Do D.C. drivers need to invest in winter tires?


False, it is not necessary

SOURCES:, AAA Mid-Atlantic, Consumer Reports


The snow may have tapered off for now but this probably isn't the last we're going to see of it this winter.

Some people think it's necessary to have snow tires, but if you live in the D.C. area do you really need them?

To get answers, we tracked down tire experts from, AAA Mid-Atlantic, and Consumer Reports. explains They have large tread blocks and deep groves for digging into the snow and rubber is designed to also work on dry pavement as well. You can identify them by a snowflake symbol on the sidewall.

But be prepared to switch them out for all season tires in warmer weather since winter tires provide a better grip at lower temperatures between 40 and 50 degrees below.

So now you're looking at additional money to have on two sets of tires, having them switched out twice a year and a storage space for them.

AAA Mid-Atlantic Public Affairs Manager, John Townsend told WUSA9 researchers some of latest all-weather tires are designed to outperform winter tires and properly inflated tires can be equipped to handle heavy snow and black ice.

Consumer Reports experts say if you are thinking of getting winter tires, keep in mind they will wear more quickly than all season tires and on average, they provide four seasons of good use before needing to be replaced. Executive Editor, Joe Wiesenfelder says because of our weather and that winter tires can't be used in warmer weather, D.C. area drivers don't need to make the investment.

So there are some benefits to having snow tires during brutally cold winters like if you live in the Midwest, but here in the DC area we can verify false, they are not needed.

Instead, just make sure you have a quality tire and check the pressure to make sure they're properly inflated. It'll make a big difference when you get out there to battle traffic in the snow.