Do you really need Snow Chains?

Monday, July 2, 2018

Getting ready for your trip to the cold shores of New Zealand this winter? Unsure if all those Lord of the Rings snow storms are a reality? We’re here to put you and your snow chain concerns at ease.

What are snow chains?

Snow chains are a set of metal chains that are fitted around your tyres to give extra grip in snowy or icy conditions, but are removed once back to a clear road. It is important that they are of the correct size and that they are fitted correctly to be safe and to avoid damage to your vehicle.

In some colder countries, snow tyres are also used in winter, but they are not common and not generally available in New Zealand.

Do I need them?

Occasionally in winter, some of the high mountain passes in the South Island and the high elevation along the Desert Road part of State Highway 1 in the North Island can close for short periods due to icy or other dangerous road conditions, so with the road closed, there’s no way through even with snow chains on board.

At other times in winter, snow chains are recommended to be carried if you're going over any of the high mountain passes in the South Island, but in practice rarely need to actually be used.

If you are planning on going up to any of the ski fields, it is reasonably common in certain weather conditions for some of the ski field roads to be icy and be open only for four-wheel drive vehicles or two-wheel drive vehicles with snow chains fitted, so it pays to have chains with you if you’re going to the snow in a two wheel drive vehicle and want to drive yourself.

Where can I get them?

With a notice period of two weeks, we can ensure we have the right size snow chains available for you. Here at Mode, our chains are available for $15 per day, up to a maximum of $100 per hire. So if you know you’re going to be tackling those winter snow roads, be sure to add them on to your hire as an accessory!

For more on our accessory range, click HERE.

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