GREAT FALLS — When its summer we deal with fires - and now, winter is quickly approaching and we need to start thinking about getting prepared, and that means getting your car equipped for winter.
October 1st marks the start to studded snow tires being permitted on Montana roads. With snow in the forecast for parts of the state in the coming days, many people are checking in at tire shops to have their snow tires installed.
Darryl Nielsen, the owner of Darryl's Tire & Service Center in Vaughn, says there is often an influx of customers following the first snowfall.
He recommends getting your tires on sooner rather than later, as global supply chain disruptions have had an impact on snow tire stock; he said simply, "That's the real hurt. Supply is terrible right now."
Darryl has found snow tire prices have increased by around 10% as we get closer and closer to winter weather.
He also advises people to have antifreeze levels checked and buy heavy-duty windshield wipers prior to the first flakes falling.
The Montana Department of Transportation recommends that people review winter driving tips before venturing out on the roads this winter:
- Allow extra time to get to your destination.
- Clean off your car. Keep windows, mirrors and lights clear of snow and ice.
- Turn off cruise control.
- Always buckle up.
- Slow down in poor visibility conditions.
- Maintain a safe distance behind other vehicles.
- Expect ice on bridges and in shady spots.
- Don't pass snowplows unless it's absolutely necessary.
- Prepare your vehicle for winter driving at the start of the season.
- Check to be sure all four tires are in good condition.
- Don't wait until the last minute to get snow tires mounted.
- Keep an emergency travel kit in your car.
Click here for more safety information on the MDT website.