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snow tires
Posted by: space-time
Date: November 19, 2007 08:44PM
OK one more tire topic please?

I never had snow tires, and I mentioned this to my wife and now she's all for it. We get some snow in NJ, not as much as in upstate NY or New England, but still there are cold and icy days. We also want to go to Canada several times this holiday season, one trip to Montreal and one to Toronto. So I think getting snow tires might not be a bad idea after all. I will probably put the snow tires on the old rims and get new rims in the spring for the summer/all season tires.

I drove for 20 years on all-season tires, and had my share of problems in the snow. I am curious if snow tires are really as good as people say, i.e. if you can climb an icy hill, or if you can brake without sliding on the ice.

do you have first hand experience? I am also gonna hit tirerack for some reviews.

Thanks
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: Racer X
Date: November 19, 2007 08:53PM
world of difference between snow tires, and studded snow tires. Especially when you are involved with ice.
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: OWC Jamie
Date: November 19, 2007 08:53PM
Big part will depend on what car you have! smiling smiley

I have a Pontiac GTO, rear wheel drive, 400HP. I have 2 sets of tires. Summer tires, and winter tires.

On that car, I can't say enough good about Dunlop Winter Sport M3's. They turn a pig(er goat) on ice into a car I drive through 6" of snow without a problem.



Good Luck!
Jamie Dresser
Other World Computing
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: space-time
Date: November 19, 2007 08:55PM
thanks.

So what happens if you get 2-3 weeks with very nice weather in January, do you put the summer tires on and keep driving on the winter tires?
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: Markintosh
Date: November 19, 2007 09:03PM
We drive studded tires from mid-November (put em on yesterday) through April. We may go weeks at a time with dry spells. Really not a problem other than noise.

We use "Canadian studs" which are set deeper than most and therefore way more quiet. Always a good joke when you go to the tire store and let them know you're interested in "Canadian studs".



“Live your life, love your life, don’t regret…live, learn and move forward positively.” – CR Johnson
Loving life in Lake Tahoe, CA
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: billb
Date: November 19, 2007 09:03PM
Whenever I see "all-season" tire I think of alll 4 seasons in San Diego.
:-)
That's also my opinion of all season tires.
Edit: Which for 75 % of the country may be a perfect tire choice.

My experience has been mud and snow tires are better, small compromise with dry pavement driving / comfort / noise.

Snow tires are better in snow, even worse re: dry pavement comfort / noise / .

Studded tires for braking on wet ice.


Studded snow tires are not going to get a Corvette up the ski slopes. Nor down.

You'll read a lot at tire rack and others.
Most will claim sticky rubber costs more and yields lower mileage.Better in snow . I concur.
Most will claim you want a tire with sipes to minimize snow build up on the tire. I concur.


I live a bit north of you in Ma., albeit on the coast so my winters are a bit milder.
I run mud and snow (Michelin) with good snow sipes in the Winter and I've been out in two feet. 4WD is the other half of the equation. Still takes good tires to go straight, climb hills and help stop.
Wouldn't surprise me if studs are not allowed in New Jersey.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/19/2007 09:07PM by billb.
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: OWC Jamie
Date: November 19, 2007 09:06PM
Nope, the winter sports are good in summer temps too. Just don't drive aggressively and you're fine.

[www.tirerack.com]



Good Luck!
Jamie Dresser
Other World Computing
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: M A V I C
Date: November 19, 2007 09:08PM
I've used snow tires for many years. We don't get a lot of snow, but when it's icy out we have major problems because people don't know how to drive here (rain or snow.)

I would not get studded tires. Very rarely are they useful. Get some studless snow tires. What type of car do you have?

I'd get an extra set of wheels and the snow tires from tirerack.com. They'll mount & balance them for free. There's also many reviews there too. I personally liked one where a guy had a Dodge Durango and a BMW M3. The Durango had all seasons but was 4WD. The M3 had studless snow tires but was RWD. Guess which one couldn't make it up the driveway? The Durango.




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Re: snow tires
Posted by: billb
Date: November 19, 2007 09:12PM
Um, snow tires are for snow.

If you want to drive on ice you want something with blades. :-)
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: M A V I C
Date: November 19, 2007 09:13PM
Quote
OWC Jamie
Nope, the winter sports are good in summer temps too. Just don't drive aggressively and you're fine.

[www.tirerack.com]

I wouldn't use those in summer. They wear very fast. One will be lucky to get 20k miles out of those on warm, dry pavement. Overall, it costs way more to get one set of those tires and use them year round that it costs to get a set of those and a set of all season tires for the non-winter months.

FWIW, I've had those tires and they're great winter performance tires. But the Dunlop Graspics are almost as good, just not for your high performance cars. I also like the Michelin Arctic tires.




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Re: snow tires
Posted by: billb
Date: November 19, 2007 09:23PM
Mavic brings up another good point.
FWD or RWD ?

My own experience with driving a FWD car and a 4WD truck up a paved unplowed mountain road to a cabin in New Hampshire in deep snow has been M&S or SNOW on ALL 4 wheels.

