From December 15 to March 15, your vehicle must be equipped with four winter tires that meet established standards and are in good condition. Depending on the Québec region in which you live, it might be preferable to have your winter tires installed before December 15 and keep them on your vehicle after March 15. While you’re having your tires changed, why not give your vehicle a proper tune-up before the cold season hits?
To drive safely during the winter months, the Ministère des Transports recommends that you do a proper tune-up before the cold hits.
Visit the Regular Maintenance webpage for tips and advice.
From December 15 to March 15 inclusive, all passenger vehicles registered in Québec, as well as taxis, must be equipped with winter tires.
This requirement also applies to rental passenger vehicles in Québec, as well as mopeds, motorized scooters and motorcycles.
The fine varies from $200 to $300, plus costs.
Winter tires: be ready before December 15
Even though winter tires are not mandatory before December 15, winter can arrive early. Don't let it catch you unprepared!
New Highway Safety Code measure
Please note that, starting in 2019, vehicles will have to be equipped with winter tires before December 1.
Since December 15, 2014, only tires on which this pictogram is found and studded tires are considered winter tires under the Highway Safety Code.
The winter tires requirement does not apply:
As soon as the temperature drops below 7°C, or when there is ice or snow on the road, the rubber compound of summer and all-season tires hardens and loses its grip. Moreover, the treads on summer tires are not designed to hold snow like those on winter tires. The snow held in the treads of winter tires helps improve their traction and grip.
Since we can generally expect such weather conditions before December 15, it is highly recommended that you equip your vehicle with winter tires before this mandatory deadline.
The rubber compound of winter tires is specially designed to meet certain flexibility criteria in temperatures as low as -40 °C, which means better grip on the road surface.
For better traction, the tread depth of your tires must be at least 4.8 mm (6/32 in) when they are installed.
Even though legislation allows for the use of tires with a tread depth of only 1.6 mm (2/32 in), you may be compromising your safety if it is below 4.8 mm (6/32 in).
Be sure to check the date the tires were made, especially when you are buying them.
The tread on older tires is harder and less effective on snow and ice.
On the tire wall, find the DOT identification number that ends with a 4-digit number. For example, 3613 means that the tire was made in the 36th week of 2013.
Studded tires are authorized for:
Chains are authorized on the tires of: