Best Tire Chains (Review & Buying Guide) In 2019

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We've searched the internet for the most popular tire chain products on the market. Our list combines a range of different products, features, and price points. If you're ready to find chains for your tires this winter, make sure to compare all the options listed below.

But first, we'll take a closer look at some key details you should know before you decide to purchase new tire chains for your vehicle.

Table of Contents

Product

Product Details

OUR #1 RATED

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Konig XG-12 PRO 245

  • Easy-to-use design
  • Multiple sizes
  • Effective, well-reviewed product
  • Backed by an industry leader, Konig

OUR #2 RATED

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Autmor Car Snow Chains

  • Unique design
  • Breaks ice while you drive
  • Easy to put on and remove
  • Cost-effective

OUR #3 RATED

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SUPTEMPO Snow Chains

  • Unique design that incorporates various materials
  • Breaks ice using steel studs
  • Easy to place on your wheel; includes alloy straps
  • 12-month warranty

OUR #4 RATED

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Super Z6 Chain

  • Lightweight design
  • Backed by a reputable company
  • Excellent for vehicles with limited clearance
  • Comes with gloves and other products

OUR #5 RATED

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Security Chain Company Radial Snow Chain

  • Simple, intuitive design
  • Meet S Class requirements
  • Multiple sizes on offer
  • Durable

Why Are Tire Chains Useful?

If you haven't purchased tire chains in the past, you might be a bit confused about their primary purpose. Tire chains are a product with the primary purpose of providing traction to drivers. During the winter months, ice, snow, and other wet conditions can make it treacherous to travel on the road.

By placing chains around your tires, you can increase your vehicle's ability to avoid sliding. In the colder parts of North America, tire chains are a ubiquitous tool. In some areas of the world, tire chains are mandatory at certain times of the year.

If you want greater control of your vehicle this winter, purchasing tire chains for your car is one of the most cost-effective solutions. Fortunately for modern drivers, it's never been easier to order excellent tire chains on the internet. With winter fast approaching, there's never been a better chance to prepare yourself.

Types of Snow Chains

While you might assume that all snow chains are traditional chains, recent developments in technology mean that you have a wide range of options at your disposal. In this section of our guide, we'll take a close look at the various types of snow chains you can purchase for your vehicle this winter.

Make sure to consider all the types of chains mentioned in this portion of our guide. Each type of chain has its own strengths and weaknesses.

Traditional Chains

Traditional chains are typically chains made with steel or another form of metal. These types of chains have been used for decades by drivers throughout the United States and Europe. They're still a popular choice with many modern consumers.

Cables

Instead of traditional chains, many drivers now also use cables that wrap around tires. Cables are another effective way to add traction to your tires. We will discuss the critical differences between traditional chains and cables in a different section of this guide.

Rubberized Chains

In some cases, you will find that modern snow chains now have rubber components. While steel is still a favorite material with many manufacturers, it's not rare to see rubber or artificial materials in the composition of the chains.

Best Tire Chains in 2019

So, now that you know why it's so important to have the best snow tire chains, it's time to look at some of the best tire chains on the market. We've compiled a list of the top 10 best tire chains available on the internet. Check them out:

Konig XG-12 PRO 245

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The Konig XG-12 PRO 245 is brought to you by Konig, a company that traces its origins to Italy in the 1960s. The business first started manufacturing tire chains to help clients that were traveling through the Swiss Alps. At present, it's one of the most reputable snow chain companies on the planet.

The Konig XG-12 PRO 245 is an easy-to-apply snow chain that is best suited to SUVs. They're designed specifically to let you enjoy your next ride in comfort. You won't feel the same amount of friction you find in many other snow chains. One of the only downsides is that it comes with two pieces; therefore, you will need to purchase two sets if you want enough for all of your tires.

The product includes anti-scratch bumpers and 12 mm of clearance inside and on-the-tread. Fortunately, this is a product that comes in a range of different sizes. You'll find there are over 12 different sizes available to drivers.

Also, because you're partnering with Konig, you'll benefit from a wide range of online resources. You can find extensive information about sizing and other vital elements of Konig's products. It's nice to purchase snow chains from a company that is so dedicated to its customer base.

