Wednesday, November 30, 2022


Using snow chains on an RV


RV Tire Safety
with RV tire expert Roger Marble

Most of us only deal with ice in our drinks or as used to get our beer cold, but some folks may find themselves wanting(?) or needing to drive in areas where roads get snow and ice covered, and even in areas where the use of chains is required. If we travel in such areas, it is important to have the correct type and size of “chains” for our application or we may end up doing damage to both our tires and the sides of our coach.

The question is: What does the RV owner do when it comes to using chains in the dual application?

There are several types of chain setups and even some alternatives such as “cables.” I cannot address the legality of the alternate styles in all areas other than to offer that if there is an advisory that chains must be used and you get stuck and do not have chains on the unit, you may face some fines and other penalties. So you need to confirm the details of the requirements in your area before spending your money or before traveling out and about on snow- and ice-covered roads.

Duals have a few options. There is going to be a difference in cost, weight and ease of install, so you need to do some research. There are “triple rail” chains as seen in this video, there are some “cable” type systems as seen here, and some newer designs as seen here. [Editor: The first two videos are excellent instructional videos for installing the triple rail and cable systems.]

If you do not have duals, your choice is to be sure you select the equipment correct for your size tire.

I have not been involved in any direct comparisons so cannot offer any advice on relative performance. For that, you may need to do some additional investigation on the internet or even talk with some over-the-road drivers. Looking at the different videos, it appears to me that some designs may be more durable than others.

I do know that driving on dry roads with chains can cause some serious tire damage, so only you can properly evaluate what system would be best for your situation.

Read more from Roger Marble on his blog at




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4 years ago

I have a set of Onspots on my ’05 Monaco Diplomat. They are low maintenance and super convenient.

4 years ago

A definition of “dual application” for us relatively new folks would have made this article more useful.

4 years ago
Reply to  Janet

Janet, I imagine they mean duallys, the dual tires on the rear axle of many motor homes and large trucks.

Tommy Molnar
4 years ago

After retiring from 30+ years of trucking, I can say with authority that “chaining up” makes a difference of night and day in both safety AND confidence in nasty, snowy, icy conditions.

Having said that, now that I’m retired and driving MY equipment, I’ve adopted a new motto. “If it’s snowin’, I ain’t goin'”. Simple as that. If it’s snowy and icy out it means I didn’t plan this trip very well – ha.

Michael Falkner
4 years ago

I am building a 15′ travel trailer and I am using a single 4000lb axle. The trailer will not come anywhere close to the axle weight but, I was needing help in what tire would do the best job for towing? I don’t ever tow over 60MPh. I was thinking about 10 ply Hankook trailer tires because of better sidewall protection, but I am not sure, I kind of think in overkill theory, please help? I appreciate any help.

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