The nuances of choice of winter tyres for light commercial vehicles


Technical Director of Nokian Tyres ‘ Matti morri reveals the nuances and rules for the selection and operation of winter tires for light-duty commercial vehicles.
Light commercial vehicles are widely used in a variety of fields of small business, from coffee shops to street transportation of goods and passengers. Data our source confirmed that the stagnation of the domestic market of light commercial vehicles in 12-15 years were replaced on sales growth (46%) of new commercial vehicles in 2016. In September this year recorded an increase in sales of new commercial vehicles by 10.12%.

So in September 2017 sold 620 new commercial vehicles versus 563 in the previous year. Thus there is a positive trend of growth of commercial vehicles market at the beginning of the business season.

The launch of the business season coincides with the period of General decrease of temperature and the need to change tires for winter. Moreover, it is necessary to consider that the use of light commercial vehicles in the winter requires special attention to the choice of tyres.

General rules of choice of winter tyres
Not difficult to assess the risks and losses, both for established business and for start-UPS, from partial or complete failure of the “workhorse”. To minimize such situations, the choice of winter tires is necessary to consider a number of nuances.

The use of tires for the season and compliance with the terms of the replacement wheels today not regulated in domestic law. As world practice shows, the adjustment of these standards at the state level greatly increases driving safety, reduce the number of accidents related to the lack of set for a particular time of year, and also contributes to the reduction of injuries and fatalities in an accident. This is confirmed by the experience of EU countries, where mandatory seasonal use of tyres is strictly regulated by law.


For example, in Finland, for commercial vehicles up to 3,500 kg, there are rules of choice of tires similar to the rules for passenger cars and vans. All four winter tyres must be used from the beginning of December until the end of February.
However, if the vehicle weight exceeds 3500 kg, come into play additional requirements. In this case, winter tyres on a car can only be installed on the leading axis in the period from December to February. The depth of the main grooves of the tyre, shall be not less than 5 mm and the minimum tread depth at the other axles shall be 3 mm. So if the car weighs more than 3500 kg and has a rear-wheel drive, you should replace winter tires on the rear axle.

“We recommend the use of winter tires on all axles of a commercial vehicle, even for vehicles weighing more than 3,500 kg. Is the key to safe driving in the cold season. If winter tires are installed only on the rear axle, a heavy slow car lacks grip the front axle on turns. As a consequence of reduced controllability of the car, which is worse than responds to steering, which often leads to a complete loss of control of the vehicle”, emphasizes Matti morri, technical Director of Nokian Tyres.

Winter tyres for Northern conditions
For winter haulage will fit both studded and non-studded tires. High quality studded winter tyre Nokian Hakkapeliitta C3 has a modern square stud and ensures a balanced winter grip, with non-studded Nokian Hakkapeliitta CR3 driving in the cold season will be especially comfortable. Thanks to the technology of the Nokian Cryo Crystal tire provides excellent traction and handling on ice and snow. For heavy vehicles ideal Nokian Hakkapeliitta LT2 with reinforced carcass and sturdy sidewall, reinforced with aramid fibers.


Check tire pressure
The bus must withstand the weight of not only vehicles, but also cargo and passengers, while ensuring safety in transit and handling of the car. For these conditions, it is important to monitor the tire pressure.

“When preparing the car for the journey you need to check the actual axle loads fully loaded vehicle and adjust the pressure in accordance with the new weight. Very often the tire pressure of the vehicle does not match the actual axle loads, which can lead to poor handling”, emphasizes Matti morri.

Higher tyre pressure increases vehicle stability and reduces heat generation. This facilitates control of the vehicle and extends the tire life.

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