Westworld Alberta

Winter 2014

Westworld Alberta

Issue link: http://westworldmagazine.ama.ab.ca/i/402160

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Page 53 of 67

TIRES: Stick to the road G ood tire traction makes it easier to accelerate, slow down and stay on the road, which leads to fewer fender-benders and close calls. Carey Blaskin, co-owner of Calgary auto shop Blaskin & Lane, o ers the following tips on rolling into winter: Get a better grip: While all-season tires are suitable for driving in mild conditions and rain, winter tires improve handling and safety at temperatures below 7 C. is is because, below 7 C, the rubber on all-seasons sti ens, reducing traction. But winter tires are engineered to maintain malleability in frigid conditions, giving them better grip. ey also have larger tread blocks, so more tire surface "bites" into the snow. Switch before winter: Before the rst snowfall if possi- ble, says Blaskin. "If you wait for the snow to fall, every reputable tire shop will be swamped," he says, "and all of a sudden you're driving for four or ve days in a snowfall, without winter tires, when no one else is prepared for winter driving either." Install four matching tires: Variations in tread pattern and wear can a ect your vehicle's handling, so this is key. Worried about the expense? If you're going to own your vehicle for longer than ve years, you needn't be, says Blaskin. "One way or another, you're going to be getting two sets of tires – the set that comes with the car, and another when that set wears out," he says. "Why not get a set of winter tires now and double the life of your all-seasons?" Grab an extra set of wheels, too: A pair of black steel winter wheels will save you time and money in the long run. is is because tires that are already mounted on wheels take a shop around 15 minutes to switch, whereas a tire-only changeover takes 60 to 90 minutes. Plus, you'll lengthen the life of your summer wheels by not exposing them to the salt, gravel and scrapes of winter. Check your pressure: As the temperature drops, so does your tire pressure, so check it at least monthly (don't forget the spare) – more if temperatures are uctuating, since you can lose two to ve PSI when temperature shifts are drastic. WINTER TIRES VERSUS ALL-SEASONS Winter tires Better below 7 C Softer rubber designed to stay exible in cold temperatures for better grip on the road. Deeper, more aggressive tread that channels water and ice away, and prevents snow from building up. Better above 7 C Harder rubber that provides good traction in warmer months, but hardens in the cold, resulting in less grip and longer stopping distances. Shallower tread optimized for longer tire life and smooth ride on asphalt. In winter, ice and snow can build up in the grooves. All-season tires A NEW WAY TO LOOK AT | Rewards { { WINTER DRIVING TIP: "De nitely get snow tires. They make such a difference. Even if you are the most careful driver in the world, you'll be even safer with snow tires." –Sheila Berg Earn 5% in reward dollars (up to $50 reward dollars) at Blaskin & Lane. AMARewards.ca/ BlaskinLane

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