Winter tires in Chicago?

Discussion in 'Motorized Vehicles' started by HopelesslyFaithful, Mar 11, 2014.

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  1. HopelesslyFaithful

    HopelesslyFaithful Notebook Virtuoso

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    So i was looking at Discount Tire Direct because they have a good Ebay deal going on and talked to the rep on the phone. I was thinking of getting a spare set of rims and winter tires that i could just take on and off in the winter months in Chicagoland area. I have a lift and taking a set of tires off and on wouldn't take more than 20 mins. Chicago/burbs have some really good snow removal and i know winter tires eat it on dry/wet roads so that is why i was thinking of just having a spare set i can take on and off in a whim. I just don't know if it is really worth it with how good snow removal is. Granted, I live more west by the farm lands so that is where the snow can really suck...especially drifts. By my house I can at times have to drive through 2-4 foot tall drifts, which is a pain. (I am familiar with the local ditches*) I have to gun it and blast through them -_- I was wondering what you guys/gals think of winter tires...assuming my situation. Wife currently heads towards city-ish area and i head west towards dekalb-ish. I just don't know how bad winter tires really are in dry and wet roads. I am basing this off of Consumer Reports too. The tires CR had highly rated that i am looking at are below if anyone cared. The tires can last a good 4-10 years if stored well so i don't expect them to go bad. Both cars drive 15-20k a year give or take....maybe more :/ If i didn't mention it i drive a corolla 2012/2013.

    BTW I am also curious on how tires perform in slush...is that more snow/ice or hydroplanning or something completely different? I-88/355 can at times be nothing but slush.


    All season (these appear to be better for me at least according to CR)
    Michelin defender 90,000 miles
    Continental procontact ecoplus (this was the one reviewed but i don't know if there is a notable difference between eco and non eco)
    - Continental procontact 60,000 miles

    Winter tires (not sure if DTD carries these but these are the only good ones)
    Michelin X-ice xi3
    Michelin X-ice xi2
    Uniroyal Tiger Paw Ice and Snow II/2 (supposedly has better wet/dry braking/hydroplanning)

    Performance All Season
    Michelin Primacy MXV4[H] 60,000 miles
    Continental Pure Contact H/V 70,000 miles (V appears better according to CR)

    *So these winter periods. Areas by me might get plowed maybe 1-4 times a day. It takes not more than 3-4 hours in storms for 2-4 foot tall drifts to form. When you have a foot of snow and 2-4 foot drifts if you drive 20mph you get stuck on the 1 foot of snow...drifts really take a lot of momentum to get through lol. You have to around here drive at 35-50 MPH to make it through the roads while trying to stay straight. When you hit some of the huge drifts at 40MPH you can drop instantly to 30MPH and if there are several of them you can get stuck if not going 40MPH or more if several drifts are in a row because they slow you down so much. Though at those speeds you also run the risk of getting pulled into a ditch -_- Lucky this isn't too common to be this bad. Maybe 3-5 times this year it was that bad but it was a really bad winter this year so yea....those drifts man :)

    It is on my list to get a truck with a plow but i have to finish college first to afford a truck that can work with a plow. I hate the local roads with those damn drifts!
     
  2. Qing Dao

    Qing Dao LORD OF THE UNDERWORLD

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    Don't get winter tires. They aren't going to help your car get through snow drifts any better than summer tires can.
     
  3. HopelesslyFaithful

    HopelesslyFaithful Notebook Virtuoso

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    i dont just deal with snow drifts.....i deal with snow on the roads all winter in rual parts...they dont really salt enough in the rural roads and ice can build up too.

    obviously with snow drifts the tires dont really matter...was just a fun little thing to add.

    The burbs roads are usually clean of any snow or ice or damn close after any major snow fall so i question if winter tires are even good in those cases. In the rural area snow tends to stay on the roads due to drifts and lack of plowing/salting. I am really curious on how bad winter tires are on clean roads compared to regular all season tires
     
  4. Tsunade_Hime

    Tsunade_Hime such bacon. wow

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    Let me be clear, even with snow tires, if all your tires are on ice....you aren't going to get traction. Same principal for 4WD/AWD, if all 4 wheels have no traction, good luck getting out of that. Winter tires would help during slushy/snowy/light icy conditions. Also you never said what vehicle you were purchasing the tires for. I just buy all season tires for year round driving, alot of summer tires have poor wet performance/traction, so it isn't worth it to get a separate set of tires. If you have summers on your stock tires, a winter set is fine.
     
  5. HopelesslyFaithful

    HopelesslyFaithful Notebook Virtuoso

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    very end of first paragraph says corolla 2012/2013.

