When winter weather makes traveling on the road more difficult, adding a set of snow tires to your car or truck is an excellent option. Choosing the right winter tires is essential, and knowing the regulations surrounding them is critical.
Basic Snow Tires
Snow tires have a more aggressive tread design to provide more traction and better handling on snow-covered roads. The tires often look like truck tires, but they come in sizes to fit cars and trucks.
The tires can be used on the pavement without snow, but often they will ride rougher than street tires, and the tires may generate some noise as a result of the aggressive tread pattern. The tires will wear faster on the pavement, but typically snow tires are only used for the harshes part of the winter seasons and then removed from the car for the rest of the year.
Many tire shops can add studs to the tread of the snow tires to provide additional traction on ice and packed snow. The studs should never be used on roads that are clear of ice and snow because they can damage the road, and the studs may be damaged or come out of the tire as you drive down the road.
In many parts of the country, studded tires are only allowed for specific times of the year, and if you are running them on the road outside of the time, you can receive a citation or ticket for the offense. If you are considering studding your snow tires, check with your local police to find out what rules or limitations you need to follow to stay within the law and still have the added traction advantages of the studs.
Snow Tires and Chains
If your tires do not provide enough traction, adding a set of tire chains to the tires is an option. The chains can be put on or taken off the tires during different times to add traction as needed, but when the roads start to clear, you can take the chains off and run only on your standard snow tires.
Snow chains are available in many different designs that allow you to choose the best ones for your vehicle, but it is a good idea to talk to a tire shop about the options for your car. It is also crucial that you get the right size chains because if the chains are too long, they can hit the body of the vehicle and damage your fenders.