There are a few important things you should consider when it comes to choosing the right tires. To help you with you decision, we came up with the answers to the 5 questions you should ask yourself to make sure you find the tires that best suit your needs and usage...
What Type of Vehicle Are You Buying Tires For?
There are 2 main categories of tires: passenger vehicle tires and utility vehicle tires.
Passenger Vehicles Tires
These tires are designed for passenger vehicles, also called "touring vehicles", including cars, small SUVs (Honda HR-V, Mazda CX-3, Toyota RAV4, etc.), crossovers (Mazda CR-5, Honda CR-V, Ford Edge, Kia Soul, etc.) and minivans (Kia Sedona, Toyota Sienna, Dodge Grand Caravan, etc.).
In our Tire Types (through applicables filters), they are identified with a P or with a -.
Utility Vehicles Tires
Tires specifically designed to answer the needs of truck, pickup and SUV drivers generally have higher load indexes and reinforced sidewalls, ensuring stability in curves with utility vehicles (which have a higher gravity center).
The ones made fo Heavy Duty trucks have the inscription LT on their sidewall (and are tagged with LT in our filters). All the others are identified with a P or with a -.
Do You Drive a Lot of Kilometers?
To fully answer this question, you need to consider your annual mileage and the number of years you plan on keeping your new tires. So the total mileage you plan to make with the tires is what matters.
In each category, there are different grades of tires. You can see these grades in our evaluations, but the prices may also give you a hint. The more mileage you will drive with the tires, the more you will feel the advantages of higher grades tires.
Lower Grade Tires for Those Who Do Not Drive a Lot of Kilometers
Tires in the lower grades tend to offer less durability. But they can be a perfect choice if you don't use your vehicle a lot or if you plan selling it at the end of the season...And you'll save money!
In fact, if you don't use your vehicle much and the regulations and climate require winter tires, Winter Approved all-season tires can be a wise choice. To know more on this topic, read our article.
Higher Grade Tires for Those Who Drive a Lot of Kilometers
If you drive numerous hours and kilometers or if you want to plan on keeping the same vehicle for the next years, higher grade tires (the one in the top of our Rating grids) are a good investment; they offer comfort and durability, allowing you to keep them longer.
What Is Your Driving Style?
To find the right balance between comfort and handling, you need to consider your driving style. Are you the kind of person who drives on cruise control with the left arm resting through the window, enjoying a cosy ride, or one of those who keep the right hand on the shifter, downshifting in curves?
Touring Tires: For a Cosy Ride
If your priority is to have a smooth ride, you should know that between touring and performance tires of the same quality, touring tires tend to be more comfortable and quiet.
The speed ratings of Touring tires are usually S, T or H, which means their maximum speed is between 180 and 210 km/h.
Performance Tires: For a Sporty Ride
The structure of a performance tire is stiffer to allow sporty driving, while ensuring higher steering precision and better traction, especially in turns.
The speed ratings of performance tires are V, W or Y. Tires with a W or Y speed rating are easy to identify since the usual R (in the dimensions) is replaced by ZR (ex. : 225/45/R17 vs 225/45/ZR17). Those speed limit codes indicate that the tires can sustain a maximum of, respectively, 240, 270 and 300 km/h.
Because in most cases traction impacts how quickly your tires wear (the softer the rubber is, the better its traction is, but quicker it wears), you have to determine the level of traction you want, without sacrificing durability to ensure your global satisfaction. It's the UTQG (Universal Tire Quality Guide) rating that indicates the durability of the tires. Performance tires usually have a rate lower than 300 (this information is available in the bottom of the Additional Information tab of each tire and on the side of the tire).
There are different grades in the performance tire category. On our website, you will mainly find Performance tires and Extreme performance tires. Those designations allow to separate the tires made to offer a day to day sporty driving and the ones designed to have fun on the tracks and used without deterioration and with a minimum level of comfort on regular roads.
Will You Have a Specific Use for Those Tires?
There are few other specific uses that have to be considered: commercial, off-road and racing.
Their track compound is particularly soft, which makes the tires adherent, yet friable. Their tread pattern is designed for traction and not to avoid hydroplaning, for example. Note that those tires are not made for driving on regular roads. The UQTG rate of those tires is usually lower than 200.
If you are buying tires for a commercial use, your primary goal should be to find tires with a great durability, allowing you to drive thousands of kilometers.
You can look our list of recommended tires for this purpose, on our Reviews & Ratings page.
There are 2 categories of off-road tires: the ones made for road & off-road driving (also called all-terrain) and those especially designed for the off-road (also called mud).
It is important to know that the more those tires are efficient in off-road conditions (with wider spacing and larger blocks), the more they'll fuel use up, the more noisy they'll be and the worse will their traction will be on paved road. The key is to find the the balance that will answer your needs.
What Is Your Budget for This Purchase?
Last but not least, the question that usually comes up first. Luckily, at PMCtire, with our great bargaining power, we can offer you better tires for cheaper!
Moreover, we make a preselection of the products we offer to ensure your satisfaction. Even the cheaper products on our website are not the lower grades available on the market. We don't sell the products with bad reputations nor ones that have failed our tests. Therefore you can shop through all the products available on our website with confidence.
If you are still undecided and wish to have an expert input, don't hesitate to contact our specialists, they will gladly advise and guide you.