As autumn is in full swing and winter is quickly approaching, you may start to notice that people are bundling up, frost is forming, and even some are already making appointments to have their winter tires installed. As it’s a general rule of thumb to have your winter tires on between Thanksgiving and Easter, or when temperatures dip below 7 degrees Celsius, it’s time to pull your winter tires out of storage and make an appointment with your mechanic. Choosing to wait may leave you at risk if unexpected snow falls, ice forms, or if there is a long wait to book an appointment to have them installed.

Why Winter Tires Are Necessary

In Canada, the winter months bring unpredictable weather that often, causes havoc on roads as snow piles up, ice and slush forms to cause slippery conditions or storms blow in to leave drivers unable to see in whiteout conditions. With all of these occurrences hard to predict, winter tires are specifically designed to help protect you from the havoc that winter weather brings. Meaning, they’re designed to help you stop faster, skid less, grip the road more and overall, stay safe while driving. Many may argue that their all-season tires are good enough, but depending on where you’re traveling and how much you’re driving, you may want to invest in a good set of winter tires. In fact, many all-season tires are only designed for the spring, summer and fall months. This stems from all-season tires being designed to provide a decent grip in most conditions, except for when temperatures drop as the rubber compound can lose pliability, causing it to harden, making it more difficult to keep cornering crisp and breaking distances short. In comparison to all-season tires, winter tires are designed for everything that the winter season has to offer as they’re designed and tested to provide drivers with greater control over their vehicle when temperatures drop below freezing or when precipitation freezes. In addition, the Traffic Injury Research Foundation (TIRF) has as well confirmed the importance of winter tires as they found that regardless of if a road surface was dry, covered in snow, slushy or icy, winter tires helped to shorten braking distances by up to 30%!

Cost Savings From Installing Winter Tires 

Many drivers overlook winter tires simply because of their cost. And while many may find excuses to not spend money on a good set of winter tires, they should become aware of how a good set can help them save in the future. Firstly, they can help keep you safe and prevent damage from occurring to your vehicle. This may seem obvious to some who already acknowledges the benefit of switching out their all-season or summer tires, but it should always be reiterated. When you invest in a good set of winter tires that help you better grip the road during icy or wet conditions, it can be assumed that generally, you are less likely to be involved in some sort of weather influenced accident. While accidents can vary from serious or life-threatening ones that cause considerable damage to the vehicles involved, accidents can also come in the form of minor ones when cars slide into ditches or curbs. And depending on your Auto Insurance policy, you may find it better to pay out of pocket than submitting a claim. Meaning you could be spending hundreds, or even thousands because your all-season or summer tires were unable to perform in the harsh, winter weather. Another way winter tires can help you save on costs is through your insurance policy. As of January 1, 2016, insurance providers offer discounts to drivers who install winter tires during the winter season. While every provider is different, it’s always recommended that you speak to your broker to learn what discounts they offer and whether you qualify.

Winter Tires And Your Car Insurance

As every insurance provider is different, it’s always recommended that you discuss your insurance needs with your broker so you know exactly when you need to install your tires by, what documentation is needed, what tires allow you to qualify for discounts, or what minimum coverage you must carry on your policy. For any questions regarding your individual coverage or how you may qualify for additional discounts, contact your Cambridge Insurance broker today.

We want you to stay safe on the roads this winter, so be sure to schedule an appointment with your trusted mechanic to install your winter tires sooner, rather than later!