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When it comes to winter driving, choosing the right traction equipment is crucial for your safety. Two popular options are snow tires and tire chains. Each has its own set of pros and cons, and the choice between the two depends on various factors. Let's take a closer look at the differences between snow tires and tire chains to help you make an informed decision for your winter driving needs.

Snow Tires

Snow tires, also known as winter tires, are specifically designed to provide enhanced traction in snowy and icy conditions. They are made of a unique rubber compound and have a tread pattern that helps disperse slush and snow, minimizing the risk of skidding and improving control. Snow tires come in two main types: studded and non-studded.

Pros of Snow Tires:

  • Excellent traction on snowy and icy roads
  • Better control and handling in winter conditions
  • Suitable for long-term use throughout the winter season
  • Perform well on dry and wet roads

Cons of Snow Tires:

  • Higher cost compared to tire chains
  • May require professional installation
  • Less effective in extreme conditions such as deep snow and ice

Tire Chains

Tire chains are metal chains that wrap around your tires to provide additional traction in snow and ice. They are particularly useful in extreme conditions, such as driving on steep slopes or unplowed roads.Pros of Tire Chains:

  • Provide exceptional traction in deep snow and ice
  • Lower cost compared to snow tires
  • Suitable for occasional use in extreme conditions

Cons of Tire Chains:

  • Can be challenging to install, especially for inexperienced users
  • Chains cannot be used on dry pavement
  • Chains tend to beat up the fenders and body of your car
  • Require driving at low speeds and can cause damage to the roadway if not used properly

In summary, snow tires are a great long-term solution for winter driving, providing excellent traction and control in a variety of conditions. On the other hand, tire chains are a more affordable option that is ideal for occasional use in extreme conditions. Ultimately, the choice between snow tires and tire chains depends on your specific driving needs, the typical winter conditions in your area, and your budget. It's important to weigh the opportunity costs of each option and consider factors such as cost, ease of installation, and the frequency of extreme winter weather in your area. Regardless of your choice, it's essential to prioritize safety and be prepared for winter driving conditions. Properly inflated tires, regular maintenance, and safe driving practices are also critical for staying safe on the road during the winter months.


How To Tell If You Need Brake Service & Repairs

The brake system in our cars, SUVs, vans, and trucks is what protects us on the road. The slightest change in brake performance can put you at risk of a collision. That is why the team at Tim’s Automotive Repair and Sales always stresses the importance of regular brake inspections. Read on to learn more about the braking system and how to tell if your car needs brake services or repairs.

Most service brakes or primary brakes are hydraulic systems, which are operated using a fluid. The pressure of that fluid gets pushed to trigger a series of events to slow down and stop your wheels from turning. Depending on whether your vehicle has disc brakes or drum brakes, the parts could vary. For example, disc brakes have brake pads, and drum brakes have brake shoes. As your vehicle puts on miles, your brake components will wear down and require servicing. To stay on top of your brakes’ condition, we recommend having your brakes checked annually or bi-annually.

How to Tell If You Need Brake Service & Repairs

Squeaking or Squealing Noises:If you constantly hear squeaks and squeals when applying pressure to your brake pedal, it usually means that your brakes have worn thin and need replacing.

Deep Grinding Metal Sound:Brake pads tend to have wear indicators that are metal ridges, and they grind on other metal parts of your car when they have worn down. Think of this sound as a warning to replace your brakes soon.

Vibrating Brake Pedal:If your vehicle shakes only when you press on the brake pedal, there’s no doubt that something is wrong with your brakes. We can’t know for certain what components are affected until an inspection is done.

Soft or Spongy Brake Pedal:A soft or spongy brake pedal almost always indicates a problem with your brake fluid. Your brake fluid may be leaking, low, or have air in its lines. Whatever the case may be, you will require brake bleeding or a brake fluid change.

Brake System Warning Light Comes On:In some vehicles, a sensor will tell your car’s computer to let you know when your vehicle has worn brakes. It will usually show up on your dashboard in the form of a light or message.

If you’re experiencing any brake troubles, please call or visit our auto repair shop as soon as possible. We will perform a complete inspection of the brake system to pinpoint your braking issues and work quickly to restore your brakes. Have confidence that the team at Tim’s Automotive Repair and Sales in Clackamas, OR can find the solution to all your brake needs.