Mikey - That's a ridiculous sentiment shared by many but thats hard to hold in my type of climate. I spend 5 months on very cold roads with either dry or damp conditions, of which a few days have snow on them. As far as I know, a good all-season still outperforms a performance snow tire on dry or damp roads in 25-30 degree weather (which is what i have). So the bulk of my driving, and my driving time, might be safest with an all-season in the winter.
Might be what you believe but it is not true. The equal performance level is about 5 c anything lower than that and a winter has the advantage. If you google you will get web site after web site explaining. The educational tools are out there.
Hear is one quote
It's winter, but I don't see snow on the ground yet. Is there still a benefit to using winter tires when there is no snow?
On dry pavement, the overall performance of an all-season tire steadily declines as the temperature gets colder. The crossover point is about 5 degrees Celsius. Colder than that, a winter tire outperforms an all-season tire. Winter tire performance sharply improves as temperatures fall from 5 degrees to -30 degrees Celsius, while the all-season tire approaches the "not recommended" status.
What is the difference between all-season tires and winter tires?
All-season tires continue to provide safe all-weather performance, but may not always be suitable for severe snow conditions. All-season tires do not have cold weather rubber compounds, channelling tread patterns, the large number of tread sipes (tiny ****s in the tread blocks) for wet surface control, and the open tread block pattern for deep snow traction that winter tires feature. The lack of a formal "snow" designation on the tire has further fuelled the misconception that "all-season" tires also mean "winter" tires.
Another quote, clearly dispels your myth and support what Mikey offered
How does the tread design of winter tires affect their performance over all-season tires?
Winter tires typically feature a unidirectional tread design. The unidirectional, V-groove tires move slush and water out of the way better than any other tread design. The more open the tread design, the better the tire will perform against accumulated snow. The larger the tread blocks, the better the handling, steering response, and transient response. The more sipes (tiny ****s in the tread blocks), the better the tire will work on wet pavement, which is different than anti-hydroplaning. New advances, such as Goodyear's patented 3D-BIS - which stands for three dimensional block interlocking system
- causes tread blocks to actually interlock during cornering, stopping, and at increased speeds.
If you are still doubting try this
Transport Canada, the Automobile Protection Agency and the Rubber Association of Canada have produced a series of videos that demonstrate the benefits of winter tires for winter driving. Click here
to see the videos.
Before you say this is Canada yes it is, but these differences start at 5 Celsius so at the -1 Celsius you are speaking of there is still a significant advantage taken by the winter tire.