It has been a long time since on November 1, 2012, the European Ecolabel for tires came into force. However, a year later, only 20% of drivers knew its characteristics.
In this article, we are going to explain in detail the content of this European tire label and how to interpret it, so that you can choose the best option.
Ecolabel for tires: analyzed criteria
This European label qualifies 3 criteria that are considered fundamental to assess the ecological character of a tire. Specifically, it is about rolling resistance, wet grip and rolling noise or noise pollution.
By the way, if you still don’t know what ecological tires are , we recommend reading our specialized article.
Classification in fuel economy
In order to classify tires according to the level of fuel economy, the degree of rolling resistance is taken as a reference.
The European label qualifies the level of efficiency of the tire for fuel saving on a scale from A to G, with A being the most optimal, and there being a difference of 0.5 extra liters of consumption per 100 kilometers between this and the G.
According to a report by the CEA Foundation (European Automobile Commissariat), the savings generated by class “A” tires, compared to those of class “G”, with a vehicle that consumes an average of 5 liters per 100 kilometers , It can be around 80 to 140 euros, for every 12,000 kilometers.
In this case, the safety of the tire is measured by its grip in wet conditions and, more specifically, in the braking distance in the wet driving at 80 km / h.
Tires are rated on an ABCEF scale. Interestingly, there is no “D” in this scale. In addition, since 2014, tires with a grade of F have been removed from the market, due to the fact that the braking distance in the wet reached 18 meters, something that is currently considered unacceptable.
- Grade A allows a braking in less than 3 meters.
- Grade B implies braking over a distance greater than 3 meters.
- The C grade implies a braking of more than 7 meters.
- Grade E indicates braking over a distance greater than 12 meters.
Classification in noise pollution
The noise pollution generated by a tire is measured as a function of the external rolling noise; that is, the number of decibels emitted during the march.
The label provides a graphic scale of 1, 2 or 3 waves, which qualify the level of noise pollution as:
- Excellent (1 wave): below 68 decibels.
- Suitable (2 waves): between 68 and 71 decibels.
- Temporarily permissible (3 waves): above 71 decibels.
There are more criteria for evaluating a tire
Although the ecological label of tires has contributed to helping drivers to better evaluate and choose the tires they use on their cars, manufacturers agree that the 3 criteria chosen by the European authorities are not the only ones that should be taken into account .
It should be remembered that the purpose of the European tire label is to identify those that are the most efficient and environmentally friendly; However, factors as relevant as:
- The durability of the tire.
- Stability in driving.
- Dry braking performance,
- Line accuracy.
- Curved grip.
- Drivability in winter.
- Behavior at high speeds.
In fact, the European homologation processes imply subjecting the tires to the analysis of a total of 11 variables, of which only 3 are exposed on the ecological tire label.
In addition, one of the criteria most used by consumers when choosing covers is their durability.
Not all tires carry the eco-label.
Finally, it should be borne in mind that there are a number of tires that are not subject to the mandatory eco-labeling. They are as follows.
- Retreaded tires
- Spare T-type tires.
- Professional off-road vehicle tires.
- Tires with speed limitation of 80 km / h.
- Tires designed for vehicles registered before October 1, 1990.
- Tires with rims with a diameter less than or equal to 254 mm, or equal to or greater than 535 mm.
- Tires with special equipment to increase traction.
- Competition tires.