Is There a Right Time to Switch to Winter Tires?

While fall temperatures are steadily dipping, they have not dropped into anything colder than 7 degrees Celsius. Vehicle and tire manufacturers recommend using snow tires once the temperatures are consistently 7 degrees Celsius or lower.

Every time you think the weather is cold enough, it starts to warm up again. You do not want to wait too long to put on your tires, but you also do not want to put on snow tires earlier than you should. So, how do you know when is the right time to get this done and prepare your vehicle for winter?

How to Decide if It is Snow Tire Time

Winter tires are a critical investment. They keep your vehicle and you safe on the road, and are better at providing you with traction than all-season tires. If you cannot decide when to put on your tires, consider these factors first:

· Go by the Season: The typical “rule” is that between Thanksgiving and Easter, you will use your winter tires. However, some years the temperatures dip faster, while others are unseasonably warm. If you go solely by the season, then you may have winter tires on too long or too early.

· Temperatures: Manufacturers recommend using their winter tires when the temperatures go below 7 degrees Celsius. This temperature is when the weather is cold, but also snow, freezing rain, ice, and slush are frequent too. The rubber compound in traditional or
all-season tires freezes and hardens when temperatures are at 7 degrees Celsius or lower. Winter tires contain rubber compounds that stay pliable and soft even in low temperatures.

· Requirements: Two provinces legally require winter tires: Quebec and British Columbia. These tires are required in Quebec from December 15th to March 15th, while BC requires them with the mountain snowflake or M+S symbol from October 1st to April 30th.

Some drivers wait until the first snow to switch out tires, but this is dangerous. The tires you have on the rest of the year are not equipped for winter temperatures and road conditions; therefore, you put yourself at risk for an accident doing so. Also, waiting for the season to officially start means that tire companies will be overwhelmed, and you may have to wait a few days to get in line for your tire change.

Refresh Your Winter Driving Skills by Attending a Vancouver Driving School

Regardless of the tires you have on your vehicle, winter driving requires a unique skillset. You will not have to stress over it too much if you take a refresher course from North Shore Driving School, Ltd.

We offer refresher classes for drivers of all ages. This 90-minute lesson assesses your skills, driving habits, and can help identify bad habits you may have developed over the years.

Call our Truck Division in Burnaby for your commercial license classes at 604-299-9292, or connect with our Car Division in North Vancouver by calling 604-988-1138. You can also contact a representative online with your questions about our driving schools serving Vancouver, Surrey, and surrounding areas of BC.

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