Depending on where you live and the sort of driving you do, you may or may not need winter tires. Snow tires are great for getting better traction on snow and ice, but they also have their disadvantages.
First of all, if you do live in an area that gets heavy snowfall in the winter, you should seriously consider getting winter tires. Because they’re made of softer material and have specially designed tread to grip onto the slickest surfaces, snow tires can prevent accidents by giving you more stopping power and keeping you from sliding off the road.
Very low temperatures are also a good reason to get winter tires. If you live somewhere northern where it gets extremely cold in the winter, your all-season tires will harden, reducing traction even further. The softer rubber of winter tires stays more pliant.
On the downside, you can’t drive on winter tires all year, so you will have to switch them out when the weather starts to warm up, which can be a hassle. Because of their soft materials, they wear down quickly, and their extra grippiness ruins dry roads.
All-season tires are meant to be driven year-round, and while they aren’t as good as winter tires on snow, they aren’t bad. So—do you need winter tires? If you live in a warmer area or a place with little snowfall, winter tires are probably an unnecessary investment. Otherwise, they’re likely worth the cost.