EU tyre labels – what do they mean?

By 13 November, 2017 Tyres
EU Tyre label

Tyre labels were introduced by the EU back in 2012 to improve road safety and energy-efficiency levels, reduce emissions and give drivers a better idea of a tyre’s performance levels. Most new tyres now have a label that features their fuel efficiency, noise levels and wet grip capacity. This tyre guide will help to explain tyre labels and how to make informed decisions about the tyres you choose.

What do tyre labels look like?

Tyre labels are similar to the kind you might see on an electrical appliance, such as a fridge or a washing machine. They feature three components:

  1. Fuel efficiency
    This section details the amount of energy that’s lost when a tyre is rolling (known as ‘rolling resistance’). Lower rolling resistance cuts fuel emissions and fuel consumption. ‘A’ is the highest fuel efficiency rating you’ll see on your tyre labels, while ‘G’ is the lowest.
  2. Wet grip
    This part tells you how good your tyres’ grip will be on wet roads. Tyres with better grip give shorter braking distances in wet conditions, so they’re safer to use. Look for tyres with an ‘A’ rating, which indicates the highest wet grip performance, while a ‘G’ rating indicates the lowest wet grip performance.
  3. External rolling noise
    The level of exterior noise from your tyres will be recorded in decibels, for example 72dB. This part of the label also includes three wave bands. One black wave indicates the best noise level, while three black waves indicates the worst.

Did you know?
  • A car’s tyres can affect its fuel economy by 20%
  • By fitting G-rated tyres in the fuel economy category, you could end up using six litres more fuel every 625 miles than with A-rated tyres
  • The difference in braking distances between an A-rated tyre and a G-rated tyre is around 18 metres, which equates to around four car lengths!
Are all tyres included?

The tyre categories currently covered by the legislation include car, van, 4×4 and truck tyres. If you’re buying spare, vintage, motorbike, studded, racing, re-tread or professional off-road tyres you probably won’t see any tyre labels.

What else should you consider when buying tyres?

While tyre labels are helpful, it’s also worth considering the following attributes:

  • Braking performance on dry roads
  • Winter weather capabilities
  • Durabililty
  • Handling performance on dry and wet roads
  • Driving stability
  • Resistance to aquaplaning
Get your tyres sorted!

If you have any questions about tyre labels that have not been covered in this tyre guide, feel free to give us a call. IN‘n’OUT can fit and supply a wide range of premium, budget and winter tyres from all manufacturers for your car. Call 0333 247 9999 today with your tyre size for a quote!