So, When, Exactly?
Let’s start by saying there’s no exact date that you can count on every year. Just because you experience an unusually warm few days doesn’t mean that the cold and even snow may not come back. In many parts of Canada, it’s not unheard of to experience snowfalls in April. We always advise those looking to prematurely change back to their summer tires to remember why they purchased winter tires in the first place — safe and confident driving.
Consider making the change when:
Daily low temperatures are consistently above freezing
each night and the long term forecast shows no threat of snow.
Summer tires perform very poorly in near-freezing temperatures and offer almost no traction in snow. They perform best in warmer temperatures that are above 10 degrees Celsius. It is not worth taking the chance of getting caught in snow or ice to have your “fun” tires on a week or two sooner.
Want to Make The Switch Yourself?
There are many cases where it can be useful to remove your wheels and tires yourself. There’s no reason to suggest that an average person can’t do it for themselves. Having said that, safety is the priority here too and to change a set of tires and wheels safely, you need the proper tools:
- A Lug wrench – gives you the extra torque you need to break those lug nuts free and loosen them. Do not use an impact wrench.
- A Floor jack – The wheel and tire need to be off of the ground before you have a chance of getting them off of the vehicle! A floor jack makes lifting the one corner of the vehicle as easy as pumping a lever.
- Jack stands – Once you have the wheel up in the air, use a jack stand to secure the vehicle in its raised position. Using solid jack stands is an important safety measure to have in place in case your floor jack fails or is inadvertently knocked out of place.
What About Actually Replacing Your Winter Tires?
People often ask when they should put on and remove their winter/snow tires. Typically, the time most drivers have their winter tires on their vehicle is from late November to early April.
It’s important to use them only during the winter months in an attempt to maximize their tread life. Tread depth is one of the most important features of a winter tire, so keep the following in mind:
- New Tire Tread Depth: A brand new tire combines all the necessary features (tread design, compound and depth) to provide effective snow traction.
- Approaching Winter Wear Indicators: The tire has now worn to about 6/32″, where its ability to provide beneficial snow traction diminishes significantly.
- Approaching Tread Wear Indicators: While still functional at 2/32″, the tire has worn well past the depth where it provides beneficial snow traction.
Schedule an appointment to have your winter tires removed and/or replaced by clicking the SERVICE REQUEST button below. If you have any concerns about the condition of any of your tires, just ask to have your tires assessed when you make the appointment.