When do you fit snow chains ?

Submitted: Friday, May 28, 2010 at 16:37
ThreadID: 78850 Views:3266 Replies:8 FollowUps:7
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I am not a fan of cold and snow but I live done here about an hour from the snowline now so I guess I will head up there sooner or later :-(

I am just wondering when people fit their snow chains ?

( I have heard of a woman who drove from Canberra to Jindabyne with them on and NO I am not planning to do that :-)

Just how much snow or what conditions do you decide to stop and put them on ?
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Reply By: Member - barry F (NSW) - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 16:48

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 16:48
Maybe when it is snowing or is about to snow or there is snow on the road?
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Follow Up By: Indigo Jones (QLD) - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 22:21

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 22:21
What's Snow ?
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Reply By: Member - Shane D (QLD) - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:12

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:12
When the authorities tell you,
You must carry them, but only NEED to fit them if directed,
A really good idea would be to do a practise run in the comfort of your own driveway,

Shane
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Follow Up By: D200Dug- Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:24

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:24
Already done that :-)
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Reply By: Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:19

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:19
I think if you have a 4x4, you do not have to carry them if you are on the NSW side of the snow. On the Victoria side you must carry them for all vehicles.. This may have changed recently,,,, i havent been for a few years now.. Michael
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Follow Up By: D200Dug- Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:24

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:24
I am in Vic so they need to be carried in the vehicle on many roads
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Follow Up By: 2000 Red Rodeo - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 21:22

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 21:22
We live about an hour from Dinner Plain where we like to take the kids for some tobogganing and snow play.

Being forced to carry snow chains is one of my pet hates.

A 4wd with good AT or mud tyres is going to go a lot further than a Commodore with chains. But both are treated the same.

So each year I pay $60 to carry something I am never going to use.

Geoff
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Follow Up By: D200Dug- Friday, May 28, 2010 at 21:49

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 21:49
My tyres are the cruddy bridgstones that came with the car so I would not trust them on any slippery surface.

I will get some wear out of them and replace them with decent tyres when we get our caravan.

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Follow Up By: Mike DiD - Saturday, May 29, 2010 at 09:34

Saturday, May 29, 2010 at 09:34
"A 4wd with good AT or mud tyres is going to go a lot further than a Commodore with chains"

- until you hit black ice, then the 4WD goes much faster and straighter.
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Reply By: Berniec - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:41

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:41
Take your cue from those around you. If there are cars coming toward you with chains on start looking for a safe place to pull over and fit them. There are plenty of dedicated "Chain fitting bays".
Obviously if you are experiencing ice conditions that are getting worse get ready to fit them.
When you pull over, keep an ear open for the road grader. You just might get a clean run to the snow.
Having seen users fit them on wrong wheels and others who leave it too late and wipe out parked cars, it is better to get them on too early than too late.
AnswerID: 418573

Reply By: skulldug - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:43

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:43
D,
No need to fit them at all provided you are in 4WD and driving to the conditions. I have driven in quite deep snow with no dramas. Go slow, dont tow, brake very carefully and beware of hills and the edge of the road and you should be fine. The roads are normally sign posted as closed or chains must be fitted on 2WD vehicles etc. Wise men follow the signs.

Skull
AnswerID: 418574

Follow Up By: Moose - Monday, May 31, 2010 at 13:35

Monday, May 31, 2010 at 13:35
"beware of hills and the edge of the road"
Definitely agree.
Nearly got stuck when I pulled over for a photo - took a bit to get out.
Another time a steep pinch made life interesting. Luckily I slide into the gutter - other side was a decent drop. Managed to back out of there too with a bit of effort.
Snow is a interesting learning experience! Never used the chains yet - looks like a bloody awful job to have to do in snow so hopefully will never need to.
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Reply By: Member - Graham H (QLD) - Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:45

Friday, May 28, 2010 at 17:45
Coming from the frozen south of NZ it was best to fit them ONLY in snow deep enough to keep them of the road surface especially if tar seal.

It not only cuts up the road but plays hell with the tyres.

When I was running taxis in Dunedin in the winter had a spare set of wheels with old tyres to fit chains on.

Generally however we didnt use them as you would be up and down the hills and off the snow.

Mostly we just let our tyres down like you do in sand.

If we couldnt get all the way to customers place tooooooo bad as they were

just using us to get where they wouldnt drive themselves anyway.

Had lots of cars get stuck being too ambitious so erred on the side of safety and then get more work.

On gravel they arent so bad but still a bit hard on the tyres.


The short answer of when to put them on is about 100metres before you really need them.

Most of the ski roads over there have a point where you must stop and fit them like it or not.


Cheers No more snow for me.

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Reply By: Member - Tony (ACT) - Saturday, May 29, 2010 at 06:31

Saturday, May 29, 2010 at 06:31
Come the start of May I carry a set of diamond pattern chains all the time. We have a farm out past Captains Flat, and at times needed chains on to get in and out.

I like too trout fish the rivers before the June closure (going tomorrow for a couple of days) and have had to use chains to get back to the main roads.

I also ski both NSW and Vic during the season, chains are always in the vehicle. Good insurance I reckon.
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Reply By: ChipPunk - Saturday, May 29, 2010 at 15:34

Saturday, May 29, 2010 at 15:34
It is illegal to drive with chains fitted (on made roads) if they are not required.

When are they not required? I guess on bitumen etc when NOT required to fit then IAC signage etc.
And it is expected hat you remove them when exiting the signed areas.

As to the person I followed down a mountain that didn't remove their hire chains until the service station they hired them from - I hope the station got more than the mere deposit, I hope the CRB traced the tarmac divots, and I hope the driver had to replace the tyres and was not covered for his panel & paint damage.


I carry chains, but only for "after the fact" - and then usually for boggings, never for snow (except when directed).
I hate the things, but I have enjoyed trans-country arctic driving on "summer" tyres that would fail a roadworthy (aka slicks). FYI - it is often not illegal to use summer tyres in winter overseas, but to used studded winter tyres in summer is.

I intend converting a passenger car to 4WD merely so I do NOT have to fit chains....

But PLEASE - if you are inexperienced in the snow etc, do NOT speed down hill and take it very careful around corners.
I'm sick of evasive action around blind corners trying to avoid spun 4WDs!
And fit chains as directed.


Are "rubber chains" (treads) acceptable instead of chains in Aus?
AnswerID: 418662

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