Driving in snow or on ice can be dangerous, scary, and make you feel that much colder inside as another stress weighs on your mind. While it is not recommended to drive over 30 MPH with them, snow chains may be required in certain areas under snowy conditions, and they are installed on vehicles to increase traction and aid with braking. Peruse this list for ten of the best snow chains available online, and keep in mind your location and what kind of driving you do daily to find what works best for your car and lifestyle.
Best Snow Chains Comparison Table
|1. Security Chain Company SZ115 Super Z6 Cable Chain for Passenger Cars, Pickups, and SUVs-- Set of 2||Designed for cars, pickups, and SUVs with very limited operating clearance around the drive tires||$$$|
|2. Security Chain Company ZT735 Super Z LT Light Truck and SUV Tire Traction Chain-- Set of 2||Fastest, easiest installation of any traction product|
Built-in rubber tensioner means there is no need to stop and retighten after installation
|3. Security Chain Company SZ343 Shur Grip Z Passenger Care Tire Traction Chain--Set of 2||Self-adjusting cables|
Z pattern of the chains is great for breaking up the snow for better traction and easier movement
|4. Pair of GudCraft Size 60 High Quality Passenger Car Snow Chain 12mm|| The diamond link pattern of the chains make them work better with the car's ABS and traction control system|
Built-in self-centering and self-tensioning system
|5. Peerless 0153005 Auto-Trac Tire Chain--Set of 2||Do not exceed 30 MPH with these chains on|
Diamond pattern cross chain provides a smoother ride and superior traction
|6. Security Chain Company SC1032 Radial Chain Cable Traction Tire Chain--Set of 2||Requires low operating space around drive tires||$$|
|7. Thule 12mm CB12 High Quality Passenger Car Snow Chain, Size 090 (Sold in Pairs)||Backed by Thule's 5 Year Warranty|
Dual-sided D shaped links provide greater traction
|8. Glacier Chains H2828SC Light Truck V-Bar Twist Link Tire Chain||Tough carbon steel twist link cross chain with welded V-bar|
Lever end fastener for easy mountingTough carbon steel twist link cross chain with welded V-bar
Lever end fastener for easy mounting
|9. Glacier 1042 Passenger Cable Tire Chain--Set of 2||Type "S" limited clearance|
Meets all state requirements for cable traction devices
|10. Security Chain Company Z-579 Z-Chain Extreme Performance Cable Tire Traction Chain--Set of 2||Better compatibility with anti-lock brakes, traction control, all-wheel drive (AWD) and other electronically monitored control systems||$$$$|
1. Security Chain Company SZ115 Super Z6 Cable Chain for Passenger Cars, Pickups, and SUVs– Set of 2
These chains are designed for larger cars, trucks, and SUVs with limited clearance around the drive tires. They are also easy to install without even having to move your car. It takes just a few minutes per wheel. This Z6 cable has a diagonal crossmember pattern design that provides excellent traction and optimizes ease in starting, aggressive stopping, and turning corners. This product is auto-adjusted with rubber tighteners, so once they’re on your tires, you’ll never have to stop or pull over to re-tighten them. With the good grip they have on your tires, you’ll be able to plow easily through several inches of snow. This Z6 chain is definitely worth every penny for your peace of mind on the road.
These snow chains are intended for road use for most vehicles, including passenger cars, trucks and SUVs, ATVs and snowblowers. Rubber tighteners make for a quick and easy installation and removal that take only a few minutes. The diagonal Z pattern allows for better grip and traction on the road, which makes this product great for getting you out of a bind when driving on packed snow, untreated roads, and even ice.
These Shur Grip Z chains are better suitable for passenger cars. They have self-adjusting cables, so although they offer less slack, making it a little tougher to install, at least you don’t have to manually re-tighten them. These chains offer great traction for soft snow in unplowed streets, which means a smooth ride every time. For driving over packed snow, the Z pattern of the chains is great for breaking up the snow for better traction and easier movement.
