Buying snow tires

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CountryBoy
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Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Sun Dec 15, 2013 5:06 pm

We live 1 hr. north of NYC and want to buy snow tire; what is the best way to go about it?

Mail order or not?

Are any of the tire stores like Mavis reliable? I hear horror stories.

cb

leonardotmnt
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by leonardotmnt » Sun Dec 15, 2013 5:16 pm

I'd start by looking at Tirerack.com. Even if they don't end up being the lowest price they do a very good job with their own reviews and you can look at the aggregate ratings of other people for most of the tires. They rate things from Wet and dry traction to snow and ice traction to noise and treadwear. Lately I've been buying more of my tires at discounttiredirect.com because shipping is free and for the tires I've been looking at at least the prices have been the lowest. I've never heard of Mavis personally.

Another option is checking Costco or Sam's Club if you're a member but in my experience they're never cheaper than tirerack or discounttiredirect. The drawback is you'll have to have them shipped to either yourself or an installer but I've never had a problem with it myself.

If you're looking for a specific tire, my wife and I both use General Altimax Arctics which are a bit of a budget brand but owned by Continental I believe. They've been outstanding over the last 4 years here in Pittsburgh, PA.

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CountryBoy
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Sun Dec 15, 2013 5:24 pm

Sounds like very good advice; thank you.

cb

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Watty
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by Watty » Sun Dec 15, 2013 5:30 pm

When I lived in an area where I used snow tires I always got an extra set of the metal tire rims so that they could be easily and inexpensively changed each spring and fall.

You should also plan on how you will move and store the four tires that are not on the car at any given time. If you have a car with a small trunk and live in an apartment with little storage then these can be an issue.

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SteveNet
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by SteveNet » Sun Dec 15, 2013 6:42 pm

CountryBoy wrote:We live 1 hr. north of NYC and want to buy snow tire; what is the best way to go about it?

Mail order or not?

Are any of the tire stores like Mavis reliable? I hear horror stories.

cb

When I lived where you are Montrose,Peekskill,Putnam Valley area. I used all season tires, if it was so bad that I 'needed' show tires I stayed home.
I kept a set of S chains in the trunk if I was at work and HAD to get home.
Putnam Valley was the only town that was slow in clearing the roads (especially to the north). Most other areas are pretty good getting the heavy stuff cleared so all seasons was all I needed.
Traveled route 9 and the Taconic.
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DSInvestor
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by DSInvestor » Sun Dec 15, 2013 6:44 pm

Watty wrote:When I lived in an area where I used snow tires I always got an extra set of the metal tire rims so that they could be easily and inexpensively changed each spring and fall.

You should also plan on how you will move and store the four tires that are not on the car at any given time. If you have a car with a small trunk and live in an apartment with little storage then these can be an issue.
We also bought metal rims for our snow tires so it costs us $20 to swap tires in and out. In Vancouver where lots of people live in apartments, some companies that sell tires offer tire storage services. They swap and store the tires for you.
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02sbxstr
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by 02sbxstr » Sun Dec 15, 2013 7:27 pm

tirerack is good - particularly if you live near BDL. So you can pick up your tires there with no delivery charges.

swaption
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by swaption » Sun Dec 15, 2013 7:37 pm

I live just north of NYC. Snow tires make a difference, even on an SUV. I ordered Blizzaks from Tirerack with rims. had them delivered to Mavis near me and they did the install. I go back to Mavis twice a year to switch tires and they have been great. Getting rims lowers the cost of changing tires, and in my case I got higher profile tires, smaller radius wheels, which are better in snow.

Atilla
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by Atilla » Sun Dec 15, 2013 7:52 pm

The last 3 sets of tires have been through Tirerack.com. I find pricing to be very good and the review/rating system to be an excellent source of reliable info.

As far as snow tires - Bridgestone Blizzaks are awesome. Do consider getting a cheap set of wheels for the snow tires rather than pay to swap them on/off your factory wheels twice a year.
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Stonebr
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by Stonebr » Sun Dec 15, 2013 8:32 pm

Consumer Reports rates winter tires fairly often, usually in November issue. Check it out.