Pros

  • Easy-to-use design
  • Multiple sizes
  • Effective, well-reviewed product
  • Backed by an industry leader, Konig

Cons

  • Only enough chains for two tires

Konig CB-12 14 Snow Chains

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This set of snow chains is another impressive product offered by Konig, one of the industry's most reputable manufacturers. As with the Konig XG-12 PRO 245, this product includes '12 mm inside and on-the-tread clearance.'

If you're looking for an easy-to-use snow chain that is well-liked by its user base, it's hard to go wrong with the Konig CB-12. Konig offers this product in a range of different sizes and variations, so it's easy to get these chains to fit snugly on your tires.

You can manually tense the chain to suit your preferences. The only downside is that you will only receive two chains if you order this product. Do you want chains for all four tires? You will need to order two (this can be quite expensive compared to other options on our list of best tire chains.)

Still, you're backed by one of the most recognizable names in the industry. Konig has maintained its reputation for over 50 years for a reason.

Pros

  • Many sizes and variations
  • Easy to place on your tires
  • Attractive design that doesn't impact the aesthetic appearance of your vehicle
  • Sturdy materials
  • Manually adjustable
  • Backed by a titan in the snow chain industry

Cons

  • You must purchase two
  • Not certified by 'Class S Requirements'

Autmor Car Snow Chains

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Autmor is best known for creating a range of auto technology products, including advanced scanners and readers. But these car snow chains show the company is ambitious about entering all parts of the auto industry. The primary focus of this particular snow chain product is ease-of-use and lightweight design.

These are not traditional tire chains. They are made from a synthetic material that is built to provide anti-skid features and ice-breaking capabilities.

To put these chains on your tires, you will need an alloy buckle to tighten the belt around the inside of your tire. This makes the process of removing the chains extremely straightforward.

It's effortless to strap these chains to your car. You won't have to deal with a lot of the same difficulties you would face with traditional steel chains. The product is made primarily from a thickened TPU material that is made to withstand friction and pressure. The design of the chain includes small steel nails that help your wheel break through ice as it drives.

One of the downsides to this product is that it only comes with enough pieces for two wheels. There are six total components, and you will need three for each wheel on your vehicle.

Pros

  • Unique design
  • Breaks ice while you drive
  • Easy to put on and remove
  • Cost-effective

Cons

  • Only comes with enough for two tires
  • Isn't the traditional snow chain design

SUPTEMPO Snow Chains

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If you're looking for a tire chain that incorporates a range of high-quality materials, this SUPTEMPO product is one of the best snow tire chains on the market. It combines steel, aluminum alloy, TPU, and steel studs to create a genuinely hybrid product. Its lightweight design doesn't sacrifice strength; these chains are built to break through road ice.

Despite being one of the newest products on our list, this snow tire chain has exceptional reviews from customers. It's easy to use, which helps take the pain out of installing and removing the chain from your tires when the weather changes. There are three separate chains for each tire, which you can fasten using the aluminum alloy fastener.

Unfortunately, like many of the other chains on our list, this only comes with enough chains for two tires. There are six chains in total (three per tire). While the price is reasonable, it doubles if you want chains for all four of your tires.

All buyers benefit from a 12-month warranty. SUPTEMPO is happy to provide replacements or refunds if any part of the product breaks within the first year of usage.

Pros

  • Unique design that incorporates various materials
  • Breaks ice using steel studs
  • Easy to place on your wheel; includes alloy straps
  • 12-month warranty

Cons

  • Not a traditional design
  • Only comes with enough chains for two tires
  • Can be expensive if you need chains for four tires

Security Chain Company SZ429 Super Z6 Chain

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The SZ429 Z6 Chain is another excellent product on offer from the Security Chain Company, a large producer of consumer and commercial chain products. It is made from a manganese alloy steel that provides a range of benefits, including a much more lightweight design. This particular product is best suited to SUVs and pickup trucks.

Unlike other snow chains on my list, this is one of the best tire chains for cars with limited clearance. You only need 6.33 mm of sidewall clearance to use these chains. This particular product only includes a set of two chains. Thus, you will need to purchase two sets if you need four chains.

On top of its range of unique features, the product is also straightforward to install. You'll be ready to drive in no time. In addition to the chains, the Security Chain Company will include gloves, adjustors, and a range of other tools that can help increase efficiency when you have to place these on your wheels.

