How to put tire chains on a semi-truck

By Herb Moring Feb 10, 2020
How to put tire chains on a semi-truck

Winter is in full force, and that means snow and slippery roads. With snow, mountain driving can become particularly challenging, and tire chains may be necessary to ensure safety on snow and ice.

See below for a video and step-by-step guide of how to put tire chains on a semi-truck.

Please note that the list and video below are just examples. It is important to remember the type of driver you are, the company you work for and the type of truck you drive can impact how you put tire chains on a semi-truck. Be sure to consult your company guidelines or speak with your leader for more information about putting tire chains on a semi-truck.

How to put tire chains on a semi:

1. Take chains out of bag.

At Schneider, there are typically two individual chain lengths in each bag. Often, the chains will hook on to one another, so some untangling may be necessary.

2. Lay out chains.

Make sure the chain hooks are facing up to ensure they face out when being placed on the tire. Tensioners should all be open.

3. Clean off hooks.

If you are laying your chains out on a surface covered with snow, use your fingers brush snow away from the chains.

4. Drape chains over tire.

Drape the chains over the tire, half to each side. Use your fingers to clean any remaining snow off the chains. Make sure the hooks are facing out and the tensioners are open.

5. Connect chains.

It is necessary to get under the truck to connect the chains. The inside chain is typically the hardest one to connect, so be patient.

6. Check number of links.

Make sure you have the same number of links on the inside of the tire as you do on the outside of the tire. Start over if you have an imbalance because the chains will not rotate around the tire properly.

7. Move truck forward.

Move your truck forward so it is easier to tighten up the chains.

8. Tighten chains.

Use tensioning tool to tighten the chains. Leave one-finger worth of space between the chains and tire.

In need of more winter weather driving tips?

At Schneider, we know the importance of having our drivers feel confident and safe while out on the road. Be a more confident driver by reviewing additional winter weather driving tips.

17 winter weather driving tips for truckers


About the Author

Herb Moring IMG
Herb has been with Schneider since July 1992. He started as a driver and became a training engineer, earning his One Million Mile award in 2000. He trained at three Schneider locations: Charlotte, Atlanta and Green Bay, and then worked as a Customer Service Engineer in Dedicated, starting up new accounts. He is currently Load Engineer Manager for Van Truckload and Flatbed, a member of the Curriculum Development team for driver training and the caretaker of Vinny, Schneider’s vintage 1949 tractor.

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