There are some just-okay brands like General, and Bridgestone Blizzak that you might be happy with at a discount price.

The best winter tires don't come cheap: Nokian and Michelin are usually top rated, and are almost never discounted. FWIW I'm on my second set of Nokians.
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Random Poster
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by Random Poster » Sun Dec 15, 2013 8:52 pm

Nokian offers a winter-rated (with the severe service emblem) all-weather tire, the WRG2 or WRG3 tire, which eliminates the need to switch your tires in the winter. That being said, I found that the tires wore down quickly. After 3 years and less than 30k miles, they were largely toast.

Plenty of people like and recommend Nokians. I tend to believe that Nokians are overpriced and under deliver.

gary11
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by gary11 » Sun Dec 15, 2013 8:59 pm

Another vote for Bridgestone Blizzak. I have them on my Camry since last 5 winters and they seem to provide pretty good grip on snow and ice. I also bought extra set of wheels along with them. I got them from Discount Tire and they swap wheels every Dec/April for free.

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tylerdurden
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by tylerdurden » Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:05 pm

I generally go to a local Discount Tire location for snow tires. The past few times, I have also purchased them with separate wheels so that it was an easy swap between summer and winter tires. I have quite a bit of experience with car work, but most people can do it themselves with a $50 jack and a few hand tools. The extra wheels also reduce the wear and tear on your OEM wheels.

For tire recommendations, I have tried Bridgestone Blizzaks and Hankook Icebears, and I would recommend them both. A RWD car with snow tires handled better than most of my prior FWD or AWD cars with all-season tires.
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gatorking
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by gatorking » Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:14 pm

I got a set of Blizzaks mounted on rims from Tire rack this year. I also chose to skip the tire pressure sensors. Had them delivered to my door and installed them myself. A breaker bar and a hydraulic floor jack make the job easier.

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gatorking
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by gatorking » Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:16 pm

DSInvestor wrote:
Watty wrote:When I lived in an area where I used snow tires I always got an extra set of the metal tire rims so that they could be easily and inexpensively changed each spring and fall.

You should also plan on how you will move and store the four tires that are not on the car at any given time. If you have a car with a small trunk and live in an apartment with little storage then these can be an issue.
We also bought metal rims for our snow tires so it costs us $20 to swap tires in and out. In Vancouver where lots of people live in apartments, some companies that sell tires offer tire storage services. They swap and store the tires for you.
In the Boston area they also charge ~$50 extra to reprogram the tire pressure sensors.

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CountryBoy
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:52 pm

You guys are great and most appreciated!

Yes, Consumer Reports rates winter tires and seem to like the Michelin x-ice xi3 but from what you folks say I should definitely reconsider and think about: Bridgestone Blizzaks and Hankook Icebears

I never treat the Consumer Reports as a bible, but rather just a reference point.

And yes we will get the rims; sounds like it saves time and money.

Many thanks.
cb.

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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by sport » Sun Dec 15, 2013 10:38 pm

You have not said what type of vehicle you will use the snow tires on. If you have a front wheel drive vehicle, you should put snow tires on all four wheels. If you just put them only on the front, you may have trouble controlling the car when you stop on slippery surfaces. On a rear wheel drive vehicle, two snow tires will suffice.
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CountryBoy
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Sun Dec 15, 2013 11:03 pm

jeff

It is a 2013 nissan altima 2.5 sedan

I believe it is front wheel drive.

WHL
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by WHL » Sun Dec 15, 2013 11:11 pm

The Nokian Hakkapeliitta has topped the list of best winter tire for a LONG time, IIRC. I've never ran winter tires so I can't really comment - I just keep a set of cam-lock style chains.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by FrugalInvestor » Sun Dec 15, 2013 11:16 pm

I've had good experiences with Costco and Discount Tire and Michelin tires.
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Mister Whale
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by Mister Whale » Sun Dec 15, 2013 11:24 pm

Another vote for Blizzaks, I think that they are at least as good as anything out there for snow (ice is another story and something that I have very little experience with, but they are at least decent on ice as well). I've had multiple sets on different cars over the years and they are consistently fantastic, and I shop for the best with this kind of stuff. I don't need them often in Virginia, but as you know when you do need them they are absolutely invaluable.

