Making the Tire Grade… A Quick Guide to Tires


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There are dozens of major tire manufacturers in the United State each with dozens, sometimes hundreds of unique tire lines.

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Making the Tire Grade… A Quick Guide to Tires

  1. 1. Making the Tire Grade… A Quick Guide to Tires <br /> <br />August 9, 2010<br />
  2. 2. If a car owner wants new tires where should they start? <br />There are dozens of major tire manufacturers in the United State each with dozens, sometimes hundreds of unique tire lines <br />Gathering information is as good of a place as any and the Uniform Tire Quality Grading (UTQG) system contains helpful information that can guide consumers in their purchase. <br />
  3. 3. Standard Grading System<br />The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) established the UTQG to create a standard grading system for three different tire components - treadwear, traction and temperature <br />
  4. 4. Know the Grade<br />Car owners can find these grades when visiting a local tire retailer on the tire itself; specifically, the paper labels on the tread and actually molded on the sidewall. <br />
  5. 5. Making the Grade<br />Tire manufacturers conduct testing for the UTQG using independent testing companies.<br /> Even though the government doesn’t conduct the tests, they inspect the data and hand out penalties for inaccuracies <br />
  6. 6. Treadwear<br />The treadwear grade is comparative based <br />Cars are tested under controlled conditions on a test track and given a rating depending on their wear rate <br />Tires with a rating of 200 lasted twice as long on the test track as tires with a rating of 100. <br />
  7. 7. A Word of Caution <br />Treadwear grades aren’t directly proportional outside the store for a few reasons. <br />The first is that condition of roads, driving habits, climate and service practices all factor in to how long tires last (which the tests can’t take into account). <br />Also, since different manufacturers have different grading schemes using treadwear grades to compare tires from specific manufacturers works better then using it to compare tires from competing manufacturers <br />
  8. 8. Traction<br />The traction grade represents the level of grip tires have, the UTQG tests the tire's ability to stop on wet pavement <br />The test evaluates a sliding tire at a constant speed (40 mph) by locking the brakes in order to measure its coefficient of friction as it slides <br />
  9. 9. Traction Cont.<br />The testing doesn’t take into account cornering, hydroplaning or acceleration. <br />There are four different ratings, from highest to lowest – “AA,” “A,” “B,” and “C.” <br />The “AA” rating is relatively new and was added in 1997. <br />
  10. 10. Temperature<br />The temperature grade represents the tire's resistance to the generation of heat <br />There are three grades, from highest to lowest – “A”, “B” and “C.” <br />A tire with a “C” rating means under the test conditions it had the minimum performance. A “C” doesn’t mean it’s unsafe, just that it will run hotter than one with an “A” rating <br />Heat is what causes tires to deteriorate over time<br />
  11. 11. The UTQG isn’t the only thing to consider when purchasing tires, but it’s a good source of information and knowing what they mean helps put them in context. <br />Driving style, type of vehicle, climate, brand name and price are all things to consider along with the three UTQG ratings. A helpful sales professional at your local tire retailer can also assist you when choosing the tire that’s right for you and your style<br />
  12. 12. Belle Tire<br />People have trusted Belle Tire for the best value since 1922. Because at Belle Tire we challenge ourselves every day to make sure that you always get the lowest tire price, period. Prove it to yourself. Take the Belle Tire Price Challenge. Challenge us online, over the phone or even challenge us right in the store. Come in to any Belle Tire, and we’ll check other stores’ prices with you, right at the counter, and prove to you that Belle Tire has the lowest tire prices, PERIOD! Plus, at Belle Tire, you’ll always get out the door with more value, services and protection with every tire installation than the competition can offer, at any price! For the Lowest Tire Price, Period and great low prices on Custom Wheels, Alignments, Brakes, Batteries, Oil and Lube, Shocks & Struts, Windshield Repair and Replacement, and more. Visit and also join our online communities: <br />BELLE TIRE CARES * BLOG * FACEBOOK * TWITTER * ABOUT BELLE TIRE<br />