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Safe Driving: Installing Snow Chains on Your Tyres

Installing Snow Chains on Your Tyres in New ZealandIn New Zealand, your tyres will need snow chains on particular roads. They’re especially necessary for specific winter conditions, as these enable you to maintain sufficient traction on slippery surfaces or steep inclines and increase steering and braking control in unfavourable driving conditions.

Fitting snow chains isn’t easy, however, but a good practice run will help. Here’s a guide to help you get started:

  • Find a level and safe area, like designated bay or parking lot.
  • Get the snow chains and disentangle them.
  • Hang them over the wheels and make certain that they cross the treads from all sides. LRC Automotive adds that since you can’t easily slide the snow chains under the portion where your tyres touch the ground, you have to make certain that you place the first chain in the tyre’s front portion that’s in contact with the ground.
  • Some snow chains include rings for easier positioning, so make good use of them. Install them inside the wheel, with the opening part positioned at the bottom.
  • Start your car until the portion with the installed chains touches the ground and park again.
  • Connect the closing link to attach the chains together, making sure that they’re tightened accurately and that the interior and exterior rings are as even as possible and spaced evenly around your tyre.
  • Start your car again, drive slowly for two metres to a feel for the chains and then park once again. You’ll see that the snow chains have slackened a bit, so adjust them before going on your way.
  • Removing them is easier. Disconnect the interior chain or ring — remove as much of it from the tyre as you can, lay them down on the ground beside the wheel, and then drive a bit to release the remaining chain underneath the tyre. Once you get the hang of it, you could outfit two wheels simultaneously.
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To ensure safety on unfavourable driving conditions, outfit your tyres with snow chains only when necessary. Never go above 30kph when driving with snow chains on, and properly dry and store them correctly after each use.

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