Ever wonder why there are different patterns on the car tire? Are these designs or patterns only to quench our aesthetic thirst or do they have some stability purpose too? Definitely these tire tread patterns play a great role in car's stability and tire traction while driving at different terrain. Not one type of tire tread pattern is suggested for all types of roads in all weather conditions. Some are best for wet conditions, some for winters and some for summers. Similarly different tires are advised when driving for different purposes. Drag racing tires or street racing tires are different for driving on a smooth track or for domestic purposes. You use a non compatible tread pattern and the tire traction will be lost which may result in severe results.
Below I will discuss some types of tread patterns you may find on different tires along with their appropriate use and their good and bad points. You may find following patterns on a normal tire.
1). Asymmetric Tread Pattern
The tread pattern differs from both sides of the tire. It also means that a tire features two patterns along its whole circumference.With this type of pattern, the manufacturers ensure that majority of the possible terrains are dealt with a single set of tires so the drivers do not need to change their tires in different conditions.
Since the tire with this type of pattern provides a higher contact area, it is considered good for high speed cornering. More than one type of tread pattern means that the inboard and outboard halves have two sizes of groove blocks. The grooves on the inward halve (smaller blocks) help retain tire traction on wet surface while the larger blocks on outward halve, helps great in cornering.
Because of these features they are proposed for high performance and motor sports needs. However you need to position them right way around to make them perform well.
2). Symmetric Tread Pattern
As the name suggest, the there is a single tread pattern on the entire tire. Therefore the inboard and outboard halves represent the same patterns. Hence the name, Symmetrical. Tires with such tread patterns emit high noise than other tires. They allow using multiple tire rotation patterns.
3). Directional Tread Pattern
A.K.A unidirectional tread, the whole pattern along with lateral grooves, roll around in one direction along the entire tire's circumference. These lateral grooves allow water to eject more efficiently (hydroplaning) hence prevents the car to skit on wet surface. These are also considered effective as street racing tires however there is one disadvantage of them.
When rotating tires with unidirectional treads, the tire on the front axle should be shifted to the rear axle, and vice verca. If different tire sizes are used on the front vs. rear axle, the tires become location-specific and prohibit tire rotation unless remounted.
4). Asymmetric And Directional Tread Pattern
These have V-shaped lateral grooves on them. Hence they are also known as V groove tires.They are much near to directional tread pattern tires hence they should be treated like them. Disadvantage is as same as directional pattern tread pattern tires.