Pros

  • Lightweight design
  • Backed by a reputable company
  • Excellent for vehicles with limited clearance
  • Comes with gloves and other products
  • Easy to put on your tires (and take off)

Cons

  • Only suitable for SUVs and trucks
  • Only comes with two chains

Security Chain Company Radial Snow Chain 

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EThis is another product from the Security Chain Company. In fact, the Radial Snow Chain is one of the first product designs from this famous supplier. It incorporates a very traditional steel chain design that helps you increase traction and meet 'S Class' requirements.

The product comes in a range of different sizes, with over ten different sizing options to choose from. It is made entirely from steel and is built to withstand heavy winter conditions. The company recommends this product if you want a steel tire chain that is capable of helping your braking and handling performance.nter your text here...

The product comes in a range of different sizes, with over ten different sizing options to choose from. It is made entirely from steel and is built to withstand heavy winter conditions. The company recommends this product if you want a steel tire chain that is capable of helping your braking and handling performance.

The Security Chain Company states that you should not exceed 30 MPH when driving with these snow chains on your vehicle.

Pros

  • Simple, intuitive design
  • Meet S Class requirements
  • Multiple sizes on offer
  • Durable

Cons

  • Not as versatile as some of the other options on our list

KONIG XB-16 247 Snow Chains

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This is yet another popular product produced by Konig, one of the most reputable snow chain producers on the planet. If you're looking for a tire chain that offers an extraordinary grip, this is one of the best options on the market. It offers 16mm on-the-tread and inside clearance.

The unique design of the chain offers large surface area coverage that can help you improve traction and increase on-road safety. You can manually adjust the snow chain's tension without any additional tools. The only downside is that it's one of the most expensive products on the market; it will cost you over $120 for two chains.

There are three sizing options available for this particular model: 245, 247, and 265 (other variations are sometimes available).

Pros

  • Adjustable
  • Backed by a strong company
  • Unique, traction-focused design

Cons

  • Extremely expensive
  • Only offers two chains per set

Dolloly Tire Chains Adjustable

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This is another snow chain that uses a combination of rubber and metal studs to help break road ice and increase traction. The manufacturing process is carried out with durability in mind. Dolloly guarantees these unique snow chains are more durable than traditional tire chains.

Unlike other products on our list, this Dolloly snow chain can be used for SUVs, trucks, and standard cars. You will need to have a tire width of between 7.2" and 11.6".

These chains come in five individual pieces, which means you won't have to fit them around the entire tire when you place them on your vehicle. It's easy to install and remove the chains; they're a good option if ease-of-use is one of your primary priorities. Each chain has an adjustable strap that you can use to fit it snuggly around your tire.

This particular product includes ten pieces. You will need to place five on each of your tires. There are only enough for two tires in this set. Fortunately, it's one of the cheapest options on our list, which makes it affordable to purchase two sets for your four tires.

Pros

  • Unique design that's easy to install
  • Made from rubber and metal studs
  • Adjustable
  • Works for cars, SUVs, and trucks

Cons

  • Only includes two sets
  • Manufactured by a lesser-known producer

Gelma Car Snow Chains Anti Slip

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Unlike most of the other products on our list, this Gelma snow chain is made from a rubber material that increases its anti-slip properties. This product comes with ten different brackets (or chains). You will need to fit five to each of your tires. If you want enough for four tires, you will need to purchase an additional set.

Because each chain is an individual piece, it's super easy to install. If you want a product that you can put on or remove quickly, this is one of the best tire chains on the market.

Not only do these chains work well on snow and ice, but they can also be used to help drivers who are stuck in mud or sand. As you can see, there are multiple applications for this chain design.

Adjustable straps allow you to dictate the tension of these snow chains, but you should always follow the instructions carefully to ensure they are properly fitted to your vehicle.

Pros

  • Unique rubber design
  • Very affordable
  • Easy to place on your tires
  • Multiple applications (sand, mud, snow, etc.)

Cons

  • Five different straps per tire (can be a lot to keep track of)
  • Only enough for two tires

Arnold Tire Chains

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If you're looking for a simple, traditional snow chain product that can help you increase your traction this winter, these tire chains by Arnold might do the trick. They're suitable for 16" x 4.8" tires; thus, they can only be used for knobby tread tires.

While these chains are a little more challenging to place on your tires, they should only take a few minutes to implement fully. This particular product comes with two chains, so you will need to buy two sets if you want to cover all four of your tires.

Full instructions are included in the packaging, so you'll be able to walk yourself through the installation process.

