The Benefits and Drawbacks of Siping
After getting new tires for your ride at the local tire shop chances are good they asked you if you wanted your tires “siped”. For those new to the term siping is a process where thousands of small cuts are applied to a tire with the intent to improve their traction, especially during adverse weather conditions.
Tires do not come from the manufacturer siped. In fact, some manufacturers believe that siping compromises the integrity of the original design of the tire. Others against siping suggest that though traction can be improved through this process that the driver is taking a risk of having their tires wear out more quickly as a result of this process.
Proponents of siping argue the opposite. They suggest that siping improves handling even in favorable driving conditions, improves grip on the road, and extends the life of the tire because the micro cuts to the tire allow heat to dissipate faster from the tire. They argue that the reduction of heat caused by friction on the tire reduces wear on the rubber and thereby improves longevity rather than decreases it.
Consider the above arguments and the type of weather you drive in regularly. If you drive in weather where rain and ice are prevalent you might consider siping. If you drive in normal conditions where there is average rain and little ice or snow, you might just want to skip the siping. It is optional and very much a personal preference
Siping may be much like deer whistles. Those who have never hit a deer swear by them; those that have hit a deer will tell you they don’t work at all. Ours is not to pass judgment one way or another but rather to give you the best information and let you decide.
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