Tire Warmers are one of any track day rider or seriuos racers necessary items. Any rider looking to increase their laps times, gain confidence, further tire life and have the ability to make their first lap a great one, know that using a quality tire warmer can make all of those things happen immediately. If you’re using a race tire, it is a necessary addition and picking the right warmer is important. They are not all manufactured equal and at Spears Enterprises/Spears Racing we only sell the best warmers that will heat your tire properly and last for many seasons to come.
Basically, cold rubber is very different from warm rubber. In track tires, cold rubber is brittle and slippery, while warm rubber is pliable and sticky. Obviously, you want the second — it allows your tires to adjust to the shape of the road, offering a bigger contact patch, and the warm rubber of this contact patch grabs the pavement better than cold, brittle rubber.
There are two ways to get warm rubber — you can either ride the tire for a couple laps or warm it to operating temperature (usually just under 200 degrees Fahrenheit) using the equivalent of an electric blanket.
There’s more: Riding a racing tire before it’s warm can result in what’s known as a cold tear, as cold, brittle rubber cracks and splits. Needless to say, that’s bad. Also, it can take four to six laps before a cold tire reaches operating temperature. That can be your whole race day, or at least enough time running on non-optimal tires to shake your confidence to the core. That is, if you don’t crash first — you know your limit, and if you push that limit on cold tires, you’re going for a slide.
So for the track rider/racer, yes — tire warmers are an essential piece in your race-day toolkit. For the everyday recreational rider, not so much