Cheaping out and putting them on just the driven pair of wheels is a mistake.
I've done it and thought I did just fine. All 4 is the way to go.








I think Jamie meant the three weeks in January would be fine to let them be, just no performance driving.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/19/2007 09:24PM by billb.
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: OWC Jamie
Date: November 19, 2007 09:29PM
Yes, 3 weeks in January - not in July. smiling smiley which is why I also said I have 2 sets, one set of rims with performance tires, one set with winter tires.

And space-time, you still have not answered the big question. WHAT KIND OF CAR? That will make a BIG difference in the kind of tires you need.



Good Luck!
Jamie Dresser
Other World Computing
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: M A V I C
Date: November 19, 2007 09:37PM
Ah, ok. I didn't realize it was the same person who made both those comments so I didn't connect the two. I just saw "summer" and "m3" and was like "dude" and "wtf?"

In some places it's law you have to get snow tires on all four (as opposed to two.) You never, EVER want to get snow tires just on the front of a FWD car. A lot of shops wont even let you buy just two for their own liability reasons.

And what type of car is it?

I cheaped out and go the non-performance winter tires this last time. I wish I had spent the extra $25/tire because handling is MUCH different.




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Re: snow tires
Posted by: space-time
Date: November 19, 2007 09:50PM
Civic! FWD. 2001.Manual.5speed.

I was looking at tirerack and I saw no mention of free installation (if you buy rims and tires)



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/19/2007 09:53PM by space-time.
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: Dakota
Date: November 19, 2007 10:05PM
You don't need snow tires on a FWD car in Jersey. If you have gotten by for this long you probably don't need them. RWD is a different story. I had Blizzaks on a BMW 740 and you could not break traction no matter how hard you tried. Matter of fact I need 4 of them for my truck($500 min). Ouch.
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: M A V I C
Date: November 19, 2007 10:06PM
Not free installation, but free mounting and balancing (putting the tires on the rims and balancing.) You've still got to get them bolted to your car.

I just did a trial run and when I added the wheels and tires to my cart, the cart reads: "Would you like the Dunlop Winter Sport M3 tires in your cart mounted and Hunter Road Force® balanced on the Rial Flair wheels at NO ADDITIONAL CHARGE?"




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Re: snow tires
Posted by: space-time
Date: November 19, 2007 10:24PM
Thanks M A V I C, I just saw the same as I added them to my car.
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: tahoedrew
Date: November 20, 2007 12:05AM
I run Dunlop SP Winter Sport 3D's on my Subaru Legacy GT. Like OWC Jamie I run the Dunlops in the winter (on my OEM 16" rims) and Kumho Ecsta's on aftermarket 17" rims in the summer. Markintosh lives in the Sierra's, I live down in the valley and don't have to deal with the ice as much, so studded snows aren't as necessary for me.

I grew up in PA, and I'd say studded tires (especially on a FWD vehicle) are a waste, but snow tires sound like they'd be beneficial for you.

~A
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Just how much Ram does that goat have?
Posted by: slbett
Date: November 20, 2007 12:39AM
And did you get the ram from OWC? ;>)
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: mikebw
Date: November 20, 2007 01:08AM
Never had real snow tires, but I did get a set of Dunlop Traction T/A's for my RWD car and they have proven to be excellent in the snow around here (DC) which is not much, but still.

If I lived in a more wintry area and had the room for a second set of wheels I would go for it.
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: Sam3
Date: November 20, 2007 06:40AM
I'm a firm believer in snow tires. I've used the Blizzaks as well as the Arctic Alpins. Both are fine tires, both are made of a compound that is softer than summer/all-season tires. They are not meant to be driven when temperatures average above 40 degrees, as they will wear out faster. Where I live in Michigan, studs are illegal, so that is not an option.

Ice is ice, you will still slide on ice. In other words, you can't be stupid when driving in the winter. I notice that I feel safer at a higher rate of speed during snow storms on winter/snow tires than I do on all-season tires, All-season tires, especially if they are not new, seem to want to drift and pull the car on the snow and icy slush
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Re: snow tires
Posted by: M A V I C
Date: November 20, 2007 10:07AM
FWIW, the Blizzaks are soft about 60% of the way through, then harder the rest of the tread. I think the Dunlop winter sports are the same. The Michelin Arctic Alpins are soft all the way through.




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Re: snow tires
Posted by: michaelb
Date: November 20, 2007 12:20PM
I think it is borderline for needing snowtires in NJ, although I don't know how many days of snow and ice you get. In northern Vt. I think you are crazy not to run dedicated snow tires. Snows are really necessary in sub 0 temps, because the rubber is formulated for cold temps. They definitely help tremendously on ice and snow over all seasons. Many people use studs here, but studs would be a bad idea for you.

If you buy snows you need to get four. It is dangerous to just drive with two on the front. Instead of getting dedictated snow tire like Hakka's or Bizzaks, you would probably get much better performance and drive (on dry and wet pavement), less noise, better gas mileage, using winter rated all seasons, like the nokian WRs or RSIs.

[www.nokiantires.com]
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