4 winter tire storage tips to protect your investment

October 6, 2015

Winter tires are an investment and like any investment, you can take steps to get more for your money. Here's how to store your winter tires safely to protect them for years to come.

4 winter tire storage tips to protect your investment

Storing winter tires isn't just a matter of putting them in the garage. There are a few simple things you can do right now to make sure that they're stored correctly. That way when winter rolls around again, your tires will still be reliable for years to come when you need them.

1. Prepare your tires for storage

The first step is to clean your tires up. Just like you wouldn't throw a pair of wet, muddy boots into your closet for months on end, you shouldn't put away your tires still coated in grime, brake dust and dirt.

  • Cleaning your tires properly before packing them helps prevent damage.

2. Seal winter tires into airtight containers

The lubricating oil in tire compounds is vulnerable to exposure to air. Letting them sit out means the oil could evaporate. By storing your winter tires in an airtight bag or container, you ensure the tires are protected.

3. Create a safe environment for your winter tires

There are other factors to consider about the environment you store your winter tires in. It should be:

  • Away from direct sunlight, which can cause the rubber in your tires to overheat and begin to degrade.
  • Free from ozone and ozone-generating machinery, which can also lead to tire damage.
  • Climate-controlled and free from temperature extremes of hot or cold, since both intense heat and freezing temperatures can put unnecessary wear on the rubber.
  • Dry, since excess humidity or dampness can break down the rubber of your tires.

4. When to hang winter tires

Although it's tempting to hang your tires on hooks while they're in storage, keep in mind that this option is best only when the tires are mounted.

  • Unmounted tires can become distorted or damaged by hooks, making them useless the next time you need them.

What about whitewall tires?

Whitewall (or white-lettered) tires require special attention, since stacking them incorrectly can lead to problems with tire cleanliness.

  • If you're bagging each tire individually, it's not an issue. Otherwise, it's important to make sure that the tires are stacked white-to-white and black-to-black.

Once your tires are properly stored, you can rest easy knowing they still have a good, long life ahead of them. Your investment is safe, and your winter tires will be ready for the challenges of the next icy season.

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