Currently I have DM-V1s on the stock wheels of my 4wd Sequoia -- while the SilentArmor all-terrain tires (on TRD wheels) that I run the rest of the year are excellent tires (and they actually have the mountain/snowflake snow rating) I want *snow tires* for snow. I change them in at the first sign of bad weather, and change them out around mid-March. And unless I order a wheel and tire package, I always have their tires shipped to the installer of my choice. Further, I don't run TPMS sensors in my winter tire wheels, but the consequences of not doing so varies from maker to maker; Honda's latest offerings, for example, won't let you turn off VSC if the TPMS light is on, which means it won't let you spin your wheels to help you, say, get up a steep hill.

Keep in mind that the TireRack surveys are based on customer feedback (whose authors seem to have wildly varying degrees of reference points, as indicated by the individual reviews); they are somewhat useful but I find TireRack's own test results to be more accurate and useful in general.

Hope that helps.

PS: I've heard some not-very-good things about Hankook's snow tire offerings but have no personal experience with which to confirm/deny.
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by rallycobra » Mon Dec 16, 2013 12:15 am

I just purchased a set of Pirelli Scorpion from tirerack on some inexpensive aluminum wheels. My ford flex came with a 255/45/20 and for winter use I went 235/60/18. Narrow is better for winter. Be careful about what class of winter tire you choose. The most extreme is a studded tire. Slightly less is a studless snow, followed by performance winter, and then all season.

If you are driving in Canada on ice, get studs. If you are driving on roads that are snow covered all of the time but also do highway driving and don't want to deal with the drone of studs get the studless snow. I'm in NJ, and our roads are snow covered a few days a year, and mostly we are dealing with wet slushy roads so I run performance winter from Thanksgiving to the beginning of March, and then run all seasons the rest of the year.

Studless snows perform MUCH worse on dry and wet rainy roads than an all season, are much worse at high speed. Performance winter has better snow traction than an all season, and is similar to an all season on wet roads. Tirerack has valuable data on their website if you want to review.

Michellin, Pirelli, Bridgestone all make quality winter tires. Nokian tend to be more expensive and I don't think they are any better than the previous three. Call tirerack and describe your road conditions, the type of driving you do, and what sizes will fit your vehicle.
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swaption
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by swaption » Mon Dec 16, 2013 6:00 am

I'll reiterate what I mentioned above. If you buy new rims, you don't have to exactly match your existing set. In my case, my car came with 21" rims and low profile tires. For my snow tires, I got 18" rims with a higher profile tire. What I learned in the process is rim plus tire must add up to the same radius. Less rim and more tire generally preferable for snow. The Tire Rack selector tool will help with this.

IowaFarmBoy
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by IowaFarmBoy » Mon Dec 16, 2013 6:50 am

I've had good luck with the General Altimax Arctic from Tirerack. They were a more economical choice than some of the other brands but seem to work well, at least in our Illinois weather. I think Continental owns General and these are a Continental tire. I get the tires shipped to me and then take to Wal-Mart to have mounted and balanced on a spare set of rims. It's pretty fun to come home and see a set of tires wrapped in plastic sitting by your door.

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CountryBoy
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Mon Dec 16, 2013 10:20 am

Update on tire info:
Car: 2013 Nissan Altima-2.5
Tire: P215/60R16

My thanks to rallycobra and everyone for their highly detailed answers.

I had no idea that there was so much I needed to know in order to answer the question of my OP.

Looks like I will be buying persformance winter tires with rims, but am now puzzled with how to buy the rims. Mention was made of buying "inexpensive aluminum rims." My wife works in a local library and this is just for commute to work so nothing special is needed. How inexpensive or expensive do I need to go?

I will probably go with Tirerack.com that people have suggested.

Most grateful to you all.

cb.

