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All Winter Tire Questions/Thoughts Go here...

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by Augie, Oct 31, 2013.

  1. maple1

    maple1 Minister of Fire

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    Studded winters here - brand not an issue.

    'All seasons' for the rest of the year.

    Well-worn winter tires actually make a not-bad summer tire too (as long as there's some tread left). They seem to wear like iron. Or at least the last ones I did that with did.

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  2. flyingcow

    flyingcow Minister of Fire

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    So true Maple1
  3. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    Have used studded tires on both cars last several seasons. Man they are noisy. When current ones wear down in year or two will maybe go to non studded. We live on a hill, and sometimes icy.
    flyingcow likes this.
  4. Augie

    Augie Feeling the Heat

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    Ask and you shall receive....
    I have a Saab 9-2x Aero or the Saabaru. The 9-2x was a WRX with STI suspension bits.

    Here is her nose on a winter drive
    [​IMG]
  5. DuckDog

    DuckDog Burning Hunk

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    Temps are still getting to the 40* range and are supposed to stay there for the next couple of weeks. Looks like we'll be running our summer tires until the end of Nov beginning of Dec.
    Wife has an 2008 Grand Prix. It is currently running Michelin Defenders but will switch out to the Michelin Xi3's at the first hint of snow (or road salt!) Her drive round trip to work is a little bit under 40 miles. 98% of her drive is on main road. I opted for an ice tire over a snow tire as the roads are plowed regularly. I've run Blizz's and Hakka's in the past and in the conditions we drive I cannot tell the difference between them and the Michelin's. Cost is also very similar.
    I drive an 2002 2wd regular cab Ranger. I put a set of Yokahama Geolander i/t G076's on last year. After using them for a season I can say that they are the best winter tires I'v ever had on a light truck. My daily commute is around 95 miles round trip. They were amazing! Highly reccomend them!

    I've been running winter tires on separate rims for whatever car / truck I've had since 1998. I will NEVER be without them!
  6. Lumber-Jack

    Lumber-Jack Minister of Fire

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    I have found just the opposite, generally winter tires are made with softer rubber that is suppose to grip better in the cold snow, and the softer rubber wears out faster, especially when the roads don't actually have snow on them, which is often the case around here.
    That is the thing that ticks me off about snow tires, the fact that they wear out so fast. We have dedicated rims for my wife's car, one set for summer tires and one set for winters. I just finished installing the winter tires on her car, but in the process I noticed that the newer summer tires I removed now had more tread than the winter tires I was installing. My wife drives about 30 minutes to work over some mountain roads that can get some very bad winter road conditions. I just didn't feel comfortable with those tires so I got a new pair of winters installed on the front (front wheel drive).
    It seems like I just replaced those winter tires and now they were worn out already, or at least worn enough they weren't up to snuff for winter driving conditions.
    Between winter and summer tires for my wife's car, my truck, my sons little pick up, not to mention replacing regular tires on my motorcycle and my son's motorcycle it seems like every time I turn around I'm buying new tires. I just gave away a little bronco II to my brother's friend, it use to be my running around vehicle, I decided I didn't really need it any more, but most of all it needed new tires and I just didn't feel like forking out any more money for tires. :(
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2013
  7. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    It is crazy how expensive tires are.
  8. maple1

    maple1 Minister of Fire

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    The last two sets of tires I bought, I bought used. If you scan Kijiji (or CL) quite often, there's good deals on tires from people who got rid of a vehicle & their new one takes a different size. Or similar situations. This past spring I got a set of studded winters for our Pilot, on rims, with only 1 winter on them, for $200 - and a set of Bridgestone all-seasons for the Civic, not on rims (have 2 sets already) with only one summer on them for $100.
  9. Beetle-Kill

