Don't take off those winter tires just yet, warns AMA

Don't take off those winter tires just yet, warns AMA

Winter isn't over quite yet, with snow and ice returning to Calgary roads after a warm, dry spell.

The rapid freeze and thaw can create slippery conditions, and if you've already taken off your winter tires, well, that's your first mistake. 

The Alberta Motor Association's chief mechanic Randy Loyk joined the Calgary Eyeopener on Monday to share some spring tips for motorists.

Q: When's the best time to take off the winter tires?

A: We usually like to say the second week of April, you can start planning on getting them taken off. We all know, living in Alberta, that we get these spring snowstorms that can dump a lot of snow at one time. 

Q: Is it bad to keep your winter tires on way past spring and into the summer?

A: A winter tire has a softer rubber compound on them. Driving in warmer temperatures on dry pavement will wear these winter tires a lot quicker. It's nice to get them off as soon as you can, yet you don't want to rush that process.

Q: Calgary police are planning to issue more warnings rather than tickets over the next few weeks, as a way to encourage better driving behaviours. What spring driving tips do you have for listeners?

A: We all tend to, once the roads start drying, pick up our speeds a little bit. Most cities increase their law enforcement during the springtime... so it's important that you do watch your speed. 

Q: What else should people think about in terms of vehicle maintenance around this time of year?

A: One of the important things to do is to make sure you put your block heater cord away. It's a good time to make sure that the air pressure is good in your tires, check your lights over, give your car a really good cleaning, lubricate the latches and hinges. Over the winter, with all the salt and moisture, they can start corroding and stop working properly. 

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​With files from the Calgary Eyeopener