Summer Tire Changeover Month takes place annually in the U.S. during the month of April and is designed to educate car owners on the importance of changing their tires twice a year. Because the U.S. is such a large country, it has a wide range of climates. As summer approaches in March, warmer temperatures normally arrive in April. Failure to replace winter tires with more appropriate summer tires can result in greater wear and, ultimately, poor tire performance. As a result, many people in the U.S. have traditionally followed the practice of using winter or snow tires from Thanksgiving to Tax Day, which is roughly November to April.
History of Summer Tire Changeover Month
The first tires were bands of leather — which later evolved into steel — mounted on wooden wheels and manipulated by a skilled person. At the time, the complexity of the operational procedure was overwhelming. It wasn’t until 1888 that a Scots-born vet named John Boyd Dunlop invented the first workable tire. Minor changes were made to the tire until Germany came up with synthetic rubber in 1920.
However, following WWII, more research was conducted to find alternatives to rubber tires, and by 1946, Michelin had created the radial tire construction method. The radial tire design swiftly expanded throughout Europe and Asia due to its excellence. This led to more tire research and the creation of different kinds of tires, like snow tires and tires with spikes. In Asia and Europe, the rules about whether you need snow tires or can use studs vary by country. In North America, the rules depend on the state or province. In Japan, limits on the use of studded tires for passenger vehicles were enacted in 1991, and other countries quickly followed suit.
Because the weather is different in different parts of the U.S., each state and province has its own rules about how studded tires can be used. Car owners and drivers must be informed of the consequences of using the wrong tires in the wrong climate. To that end, on February 1, 2004, a legislative statute known as the “Highway Traffic Act Winter Tires Regulations” was passed in an attempt to control the nationwide use of the appropriate tires during the appropriate season.
Summer Tire Changeover Month timeline
A Scots-born vet invents the first pneumatic tire.
Germany begins the production of synthetic rubber tires.
Michelin develops the radial tire which quickly spreads throughout Europe and Asia.
Federal authorities begin to enforce restrictions against the use of studded tires for passenger vehicles.
Summer Tire Changeover Month FAQs
Can you still use summer tires in the winter?
Using summer tires in the winter could be dangerous and could cause your tires to wear out.
At what temperature do summer tires stop working?
As the air temperature drops, usually between 40 and 45 degrees Fahrenheit, summer tires lose a significant amount of grip because the tread compound rubber changes from being soft and elastic to being hard and plastic.
Is it worth getting winter tires with rims?
It’s a good idea to have a set of wheels (rims) to go with your winter tires. It saves the wear and tear of mounting seasonal tires and makes the seasonal changeover easy and much cheaper.
How to Observe Summer Tire Changeover Month
Inspect your tire alignments
Use changeover month to carry out that overdue tire checkup you’ve been postponing. While you're swapping out your winter tires for summer wheels, doing a total tire inspection can also come in handy.
Go on a scenic drive
After you’ve installed your tires for the summer, ride out into the warm summer breeze and give the tires some mileage. You can go on a road trip with your friends or family as well.
Throw a tire changeover party
Everyone likes a good reason to go to a party. During Changeover Month, you can throw a party for your friends and invite them to show off their summer wheels.
5 Facts About Tires
Flat tires can last a while without air
They are made to go about 50 miles at 50 mph, but you can get a lot more miles out of them if you drive more slowly.
Early tires were white
To increase the strength of the rubber, manufacturers added zinc oxide, which turned it white.
The modern tire contains over 200 materials
Tires are usually made of Kevlar, nylon, rubber, and steel, but there are a lot of other things that go into making them.
The world’s largest tire is in Michigan
It is 80 feet tall and weighs 12 tons and was originally used as a Ferris wheel at the 1964-65 New York World Fair.
Used tires contribute a lot of waste
More than 250 million used tires are thrown away every year.
Why Summer Tire Changeover Month is Important
It's the perfect time to switch to summer tires
April marks the beginning of summer in many parts of the country. This is an excellent time for motorists to make the transition from winter tires to all-season tires.
It's a great time to stock up on tires
Because of the impending arrival of winter weather, now is an excellent time for motorists to stock up on tires. Be sure to pick up some long-lasting summer tires from a company you can rely on, or at the very least get your current set checked out.
It's a great time to service your car
Summer weather means road trips and outdoor meetings. Getting all parts of your car checked out before the summer starts can save you stress and help you avoid last-minute trips to the mechanic shop.
Summer Tire Changeover Month dates