Winter tires are a highly recommended necessity for your vehicle. They are equipped to handle winter conditions such as heavy snowfall, slippery ice, slush and freezing temperatures. Winter tires also have deeper tread depths and better traction compared to all-season tires. If you've made the switch to winter tires, kudos on being proactive and thinking ahead! Stay on top of things and pay a visit to your local mechanic again and have your tires re-torqued after approximately 100 kilometres.
Why you Need to Re-torque your Tires
Re-torquing your tires is an essential car maintenance task that can be done each time you switch tires and a second follow-up check after driving 100 kilometres. With fluctuating temperature changes and your new tires handling the road, lug nuts or bolts can become loose, tighten and shift, which can unsecure the wheel. A wheel falling off your car can be a scary and costly situation. Re-torquing can help keep you, your loved ones and other drivers on the road safe.
A study performed by the Tire Dealers Association of Canada in 2017 reported a total of 389 wheel separation incidents. Of those 389, 85% of these wheel separations were caused from "faster failure", which means the lug nuts had been loosened. 29% of the wheel separation incidents resulted in a collision.
How to Re-torque Tires
Professional car mechanics can re-torque your tires, but if you prefer to take the DIY route, it can be done. You will most likely need to have a torque wrench that can identify how much force you're using to avoid over or under-tightening the lug nuts. Using an impact wrench may cause more harm than good as it's more difficult to ensure proper torque. There are various tutorial videos available online that you can follow along with.
Your tires are an important part of your vehicle. Take some time to check on them by making sure your tires are at the correct tire pressure, inspecting the tire wear patterns and that they are properly aligned and rotated. Preserving your tires in good working condition can help save money and keep you safe while driving. If you have winter tires, be sure to check the tire pressure more regularly as the inflation levels change more dramatically, effecting the control you have on your vehicle.
Along with proper vehicle maintenance, make sure you are equipped with the right insurance coverage. Choose a policy that's ideal for you and your lifestyle.