Rotating Directional Tires for Dry Conditions

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I have directional staggered tires that have never been rotated. The rears have worn unevenly. I am thinking that once our rainy season is over (it doesn't rain in much of CA for half the year), could I swap the rears? I read that in dry conditions, directional tires are better for high speed. But what kind of speeds are we talking about?
 
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Originally Posted by old1
I think he is asking if it would hurt to just switch sides, and run the directional tires backwards.
Yep. For driving in the dry only (6-8 months in CA).
 
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Originally Posted by CharlieBauer
Originally Posted by old1
I think he is asking if it would hurt to just switch sides, and run the directional tires backwards.
Yep. For driving in the dry only (6-8 months in CA).
Totally your call, but I wouldn't do it. Maybe CapriRacer will be by shortly to add his expertise.
 
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You didn't say what kind of car you have, but I'll bet it is a RWD. If so, the just swapping directional tires left to right is going to reduce the wet traction somewhat, so be careful with the throttle when it rains. If not RWD, then you need to reduce your speed when it rains - especially when cornering. Tires can hydroplane as low as 40 mph.
 
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Originally Posted by CharlieBauer
... could I swap the rears?
I wouldn't without reversing them on the rims. They may work fine in the dry, but if you ever had an accident the fact they were on "backwards" could get major play. And if it came out that you had done that on purpose, you would be hard pressed to find anyone to support you. If the fronts have relatively similar I'd leave them where they are.
 
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Here is a question ... why are some (most ... ) of the highest performance tires out there NOT directional ? Like Michelin PSS or PS4, Continental Extreme Contact etc. If a directional tread design made such a huge difference in the rain, you know that the top tire makers would use it on their flagship performance tires. And they don't ... That is because the actual performance difference is very small, and often only measurable at extremely high speeds. Tread DEPTH is vitally important, and the tread / void ratio plays a large role as well. The water needs a place to go. The actual tread pattern itself makes little difference, IF the water has some place to go.
 
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Originally Posted by geeman789
Here is a question ... why are some (most ... ) of the highest performance tires out there NOT directional ? Like Michelin PSS or PS4, Continental Extreme Contact etc. If a directional tread design made such a huge difference in the rain, you know that the top tire makers would use it on their flagship performance tires. And they don't ... That is because the actual performance difference is very small, and often only measurable at extremely high speeds. Tread DEPTH is vitally important, and the tread / void ratio plays a large role as well. The water needs a place to go. The actual tread pattern itself makes little difference, IF the water has some place to go.
Way back when, someone tested a directional tire for wet traction, then reversed the direction of travel. They got a 10% difference. That means that the difference between a directional tire and a non-directional tire is only 5%. I think a professional racecar driver could find that 5% useful, but I'll bet the average motorist could never tell. And as pointed out above, tread depth makes much more of a difference.
 
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It's too late for those tires anyway. Just run them and start shopping for some new non-directional tires, and keep them rotated side-side, plus make sure the alignment is spot on.
 
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The only way to make a staggered tire fitment last longer is to dismount, flip and rebalance the tire. Most cars running a staggered set up have more rear negative camber than average, so that inside edge of the tire gets more wear, on either side of the car. The inside shoulder is always on the inside ... you need to flip the tire to move it to the outside.
 
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