Colorado Springs tire shops see brisk business with taste of winter weather

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — An early snow fall Monday morning gave southern Colorado a taste of winter. Now, drivers are flocking to the tire shops.

“My tires are super, super, super bald, the weather is starting to get bad,” said Ethan Tribble, a customer at the Tire Barn.  “If you don’t have good tires you are going to be slipping and that’s not good, I’ve had bad tires before in bad weather and it’s a huge difference when you have good tires.”

When the cold weather rolled in, locals say the cold snap makes them want to check in on their tires.

An old tire shop, now called The Tire Barn, is owned by retired cop Phil McDonald.

“We never know what weather is going to bring here in Colorado,” said Phil McDonald, owner of The Tire Barn. “As soon as we got into work this morning, the phones just ringing off the hook of people nearly in panic mode. ‘We need tires, I need winter tires, can you price these?’ It seems like folks are putting it off a little bit. The winter is coming this is just a little taste.”

McDonald works together with Gerald Tafoya, who helps with used tires and other repairs.

“[We] Check their fluid on their cars, check their brakes, make sure they have decent tires on the cars,” said Tafoya, with Mr. G’s shop.

McDonald said they offer a price point to keep everyone’s car moving forward.

“[A] Lot of our tires, coming from hail damaged cars a couple of seasons ago, where they have been totaled instead of taking those and turning those into salvage with the good tires on them, we peel them off inspect them thoroughly. Some of them are 95 percent tread or more, instead of putting them in the landfill, we are getting out use out of them,” said McDonald.

According to the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), good snow tires are the number one tool to preparing your car for winter.

“Winter tires are always a good thought, they adhere to the colder, icy roads better, they are worth the investment,” said McDonald.

CDOT has a list of winter driving preparedness tips on their website. They recommend the following:

Automotive Checklist

Before you leave on a road trip, make sure all of the following are in safe operating condition:

  • Windshield Wiper Fluid
  • Heater/Defroster
  • Wiper Blades Antifreeze
  • Lights
  • Fuel System and a Full Tank of Gas
  • Ignition
  • Exhaust System
  • Tire Tread
  • Battery Brakes

Safety Checklist

Make sure you have the following items in your vehicle in case of an emergency:

  • Flares/reflectors to signal for help and warn other motorists
  • Sturdy scraper/snow brush/snow shovel to clear snow
  • Battery or crank-powered radio to listen to emergency broadcasts
  • Flashlight with extra batteries or crank-powered flashlight
  • Survival blanket or sleeping bag
  • Chemical hand warmers
  • Extra set of clothes, including coat, hat, mittens, boots, etc.
  • Gallon jug of water and nonperishable food
  • First Aid Kit and essential medications
  • Tire chains and tow strap
  • Non-clumping kitty litter/sand for traction
  • Jumper cables
  • Extra cloth or paper towels for cleanup if necessary
  • Deck of cards or board game for entertainment

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