Are Winter Tires Worth It?Dec 13rd, 2016
6 reasons you need winter tires
First off, we understand why you’re asking this question. Fact: winter tires do not grow on trees. It’s totally fair to want to get away with not using them if you don’t have to. Maybe your all-seasons are brand new and you reckon they’ll do fine in the winter. Or maybe you figure your AWD will keep you on the road and in the right lane—besides, it rarely snows where you’re from, right?
Still, here you are, doing the proper research so you and your family can be safe this winter. Good on you!
Now if you’ve come across this post and you happen to be from New Mexico, or actual Mexico, or even Vancouver Island, this probably won’t apply to you. But if you live in or plan to be driving in Ontario—or pretty much anywhere else in Canada besides Vancouver Island—this winter, please heed the below advice.
In short, if you live where it snows or drops below 7 degrees Celsius, yes, winter tires are worth it. Why? Here are 6 reasons:
You’ll be safer. Much safer.
Right. But why? Well, it’s science, folks! Even without snow or ice on the road, traction is lost in winter. At 7 degrees C, the compounds in all-seasons and summer tires change. The rubber becomes harder, resulting in less contact with the road and therefore less traction. Less traction = less safety. Winter tires are specially designed to remain soft and retain contact with the road in cold weather. Our video explains it:
You’ll be faster.
Thanks to the improved traction provided by winter tires, not only will you stop more effectively, but you’ll also accelerate and corner better. Changing to your winters may actually save you time on your daily commute.
Your other tires will last longer.
Here’s another silver lining: by swapping on your snow tires for a handful of months each year, you’ll automatically be prolonging the life of your other tires. There’s savings in this here safety.
That AWD won’t help when you need to stop or turn in a hurry.
While the presence of all-wheel-drive is unquestionably a benefit when it comes to getting out of a sticky situation—like, say, starting off from a sloped parking lot covered in 10-inches of freshly fallen snow—it won’t be so helpful when you need to stop or corner in a hurry. It’s a common misconception, but AWD only really helps with getting the vehicle going.
You’re not the only person on the road.
You do not want to be that person who rear ends someone and then has to explain why you weren’t using winter tires because you “usually just drive nice and slow and safe like.” The problem is, you can’t just count on driving slowly and safely—sometimes you have to act quick. Somebody could lose control and come skidding toward you, or, heaven forbid you lose control and crash into someone else.
On some roads, it’s the law.
Some particularly winter-y places in Canada have gone so far as to write winter tires right into their laws. On some of BC’s highways, like the Coquihala Highway connecting the lower mainland to the interior, and the entire province of Quebec, it’s mandatory to have winters. Do you know the winter tire laws in your area?
If you’re in need of some new winter tires or need to get your existing tires swapped out, our expert staff will happily help you out. Just contact our Service Department and book an appointment.
Be safe, stay warm and have fun this winter.