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lthenderson
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by lthenderson » Mon Dec 16, 2013 10:36 am

I bought a pair of Blizzaks for my front wheel drive Honda Civic a few years ago and they were the best purchase I ever made. Before that I used all season tires made for snow and the Blizzaks made a night and day difference. I only put the wheels on my front drive wheels and skip the rear tires and never had a problem. Yes if you drive hell for fast up to a stop sign and slam on the brakes the back end might kick out but driving normal speeds in normal winter conditions you shouldn't have any problem.

Because I only use these tires maybe three months of the year here in Iowa, I went an even cheaper route. I went down to the local junkyard and picked up two salvaged rims for about $10 each. I paid another $5 to have the Blizzaks mounted and balanced so for a total of $30 beyond the actual tire cost, I have two tires ready to put on. During the summer I throw one of them in the trunk to use as a full sized spare if needed which is way better than the donut that came standard with my car. To change them simple grab the jack and wrench that came with your car and ten minutes later you can swap them out yourself without paying someone to do it. The only word of caution is that most snow tires are directional so you have to look at the arrows to make sure you put them on the correct side of the car.

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Mister Whale
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by Mister Whale » Mon Dec 16, 2013 1:31 pm

CountryBoy wrote:Looks like I will be buying persformance winter tires with rims, but am now puzzled with how to buy the rims. Mention was made of buying "inexpensive aluminum rims." My wife works in a local library and this is just for commute to work so nothing special is needed. How inexpensive or expensive do I need to go?

I will probably go with Tirerack.com that people have suggested.

Most grateful to you all.

cb.
TireRack also sells steel wheels that are less expensive than any of the aluminum wheels that they sell; these will function just fine.
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user5027
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by user5027 » Mon Dec 16, 2013 3:05 pm

Blizzacks were the best snow tires I have ever bought. The first snow fall after my son began driving, I took him to an empty parking lot to show him how to turn into a slide. With the blizzacks I had a hard time getting the car into a slide.

I always use steel wheels with the winter tires. Winter and especially winter-spring is when the roads in PA deteriorate after a few freeze thaw cycles. I'd much rather bend an inexpensive steel wheel on a pot hole than the expensive alloy wheels.

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CountryBoy
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Mon Dec 16, 2013 4:48 pm

I am amazed how very complicated this question is; I never would have guessed it.

So the Owner's Manual lists:

Wheel type..........Size.............Offset
Steel...............16x7.0J..........50(1.97)
Aluminum.........17x7 5J..........50(1.97)
Aluminum.........18x7.5J..........55(2.17)


I would love to know how many grown American males know the meaning of the "J"; I certainly do not.

And narrow tires are better in snow?

tires
P215/60R16

cb

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interplanetjanet
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by interplanetjanet » Mon Dec 16, 2013 5:27 pm

jsl11 wrote:You have not said what type of vehicle you will use the snow tires on. If you have a front wheel drive vehicle, you should put snow tires on all four wheels. If you just put them only on the front, you may have trouble controlling the car when you stop on slippery surfaces. On a rear wheel drive vehicle, two snow tires will suffice.
Jeff
I would be cautious with only two snow tires. On a RWD vehicle, having snows on the rear will help you get going more easily, but the considerable majority of braking force and all steering force is applied through the front wheels. Braking and stopping are pretty high priorities for me!

That said, in a RWD vehicle that's really front-heavy (like a 2WD pickup or a car without balanced weight distribution) the weight on the front will help to offset that some. I still don't like doing that though.

rallycobra
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by rallycobra » Mon Dec 16, 2013 9:03 pm

J or JJ refer to the rim flange where the tire mounts at the bead. I've never had an issue or noticed what my wheels are. See the reference link below.

http://i88.photobucket.com/albums/k174/ ... means1.jpg

Sorry about the 'inexpensive aluminum wheel comment' By inexpensive, I meant $140 instead of $340 a wheel :twisted: Steel wheels are probably $50 a pop. Lightweight aluminum wheels will get better gas mileage, accelerate and stop more quickly.
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CountryBoy
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Mon Dec 16, 2013 9:23 pm

rallycobra

Thanks so much for your answers....all of them.

Now for what I hope will be The last question: her car has sensors for when the tires need to have air pressure added. Does that mean I need a certain kind of tire or will any tire be ok to register on her 2013 Nissan Altima?

