How Do You Properly Store Summer Tires?
A lot of people choose to keep two sets of season tires, one set for spring and summer driving and another for winter driving. The thing people always ask when they finally make the leap into having multiple sets of seasonal tires is, ‘How do you properly store summer tires?’ Simply placing the out-of-date set of tires in the corner of your garage or basement isn’t good enough. Improperly storing a set of tires can cause them to age prematurely, develop cracks in the sidewalls, and, eventually, increase the odds you’ll experience a blowout. Let’s take a closer look at some things you should know before you swap out your summer tires for winter tires.
[READ MORE: When is the Best Month to Put on Winter Tires?]
Tips for Storing Summer Tires During the Winter
Your work isn’t done after removing your summer tires and replacing them with snow tires. Skipping these steps can have some negative consequences that will lead to more problems later, if they come to fruition.
Clean Off Seasonal Dirty and Grime
Removing a season’s worth of dirt, grime, and brake dust is crucial to properly storing a set of winter tires. Fortunately, you don’t really need anything terribly fancy to get the job done. Some tire-safe detergent (like dish soap), warm water, and a good stiff brush are all you need to get the tires ready to rest for the winter. After you wash and scrub all the dirt off the tires, make sure they are completely dry before moving to the next step.
Seal-Up Each Tire
Leaving tires exposed to air is the top enemy of keeping the rubber as fresh and usable as possible. Tire bags are available that will allow you to use a vacuum cleaner to pull the air out of the bag. However, plastic (or other airtight material) yard waste bags are likely large enough to hold your tires while being stored. The important part is being able to remove as much air from the bag as possible.
Choose the Right Location
If leaving tires exposed to air is the top enemy of tires, the heat and UV light from the sun is a close second. Keeping the tires out of direct sunlight and finding a cool dark place (like a basement) is critical. Additionally, any area that will be holding the tires should have some kind of ventilation.
Certain electric motors produce ozone which is very bad for the health of tires. Avoid storing tires near:
- Sump pumps