Pros

  • Traditional design
  • Simple product
  • Instructions included
  • Reputable producer

Cons

  • Fairly basic design
  • Only one size available
  • Only includes two tire chains

Follow the Instructions!

No matter what type of chains you purchase for your vehicle, it's essential to follow the installation instructions as carefully as possible. It can be extremely dangerous if you do not install your chains correctly. Many of the chains on our guide are built using different types of materials and designs. It's impossible to apply the same installation techniques to different products.

Don't overestimate your ability to understand the best way to apply the chains to your tires. If your tires are too loose, or they're not attached properly, it might result in conditions that are even more dangerous than driving on ice.

Common Reasons That Snow Chains Don't Work

While snow chains are an extremely effective product for preventing certain types of issues on icy roads, they can still fail. In most cases, it is the fault of the driver if a snow chain fails. Let's explore some common reasons why your snow chains might not work effectively:

You're driving too fast

You're driving on roads that don't have ice or snow

The chains are not appropriately secured; they're not tight enough

Chains are installed on the wrong type of wheels

The chain breaks

The driver rapidly accelerates the car, which might cause issues or snap the chains

Consider Your Vehicle's Internal Computer

Most modern vehicles have an internal computer that increases traction control and performs several other automated tasks. While these computer systems provide enormous benefits to vehicle owners, they can also cause several problems when you have snow chains attached to your tires.

Because your car doesn't know there is now an external item attached to its tires, it will not be able to read signals or make adjustments properly. In many cases, this might create dangerous situations that could put your safety at risk. For this reason, it's a good idea to deactivate your vehicle's internal computer if you plan on using your snow chains.

In most instances, the manufacturer will include information about this in the guide. Your tires might be suitable for partnership with your car's internal computer controls, but you should always double-check.

Why You Shouldn't Use Snow Chains When There's No Ice

Fitting and removing snow chains can take a considerable amount of time. Even the best tire chains can be frustrating to install. For this reason, many car owners make the mistake of leaving the chains on their tires, even after they exit snowy conditions. Leaving the chains on your tires, however, can pose a range of different problems. Let's examine them in more detail below.

Reduced Performance and Control

At the end of the day, keeping your snow chains on your vehicle will reduce its overall performance. You won't be able to drive as fast, and you won't feel like your car is driving the same way it usually does.

In fact, many tire chains can impact your ability to control your vehicle if there is no ice outside. If you do decide to leave your chains on for convenience, you'll be placing yourself and other drivers at risk.

Braking Issues

Not only do drivers lose control while they are driving their vehicles on dry roads, but they might also experience problems braking. The materials used to build car chains are not suitable for braking on dry concrete. If you need to come to a sudden stop, the vehicle might slide. This side-effect is another factor that might put you and other drivers at risk if you choose not to remove your chains in good conditions.

Loud Noises

Not only will tire chains impact your ability to control your vehicle, but they'll also make extremely loud noises. As the chains continually rub against the asphalt or concrete on the road, they'll emit loud noises that will be impossible to ignore. If your chains are made of metal, expect an even louder noise.

The noise made by tire chains can be a massive distraction to you and other drivers on the road. This is yet another reason it's best to remove your chains as soon as you have a chance.

They Damage the Road

If you decide to use your tire chains when there is no ice or snow on the road, you'll also be damaging the road beneath your vehicle. By keeping the concrete in constant contact with moving metal, you will damage the roads you drive on if there is not a buffer of snow or ice between your tires and the asphalt.

This is yet another reason it's essential to avoid using your chains on the road.

Poor Gas Mileage

On top of the above issues, you should also consider the impact it will have on your gas mileage. Tire chains are known to reduce the efficiency of vehicles drastically. You won't get close to the same gas mileage if you leave your chains on.

So, while it might be convenient to leave your snow chains on when it's no longer icy on the roads, it should be avoided at all costs. Not only will you waste gasoline, but you'll also lose the ability to control your vehicle. You might be found to be at fault if something happens on the roads.

Best Tire Chains FAQs

Many consumers that are in the market for the best chains for tires have similar questions. Below, let's explore some common topics that can create confusion amongst drivers:

Which is Better: Tire Chains or Cables?

One of the most common questions you'll hear about snow chains involves snow cables. Snow cables are sometimes considered an upgrade from snow chains, but this isn't always the case. Snow cables are thought to work better with 4WDs, while snow chains are preferred with 2WDs.

