How to Choose the Best Ice Cleats

"Choosing the right ice cleats for your shoes and boots is a matter
of selecting the right tool for the job..."

About the Information Contained on This Page

There is no one best type or brand of ice cleats to suit everyone's needs. Choosing the best ice cleat depends on several considerations. Click on the expansion boxes below to find out more. Note: Many of the links on this page take you to my Online Store that primarily focuses on industrial strength ice cleats designed for businesses. But in many instances these ice cleats are precisely what you need to minimize slips and falls or be sufficiently durable to hold up in you particular set of circumstances. Margins, product weights and packaging related to these ice cleats do not fit the business model used on the Perfect Present Store and are therefore exclusively sold through

Where You Live

  • Frequency of ice and snow
    • If you live in an area where it snows just about every day and you wear ice cleats everyday durability is obviously a major consideration for two reasons.
      • You may have to replace a lower cost ice cleat in the first season which essentially makes it more expensive than a higher cost, more durable ice cleat.
      • Depending on how late in the season the ice cleat fails it may be impossible to replace it which exposes you to the risk of injury.
      If you live in an area where you occasionally get ice and snow durability is less of an issue.
  • Do you get deep snow or is the problem ice and packed snow?
    • This is an issue because some ice traction devices are for ice and packed snow only.
  • Is the snow you get usually a wet snow... like the snow you get in the Middle Atlantic States? This is important because wet snow is more likely to create a suction causing your ice cleats to come off your shoes. So you would want an ice traction device that attached more substantially.
  • How cold does it typically get where you live? All ice is not the same. The colder the ice the harder the ice. Spikeless and gritted ice traction devices become less effective as temperatures drop into the low teens and single digits and may become totally ineffective at temperatures below zero. The best defense against slips and falls on extremely cold, dense ice is an aggressive tungsten carbide cleat that will penetrate the hardest ice.

How You Plan to Use Your Ice Cleats

  • If you're planning to use ice cleats for short, routine winter activities like walking to the mailbox, a short walk with the dog, or walking from your car across a slippery parking lot to the grocery store a light duty ice traction device will probably be OK regardless of how often you get ice and snow.
  • If you're planning to walk several miles every time you wear your ice cleats you need a heavier duty ice cleat or an ice traction device with replaceable spikes.
  • If you walk where there are frequent bare spots your ice cleats will obviously be exposed to more wear and you'll need a heavier duty ice traction device and/or one with replaceable spikes.
  • If you're planning to run or jog or participate in outdoor winter sports you would obviously want a very durable ice traction device
  • Will you be constantly going in and out of doors?
    • All but one ice traction device that I'm aware of should be removed before going indoors.
  • Will you be constantly getting in and out of your car or truck? You would obviously want an ice traction device that's safe to wear while driving.
  • Do you live or work in an urban environment?
    Cities present a whole new set of problems
    • The problem of constantly going in and out of doors... for example the train station
    • Getting on and off the bus or train because of the bare metal steps.
    • You have to be careful stepping off curbs and crossing streets because sewer and manhole covers are frequently not snow or ice covered which is dangerous if because of the metal on smooth metal contact.
    • Consider Altragrips-Lite Low Profile Ice Cleats or Low-Pro Ice Cleats.
  • Will you be using them off road?
  • Is anti sparking a consideration? Any ice traction device using either a metal spike or steel coil won't work. Consider Grips-Lite Gritted Non-Conductive Non-Sparking Ice Cleats that use a grit material for traction.

Your Physical Limitations

Ice Cleats for Specific Applications

This can all be very confusing. So why guess? Call me at 1-888-205-4477 and I'll help you choose which one is best for you.

Yaktrax Walker & Yaktrax Pro

$17.95 to $24.95 / pr.
The most popular cleats. Inexpensive, user friendly and very effective for traction on ice and packed snow under normal conditions. Effectiveness is much less in extremely cold conditions.

Spare Spike Ice Cleats

$24.97 / pr.
Low cost ice cleats giving you excellent traction on ice, packed snow and deep snow.

Altragrips-Lite Low Profile Ice Cleats

$43.97  /pr. + Shipping
$34.97 /pr. + Shipping
AltraGrips-Lite Low Profile and Low-Pro Ice Cleats are the most convenient ice cleats. They're perfect for people who live or work in the city, delivery drivers, the blind, and people with disabilities. Both use a unique 1mm tungsten carbide spike design that give them unique capabilities.

Lo-Pro Ice Cleats

Grip-X Ice Cleats

$37.97 /pr. + Shipping
Tough, industrial grade ice cleats with replaceable tungsten carbide spikes giving you excellent traction on ice, packed snow, deep snow, slush and mud. These are sold on my website.

Icegrips Ice Cleats

$51.97/ pr. + Shipping
Icegrips Ice Cleats are the toughest ice cleats available.
These ice cleats have several patented features that make them the ice cleats of choice for people who want to put them on their shoes or boots and let them on. These are ice cleats for outside construction workers, farmers, utility workers, etc. You can even climb a ladder with them. There are two strap systems available so they fit over large bulky boots. And the straps are replaceable so you get extended use from them. Again I sell these on the website.

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