I read about it here,
http://www.ehow.com/how-does_5003184_ti ... -work.html
and here:
http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tiretech/ ... ?techid=44
but am still not clear on it.........

Gratefully.

cb

opus360
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by opus360 » Tue Dec 17, 2013 8:51 am

CountryBoy wrote:
Now for what I hope will be The last question: her car has sensors for when the tires need to have air pressure added. Does that mean I need a certain kind of tire or will any tire be ok to register on her 2013 Nissan Altima?
Any tire will do. It is the sensors that matter. Aftermarket ones are cheaper, but sometimes give problems versus the OEM ones.

Back to tires, the new model of Nokian WR G3 has a 55,000 mile warranty, which is comparable to an average all season tire in H and V rating. It cost more than other tires, but you save by not having to switch tires twice a year, buy new rims/sensors. That will be my suggestion.

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Bengineer
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by Bengineer » Tue Dec 17, 2013 11:37 am

OP, let's see if I can put it all together. You're considering a set of snow tires, wheels and pressure sensors for your wife's 2013 Altima with P215/60R16 tires and steel 16" rims (from "Steel...............16x7.0J..........50(1.97)" ). So:

Steel wheels, as you're currently running them and you can put the current wheel covers on so your wife isn't sporting the trendy ghetto look.
P215/60R16 winter tires. They could be narrower, say P205/65R16. The key is that the tire outside diameter is the same (google tire size chart)
Pressue monitors (It's your wifes car, she isn't going to want to stare at the light all winter, and you can imagine how it's going to go if one runs low and she has a blowout. :oops: )

I have a suggestion: Get a quote from a couple local independents. They'll be able to get all this right and you'll be confident in evaluating what they suggest with all the info here. I'd think they'd have a good take on the right type of winter tire for your area and driving. I think you might be pleasantly surprised at the all-in for wheels, tires, sensors, programming the sensors, mounting & balancing. Completely anecdotal, I know, but I found a local independent that helped me find just the right replacements for my wife's car with no upsell or FUD as has been my experience with the chains and the all-in wasn't far from ordering my tires and having them installed. Plus, it was nice knowing if I had issues I could return and the guy that put them on would look at it. I say this as a complete D-I-Y guy. I've ordered tires and had them installed as well.

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CountryBoy
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Tue Dec 17, 2013 12:49 pm

Now that sounds like a good idea.

cb

rjc32000
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by rjc32000 » Tue Dec 17, 2013 1:28 pm

I'll add my two cents coming from a truly winter climate with snow/ice on the roads 6 months out of the year (Anchorage, AK). Blizzaks are awesome! I've got a set of the WS70s on my car, and it is just a tank. I would also second the recommendation that you consider a dedicated set of winter rims, especially if you have run-flat tires on your vehicle. Removing and reinstalling run-flats on rims 2x/yr will seriously degrade, and possibly damage, the stiff sidewalls necessary for run-flats to work. A cheap set of steel wheels that you permanently mount your winter tires on will likely save money in the long run; you won't need to pay for mounting/rebalancing 2x/yr, you won't damage your expensive summer tires, and you won't damage your relatively expensive alloy wheels in the winter months when you hit a massive pothole.
I'd also recommend Costco; they have good prices, you can special order tires they don't have in stock, and they will mount/balance your tires on rims at no extra cost.

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CountryBoy
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Tue Dec 17, 2013 3:26 pm

Well Blizzaks are what we will go with but there is no Costco in the area............

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frugaltype
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by frugaltype » Tue Dec 17, 2013 3:45 pm

My brother told me to go to Pep Boys. They seem to be a good place.

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telemark
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by telemark » Tue Dec 17, 2013 8:29 pm

CountryBoy wrote:And narrow tires are better in snow?
On soft snow, wide tires are more likely to float on the snow instead of gripping the surface underneath. On packed snow it may not matter much. Depends on a bunch of stuff, but sometimes every little thing helps.

ddj
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by ddj » Wed Dec 18, 2013 2:10 am

I got Nitto SN2s from my dad last Christmas for my front wheel drive hatchback (4 tires). Make a world of difference in snowy/snowpack driving. Not too expensive. He got them elsewhere but I think Walmart carries them.

