If you have winter tires (and if you don’t, you probably should), you are eligible for a discount on your car insurance.
The Ontario government recently reminded residents that auto insurance companies are now required to offer customers discounts for winter tire use. Although winter won’t officially kick off until Tuesday, Dec. 20, Brampton has had its fair share of wintery weather and if you need a little extra incentive to switch your tires, well, perhaps this will do it.
To be clear, the discount isn’t brand new–it actually came into effect on Jan. 1, 2016. That said, drivers were not immediately eligible for the discount, as they had to wait until it came time to renew their policies.
So, if your policy comes up for renewal at the end of December, you’re in luck–you can enjoy the discount very, very soon.
On average, drivers with winter tires can expect to see their insurance premiums dip by two to five per cent. While some people might feel comfortable sporting all-seasons all year round, winter tires do typically enhance safety and reduce the potential for accidents by functioning better in snowy, slushy and ic conditions.
“Winter tires don’t just make you more safe, they protect those around you, including passengers, other drivers, and pedestrians,” says Yvan Baker, parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Finance. “The winter tire discount doesn’t just lower your auto insurance rate by up to five per cent—it makes everyone on the road safer.”
When looking for winter tires, keep the following mind:
- Look for models that carry a logo of a snowflake on a peaked mountain
- Install them in sets of four
- Check their air pressure and condition at least once a month
- Get new tires if they are worn close to the tread-wear indicators
While this news is no doubt good for consumers, the province has introduced other intiatives aimed at decreasing auto insurance costs. Other reforms include prohibiting premium increases for minor at-fault accidents and lowering the maximum interest rate that can be charged on monthly auto insurance premium payments to 1.3 per cent from 3 per cent.
So, if you don’t have winter tires already (or you do and your policy is set to renew this month), note that you are eligible for this discount if you decide to switch from all-seasons to snow.