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Member Since 18 Oct 2009
Offline Last Active Apr 10 2012 03:23 PM

Topics I've Started

Should You Buy Winter Tyres?

01 November 2011 - 08:42 PM

As there are a few threads and queries regarding winter tyres here is some current advice and information supplied by the AA

Should you buy winter tyres?

Winter tyres make sense if you live in a remote area where winter conditions are likely to be worse for longer.
Elsewhere it may be harder to justify the cost, though this has to be a personal decision depending on the risk of bad weather, your confidence when driving and how much you have to drive when snow and ice are around.

Winter tyres are made by most of the main manufacturers. Some suppliers will provide these pre-fitted to a set of steel wheels too.

If changing from alloy wheels to steel wheels - you may have to change the design of wheel nuts used too. Ask the wheel supplier or car manufacturer for advice.

Winter tyres must be fitted in sets of four. Fitting only one pair will affect the balance and stability of the car.

Winter tyres are not really suited to all year round use though – summer tyres will give better performance when temperatures are higher and roads dry – so you'll need two sets of tyres if you're going to choose specialist tyres for winter.

All Season Tyres
As an alternative you could consider buying 'All Season Tyres' which also have a high silica content for low temperature flexibility and a tread pattern somewhere between a normal summer tyre and an out-and-out winter tyre. Like all compromises they're unlikely to be as good as the best specialist tyre but can be expected to work better on wintry roads than a summer tyre and you will avoid the hassle and cost of swapping wheels/tyres twice a year.

Insurance implications - winter tyres
If you fit winter or all-season tyres in place of your standard 'summer' tyres there should be no need to tell your insurer – even though the speed index might be lower.

If you follow the standard European practice of keeping two sets of wheels, one with winter tyres and one with summer tyres, then you shouldn't need to tell your insurer as long as the winter tyres are fitted to wheels of the correct specification.
'Correct specification' means that the wheel size – diameter, width and offset – conforms to the vehicle manufacturer's specifications.
Check the handbook for details of wheel/tyre sizes suitable for your car and refer to the car manufacturer or dealer for further advice.

Over the winter of 2010/11 we did hear reports of some insurers increasing premiums or remarkably even refusing cover if winter tyres are fitted. As a result we (the AA) recommend talking to your insurer if you are considering fitting winter tyres.

According to the Association of British Insurers (ABI)
If anything winter tyres should reduce the accident risk and, by implication, drivers who fit them are likely to be more risk-conscious too.
The major motor insurers have all confirmed that they would not class fitting winter tyres as a material modification and it would not impact on the premium. The one condition would be that they would expect such tyres to be fitted by reputable garage/dealer, in accordance with the motor manufacturer's specifications.

Some said that they would not require the policyholder to tell the insurer these tyres had been fitted, but the ABI's advice is to play safe and tell your insurer anyway.

Tread depth and pressure
Whatever tyres you fit they must have enough tread – at least 3mm is recommended for winter, and certainly no less than 2mm.

Check tyre pressures too but don't be tempted to try reducing pressure when there's snow and ice about – it doesn't help with grip and can affect handling.

Why are winter tyres not compulsory here?
There are several practical and economic reasons:
many parts of the country never or only rarely experience weather conditions that would justify use of winter tyres
many drivers choose not to use the car when snow or ice are around

Please bear in mind that NO tyre works very well on black ice ... winter driving skills still need to be learned. A set of winter tyres makes keeping control easier but does not guarantee that the car will never slide, just as ABS does not allow a car to stop from high speed in zero distance.


Facebook Help

30 August 2011 - 12:11 PM

Can I ask a favour of those of you who use facebook?

I need as many as possible to click on the like button on my page which will help me get a direct url line via face book to Flickr, which I am then hoping I can use to promote some of my photography.


If you wish to view my Flickr sets the current link via Filckr is;


Thanks to all in advance :)

Mk7 Lower Front Grill

03 June 2011 - 08:50 AM

Anyone taken the lower front grill off their MK7?

How easy is it what’s the best way of removing it and is there any thing I need to watch out for?

Thanks for looking and any help appreciated

Site Problems

02 May 2011 - 02:53 PM

1) Do you know why are there certain phrases when you type linking automatically to ebay?
e.g. fuel cap - fuel pump in this thread

2) why when you click on report post does it tell you that you can't report it?

3) I still have problems viewing pages, one day I can, next day the site won’t let me view the same page.

Ford Easy Fuel

02 May 2011 - 09:24 AM

Because of all the ‘worries’ about Fords easy fuel system I thought we should have a poll on this matter. I have been driving for ooooooo a fair number of years and never had any problems with or without a locking fuel cap on my vehicles and I find all this ‘worrying’ rather unnecessary.
I find Fords system easy to use and should someone really want to steal your fuel a locking cap would be of little help and may cause more damage than without.

We are really only talking about the current Fiesta or cars with a similar ‘easy fuel’ system

So please choose your answers carefully so we can discover what really are the chances of this kind of thing happening to you.