The Science Behind Why Tires Are Loud and How to Reduce Noise

June 29, 2022

The Science Behind Why Tires Are Loud and How to Reduce Noise

If you've ever been near a car with new tires, you know how loud they can be. In this blog post, we will discuss the science behind why tires are so noisy and what you can do to reduce the noise.

Why do we have quiet tire noise?

Excessive noise from car tires can be from a variety of variables. Some of the most common reasons a car tire has more noise are:

  • Worn tires
  • Incorrect tire pressure
  • Loose objects in the tread

All of these variables can cause your car to have an increased noise level. If you are concerned about the noise from your car, we suggest taking it to a mechanic to have it checked out.

What can I do to reduce tire noise?

If you find that your car is excessively noisy, there are a few things you can do to help reduce the noise. Some tips on reducing tire noise are:

  • Keep your tires inflated to the proper pressure levels: This will help reduce wear and tear on your tires and also help reduce road noise.
  • Make sure there is nothing loose in the tread of your tires: Any objects that are loose in the tread can cause your tires to vibrate and create noise.
  • Have your alignment checked: If your car is not properly aligned, it can cause your tires to rub against the road and create noise.
  • Avoid driving on rough or uneven roads: This can damage your tires and also create a lot of noise.

If you follow these tips, you should be able to reduce the amount of tire noise coming from your car. If you have any further questions or concerns, feel free to contact us and we will be happy to help!

The history of the quiet ride

Noisy tires have been around for a long time, and when they were first discovered one of the main issues tire brands had was excessive tire noise. Back in the year 2000, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) began to investigate why some tires were so much louder than others. After a study that lasted over five years, the EPA released its findings in 2006.

What they found was that there were three main reasons why tires were loud:

  • The design of the tire
  • The material used to make the tire
  • The way the tire was manufactured

All of these factors contribute to how loud a tire is when it hits the road. And while there are ways to reduce noise from each of these areas, it's not always possible to eliminate it.

Designing for noise reduction

One of the ways manufacturers have tried to reduce tire noise is by changing the design of the tread pattern. By altering the shape and size of the tread blocks, they can change the way the tire interacts with the road surface.

This can help to reduce noise, but it's not always effective. And in some cases, it can make the problem worse. Another design change that's been made is to add voids between the tread blocks. This helps to break up the sound waves as they travel from the tire to your ear.

But again, this isn't a perfect solution. The voids need to be just the right size and shape, or they can make the noise worse.

Why are tires loud?

If you have new car tires then hearing tire noises can be pretty common. Heavy-duty tires will have more noise than your average vehicle's tires. There are a few reasons aside from tread patterns on new tires that can cause more than just tire noises.

Tire rotation is important and the number one reason why is because of tire treads. Properly inflated new tires even need a regular tire rotation to avoid uneven wear. Tire wear is your tire life. Low tread depth on any car tires can lead to wheel alignment issues with the wheel bearings. This can translate to a whole lot of extra loud noise and other factors can lead to auto repair needed with suspension parts.

Bad wheel alignment from low tread depth is why you might hear a drumming sound or grinding noise when driving at highway speeds. It can also feel like your car wants to pull to one side or the other. When this happens, it's best to get your vehicle into a tire shop so they can check the tread depth and rotate your tires if needed.

Another reason why new tires can be noisy is because of the material they're made from. Some materials used in new tires are louder than others when they contact the ground. Wearing earplugs while driving may help reduce some tire noise if you find it bothersome.

Tire noise is something that all drivers have to deal with but understanding how to have your car tires working properly with proper alignment for your wheel bearings, tire rotation, and more rubber on your car tires will give you an overall better driving experience.

Are there quieter tires?

Depending on the tire type, there may be low-profile tires available for better ride quality and a quieter ride. The most common tire selection for a car tire prone to have more road noise includes snow tires, touring tires, run flat tires, and off-road tires. The quietest tires can vary with tire types, here's a list of the most popular brands and tires that specialize in being quiet.

Michelin Pilot Sport A/S Plus:

Tire tread is just as important as tire grooves. That's why the Pilot Sport A/S Plus tires are superior so you never have to worry about a bumpier ride or a popping noise at high speeds. The design technology for this tire's tire tread is called "Variable Contact Patch." This means that the contact patch (the area of the tire touching the ground) adapts to different driving conditions. So whether you're going fast on the highway or making a sudden stop, your tires will grip the road and prevent any skidding.

Goodyear Eagle:

Never worry about your vehicle having wear unevenly again with an Eagle tire set from Goodyear. With features like "Tredlock Technology" and "Maxima Sidewall Plies," you'll be driving on a tire that not only looks great but will perform better and last longer. These tires were made for those who want the best of both worlds - style and function.

Pirelli P Zero Nero:

The P Zero Nero tires are designed for luxury vehicles so you can expect a smooth, quiet ride. These tires have an innovative tread pattern that reduces road noise while still providing excellent traction in all weather conditions. If you're looking for a luxurious, quiet ride, then these are the tires for you.

Continental ExtremeContact DWS06:

The ExtremeContact DWS06 from Continental is one of the best-selling ultra-high performance, all-season tires on the market. And for good reason too - they offer great traction in all weather conditions while still providing a comfortable, quiet ride. If you're looking for a tire that can handle anything Mother Nature throws at it, then the ExtremeContact DWS06 is a perfect choice.

Hankook Ventus V12 evo K110:

One tire that gives more space for smaller blocks or wheels is the Ventus V12 evo K110 from Hankook. Over-inflated or under-inflated, you can change lanes confidently without fear of the same noise you're used to. With an open-air chamber and technically designed air flow, Hankook was able to achieve something that most tire brands fall short of with air circulating: a quiet ride.

Research is knowledge

If you want to find a quiet tire for your car, research is key. You'll want to take into account the type of vehicle you have and what driving conditions you typically encounter. With that information, you can narrow down your choices and find the perfect set of tires for a quieter ride.

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