather season, and thus do not perform well in warm weather, like all-season tires, and can see increased wear if run during this time. Winter tires are highlighted by:

  • Soft rubber material
  • Soft treads = smooth drive
  • Special treads to push snow and slush away
  • Large treads and sipes to dig into snow and ice


Equip the Right Tires for the Current Season

There is no right or wrong type of tires, it’s just a question of making sure you are using the correct ones for the current season. All-season tires are great tires to use, just not something to be consistently relieved upon during the winter. Conversely, winter tires are perfect for the winter months, but as high-performing as they are then, they aren’t built for warm weather. This underlines the importance of having multiple sets of tires, and being diligent about switching them out when the seasons demand it. The beauty of living in Alberta is that we get to experience hot, sunny summers and gorgeous, snow-covered winters, you just need to make sure your Chevrolet, Buick or GMC vehicle is equipped with the right tires to deal with them.

If you’d like to learn more about the differences between all-season and winter tires, want to shop for a new set or need to get your tires swapped for the season, our service team here at Jack Carter Chevrolet are ready and waiting to help. Contact us, today, and get out on the road with the proper tires that will ensure years of reliable driving, no matter the season.