Why aren’t more Albertans using winter tires?

winter road

Let’s face it. Chinooks notwithstanding, we ARE a winter province. Yet, according to a 2016 survey by Canadian Underwriter only 55% of Albertans are using winter tires. The reluctance of many to fully embrace winter tires seems to boil down to a couple of things. First, not everyone is yet convinced that winter tires are all that necessary. Second, there is the issue of cost.

One might reasonably ask isn’t an all-season tire good for ALL seasons? Not quite. All seasons are designed to provide adequate performance in a wide variety of conditions and for a good part of the year they can perform admirably. However, in attempting to be the tire for every season there is inevitably some compromise. Typically, all seasons begin to lose their elasticity at 7 degrees C and elasticity pretty much disappears by minus 15. That’s why handling and braking is compromised in freezing temperatures even when the road is dry and clear.

All-wheel-drive (AWD) vehicles are very popular among our customers and a big part of our model line-up. Won’t they do the job? It’s true that AWD is great for getting started on slippery surfaces especially when making your way uphill. However, even the most sophisticated AWD system can’t create traction where none exists. A mere 10th of a square meter of rubber keeps you in contact with the road so matching the tire to the conditions just makes sense.

In Quebec and B.C. the use of winter tires is more than just a good idea. It’s the law. Quebec requires that all passenger vehicles be equipped with winter tires from December 15 to March 15. B.C.’s tire laws are not province wide but they kick in earlier – October 1. Travelling to your favorite B.C. ski resort in January on your all seasons could earn you a fine.

Of course, even if you are convinced of the wisdom of using winter tires there is the cost to consider. A set of four winter tires is a substantial investment but consider this: during the time you own or lease your vehicle you will almost certainly be replacing your all seasons should those be the only type of tire you decide to use. Buying snow tires now is paying upfront what you would be paying later anyway. The bonus is that you’ll have the right tires for the right conditions and you’ll be extending the life of your all season or summer tires.

The cost of winter tires is comparable to that of all seasons and you needn’t run to a big warehouse store like Costco take get the best value for your dollar. Honda Canada will price match on most tire brands. Additionally, T&T Honda is currently offering 6 month financing at zero percent (OAC) on parts and service, including wheel and tire packages. We also offer seasonable tire storage. We want to make it as easy as possible for you to maximize your driving safety throughout the year.

Do you have automotive questions that need answering? Or even just a driving related experience you’d like to share? Drop as a line at We look forward to hearing from you!