Winter tires? Check. Winter wiper blades? Check. Emergency kit? Check.
Drivers can never take too many precautions when it comes to cold-weather driving, which is why Space Age Kal Tire of Steinbach is booking tire-changeover appointments, a winterization package and helpful advice for those journeys on snow-packed and ice-covered roads.
“You just never know what our winters will throw at us,” says Space Age manager Chris Dyck. “Winter maintenance is really important, because no one wants to be stranded on the side of the road or stalled in a parking lot with a dead battery.”
The first safety measure most drivers take this time of year is the installation of winter tires. Space Age was busy with changeovers following the late-October snowfall, and this later, milder weather has provided another opportunity for vehicle owners to prepare for winter’s next howl.
“We’re still booking tire appointments well in advance,” Dyck explains. “We also do some first-come, first-served drop-offs, but those are obviously restricted to how many we can do on a given day. Call us earlier than later to reserve a spot, or, if you have some flexibility, we can work with you if you want to drop off your vehicle for a day.”
Dyck says that drivers should typically get their tires switched when the temperature is somewhere between 5 and 10 degrees. Anything cooler, and you’ll start seeing frost on the road.
“It’s not just the deep snow we’re worried about,” he says. “ Black ice can glaze up intersections, and there are things you don’t necessarily see right away. Winter tires will also give you a grip on that sheer ice.”
Beyond winter tires, Space Age also advises switching to winter wiper blades and having your vehicle battery checked. Their staff can provide both services, and more, as part of their winterization package, which drivers can add on to an oil change.
“Just ask for the package as part of your oil change and we’ll look through all those items,” says Dyck.
He also offers some free advice for drivers who may be thinking of ways to keep themselves and their families safe on the road during the winter.
“Have a crash kit idea,” he recommends. “People can use an old backpack or suitcase, or you can buy pre-made kits that have safety flares, flashlights and LED strobe lights that indicate where you are. If you’re stranded on the side of the road, have some warm blankets and make sure you throw some extra winter gear into the trunk – some boots, some gloves, extra pants and jackets, and also carry a shovel with you.”
Preparation can also include food items such as energy bars, and it’s always important to let people know when you’ll be heading out on the road and where you’ll be going. After all, there really isn’t a busier time of year for motorists.
“We know holiday season is coming up, and we hope everyone has a great holiday and is safe and able to enjoy the beautiful winters we usually have,” says Dyck. “They’re cold, but they’re also very enjoyable.”
Space Age Kal Tire, located at 8 Hwy 52 W, is open Monday to Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 8:00 a.m. until noon. THey can be reached by calling (204) 326-6039, and their services can be browsed by visiting their website.