If you live in an area with severe winters, it is important to invest in high-quality tires. There are many good winter tires on the market, and it’s not always easy to know which tires to choose. To complicate matters even further, there are both non-studded winter tires and studded winter tires. All dedicated winter tires, studded and non-studded, hold the three-peak mountain snow flake symbol that indicates they meet the required performance criteria in snow testing to be considered severe snow service-rated. So, what makes studded tires better than non-studded tires for some drivers?
Studded tires have metal studs embedded within the
tread that are designed to dig into the ice and provide ultimate traction. The
drawback with studded tires is that they can only be used in winter months and
are actually outlawed in several states. This is because the studs that are so
efficient in providing traction on ice and snow can damage bare roads.
In recent years, there have been a lot of advances in
rubber compounding technology, tread design and other unique technologies that
make the need for studded tires less vital. Non-studded winter tires generally
have deeper tread depth, which allows the tire to maintain traction by managing
snow and slush dispersion from under the tire. Tires like the Nokian Nordman 7 come
with both options, either factory studded or without studs. This gives the
consumer the option to choose based on his or her needs, while enjoying a state-of-the-art
tire that has been uniquely designed to handle the harshest of winters.
The Nokian Nordman 7’s factory-studded version
features an innovative stud design and stud support system that takes grip and
stability to an advanced level. It has a new eco-stud system as well as a stud
run-in indicator. It also has bear claw technology, which offers unrelenting
grip with its sharp-edged claw-like projections. The bear claws also help keep
the studs perpendicular to the road, which is the ideal position especially
during braking and lateral movement.
Whether choosing the non-studded or factory studded
version of this high-quality winter tire, you will not be disappointed. For
SUVs there is the Nokian Nordman 7 SUV
The factory-studded version ensures the quality,
durability and fit of the studs and delivers the best possible tire-stud
function. The air cushion beneath the stud on both the passenger and SUV winter tires offers a lighter-rolling
tire that is less damaging to the surface of the road than ordinary studded
tires without compromising driver safety.
If you have invested in winter tires because you live in a place that experiences severe winter weather with both snow and ice, you should know that winter tires should not be used in the summer. All-season tires, on the other hand, are only suitable for spring, summer, and fall but not perfect for winter. All-season tires can be placed on the vehicle once the final snow has melted and the roads remain dry.
When you buy winter tires like the Nokian Nordman 7, they are meant to be used only during the winter months. Using these tires during the other seasons is not recommended. In some states, it is against the law to use studded tires after a certain date. Winter tires — especially studded winter tires — remain the best choice for harsh winters with lots of snow and ice, where they provide the ultimate traction, especially lateral traction. Even for an SUVs the best choice for severe winter weather are SUV studded tires.
All winter tires, whether studded or non-studded, are designed to maintain better traction in extreme cold and on icy, snowy or slush-filled roads. Their rubber compounds are softer and thereby remain more flexible, allowing the tire to conform to the road in cold conditions. The same flexible rubber compound that works well in winter does not dissipate heat well and will wear down faster on dry summer roads. When you use them on hot summer roads, the risk of overinflating or blowing out will be much higher. The specialized rubber compound and tread design of winter tires are not designed for optimal warm climate performance or wear.
The softer rubber compound and tread design of winter tires also create more rolling resistance when driven on dry roads, causing you to use more fuel and wear down the tires faster. This is not a very ecological or economical solution. If the idea is not to change tires after the winter season, then the second best choice to provide safe driving in winter conditions would be to invest in an all-weather tire. Unlike all-season tires, all-weather tires are marked with the threepeak mountain snowflake symbol, like winter tires. The 3PMSF symbol indicates that the tire has a severe snow service rating, which means that it has met required performance criteria in snow testing.
