Dont worry about insurance hikes caused by fitting winter tyres – they dont exist
Posted by Richard Sinclair
Winter tyres are almost a must-have nowadays after two severe winters have taken their toll on the motorists in the UK – with many spending time in the last two winters holed up at home unable to get out of the street.
Fitting specialist winter tyres can make getting about in the snow and ice a lot easier, but many drivers have failed to take the plunge as they feared that adding the tyres would either invalidate their insurance of see their premiums increase dramatically.
Reports last year claimed drivers were being charged up to 20 per cent more by insurance companies or even having cover refused as the firms classed adding specialised tyres as a modification.
However, motorists may be happy to hear that this is not the case, as an Autocar investigation has found that insurers do not hike premiums after specialist tyres have been fitted.
The magazine talked to some of the leading insurers in the UK – the AA, Churchill, Co-operative, Direct Line, Esure, Liverpool Victoria and RBS – with each one confirming that winter tyres are not in fact classed as a modification and therefore have no bearing whatsoever on premiums.
Each insurer confirmed that as long as the winter tyres meet the manufacturer's specification and are fitted by a trained professional on all four wheels, premiums remain valid.
It was also revealed that there is no formal requirement to notify insurers that you have fitted winter tyres to your car to deal with conditions when the mercury drops below zero.
Drivers are also not formally required to tell insurance companies if new wheels are fitted to their car along with winter tyres, although if considerably more expensive wheels are fitted, these could be classed as a modification and may incur extra charges.