New Zealand campervan hire | call 0800 772 237 or +6495262130 | email us | FAQ

Hit enter to search or ESC to close

How to put on snow chains

As soon as winter kicks in, you’ll need to think about winter accessories for your road trip in New Zealand. Adding snow chains to your Spaceships booking is easy, but then what? How do you put on snow chains? As snow chains are items you’ll only use a few times a year we have created this info to help you out.

Video Thumbnail

Important: watch this video as it explains perfectly how to put on snow chains

Putting on snow chains in 10 steps

  1. Pull over to a safe place to put on the snow chains.
  2. Hold the chains up and make sure chains hang freely
  3. Slide the chains behind the driving wheels of your Spaceship. The coloured washers need to be at the front of the tyre.
  4. Locate the hook and chain.
  5. Connect the hook and chain at the top rear of the tyre.
  6. Start rotating both side hoops together anti-clockwise (left) around the wheel until the black band is at the top.
  7. Pull the side hoop with the black band forward. Centre the chains around the wheel.
  8. Start securing the chains around the wheel.
  9. Secure the large hook through one of the links to the side loop.
  10. Move the vehicle forward (1 to 2 car lengths) and re-adjust the chains until they are tight. How tight? Very tight. Your fingers shouldn't be able to get between the chain and the wheel.

Your Spaceships campervan and snow chains: extra tips

Snow chains must always be fitted to the drive wheels of a vehicle. Those are the wheels that start spinning when you push on the gas pedal. Or as a mechanic would say: “a drive wheel transforms torque into tractive force”.

A two-wheel-drive vehicle has two drive wheels (either at the front or at the back), while a four-wheel-drive vehicle has four drive wheels. All Spaceships campervans are two-wheel drive vehicles! Beta, Beta 2S and the Dream Sleeper Mini are front-wheel drive campervans (fit snow chains to the front wheels). Important: snow chains must be fitted to the driving wheels!!!!

Words of advice when it comes to driving with snow chains

  • Don’t drive too fast with snow chains. Please drive to the conditions and stick to the maximum speed as mentioned in the snow chain’s manual.
  • Don’t drive with snow chains on a dry road too long! As soon as the road is clear of snow and/or ice, take off the snow chains. Driving for an extended period of time on a dry road with snow chains on can cause damage to your Spaceship but it can also cause the vehicle to slide when braking.
  • Don’t put snow chains on the non-drive wheels. Spaceships are two-drive vehicles and you’ll need to fit the snow chains on these drive wheels.
  • Don’t accelerate too abrupt as it can cause the tyres to spin which will put extra stress on the chains.
  • Please secure the snow chains tight enough. See the manual that came with the snow chains for detailed info.
  • If a chain does break when driving, stop immediately. If you keep driving with a broken snow chain it can cause severe damage to your Spaceship.

Snow chain-related questions answered

Okay so now you know how to put on snow chains to your campervan. But there is so much more to tell. Here are the most frequently asked questions about putting on snow chains.

Do you need to put snow chains on all four tires?

You’ll only need to put snow chains on the drive wheels. If your vehicle is a two-wheel drive (like a Spaceship) you only need to put snow chains on two wheels.

Do you put snow chains on the front or back?

Snow chains only need to be fitted to the drive wheels. If your vehicle is like a Spaceship, a two-wheel drive, you’ll only need to fit snow chains to these two wheels.

How far can you drive with snow chains?

Only use snow chains when you really need them. If there is no snow or ice on the road, please remove the snow chains from your wheels.

How fast can you drive with snow chains?

The recommended driving speed can be found in the manual of the snow chains. Usually, it’s between 30 and 50 km/h. Please drive to the conditions, drive slowly in snowy or icy conditions. Take your time.

How many tyres do you need to put snow chains on?

Snow chains are only needed on the drive wheels (see the explanation above).

Is it easy to put on snow chains?

Putting on snow chains isn’t that difficult. It’s just not something you do every day, so it takes some time to master this skill. Please watch the video above for detailed instructions about how to put on snow chains. If there are still questions, feel free to contact our friendly and tech-savvy crew.

background image

Always Drive Safe, no matter the season

  • Be alert
  • Take your time
  • Plan ahead
  • Let others pass
  • Watch for fatigue

More Drive Safe tips

And in winter: drive at a safe travelling distance and avoid sudden braking or turning that could cause you to skid.