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czeckers
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by czeckers » Wed Dec 18, 2013 8:18 am

I live in upstate NY so lots of snow oh my.

It's hard to beat tirerack.com prices. I've bought my last 4-5 sets of tires through them with no problems. In my area, Walmart is the most inexpensive place to get them mounted.

I've had Blizzaks, Michellin X-Ice, and Continentals and have been very happy with all of them. Looking at the reviews on the tirerack site, it seems that these 3 manufacturers keep swapping the top spot depending on who has the newest most modern tire that year. In the snow, even the worst snow tire will still be better than the best all-season tire.

Everytime we get a new car, I run the numbers with respect to buying a set of dedicated wheels for the snow tires. Unfortunately, for each of my last three vehicles, even with cheap steel rims, the cost the tire pressure monitoring sensors and the device to reprogram them increases the cost of the package to the point where, assuming you'll drive the car for 10 years, it is no better than just going to Walmart to have the tires swapped on the wheels the car came with. I think the separate set of wheels made more sense before the TPM sensors. However, I've also noticed the price of the TPM sensors varies significantly from car to car so you'll have to run the numbers for yourself.

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Mister Whale
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Re: Buying snow tires

Post by Mister Whale » Wed Dec 18, 2013 8:43 am

CountryBoy wrote:And narrow tires are better in snow?
That's TireRack's opinion, and is a general consensus regarding the conventional wisdom on the matter.

We can talk about the advantages of wide tires for flotation (and how airing down will assist with this), but stock-to-slightly-narrower is generally what you want to do with a automobile snow tire for street driving IMO.
" ... advice is most useful and at its best, not when it is telling you what to do, but when it is illuminating aspects of the situation you hadn't thought about." --nisiprius

stoptothink
Posts: 4365
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 9:53 am

Re: Buying snow tires

Post by stoptothink » Wed Dec 18, 2013 11:14 am

czeckers wrote:Everytime we get a new car, I run the numbers with respect to buying a set of dedicated wheels for the snow tires. Unfortunately, for each of my last three vehicles, even with cheap steel rims, the cost the tire pressure monitoring sensors and the device to reprogram them increases the cost of the package to the point where, assuming you'll drive the car for 10 years, it is no better than just going to Walmart to have the tires swapped on the wheels the car came with. I think the separate set of wheels made more sense before the TPM sensors. However, I've also noticed the price of the TPM sensors varies significantly from car to car so you'll have to run the numbers for yourself.
You don't have to get TPMS for the new wheels, I never have. I've had dedicated snow wheels/tires for my last two vehicles over the course of a decade, both cars came with TPMS, and I never put TPMS on the steel winter wheels. You just lose the TPMS function and have a dash light on. I'll monitor my tire pressure myself to save $100+. I recently purchased a set of steel wheels and Dunlop Graspics for my newer vehicle, $450 after mail-in rebate from TireRack.

Beck49
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Joined: Sun Nov 24, 2013 8:15 pm

Re: Buying snow tires

Post by Beck49 » Wed Dec 18, 2013 11:23 am

opus360 wrote:
Back to tires, the new model of Nokian WR G3 has a 55,000 mile warranty, which is comparable to an average all season tire in H and V rating. It cost more than other tires, but you save by not having to switch tires twice a year, buy new rims/sensors. That will be my suggestion.
+1 on Nokians. We drive in Western New York so we know snow. I doubt that Nokians are better than dedicated snow tires, but for a true "all season" tire that avoids the switching and additional cost of a second set of tires, they have worked very well for us.

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CountryBoy
Posts: 1757
Joined: Wed Feb 28, 2007 10:21 am
Location: NY

Re: Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:07 pm

Well we got the Bridgestone Blizzack and steel rims with TPMS from TireRack.com. They are expected to arrive in a few days time.

Total cost was about $1099.00. Since I am 72 y.o. I find that a lot to pay; must be the Boglehead in me, but the wife wanted the TPMS on them.

