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Depending on where you live, you will need to put winter tires on your Mazda 3 when it starts to get cold out. Even though this Mazda comes with all-season tires, this is not enough in colder areas with snow and ice. The issue then becomes choosing the right winter tires for your Mazda 3. The easiest option is to ask your dealership for a suggestion, but you will still want to know a few things first.

Why You Need Mazda 3 Winter Tires

No matter the type of vehicle you drive, you need winter tires to deal with tough weather conditions. All-season tires aren’t designed to work in extreme temperatures, meaning that they will start to lose elasticity when it gets colder out. As soon as it gets below 45 degrees Fahrenheit or 7 degrees Celsius, the elasticity will start to decrease, reducing traction. Winter tires, on the other hand, contain special compounds that help them keep their elasticity even in cold temperatures. These tires also have special tread patterns that stop snow from building up and boost the traction on snow and ice in particular. Using winter tires as opposed to all-season tires during cold, snowy, or icy weather reduces your stopping distance and your risk of spinning out or fishtailing.

Ideal Size for Mazda 3 Winter Tires

When it comes to winter tires, narrow tires will be easier to maneuver through the snow. The easiest way to choose the size of your winter tires is to look at the optional wheel and tire size on the base model of the Mazda 3. This model comes standard with 16-inch wheels with 18-inch ones only available on the GT trim. The 16-inch wheels come with 205/60R16 while the 18-inch ones come with 215/45R18 all-season tires. That means that your Mazda 3 winter tires should probably be 16 or 18 inches depending on the trim you have. You can also use minus sizing and pick a tire that is one inch smaller in diameter than your all-season tires but has a slightly taller profile.

Other Winter Tire Considerations

When looking for your winter tires, you should also be willing to pay more for a high-quality tire. These will do a better job at holding up to the elements and last longer. Most Mazda 3 winter tires will have a special tread compound and advanced tread design to boost traction and shorten the stopping distance, giving you a better brake performance. When you install you winter tires, be sure to install all four at once as this will optimize their performance benefits. Many winter tires will have a Severe Snow Conditions Symbol, which indicates they meet the standards set by the Rubber Manufacturers Association for snow traction.

Tips for Using Winter Tires

Remember that while the Mazda 3 winter tires are important to use during the winter months when temperatures drop, you should not use them all year round. As soon as the temperature begins staying above 45 degrees Fahrenheit or 7 degrees Celsius consistently, you should switch back to the original all-season tires that came with your Mazda 3. It will be time to replace your winter tires if their depth is 4/32nds or less.

 

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