Snow tire rotation question

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by mithesaint, Dec 4, 2013.

  1. mithesaint

    mithesaint
    Expand Collapse
    Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2011
    Messages:
    511
    Likes Received:
    81
    Loc:
    NW Ohio
    I put the Blizzaks on the wife's Fusion tonight, and had a question for the tire experts on here.

    The tires are about 3 years old, but in pretty good shape. They are WS 70's I believe, and are directional. Looking at the tread, it was fairly obvious which tires were on the front last year, as there was a noticeable difference between the front and rear tread depth.

    My question is this: Should the tire with more tread go on the front or the back?

    I know that when you get only two new tires you are supposed to mount them on the back, to prevent fishtailing/oversteer. I also know that tires generally wear faster when they are on the front axle. So, should I put the tires with more tread remaining on the back to give better stability, or on the front to try to even out the tread wear?
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature

    Helpful Sponsor Ads!





  2. midwestcoast

    midwestcoast
    Expand Collapse
    Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2009
    Messages:
    1,745
    Likes Received:
    321
    Loc:
    NW Indiana
    You bought snow tire because they're safer on snow & ice right? So you want the deeper treads on the rear for the same reason as if they were all-seasons. You want to lose traction on the front first, not the rear where it could cause a spin.
    I'm a waste-not kind of guy so it kills me to put newer tires on the rear, or replace a whole set, but I'll follow the tire mfrs suggestions until someone gives me a good reason not to.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  3. #3 ewdudley, Dec 5, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2013
    ewdudley

    ewdudley
    Expand Collapse
    Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2009
    Messages:
    1,986
    Likes Received:
    308
    Loc:
    Cayuga County NY
    I think you should rotate them often enough that the difference in wear between front and back is not significant. In the meantime, I myself would put the better tires on the front until things even out.

    Generally speaking, cars these days are designed to handle in a very decidedly under-steering fashion, so I wouldn't be too worried about tail-happy behavior with the better tires on the front until things equalize. Of course all bets are off if the driver is in the habit of braking or letting off the gas in corners.

    Also you may want to swap left for right by dismounting the tires off the rims and remounting to the opposite side. Usually the outside of the tread will wear more, so remounting to the opposite side will bring fresher rubber to the outside, if you're willing to take the time or spring for the expense.
     
  4. jebatty

    jebatty
    Expand Collapse
    Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2008
    Messages:
    5,188
    Likes Received:
    644
    Loc:
    Northern MN
    Rotate frequently and don't worry about it for future tires. I change my oil and rotate tires, summer and winter, every 5000 miles.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  5. oldspark

    oldspark
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    Yep 5000 miles for smaller cars and I guess 10000 miles for larger cars.
     
    Swedishchef likes this.
  6. Jim H.

    Jim H.
    Expand Collapse
    Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2008
    Messages:
    392
    Likes Received:
    56
    Loc:
    N.E. Pa. (Northampton County)
    I did the same on my wife's Fusion as well. I put the Blizzaks on the front....it is a front wheel drive car. And the other tires which ever were had the most tread then went on the back. The dealer usually used a tread depth finder to make sure. They get rotated every year this way.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  7. begreen

    begreen
    Expand Collapse
    Mooderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    60,488
    Likes Received:
    7,634
    Loc:
    South Puget Sound, WA
    Snow tires should rotate in a counter-clockwise direction when the car or truck is in forward motion. If not, your tires are frozen to the ground (or your brake is still on).
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    PapaDave likes this.
  8. mithesaint

    mithesaint
    Expand Collapse
    Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2011
    Messages:
    511
    Likes Received:
    81
    Loc:
    NW Ohio
    What about the passenger side tires? Aren't they clockwise?:)
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    PapaDave and Swedishchef like this.
  9. begreen

    begreen
    Expand Collapse
    Mooderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    60,488
    Likes Received:
    7,634
    Loc:
    South Puget Sound, WA
    Picky picky. ;lol
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    PapaDave likes this.
  10. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef
    Expand Collapse
    Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2010
    Messages:
    3,209
    Likes Received:
    678
    Loc:
    Quebec, Canada
    FWIW, I rotate my tires every 10000KMs when I get an oil change. Why? Subaru's have full time AWD. If you let the tread depth vary significantly from front to back it gives the differential a hard time....
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    PapaDave likes this.
  11. PapaDave

    PapaDave
    Expand Collapse
    Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2008
    Messages:
    5,740
    Likes Received:
    2,220
    Loc:
    Northern MI - in the mitten
    Not if you're looking from the driver's side.:p
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  12. Jags

    Jags
    Expand Collapse
    Moderate Moderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2006
    Messages:
    17,139
    Likes Received:
    5,858
    Loc:
    Northern IL
    Be aware - directional tires can only go from front to back. No side to side swapping. The directional tread, like a tractor tire, doesn't want to be on backwards.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    Swedishchef likes this.
  13. Swedishchef

    Swedishchef
    Expand Collapse
    Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2010
    Messages:
    3,209
    Likes Received:
    678
    Loc:
    Quebec, Canada
    And I think it is fair to say that 95% of winter tires these days are directional.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature

Share This Page