What has changed and how it will influence the drivers?
From May 1, 2021, new European requirements for labels and markings on tyres will come into force. Bus and truck tyres will also be covered by the new regulation. Tyres will no longer be allowed in the F and G classes due to rolling resistance and wet grip, so the new scale only includes 5 classes (A to E). The new energy symbols better suggest that fuel economy applies to both combustion and electric vehicles. In the lower part, the noise class is always indicated with the value of the external noise level in decibels. According to the new regulation, in addition to the standard label, an icon will appear for grip on icy roads and / or in difficult snow conditions. This gives consumers a total of 4 label options.
– The energy labels provide a clear and common classification of tyre performance in terms of rolling resistance, wet braking and external noise. They will help consumers make conscious decisions when purchasing tyres as they can be easily judged on the basis of 3 parameters. These are just selected parameters, one each in terms of energy efficiency, braking distance and comfort. A mindful driver, when buying tyres, should also check the tyre tests in the same or very similar size as the ones he is looking for, where he will also compare, among others: braking distance on a dry road and on snow (in the case of winter or all-season tyres), cornering grip and resistance to aquaplaning. Before buying, it is worth talking to a service technician in a professional tyre service – says Piotr Sarnecki, General Director of the Polish Tyre Industry Association (PTIA).
The new label features the same three classifications as before – fuel efficiency, wet grip and noise levels. However, the class icons for wet grip and fuel efficiency have been redesigned to resemble household appliance labels. The empty classes have been removed and the scale is marked with letters A through E. In addition, the decibel dependent noise class is given in a new way, using letters A through C.
Additional pictograms have been introduced on the new label to inform about the increased grip of the tyres on snow and / or ice (note: the pictogram regarding grip on ice applies to passenger car tyres only). They show that the tyre can be used in certain winter conditions. The labels may have no markings, only snow grip, ice grip only, or both, depending on the tyre model.
– The symbol of ice grip itself means a tyre intended for the Scandinavian and Finnish markets – with a rubber compound even softer than typical winter tyres, adapted to very low temperatures and long periods of ice and snow on roads. Such tyres on dry or wet roads at temperatures around 0 degrees C and above (which often happens during autumn and winter in Central Europe) will show less grip and significantly longer braking distance, increased noise and fuel consumption. Therefore, they cannot replace typical winter tyres and all-season tyres developed for our winters – points Piotr Sarnecki.
A scannable QR code has also been added to the new labels – for easy access to the European Product Database (EPREL), where a downloadable product information sheet and tyre label are available. The scope of the tyre labelling label will be extended to also cover truck and bus tyres, for which until now only labelling classes were required to be displayed in marketing and technical promotional material.
The aim of the changes is to increase the safety, health protection, economic and environmental efficiency of road transport by providing end-users with objective, reliable and comparable information on tyres – allowing to choose tyres with higher fuel efficiency, greater road safety and lower noise emissions.
New symbols for snow and icy grip make it easier for the end-user to find and purchase tyres that are specially designed for areas with severe winter conditions – such as Central and Eastern Europe, the Nordic countries or mountain areas.
The renewed label also has a lower environmental impact. It aims to help the end-user choose more fuel-efficient tyres - and consequently reduce the vehicle's CO2 emissions to the environment. Information on the noise level will help to reduce traffic-related noise pollution. By choosing tyres from the highest class in terms of energy efficiency, energy consumption will be up to 45 TWh lower per year. This corresponds to savings of around 15 million tonnes of CO2 emissions annually. This is an important aspect for everyone. However, it is gaining even more importance for drivers of electric cars and PHEV (plug-in hybrids).
It is worth to remember that the best tyre manufacturers provide warranties for new passenger tyres from the date of purchase, not production. The DOT number is used by tyre manufacturers only to identify the production batch. The date of manufacture is part of this code, which also includes the factory, size and model of the tyre. The code was introduced by the US Department of Transportation (hence the DOT abbreviation) for there to be an official international marking to identify the tyre – assigning any other meaning or validity to the date of manufacture is simply a mistake.
Professional tyre service
Having bought the best tyres for us, it is also worth choosing a professional service that will not destroy them during assembly. It is not so obvious, because as drivers we are not able to distinguish professionals from bunglers. Who of you knows how to remove and install a tyre on a rim and know the 40 basic steps of correct tyre replacement? That is why the Polish Tyre Industry Association together with the independent certification company TÜV SÜD introduced a system of evaluation and certification professional services based on an independent audit of equipment and qualifications of technical personnel. It is worth choosing workshops with a Tyre Certificate of the Polish Tyre Industry Association, which have been audited and thoroughly checked. Safe service is your safety!
More information: https://certyfikatoponiarski.pl/en/
Informational campaign: www.oponymajamoc.pl
Source: Polish Tyre Industry Association