Most grateful for everyone's help; had absolutely no idea there was so much to learn on this topic.

cb

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Mister Whale
Posts: 484
Joined: Sat Jan 02, 2010 10:39 am

Re: Buying snow tires

Post by Mister Whale » Wed Dec 18, 2013 2:12 pm

That is a lot of money; however the cost is somewhat mitigated by the reduced wear on the other set of tires.

When the first snow falls, I think that you will feel a deep sense of satisfaction in the security that driving on snow tires brings. At that point it will be money "well spent."

Update this thread with your feedback on the tires after they've seen some of the white stuff!
" ... advice is most useful and at its best, not when it is telling you what to do, but when it is illuminating aspects of the situation you hadn't thought about." --nisiprius

nordlead
Posts: 739
Joined: Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:09 am

Re: Buying snow tires

Post by nordlead » Wed Dec 18, 2013 2:16 pm

stoptothink wrote:
czeckers wrote:Everytime we get a new car, I run the numbers with respect to buying a set of dedicated wheels for the snow tires. Unfortunately, for each of my last three vehicles, even with cheap steel rims, the cost the tire pressure monitoring sensors and the device to reprogram them increases the cost of the package to the point where, assuming you'll drive the car for 10 years, it is no better than just going to Walmart to have the tires swapped on the wheels the car came with. I think the separate set of wheels made more sense before the TPM sensors. However, I've also noticed the price of the TPM sensors varies significantly from car to car so you'll have to run the numbers for yourself.
You don't have to get TPMS for the new wheels, I never have. I've had dedicated snow wheels/tires for my last two vehicles over the course of a decade, both cars came with TPMS, and I never put TPMS on the steel winter wheels. You just lose the TPMS function and have a dash light on. I'll monitor my tire pressure myself to save $100+. I recently purchased a set of steel wheels and Dunlop Graspics for my newer vehicle, $450 after mail-in rebate from TireRack.
If your state cares about the TPMS working than just get the car inspected in the summer months. I'm pretty sure that in NY and NJ they don't care.

stoptothink
Posts: 4365
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 9:53 am

Re: Buying snow tires

Post by stoptothink » Wed Dec 18, 2013 2:35 pm

nordlead wrote:
stoptothink wrote:
czeckers wrote:Everytime we get a new car, I run the numbers with respect to buying a set of dedicated wheels for the snow tires. Unfortunately, for each of my last three vehicles, even with cheap steel rims, the cost the tire pressure monitoring sensors and the device to reprogram them increases the cost of the package to the point where, assuming you'll drive the car for 10 years, it is no better than just going to Walmart to have the tires swapped on the wheels the car came with. I think the separate set of wheels made more sense before the TPM sensors. However, I've also noticed the price of the TPM sensors varies significantly from car to car so you'll have to run the numbers for yourself.
You don't have to get TPMS for the new wheels, I never have. I've had dedicated snow wheels/tires for my last two vehicles over the course of a decade, both cars came with TPMS, and I never put TPMS on the steel winter wheels. You just lose the TPMS function and have a dash light on. I'll monitor my tire pressure myself to save $100+. I recently purchased a set of steel wheels and Dunlop Graspics for my newer vehicle, $450 after mail-in rebate from TireRack.
If your state cares about the TPMS working than just get the car inspected in the summer months. I'm pretty sure that in NY and NJ they don't care.
According to TireRack, only Hawaii, Rhode Island, Vermont, and West Virginia will fail your inspection for TPMS not working.

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CountryBoy
Posts: 1757
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Location: NY

Re: Buying snow tires

Post by CountryBoy » Wed Dec 18, 2013 3:05 pm

Interesting.........

Thanks again.

cb

opus360
Posts: 203
Joined: Mon Sep 30, 2013 10:02 am

Re: Buying snow tires

Post by opus360 » Thu Dec 19, 2013 9:15 am

CountryBoy wrote:
Total cost was about $1099.00. Since I am 72 y.o. I find that a lot to pay; must be the Boglehead in me, but the wife wanted the TPMS on them.
Think of it as buying insurance. If it saves you from a major accident, it would have paid for itself many times over.

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