Directional or asymmetrical tread pattern. What’s the difference?
Almost every car owner when choosing tires asks which ones are better? Indeed, a huge range of tires, including winter , all-season and summer models, different sizes, different tread patterns create some difficulties in selecting tires. One of the most pressing questions asked by buyers is the following: which tread is the best, directional or asymmetrical, and what is the difference between them? I must say that the answer to it is not as obvious as it may seem at first glance …
Many drivers generally confuse the concept of asymmetry and direction of tires, believing them to be identical or very close. In fact, this is not the case and the difference between these types of tires is important. In general, tires are available with three types of tread patterns: symmetrical directional – it’s just “directional”, symmetrical non-directional, or, as it is called, “symmetrical” and asymmetrical non-directional – “asymmetrical”. They all have their own technical and operational characteristics. The question arises, is there any universal option? The answer is no. When choosing a set of tires, each car owner has to take into account the conditions in which the tires will be used. It should be noted at once that symmetrical tires are a budget option. The tread of such tires has a mirror pattern, rubber compound and cord construction are homogeneous. Such tires are usually recommended for a calm, neat driving style.
This type of car tire is considered one of the most common. Their protectors are easy to recognize. They resemble the English letter “V” or, as they say, look like a “Christmas tree”. This structure forms an effective drainage system. When driving on wet roads, the water on the V-shaped channels is thrown to the side, and numerous traction edges make the car stable. Increased traction of cars with the road and the exclusion of aquaplaning are the undoubted advantages of directional tires, which allows them to operate in regions with severe winters, characterized by high rainfall.
Along with the advantages, directional tires have disadvantages. The main ones are increased wear and high noise while driving. When installing such tires on the car, it is important to follow the direction of the drawing. And so on their sides are marked with arrows that indicate the direction of rotation, that is, it turns out that a particular tire assembly with a disc can be installed only on a certain side of the car.
This type of tread was born on the tracks. They eliminated the constant replacement of wheels depending on specific conditions – the replacement of rubber resistant to aquaplaning on slippery surfaces with one that has maximum traction and eliminates the entry of the car on high-speed turns.
Features of the structure of the asymmetric tire tread are that the outer part ensures the stability of the car when maneuvering, and the inner is responsible for drainage. Constructively it looks like this. The outer part of the tread has large rubber blocks that form ground hooks, and is made of a denser rubber compound. And the inner part has received numerous drainage channels and is made of softer rubber. The cord of the inner and outer parts of asymmetric tires is also heterogeneous. The outer part has a reinforcement formed by reinforcing weave of high density.
In order not to confuse these two parts during installation, inscriptions are applied on the sides of the tires. “OUTSIDE” on the outside and “INSIDE” on the inside. Properly installed, only “OUTSIDE” will be visible on all wheels on both sides.
Asymmetric tires are available in both winter and summer. Winter models are noticeably softer than summer ones. They have a deep cut and are not afraid of frost. Summer models are made of harder rubber, which is resistant to high temperatures.
Of the disadvantages of asymmetric tires should be noted the more expensive production.
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