When should you invest in studded tires for an SUV? The SUV is a much heavier vehicle than a passenger car so if you live in an area with severe winter weather you are well advised to invest in SUV studded tires. This is because nothing beats the traction you get with a studded winter tire. You might think that if you have an SUV you don’t need a studded winter tire, but nothing is further from the truth. This is because the size and weight of the SUV actually makes it more prone to lose traction on snowy and icy roads. This is because the tire is what actually grips the road and provides traction so without a good quality winter tire you might be worse off in an SUV.
In areas like
North Dakota that endure extremely harsh winters, smart drivers invest in
Nokian Hakkapeliitta 9 SUV studded tires.. Sometimes North Dakota has
temperatures as low as -60 degrees Fahrenheit with blizzards to boot. This tire
has the most advanced stud technology to assure state-of-the-art grip and
traction. This includes advancemdnts like the Nokian Eco Stud technology, which
features a more eco-friendly anchor stud, a flange design that reduces stud
impact, and a patented eco stud cushion that dampens road contact. The studs
are no longer placed in rows but rather evenly distributed throughout the tread
thereby optimizing grip and reducing driving noise. This allows the tire to
remain eco-friendly while allowing maximum grip.
The tire also
employs something called the Brake Booster, which is an innovation developed on
the rear edges of the tread blocks to provide increased braking grip. This is
really important especially with the extra weight of the SUV which requires
good grip especially when braking. The “Brake Boosters” are part of the tread
block on the shoulder area of the tire. This saw-tooth pattern increases the
tire’s contact with the driving surface increasing braking grip, especially on ice
Hakkapeliitta 9 SUV studded tires, North Dakota drivers are ready to handle the
harsh winter and will probably keep them until all the snow has melted before
looking into changing into SUV all-season tires.
Both your SUV summer tires and your SUV winter tires need to be taken care of to ensure that they deliver the best performance for your SUV. There are a few things that you need to check on your tires on a regular basis. You need to make sure that you have sufficient tread depth on your tires. This can easily be checked with a coin.
Do a visual inspection to see that there are no cuts or tears on the tires. For SUV studded tires, check also that the studs look in good condition and that there are enough of them. Tire pressure is important to check as it impacts the driving performance. It also has negative impact on your fuel efficiency and tire wear, so it can impact your safety as well as your financials. Remember that with decreasing temperatures the tire pressure decreases and needs to be filled up.
If your tires look good and the tread depth is good with sufficient air pressure, then you should be in good shape to drive safely regardless of what weather condition you will face.
When winter arrives it is good to make sure that your SUV will be ready for the change of weather. One obvious step is to make sure that you have good tires to cope with the winter weather. If you are expecting a real winter, then you need to change to real winter tires. Winter tires, or snow tires that they are sometimes referred to, have a snowflake symbol on them, to indicate that they have been tested and approved for driving in winter conditions. You will have either studded tires or non-studded aka studless tires. The choice depends a lot of the weather and driving conditions in the area where you live or where you will drive. The SUV studded tires will be superior when it comes to traction, especially on ice. So if you live in an coastal area where you tend to have a lot of ice covering the streets, then I would recommend going for a studded tire. If you live in a more snow-covered area, then you will be ok with a non-studded tire.
Both options will be good and will keep you safe on the roads, especially if you select a high quality tire. I would recommend choosing tires from Nokian Tyres, as they are from an area with proper winters and have the world’s northernmost testing facility to ensure that they can continuously test and improve the tires that they manufacture and sell. They make world-class studded and non-studded tires, that perform well in all winter conditions and ensure that you can stay safe while driving in the most extreme conditions.
I always recommend having an emergency kit with you. There are some basic things for everyday driving and then some items that you should bring with you if you go on a longer trip, especially in isolated areas.
Some of the items that you should have for normal winter driving: -Ice scraper
-Sand that can be used to get out of icy spots
If you go on longer trips, you might consider adding: -Power bank, to be able to charge your phone
-Blanket, warm jacket, proper winter boots, winter hat
Of course you need your everyday safety items: -First Aid kit
If you follow the above steps, you should be safe and ready for winter. Just remember to change to winter tires before winter hits.