Snow cables are often much lighter than snow chains, but chains tend to offer the best traction features. While some people like to say that snow chains are outdated, they still provide an excellent grip for icy and snowy roads. That's the reason they remain so popular with drivers in the United States and throughout Europe.

One benefit of snow cables is that they're easier to install and remove. If you want a product that is convenient, you might prefer a cable.

Do Chains Ruin Your Tires?

Unfortunately, chains do ruin your tires over time. This is especially true if you use the chains when there is no ice or snow on the ground. If the chain is rubbing between your tire and the street, you can be assured that it will eventually cause damage to your tire's rubber.

As we mentioned in a previous section of this guide, it's never a good idea to use chains when there is no ice or snow on the road. If you want to protect your tires as much as possible, it's essential to remove them as soon as the ice or snow melts away. While this might sound like a nuisance, it can save you $100s by helping you avoid having to buy new tires.

Do You Need 2 or 4 Tire Chains?

As you have seen, many tire chain products only come with two chains. If you want enough to cover all of your tires, you will need to purchase multiple sets. But do you really need them? While many car owners only use two tire chains, having four on your vehicle will increase traction and control. It can be a good way to increase your safety when you're on the road.

For those who have back wheel drive vehicles, you should place your tire chains on your back wheels. On the other hand, if your tires have front-wheel drive, you should place the chains on the front tires of your vehicle.

How Fast Can You Go with Chains on Your Tires?

The exact speed that you can go with chains on your tires will depend on a range of factors: including your vehicle, the conditions, and the type of chain that you have attached to your wheel. As a rule of thumb, you should try not to drive faster than 30 mph when you have snow chains attached to your tires.

Speeding with chains on your tires can damage your tires and result in a lack of control. Losing control is extremely dangerous in icy conditions. Keep in mind: you should also be considering the external conditions and climate. If it's clear that the roads are particularly treacherous, you might need to drive much slower than this upper limit.

Additional Information to Keep in Mind

If you're in the market for snow chains, there are some additional pieces of information to keep in mind. If you want to stay safe this winter, it's important to take in as much information as possible. Below, let's explore some additional information to consider when you're driving with snow chains this winter.

Clean Your Chains

After you use your chains, it's always important to clean them when you return home. Remove your chains, thoroughly wash them, and ensure that you keep them in a dry place. If you don't clean your chains, they might build up residue that will impact their ability to function correctly.

It doesn't take much to wash your chains and store them when you get home. You can also use this as an opportunity to inspect them carefully for any damage or faults.

Don't Overestimate Your Skills

Snow chains aren't a fool-proof solution. There is still plenty that can go wrong when you're driving on icy or snowy roads. Some drivers get overconfident when they have snow chains attached to their wheels. If you are driving in snowy or icy conditions, you should approach the journey with the same care you would employ if you didn't have chains on your tires.

Make sure to follow all road rules and don't exceed any limits set by the manufacturer. It's still very easy to get in an accident if you have snow chains attached to your tires.

Consulting the Experts

Choosing the right tire chains is critical if you want to be as safe as possible this winter. If you're unsure which chains are most suitable for your vehicle, it's a good idea to speak to experts about what is the best option for your car this winter. If you speak to a local mechanic or tire specialist, they can help you determine the best product to purchase.

If you bring our list of options to your tire specialist or mechanic, they'll be able to help you determine which chains are most suitable for your vehicle and its tires. Finding the right fit is essential if you want your tires to be as effective as possible when the conditions turn cold and wet.

Additionally, don't hesitate to contact the manufacturer of the chains that you purchase. If a manufacturer is reputable, they'll be more than happy to talk to you about their product and the best way to use it.

Verdict: Prepare for Winter

As the coldest months of the year are fast approaching, it's more important than ever to prepare your vehicle and home for treacherous conditions. Finding the best tire chains for your vehicle doesn't happen overnight; you need to allow enough time for delivery and testing.

Now that you've read our snow chain reviews, it's time to decide which of the best snow chains is right for your vehicle. While there are plenty of 'Best Snow Chains 2018' articles on the internet, we provide one of the few comparison guides that are updated for 2019. Make sure to compare all of the products on our list before you make a purchasing decision.

Once you receive your chains, make sure they fit and that you know to install them effectively. You should be certain they're the right type of chains before it begins to snow. You don't want to get caught out when the weather turns sour.

Another product reviewed: Slime 50123 repair kit for temporary repair of all tire 

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