Skip to Main Content

Start Of Main Content

What are the best tires for winter driving?

Know the tires you need for winter driving, and how maintain them for the increased tire safety.

Tire in the snow

All tires are not created equal — they're designed for different road and weather conditions. Know what's on your car before you head out this winter.

What Are the Different Types of Tires?

  • All-season tires offer moderate traction in a variety of conditions, from rain to light snow, but are not as effective in extreme weather. All-season tires are a good choice for climates where temperatures generally remain above freezing; but they start to harden and provide less traction at 40 degrees or colder. Because they are made of harder compounds, these tires typically have a long life.
  • All-weather tires are available in two primary models: one for rain or light snow and another for more challenging conditions, such as mud and moderate snow. The tread of all-weather tires expels water, making their traction better than all-season tires. They stay relatively supple in cold temperatures but don't provide as much traction as true snow tires.
  • Snow tires: These tires provide the most effective traction, braking, and handling control for winter driving on snow and ice. Snow tires are made of compounds that remain pliable in cold temperatures, allowing them to grip the road better. Drivers in extremely snowy areas may choose studded snow tires, which are tires with surface openings where metal studs can be anchored. Unlike other tires, snow tires must be put on at the beginning of the snow season and removed when warmer weather returns.

What Are Some Winter Tire Care Tips

  • Look for tires with a mountain and snowflake icon. They will provide traction and function well at low temperatures.
  • Always install four snow tires instead of two. Cars with only two snow tires have less traction and tend to spin out of control.
  • Keep tires properly inflated. Winter's cold temperatures can cause the air in your tires to contract, leading to lower tire pressure. Your vehicle's tire pressure should be checked at least once a month using an accurate pressure gauge.
  • Remember that vehicle safety systems, like antilock braking systems (ABS), traction control, and other advanced stability control systems, cannot compensate for poor tire traction. The best way to maximize your safety is to make sure your tires are suitable for the conditions you must drive in.

Learn more about tire safety from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

State Farm® (including State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company and its subsidiaries and affiliates) is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the content of any third party sites hyperlinked from this page. State Farm has no discretion to alter, update, or control the content on the hyperlinked, third party site. Access to third party sites is at the user's own risk, is being provided for informational purposes only and is not a solicitation to buy or sell any of the products which may be referenced on such third party sites.

The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with State Farm®. While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. The information is not intended to replace manuals or instructions provided by the manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional. Nor is it intended to effect coverage under our policy. State Farm makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.

Get a Quote

Select a product to start a quote.

Contact Us

844-373-0003 844-373-0003

Also Important

Safe Driving Depends on Regular Tire Maintenance

Safe Driving Depends on Regular Tire Maintenance

It's crucial to keep tires in top shape. Learn how to maintain them and when to replace tires.

Black Ice: The Winter Hazard Nobody Sees Coming

Black Ice: The Winter Hazard Nobody Sees Coming

Many drivers are unaware of this slippery winter road culprit. Here's how to prepare.

Related Articles

Ways to Help Keep Your Car Clear of Snow and Ice

Ways to Help Keep Your Car Clear of Snow and Ice

Clearing windshields might help increase driving visibility

5 Tips to Remember for Driving Safely in the Rain

5 Tips to Remember for Driving Safely in the Rain

Being behind the wheel of a rain-splattered windshield doesn't have to be stressful.

Does Your Car Have This Icy Road Safety Feature?

Does Your Car Have This Icy Road Safety Feature?

When cars slip on frozen roads in winter, many drivers get a little help from ESC.