The best tire chains of 2024


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Winter driving through snow and ice is inevitable in cold weather regions and it can become dangerous if you and your vehicle aren’t prepared. While tire chains, or snow chains, aren’t needed for most snowy driving they can certainly help in an emergency if you get stuck or live in an area that routinely gets heavy snowfall and traction is limited. Tire chains are wrapped around the tread of the tires and latch on tightly to prevent slipping and increase traction. Here are the best tire chains currently for sale at Amazon and Walmart.

$90.18 at Amazon

Key Features

  • Set of 2
  • Self-tightening polycarbonate ratchets
  • Diamond pattern cross chain
  • Meets S.A.E. Class S requirements
  • Do not exceed 30 mph with these chains attached

This SCC Security Chain Peerless Auto-Trac Tire Traction Chain uses self-tightening ratchets that deliver automatic centering and tightening when being used. The diamond cross-chain pattern increases traction and improves the ride quality of these tire chains. It’s recommended by the manufacturer that you don’t exceed 30 mph while using these chains.


SCC Peerless 0232405 Auto-Trac Light Truck/SUV Tire Traction Chain

$104.32 at Amazon

Key Features

  • #1 best-selling passenger car snow chain on Amazon
  • Fast and easy installation
  • Prevents vehicle slipping
  • Built-in rubber self-tensioning system
  • Self-tightening system
  • Meets S.A.E Class S requirements

The SCC Peerless Auto-Trac Light Truck/SUV Tire Traction Chain is currently the best-selling tire chain on Amazon. It’s easy to install and stays in place without the need to tighten it after installation. It uses a self-tightening ratchet that tightens and centers the chains automatically. The chains have a Class S requirement given by S.A.E. (Society of Automotive Engineers), which is an organization that rates products in aerospace, automotive and commercial vehicle industries.


Peerless Chain Company Quik-Grip Tire Chains QG2216CAM

$75.57 at Walmart

Key Features

  • Ladder-style steel link chain
  • Uses CAM locking mechanism
  • Chain tensioners not required
  • Does not meet S.A.E. Class S requirements
  • Manufactured to meet specifications of NACM (National Association of Chain Manufacturers) 

This Peerless Chain Company Quik-Grip Tire Chains uses a CAM style locking mechanism that has pieces of stamped steel on the outside rail of the tire chain to increase traction. With the CAM mechanism included you won’t need to add chain tensioners to the tires.


K&K Automotive Snow Socks for Tires

$119.99 at Amazon

Key Features

  • Alternative for tire chains and cables
  • Won’t damage tires or wheels
  • Tear-resistant
  • Maximum recommended speed of 25 mph
  • Can support vehicles up to 3.5 tons

The K&K Automotive Snow Socks for Tires are exactly what their name suggests, socks for your car. But don’t let the name fool you, they are a strong alternative to tire chains and cables. They increase traction, steering and braking when using them and are very durable. They can support a maximum vehicle weight reaching up to 3.5 tons.


TracGrabber Tire Traction Device for Cars & Small SUVs

$59.99 at Amazon

Key Features

  • Set of 2
  • Reusable and portable
  • EPDM rubber block
  • Reinforced stitch seams
  • Works in snow, mud and sand

The TracGrabber Tire Traction Device for Cars & Small SUVs is a versatile tire chain that works well in snow, sand, ice and mud. These tire chains are made with premium EPDM rubber, reinforced tire straps and heavy-duty “D” rings to handle and terrain when necessary.


How to install tire chains

Before buying a set of tire chains, make sure they are the right size for your tires. Here is a YouTube tutorial from Ministry of TranBC on how to install winter tire chains.

Do you put tire chains on all 4 tires?

You only need to put four tire chains on all four tires if your vehicle is all-wheel or four-wheel drive. If you have a front-wheel drive car then place the chains on the two front wheels. For rear-wheel drive vehicles, attach the chains to the rear wheels.  

How fast can you drive with tire chains?

Every tire chain has a different set of rules, but most brands don’t want you driving over 30 mph. Make sure you read the instructions of your chains to know the exact speed limit of your chains.

How effective are tire chains on ice?

Snow tire chains work well in icy conditions as well. According to eTrailer, “Although tire chains are often referred to as “snow tire chains,” they’re also good for ice and mud. Chains handle deep snow better than studded tires or winter tires, and they do just as well at cutting through ice”.

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