Snow Socks Size Guide
Snow socks are ideal for motorists who live in or near cities, and who don’t usually have to drive on snowy or icy roads, but will occasionally encounter hazardous driving conditions. They are far less expensive than winter tyres, easier to fit than snow chains, compact and easy to store, and are re-usable too. While winter tyres do definitely have their place – and are a better option for people who spend a lot of time in the snow in rural areas, a good pair of snow socks is a must for anyone who wants to give themselves peace of mind that they will be safe on the roads this winter. It’s important, however, that you choose the right pair for your vehicle.
Do Snow Socks Come In Sizes?
Snow socks slip over your car’s tyres, and it’s important that you get a pair that fits properly. There are several different sizes of snow sock, designed to fit the most common vehicles. It is important that you pick the right size, because a sock that is too loose could make your car more difficult to control, while one that is too tight either would not fit over the wheel, or could cause damage to the tyre. At the RAC Shop, we try to make it as easy as possible for you to pick the right snow socks for your car. You can search by registration number or by wheel size and get recommendations for the right type of sock.
How To Choose Snow Socks Size
The easiest way to get the right type of snow sock for your car is to enter your car’s registration number. Assuming that you haven’t got a personalised registration plate, or have not carried your registration from car to car, the system will be able to identify your vehicle and will then recommend the right type of snow sock for you.
If the system thinks that it has found a match, it will show you the best product and will also show you the make and model of car that it thinks you have. If the make and model of car is correct, you can buy those snow socks with confidence. If the system is wrong, you should ignore that recommendation, and check your vehicle’s wheel size yourself. If you don’t know how to find your wheel size, don’t worry – it’s actually easy to figure it out by looking at your tyres.
Note that snow socks only go on the drive wheels. So, first you need to check whether your car is rear wheel drive or front wheel drive. You can tell this by accelerating your vehicle while it is up on a jack, and noting which wheels spin.
There should be some numbers on the side of the tyres on your drive wheels. These numbers correspond to the size of the tyres. Write down the numbers, and match them from the list on the Snow Socks Size Guide page. You will be shown the correct size of ‘fit and go’ snow sock for your car.
Do Snow Socks Have To Be An Exact Size?
It is very important that you choose the right size of snow sock for your car. Socks that are far too tight won’t fit over the wheel at all, and will essentially be useless. If they are slightly too tight, then this will increase the wear and tear on them, and mean that they are more likely to need replacing before the winter is over. They could even cause damage to the car.
Snow socks that are too loose will be slippy and not give enough traction to help you in wintry conditions. In addition, they could lead to your car under-steering, or otherwise becoming hard to control. Driving in the winter is difficult enough without having to worry about keeping control of a vehicle that is not handling the way you are used to.
Sizing on snow socks is a little more flexible than it is on snow chains, since you don’t have to worry about the gap between the wheel arches, but it is still something that you have to be careful about. With snow chains, you have to get exactly the right size since the chains are made of a strong metal and will not stretch. In addition, because they are made of metal there is a greater risk of them damaging the tyre if they are fitted too tightly. Using chains on a clear road could damage the road, too.
Staying Safe in the Winter
Most motorists in the UK are not used to winter driving, since it is only in the last few years that we have started to encounter really bad weather. Remember to watch your speed when you are driving in cold weather, since black ice is a common problem on rural roads, and can greatly increase your stopping distance.
When it is snowing, try not to make any unnecessary journeys, and if you do decide to drive somewhere make sure that you pack a winter survival kit including a fully charged mobile phone, jump leads, a shovel, warm clothing, water and non-perishable foods, as well as a hazard triangle and lights.
If you get stuck in snow, call the police or an emergency breakdown service (ideally, every motorist should be a member of one of these), rather than asking friends or family to come to get you – after all, if you got stuck in the snow, they might too.
If you do buy snow chains or socks, pay attention to the conditions on the roads and fit the socks as soon as the roads start getting bad. If you wait until you are stranded, snow socks won’t help you because you won’t be able to get them over the tyres fully. Practice fitting the socks at home, on a clear road so that you know what you are doing and can fit them properly even when it is cold and wet, and visibility is poor.