The first perk of these snow chains is their affordable price. The diamond link pattern of the chains make them work better with the car’s ABS and traction control system, so you don’t have to worry about sliding down the road or on ice. These chains are intended for passenger car use, and boast easy installation and removal, even in snow or ice. There is also a built-in self-centering and self-tensioning system, which allows the chain to tighten automatically when the car begins to move. While the GudCraft’s grip on your tires may not be as great, it offers a low operating weight so the chains don’t weigh your car down.
These diamond pattern cross chains are excellent for providing good traction and smooth riding. They also have self-tightening ratchets that center and tighten automatically, which eliminates the need for stopping in the road to readjust them. With an easy installation and a fit that supports many tire sizes, these chains are reliable and convenient for snowy days. It may take a few trials to get the fit right, but the long-lasting tightness means minimal signs of wear and tear or slippage.
The most economical chain product available from this company, these chains are highly durable to promote long wear and a smooth ride. While it requires a low operating space around the drive tires, installation is easy whether in snowy or icy conditions. It features a low operating weight, and the ladder-style pattern of the chains are great for snow and icy surfaces and provide a nice grip.
These chained are backed by a five year warranty, which will make you feel safe with your purchase even though it’s more on the pricier side. Featured are the dual-sided D shaped links that are excellent for traction and provide a longer lifespan for the product. The links are hand-made in Italy and are constructed of a hardened manganese nickel alloy steel that promises durability. These chains also have a self-centering and self-tensioning system that activates once your car is in motion and the wheels are turned. As a bonus, there are color-coded attachment points on the chains to make installation more time-friendly. Even better, this product comes with a hard case, pair of gloves, spare links, and an installation mat.
The Glacier Chains are intended for use on vans, trucks, or SUVs. The V-bar twist links and ladder design makes for more control and durable traction on snow, icy roads, and off-road driving. While installation can involve some trial and error at first, the chains come with locking side-cams to ensure a snug fit around the tires and a lever end fastener to facilitate mounting. Since these chains may loosen over time, it would be worthwhile to purchase chain tighteners to make future uses easier. Since these chains are made of carbon steel, you will have no problem driving on slippery surfaces. The twist-link chain design really hugs the road and leads to better traction when driving through snow or on ice. While a more expensive option, this product is worth the price.
Intended for passenger cars, these snow chains fit both radial and standard tires, and are acceptable for front and rear wheel drive cars. The ladder style design of the chains are optimal for good traction in snow. While not intended for heavy duty, long-distance travel, or longtime use, they are good for use in emergencies or for short travels. The chains are lightweight and flexible for ease and time-saving installation and have a snug fit around the tires. With minimal vibration while driving there is greater comfort for all passengers. As a plus, the chains are easy to remove due to a latching system that helps save time and energy. While these chains are good for driving on snow or ice, be wary if you’re considering attempting to drive anywhere steep or hilly. The individual links are irreplaceable, which can be troublesome if any start to break, however, this product is effective for its cheap price.
Security Chain Company is well-loved and highly thought of for their products, and after making this list several times, it comes as no surprise why. These particular Z patterned chains are made of manganese alloy, semi rigid steel cable that allows for superior traction and durability in inclement weather conditions. The best use for these chains are for smaller cars and for short periods of time, such as when needing to get your vehicle through a rough area. Not only are these chains designed for smaller and convenient storage space, it meets the requirements for cars with restricted clearance around the drive tires, making for an easier installation.
The Z-Chain is very suitable for all-wheel drive and compatible with anti-lock brakes and traction control systems. This product promises a high durability and low potential for damage to the product and vehicle, even after much wear and tear. What’s also great about these chains is that the springs on the cables are separate pieces; so even if some break off it won’t compromise the overall function, and the rest will move along to fill any gaps.
All in all, this collection of snow chains are all great options depending on your needs for snowy and icy weather conditions. While not intended for high speeds or highway use, whatever you choose will still get you to where you need to go, whether work, school, grocery shopping, or a trip to the mountains!