Snow tires, also called winter tires Canada, are made for cold seasons like winter. However, most drivers use all-weather tires, which are suitable for both cold and warm climates.
Snow tires have specific characteristics for winter, but they are more expensive to buy. Due to this reason, drivers are torn between using all-weather tires or change to winter tires Canada during winter. Here are the most asked questions about these tires, which we will answer, in this comprehensive guide.
1. Are Winter Tires Necessary?
Winter tires Canada are made with unique characteristics and properties to make them suitable for snowy roads. Besides, all-season tires can also drive on a snowy road. However, although these tires have a mixture of characteristics of winter tires, they cannot compare to purely winter tires.
If you live in areas that are highly affected by ice, you will need winter tires. These are made with a soft rubber for flexibility which reduces the chances of shrinking. Shrinking tires have less traction, and this can be a cause of accidents on slippery snowy roads.
Winter tires also have deeper and unique tread patterns to prevent snow from sticking on the tire. Therefore, if your area experiences temperatures as low as 45oF, winter tires will come in handy.
2. Does The M+S Sign Mean The Tires Are Good For Snow?
This sign means mud and snow, and it is a sign found mostly on all-season tires. These tires are designed for both winter and warm climates. Their characteristics are large tread blocks for better traction and wide gaps between the treads. Their tread design is made for more traction as well.
Although they are called all-season, they might not be a good choice in winter. Winter roads are filled with slippery snow, and the traction on M+S tires is not enough for the climate. Unlike snow tires, these do not have a short stopping distance, which is advantageous on snowy roads.
3. Should I Replace All-Season Tires With Winter Tires?
You could be asking whether this is important if you have all-weather tires. Well, although all-season tires have characteristics that make them suitable for snowy roads, they cannot beat winter tires online Canada on snowy roads. This is because winter tires are built specifically for these roads. They have a less stiff and flexible rubber that prevents the tire from shrinking due to cold weather, a characteristic that all-season tires do not have.
On the other hand, summer and all-season tires have a stiff rubber that ensures the tire’s shape remains as it moves on hot roads. This explains why it will be essential to replace all-season tires with winter tires Canada. However, if you are looking at it from a cost-saving perspective, you can still use your all-weather tires, but this will depend on the severity of the winter.
4. Siping on Snow Tires?
Siped tires have small patterned slits that give the edges a better grip when driving on snow. You can buy winter tires that are not siped, but it will cost you some coins for them to be siped. You can also add sips on old tires. This adds traction to the tire, ensuring it has a better starting and stopping power.
However, unless you have an expert who can sip the winter tires for you or you are an excellent DIYer, we recommend buying tires that are already sipped. This will save you not only money but also inconveniences that you may experience in case the sipping isn’t done well and your vehicle cannot maneuver well through the ice.
5. Are Second-Hand Winter Tires Okay?
Winter tires are costly to buy, which is why many drivers prefer to drive on all-season tires throughout the year. However, you can get lightly used winter tires online Canada at a lower price. It is essential to be careful with what you buy first. Ensure they are the right size for your vehicle. The size of the tire is written on the sidewall.
Check the tread depth using a tire tread depth gauge to ensure it is right before purchasing. Do not compromise on quality.
Ensure the wear of the tire is even. Buying a tire with uneven wear will be a waste of money. Although tires wear out unevenly, the difference should not be that big. Installing tires with uneven wear makes driving hard and uncomfortable and increases the chances of accidents.
Do not put different tires in one vehicle. For example, installing winter tires Canada on the rear and all-season tires at the front is a bad idea. This difference creates a traction difference and can be a cause for accidents.