Are Winter Tires Worth the Money in Canada?

October 9, 2018

Winter tires are an investment that can facilitate a safer driving experience. However, depending on the province that you live in, snow tires might not be your only option.

Each Canadian province has its own laws regarding winter tires. Installing winter tires is only a mandatory law in Quebec. Winter tires are required by law in British Columbia if driving on snowy mountain roads, and in New Brunswick school buses have to put on winter tires in the winter time, but not regular vehicles. Other than these three rules, there is no law that Canadians use winter tires in the rest of the country. Even though there is no law for winter tires in some provinces, having them installed, especially when the weather hits minus temperatures, is not always a bad idea.

READ MORE: 5 Ways To Start Preparing Your Car For The Winter Now

Drivers who do not use winter tires may opt for investing in all-season tires or using vehicle features such as ‘snow mode’ which can offset the slippery nature of driving. Many drivers, particularly those that are driving in parts of the country that are more prone to snow and icy weather, may choose to use all-season or regular tires during the warmer seasons and replace them with winter ones during the colder months. Choosing to install winter tires on your vehicle is a decision that should depend on your province’s winter climate. Some Canadians decide against winter tires due to the price. Depending on the model of your vehicle, winter tires can cost up to $2,000. However, placing safety about all else is extremely important, especially when it comes to Canada’s rough winters. Is saving money worth the risk? Here are the pros and cons of investing in winter tires.

The Cons of Winter Tires

Shying away from the extra cost of winter tires is extremely reasonable for many drivers. Over time, winter tires can put a dent in your wallet. All-season tires are a great option for Canadians who live in provinces that do not get hit with a lot of ice and snow. Additionally, all-season tires last on average up to three years, whereas winter tires are only good for the winter season. Although winter tires typically last up to six years, having them installed every year and rotated throughout the season is an added cost. Some vehicles also require other attachments to winter tires, like hubcaps or steel rims, in order to successfully attach winter tires. If you choose against snow tires, all-season tires are a less expensive investment that will ensure your safety on the road.

The Pros of Winter Tires

Having the most appropriate tires for winter means increased safety on the road, which for some, depending on the province that you live in, will outweigh costs. If you want to minimize accidents and vehicle damage, paying the extra money for winter tires might be worth it. After two years of driving with winter tires, it is likely that they will have paid for themselves, and with proper maintenance, they can last up to four more years in winter conditions. Winter tires have superior treads that allow for improved traction when driven through ice and snow. With a softer rubber material, these tires are only suitable for winter driving. In the summer, when temperatures are warmer, this softer material will experience more wear and tear, which is why they should be removed as soon as the spring arrives.

READ MORE: Buying Tips For Your Winter Tires

Whether you decide to invest in winter tires or not will depend on your specific situation. How often you drive during the winter season, road conditions and the type of vehicle that you drive are all factors that should be considered before you invest in winter tires. If you are looking for a new vehicle before the winter weather hits, Canada Drives can help you get driving in a vehicle that is best suited to fit your budget and lifestyle needs. Visit Canada Drives today to learn more about our programs or to apply with us for free right now.


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