    Beetle-Kill Minister of Fire

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    Since the wife's new Firestone studded Winterforce tires showed up today, thought I'd add them to the mix.
    I have run the Winterforce studded tires year-round on various vehicles. They give you confidence on a front wheel drive car and they wear like an all-season.
    Her AWD CR-V should be unstoppable if the situation arises to actually test them.
    They have an aggressive tread pattern so,-- good in slush, rain, and deep snow.
    The studs are for the snow packed/ ice conditions on the roads, plus I believe they add to the longevity of the tread.
    They do have a harder compound than most winter tires, and I only recommend them with studs. (not sure of the durometer rating)
    Tire Rack has good pricing, even with shipping.
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2013
  10. chrisasst

    chrisasst Minister of Fire

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    Ok, so been searching...
    Wife will be driving an hour back in forth to work on back roads.
    What snow tires are good. Should I go with studded or non studded?
    One of my local shops has Goodyear Ultra Grip Winters that are non studded I think for $344 for 4 tires (includes installing etc.)
    This is the cheapest tire place around but I don't see any studded tires there.

    So studded or non studded? Which should I look at?
    Just found this video.. hmmm


    http://www.tirerack.com/videos/index.jsp?video=7
  11. ewdudley

    ewdudley Minister of Fire

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    Looking closely at the video it appears to me that they are running the studded vs non-studded simultaneously, which means the non-studded tires have the advantage of running on ice that has been textured by the studded tires.

    On frozen lakes we run full race cars and street cars in different races. The full race cars have very aggressive purpose-built race-studded tires than chew the ice up and give it texture. When the street cars run (separately after the race cars) there is a mix of cars with non-studded and street-studded tires. At the start the non-studded can keep up and can even outperform the street-studded on the textured ice. But as the corners get polished by cars sliding in and spinning on exit the non-studded lose parity in a hurry.

    I say the only advantage of studded tires is on smooth/polished ice. So the question is, where, when, and how often will drivers encounter smooth/polished ice [in central NY]?

    One case is in an ice storm, but they are quite rare, and you're simply not going to make speed with or without studs. If it's so bad that the salting can't keep up the best strategy is creep along trying not to get run into, or just stay off the road.

    The other case is high traffic intersections where snow gets packed and polished into ice by all the cars skidding to a stop and spinning away when the light changes.

    Since studded tires are noisy, and they suck on dry pavement, and they suck on wet pavement, and they suck in slush, and they suck on salt-slime, all-in-all, having run studded and non-studded for many years, I say [in central NY] you're better off without studs unless you're doing a lot of city driving.

    http://cnyira.com/

    http://icerace.com/sl.htm
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2013
  12. festerw

    festerw Member

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    I would agree with this, I've run both and prefer non studded. I'm due for new tires on the Jeep and I'm going to give the Treadwright Warden tires with their Kedge Grip and see how those work out. I've used them on my old Dakota without it and liked the way they performed.
  13. Augie

    Augie Feeling the Heat

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    Unless you are in Deep snow almost all of the time stud-less are far superior. ANY winter tire will be light years ahead of any All Season.

    Price looks good on those tires, I would have them mounted on some cheap steel wheels so you can swap in the spring back to the current tires.
  14. festerw

    festerw Member

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    I should clarify I plan on running those all year round, but I do have a set of steel wheels that my current snows are mounted on. The last set I had I sold the truck with 30K miles on the tires and they were still well over half tread.
  15. MDFisherman

    MDFisherman Member

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    Bfgoodrich allterrains last tires you will buy!
  16. Beetle-Kill

    Beetle-Kill Minister of Fire

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    So the question goes. Is it better to have it and not need it, or to need it and not have it?
    I don't believe a studded tire "sucks" worse on a slushy road than a comparable tire in the same conditions at all. What do they call it- 'Tread Void' or something like it, the ability of a certain tread to expel water/slush to maintain traction, that is critical to me. With my variety of conditions, an aggressive tread and studs works very well. Tire air pressure is an important factor also. Sidewall stiffness will play into this, so you have to factor vehicle weight and tire capacity into the equation.
    The true ice racers on Georgetown Lake (my area), run single-digit tire pressures with bead-locks. They don't count.
    The snow driving classes for you and I, they run at street pressures in the tires. Those classes only show people that, HEY!!- ice is slippery no matter what tire you have, and that you should slow down, AWD is not the "be all, end all". Lots of variables between a certain vehicles weight and the max. capacity of a certain tire. Contact patch pressure is what I aim for, but it differs between vehicles. Air pressure matters in the winter.
    After 20+ years above 8K, I've seen enough. I'll keep my studded tires, thank you. JB
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2013
    flyingcow likes this.
  17. flyingcow

    flyingcow Minister of Fire

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    After reading this thread, I still prefer studded tires. For me, it's the only way to go.
  18. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Hey guys

    A few things I would like to add:

    1- Anyone who is serious about snow tires know about Nokian. In a recent Canadian winter tire review, Nokian won against all competition. They make studded and non-studded winter tires. They are expensive but you will get about 40000 miles out of them. They are made in Finland. FYI, all cars must have winter tires in Finland during the winter months.

