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Winter Tires

The value of having proper winter tires for staying safe during a Canadian winter is important. Some drivers choose all season tires, but there is a clear difference in control and comfort with tires that have been manufactured for the winter in Canada.
Hankook winter tire

Why are Winter Tires so Important in Canada?

  • Winter tires have a design that provides superior handling and shorter stopping distances in cooler temperatures
  • They are made with a compound that does not harden in the cold. This allows the tire to have a better grip on the road and increased traction
  • They can reduce stopping distances by 30% to 40% on snow, ice or cold.

TIRECRAFT offers snow/winter tires from leading manufacturers, like: 

Shop Michelin Winter Tires      Shop Hankook      Shop ToyoShop General      Shop GT Radial      Shop Goodyear Winter TiresShop Firestone Shop Bridgestone

The Evolution of Snow/Winter Tires

The original snow tires design made tires noisy and they had deep treads that were useful for heavy snow.  Newer models have evolved to provide traction on ice, soft snow, hard packed snow and cold or wet pavement. Because of this, they’re also referred to as cold weather tires.

Specialized Rubber CompoundsHankook Winter Tire

Newer models of winter/snow tires are manufactured using rubber compounds that remain flexible in lower temperatures. They typically contain substances like silica to offer better grip. This enhanced traction and flexibility helps the tire to stick the road in inclement conditions.

Their treads are designed to cut through the thin layer of water on the road caused by heat melting the ice. The tiny grooves in the tires are known as ‘sipes’.  They move the water away from the front of the tire keeping the tire’s contact with the road consistent. This action is what prevents vehicles from hydroplaning.

Safety and Comfort

Not sure about the benefits of using winter tires? Many insurance companies offer a reduced rate to drivers who use winter/snow tires. Savings are often around 5%. In the years since winter tires have been mandatory, winter collisions have been reduced by 17% . There has also been a 36% reduction in road accidents that cause serious injury or death.

Tips When Buying Winter Tires

Our goal at TIRECRAFT has always been to provide some insight for customers to help their decision making when looking to buy the best winter tires.

Tires are a passion for us but most consumers don’t share the same level of enthusiasm.  Yet, the contact patch on the tire is the only point of contact between your car and the road, so selecting the proper tire is critical for the safety of you and your family.

It is important to pick the right tire for your vehicle, especially during the Canadian winter months. There are a lot of options when shopping for the best winter tires and it can seem overwhelming, but we can help to eliminate some of that confusion.

Researching Winter Tires Online

When go you go online and read about winter/snow tires it can be somewhat confusing with the terminology.  We are going  suggest some things to look for and maybe some questions to ask when in the market for winter tires.

With a premium product like the Michelin X-Ice 3, there are a few advancements in technology that we wouldn’t maybe see in another tire.

One being when we’re driving down the road and encounter ice, it’s not actually the ice that creates the slipage, there’s often a layer of water that sits on top of the ice that creates hydroplaning.

With a premium product there is a micro pump built into the Michelin X-Ice 3 tire so that when the tire rolls it actually absorbs the water off the ice to get the rubber back down onto the road.

What are Tire Sipes?

Also when you’re online, you will read about things like zig-zag siping, 3D siping and full depth siping.

Siping can be confusing and when you look at a variety of tires . Sipes are the little cuts that go across the tread of the design. Sipes are extremely important when looking at tires. You will notice in premium products you can actually see the sipes go the full depth of the tire.

When all the siping in the snow tire goes all the way down to the bottom of the tread, the handling and performance of the vehicle through the snow and winter is the same for years.

When your’re looking at a lower priced product it may have less siping. This means you are going to get the benefit of the siping for a shorter time.

If you find yourself between a low price and a premium option, you may want to consider the new BFG Winter KSI.  It features high density, zig-zag siping, voids for  traction and a tonne of biting edges for cornering, starting and stopping.

We have only mentioned a few differences between winter tires, hopefully this helps when deciding what is the best winter tire. If you are still unsure what product fits your needs, call a TIRECRAFT location today!