A tire is just a tire, right? As long as there is tread on it and it remains inflated, then it should be fine. At least that is what some motorists think. Knowing how to read A UTQG rating can help you get a bit more insight.
Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth. Yes, there is actually a big difference between economy tires and premium-priced tires. But, you do not have to just take the price tag as the gauge. Rather, there is an official rating system, that once you understand it, will help you understand tire quality at shops around Springfield.
What is the Funky Alphabet UTQG Rating All About?
When you see something like the UTQG Rating, you begin to think someone did not fair so well in kindergarten. That is not actually the case, this is the official tire ratings system. It actually stands for Uniform Tire Quality Grading.
This rating system allows consumers to quickly compare tread, traction, and temperature performance on tires. Keep reading for more on each of these.
One of the basic questions most consumers ask when considering tire options is the tread. What most people are actually asking about is a combination of how long the tread will last as well as how well it will grip. These are actually two different tire ratings.
The treadwear on the UTQG rating is very specific to how long the tread will last. The control against which all tires are measured is rated at 100. The higher the rating, the longer the tire should last compared to the control tire. That is great, but how long will the control tire last?
The control tire is expected to last roughly 30,000 miles under normal driving conditions. If a tire is rated 50, then it will last roughly 15,00 miles. If a tire is rated 600, then it should last roughly 180,000 miles.
Keep in mind that how the vehicle is operated will affect the actual service life of the tire. If a driver tends to spin the tires or lock them up when braking, that will reduce the life of the tire.
Anyone who has driven in the snow or a torrential downpour around Springfield understands how important of traction. Basically, this is the friction that the tire exerts on the road that allows you to control the vehicle. While the tread design will certainly affect this traction while tires are spinning, this test ignores that component.
Rather, this test focuses on the traction provided by the tread material. Believe it or not, there is a lot more in that tread than just rubber, and different formulations perform differently.
To actually test this material, the tires are mounted to a trailer. Then they are drug across wet asphalt and concrete test surfaces. This is done at a constant rate of speed. While the tires are skidding, the coefficient of traction is measured.
There are four ratings for traction: AA, A, B, and C. AA is the best and C is the lowest. What that means is that AA will grip a wet surface the best traveling on a straight line. C will be the most likely to skid under the same conditions.
Most people do not think about the temperature rating of tires, but it is extremely important. As you drive down the road, your tires are producing a lot of heat due to the friction that keeps you in control. The faster your tire spins, the more heat is generated.
Ultimately, you want a tire that will disperse heat effectively as it rolls down the road. Heat is part of what causes a tire to break down a tire over time. The temperature ratings are: A, B, and C. A-rated tires will effectively disperse heat at speeds in excess of 115 mph, while C-rated tires are between 85mph to 100mph. While you will not likely drive at these speeds on the roadways around Springfield, you can get a sense of how well the tire handles heat. With tires that cannot disperse heat well, the tire will break down more quickly.