    BTW i edited my second post when you posted yours

    Also i get decent traction with my all season tires but they do have there limits...supposedly winter tires are a good deal better in ice and snow. I rarely run into areas where i have 0 traction...minus on the slope part of the gravel driveway where you have to get a little momentum to get up it. The only other place i recall real traction issues is when you have to drive through the 6-12 in of snow and your car is actually plowing the top layer.....thats when you have to work the tires and peddle a bit to keep traction and go back and forth clearing a long enough stretch to gun it to get enough momentum to get through the road....should have taken a picture of it this year.

    man i am still sick....typing a coherent sentence is hard than normal -_-
     
  6. Tsunade_Hime

    Tsunade_Hime such bacon. wow

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    Are your stock tires that bad? Even with an extra set of wheels, why not just stick with another set of all seasons? They are going to be cheaper, and be usable all year around vs winter tires only being good during winter. You should be fine driving a FWD vehicle during the winter, even better tires won't make up for excessive speeding/driving recklessly.

    My friend's dad has an extra set of winter tires for his BMW 325i, but it's a RWD sedan.
     
  7. HopelesslyFaithful

    HopelesslyFaithful Notebook Virtuoso

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    Where do you get this? You really are not reading are you? So have fun driving a rural back road (to clarify) in winter going 20 mph then finding out you just got stuck because the snow is above the clearance of your car and you didn't have enough momentum to get through it. Been there, done that....hence why i stated at times you have to go forward and backwards to make a stretch of road that is long enough for you to accelerate to 30-40MPH...sometimes more to be able to not get stuck. Many times, by time i get home the gravel driveway has a foot of snow and i get stuck midway in the driveway because i couldn't get enough momentum to make it through the drive. Can't park in a street that is 1.5 cars wide and walk 500 feet to get the skid steer leaving a car in the middle of the road blocking it so i can plow it. Plus the snow in the road is just as tall so if i park in the road it won't move again until i shovel under the car to clear enough snow to reduce friction.


    How does getting another set of all season tires really help? That seems wasteful.
     
  8. KLF

    KLF NBR Super Modernator Super Moderator

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    I have two sets of those (for 4 wheels, 4wd, obviously) in my car. In a pinch they make the difference, altough most use I've had so far for those: go and help one of our company vans that has again gotten stuck somewhere. Once I needed them to pull my coworkers car from someones garden... :D This winter, no need for them at all. Still I keep them in the trunk during winter, just in case. They are useful also on sand and mud if stuck on such. A foldable shovel also, basic tool.

    For the actual topic, my vote definitely goes for a combination of good summer tires and good winter tires, get best of both worlds instead of crap piece of both with allseasons.

    Summer tires are harder compound than winter tires. Winter tires wear out faster on plain asphalt but they have superior traction compared to a summer tire that's hard and slippery in sub zero temps. Boring scientific data: 1. 2. 3.

    Summer tires in winter -> good for youtube fun. Not much else :)

    I've had both studless winter tires and studded. Latter ones are definitely better in actual winter conditions but studless are more comfortable especially if winter is like one we had this year, more like wet autumn... :p Like studded tires are allowed in many us states during winter months, here winter tyres are mandatory during those (up to the owner if he chooses allseasons, winter or studded).

    I could babble about this a lot more but instead I'll just say... try it.
     
  9. ajkula66

    ajkula66 Courage and Consequence

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    FWIW...

    We've had Michelin Defenders on our Honda Odyssey for about 15 months now and they are an excellent all-season tire IMO. You just have to remember that our van is about as twice as heavy as your Corolla which can make a difference in snow, which is something that we get a lot more than you. I did have a preference towards Hydroedges that we've had for years, but they are not available in the needed size anymore.

    Personally, I don't see a need for winter tires on a Corolla. If it gets *really* bad, you'll get stuck no matter what since your vehicle doesn't have much of a ground clearance to begin with. A good set of all-season tires is all you need IMO.

    My $0.02 only...
     
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  10. HopelesslyFaithful

    HopelesslyFaithful Notebook Virtuoso

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    i'll read the boring data later....i love that stuff as long as i got the time ^^

    what are those in the picture? Do you just lay them on the ground or are those like chains? Chains in IL are illegal IIRC plus a hassle for on and off purposes. (Assuming those you just put on the ground) don't get me wrong...those might be handy to have no matter what i do but i need something a bit more than a "i am stuck and i just need a boost" I need something on a regular overall drive thing.

    I am still a little unsure if the one person is right that ice/snowy slush is just hydro planning or a bit of everything.

    Those performance summer tires are super expensive and dont have the greatest life. I find all season tires to be just fine in the summer...especially considering it is summer. In a perfect world sure it would be nice to have them but i don't really see the added performance being worth it compared to how good the defender/primacy/procontact are. The Pirelli P-zero and michelin pilot super sport have great ratings by CR though....just don't think it is worth pay hundred more over the long haul due to price and poor life span. