How To Measure For Snow Blower Tire Chains

January 19, 2021

Living in an area where you get persistent or regular snow can be difficult. Unlike in places where snow is rare, if your area gets snow regularly you are expected to carry on with life as normal.

This means that you have to put precautions in place ready for when the snow does appear.

One of these precautions is the purchase of a snowblower which can be used to clear the snow from your driveway and immediate area and allow you to get on with your life as normal.

How To Measure For Snow Blower Tire Chains
chained wheel of a snow blower tractor

But even snow blowers can struggle in snowy and icy conditions which is why a little device known as snowblower tire chains exist.

But you must purchase snowblower tire chains that are the right fit for the tires of your snowblower which is why we’ve put together this guide on how to measure for snowblower tire chains to help. 

What is a snow blower?

Before we take a look at how to measure for snowblower tire chains, let’s quickly establish exactly what a snowblower is.

A snow blower is something that you probably will have already heard of if you live in an area that is prone to getting lots of snow regularly. While snow is always fun at first, it can quickly become inconvenient.

Especially when you are expected to carry on with your life as normal, despite there being snow everywhere. Snowblowers, or snow throwers as they are sometimes called, are the perfect solution to all your snow problems. 

Snow blowers are machines that are excellent for clearing snow from areas where it is not wanted, and they are most commonly used to clear driveways and sidewalks.

Despite their name, snow blowers do not actually clear the snow through the use of air, instead, they usually use an auger to push the snow out of the way. The machine itself tends to be electricity-powered, diesel-powered, or gas-powered, and they come in a variety of sizes. 

Despite being available in multiple sizes, there are actually only 2 main groups of snow blowers. These groups are one-stage snow blowers and two-stage snow blowers. Both types operate fairly similar to one another, but they are better suited for different depths of snow.

Generally, one or single-stage snow blowers are perfect for smaller amounts of snow, whereas two-stage snow blowers are perfect for large depths of snow.

You can learn more about the different stages of snow blowers and here and how to select the best snow blower for your needs under $600 here.

So now that we know what snow blowers are, let’s take a look at what snow blower tire chains are.

What are snow blower tire chains?

If a snow blower is a machine used to clear snow, it stands to reason that snowblower tire chains are something that helps the machine travel better on the snow. If you made this assumption, you are correct. 

Even though snow blowers are designed to clear snow, their tires are known to struggle on certain surfaces. Especially when there is snow coating these surfaces.

So in the majority of cases, tire chains are absolutely essential for the snowblower to be able to work properly. Even if the tires appear incredibly sturdy, don’t be misled into thinking you will not require chains.

Unless your driveway is incredibly flat you will need tire chains. So we’ve established that tire chains are something that attaches to your tires to allow you to drive safely in the snow, but what are they exactly?

Despite their bulky and sturdy appearance, snowblower tires fall victim to slippery ice and snow conditions just as regular tires do. This is unfortunate as it is the snow blower’s job to clear the snow so that your car can travel on the road surfaces.

Tire chains are chains that can be attached to the tire to cover all of the surfaces and generate traction that allows the tires to travel without slipping on the ice. 

There are lots of different types of tire chains available for tires of a variety of sizes, to find the right ones for your snowblower you have to measure the tires. Let’s take a look at how you do it. 

How to measure for snow blower tire chains

So now that we know exactly what snowblower tire chains are, let’s take a look at how you measure to find the perfect chains for your snowblower. 

As you will probably expect, the first thing that you need to do to find the right tire chains for your snowblower tires is to measure them.

Perhaps measure isn’t the right word, because in most cases you will not have to physically measure your tires to work out the size of them. In fact, in most cases, you can measure your snowblower tires for chains without even needing a measuring tape. 

To find out the measurements of your tire, you will need to look at the sidewalls. At some point along the sidewalls of the tire, you will find a set of numbers that are all grouped together. Of these numbers, you want to focus on the first three sets which are located together.

Looking at these numbers, you then want to focus on the two numbers before the dash and the ‘R’. Then you want to locate the two numbers immediately after the ‘R’, these numbers are all measurements of your tires. 

The first numbers are a measurement of the tire’s diameter, the second set of numbers are the tire’s width, and the final set of numbers is the width of the tire’s rim. Using these numbers you can then work out which size of tire chains you need for your snowblower.

The measurements of the snowblower tire chains will also come with three sets of numbers attached to them which will allow you to find the perfect chains for your tires. 


In short, measuring for snowblower tire chains is actually incredibly easy, you don’t even need a measuring tape to be able to do the job.

All you need to do is locate the numbers on the sidewall of your tire and this will give you all the information that you need to be able to find the tire chains that will fit perfectly with the tires of your snowblower. 

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