Storing Your Winter Tires: A How-To Guide
While swapping out one set of tires for another is a challenge in itself, once our winter tires are removed, we still need to store them properly for the warm months ahead.
Use the following steps to store your winter wheels throughout the spring and summer months, so that you can prolong the life of your tires and make sure they are ready to go for next winter.
Step 1: Inspect
Inspect your tires before you put them away for the spring and summer. Check them thoroughly for cracks, damage, and deterioration of the rubber.
Check the tread of your tires as well – if the tire depth is nearing the wear indicator, it’s wise to purchase a new set of winter tires for next winter. Prepare and budget accordingly, so that you can make that purchase when the time comes.
Step 2: Clean
Before storing your tires, it’s wise to give them a good cleaning so that they’re ready to go for next winter.
Use a tire brush, soap, and water to scrub dirt, brake dust, and grime off of your tires, making sure to clean every nook and cranny. Allow them to dry thoroughly before continuing.
Step 3: Bag
While it’s not absolutely necessary to bag your tires, it’s definitely helpful in keeping your tires clean and moisture-free throughout the sunny season ahead.
You’ll need one large, plastic bag for each tire – preferably airtight bags, such as the ones used for lawn and leaf collection. Remove as much air as possible, using a vacuum if necessary, and take care that no moisture gets into the bags. Use tape to close each bag tightly – this will help minimize the evaporation of oil from your tires.
If you will be storing your tires outside, keeping them in their own separate bags will also protect them from the elements.
Step 4: Stack
Rather than resting your tires on the tread, you should stack them one on top of the other. Even without the weight of your car, storing your tires vertically could cause unnecessary stress and tire distortion.
What’s more, avoid storing anything on top of your tires, as this will only add additional weight and once again add unnecessary stress, which could lead to damage and tire cracks.
Step 5: Store
Store your tires in a clean, cool, and dry location, preferably indoors. Storing your tires indoors is better than keeping them outside, since there is less temperature and humidity variation indoors than there is outside. A climate controlled environment – such as a heated garage or basement – is an ideal storage location.
What’s more, you should keep your tires out of direct sunlight – heat and UV rays from the sun can damage the rubber of your tires.
If you are storing your tires in your own house, you should avoid storing them near an appliance that emits carbon monoxide, such as a central vacuum cleaner or a furnace. You should also keep them away from any heat sources, and make sure that they don’t come in contact with fuels, solvents, chemicals, lubricants or other liquids that could by stored alongside them in your garage.
While it’s important to outfit your car with the right type of tires, it’s just as important to outfit your automobile with the right type of auto insurance policy. Protect your car for years to come with proper car insurance coverage, so that you can have peace of mind, no matter the season.