Winter Tires 101

Our footwear changes as the seasons turn from spring and summer to fall and winter. The same thought process should be attributed to your vehicle’s tires. You don’t wear sandals in slush, snow or ice as you want to avoid slipping and falling; instead you wear boots with a proper tread. Your car or SUV also needs to have the correct tread on its tires to avoid slipping or sliding.

When Are Winter Tires Needed?

Winter Tires are not only meant for snowy or slushy days. As soon as the weather is at or around 7 degrees, your summer and all-season tires do not grip as well in colder weather. As temperatures drop, your standard ‘non-winter’ tire’s show diminished elasticity which results in decreased grip and reduced contact on the road.

Why Winter Tires?

Winter tires have more tread blocks than all-season or summer tires. The treads on winter tires have more traction and a larger block to avoid snow and slush build up. The tread blocks also have sipes, which open under the weight of the car and help with ice grip. Winter tires provide the best contact between your vehicle and the road ahead. According to the Tire and Rubber Association of Canada, modern winter tires have 50% more traction compared to all-season tires.

Why Four Winter Tires Instead of Two?

Always install four winter tires! If you install two, it will create inconsistent traction and can actually be more harmful. Installing two in the front can result in complete loss of vehicle control. Installing two in the rear will lead to surprising vehicle handling and can cause decreased grip in the front of your vehicle.

Check for the Mountain Snowflake:

Winter Tires and All-Weather tires that bare the mountain snowflake logo show that they pass Transport Canada’s severe service winter test. If you don’t like seasonal tire changes, All-Weather tires are your best bet.

Look for this Mountain Snowflake symbol on your tires:

Contact us at 416-401-3371 to find out more.

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