    2 - I live in Quebec. It is mandatory in Quebec to have winter tires from December 15th to March 15th. You MUST have winter tires that are winter approved. No LT tires, no BFGoodrich all terrains, etc etc. They simply don't cut it when it's -20C outside.

    3- As others have mentioned, a winter tire has a much softer rubber compound. This allows for the tire to remain soft during cold periods. Normally all seasons start losing effeiciency at around 3-7 degrees C (when it starts getting cold). Any WINTER tire is better than an ALL SEASON tire in the snow/slush/cold.

    4- Studded tires are noisy, that's for sure. I currently have nokian hakkapeliitta 5 on both vehicles. WHile my dry pave traction may be reduced by 8-13% and it is loud, I sure love them when it starts snowing and you're driving on the icepack/ice that forms during the initial 2 inches. I don't plan on driving 100 MPH with winter tires on. Not to mention: 2 subarus + nokian hakkapeliitta 5 = Snowmobiles :)

    I am very passionate about winter tires and their technology. I learned a long time ago not to be cheap with winter tires: they are what keeps you on the road during the worse road conditions. So I make a budget and buy the "best" that I can. Why would I say "hey, those are $200 less" and buy a lesser quality tire (for example, something made in China) when the $200 in savings is split over 3-4-5 winters??

    Andrew
    flyingcow likes this.
  19. festerw

    festerw Member

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    Take a look at some truck all terrains next time you walk through a parking lot, you'll find quite a few now that are rated for severe snow BFG AT's are one of them. They'll be marked with a mountain snowflake symbol, while they won't be as good as a dedicated snow they'll be much better than a summer tread.
  20. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    That is new! Cool.

    It wasn't like that 3 years ago. Personally not a big fan of the AT but lots of people love them. They don't have much choice, more and more places require winter tires. They would lose customers by the masses in snow-prone areas (that require snow tires)
  21. festerw

    festerw Member

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  22. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef Minister of Fire

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    Right. But notice the small print:
    Alternate tires not bearing the mountain/snowflake symbol which have one or more of the following terms branded in their tire name or tire size are temporarily acceptable: Alaska, Arctic, A/T or AT Blizzard, Ice, LT, Nordic, Snow (but not mud and snow), Stud, Ultratraction or Winter. Starting December 15, 2014, the Highway Safety Code regulation specifies only tires bearing the mountain/snowflake symbol will be considered acceptable winter/snow tires in Quebec

    And concerning the BG AT, here is what it says at the bottom:
    NOTE: While most BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO tires meet the industry's severe snow service requirements (and are branded with the mountain/snowflake symbol), selected tires do not. Specific tires/sizes not meeting the industry's severe snow service requirements are identified with a "Not Rated For Severe Snow" notation on the Sizes & Pricing, as well as on Specs.
  23. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    After checking with several places -- on line and in stores -- and briefly debating on purchasing some Nokian Nordman4's (made in Russia), I opted to save a bit of change ($70) and go with General Altimax Arctics as they seem pretty well liked . . . and based on my past experiences with General tires.
  24. Augie

    Augie Feeling the Heat

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    General Altimax Arctics are the Gislaved - Nord*Frost 4. Still a better tire than most even though they are on to the Gislaved - Nord*Frost 5 now. I have used them in Deep snow on a ski trip to the UP of Michigan and they are a confidence inspiring tire.
  25. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    Well, I switched out the summer tires/wheels with the studded winter set last night. I think it's early, but I was concerned whether the wheels would fit over the discs, etc, so anyway, they're on. Noisy as hell.

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