Is Your Car Ready For Driving In Colorado Winter?

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Check your tires, stay informed about road conditions and avoid big fines

I-70 interstate colorado

Colorado is a beautiful state and a great one to live in too! Each season has different landscapes, and the weather can be very different throughout the year. For example, Colorado’s winter driving conditions can change from sunny to blowing snow within an hour. So at Auto Rehab in Denver, we want to make sure you are prepared for any situation during the winter season and avoid any accidents and big fines when enjoying a trip through our colorful state.

Passenger Vehicle Traction & Chain Laws

A chain law restriction for vehicles weighing less than 26,001 lbs including passenger vehicles, crossovers, SUVs, and small trucks can be put into effect in Colorado at any time when weather conditions are severe, primarily on roadways with significant ascending and descending grades. This restriction is Code 15.

When the chain law is in effect, authorities will inform about it either by electronic message signs; 511 traveler information; on their website and media outlets. You can also sign up to receive their newsletter and text message alerts, to make it easier to stay informed about road conditions, road closures, and the chain law.

Operation Tire-Safe

If your car has worn tires or ones made for a different season, things can get really dangerous! And if a Traction Law is in effect, your all-season tires might not be enough!! Besides, if you don’t carry the proper equipment during a Traction Law, you could face fines as low as $130 or as high as $650!

When it comes to snow or ice on the ground, all-season tires are no match to winter tires, as illustrated in the graphic below, so you might want to consider investing a bit more in a good set of winter tires when your safety is at stake.

CDOT's winter tire recommendations


The quarter test

How do you know if you need new tires? The Quarter Test is a quick and easy way to see if your tires meet the minimum tread depth (one-eighth inch) during a Traction Law.

  • Insert a quarter into the tire tread upside down, with Washington’s head going in first.
  • If the tread covers the top of George’s head, your tires are OK. Do this test at multiple points around each tire.
  • If the top of his head is visible at any point on the tire, they won’t meet the Traction Law minimum, and you should consider new tires.

If you ignore our recommendations and winter debris, rocks or small accidents cause dents on your vehicle, don’t worry! We can fix it with our paintless dent removal and our other car paint services. Still, who needs an extra expense during the Winter? So stay safe, stay calm and enjoy the season!!   

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