Just like a new pair of shoes, your new tires need to be “broken in” for the best performance. So when you get new tires, it's a good idea to take it easy for a while.
During manufacturing, tires are coated with a release lubricant to keep them from sticking to their molds after the curing process. Some of the lubricant stays on the surface of the tires, and until it completely wears away it can reduce traction. About 500 miles of easy driving (accelerating, braking, cornering) will allow the lubricant to wear off safely and completely.
Also, tires are made of several layers of materials including rubber, steel, and fabric. Giving the tire time to break in allows these different components to start working together, delivering the optimal performance and ride quality.
If you've just replaced your tires, it's probably because the old tires had very little tread left. Tires with very little tread tend to respond a bit quicker, because there's less tread that needs to flex during cornering and quick turns. Tires with a deeper tread tend to flex or “squirm” a bit more -- so they may feel slightly less responsive than your old tires, even if you replaced your old set with the exact same brand and model.
So while we know you're excited to get out there and put your new tires to the test, it's in your best interest to take it easy for the first few weeks and let your tires break in naturally.
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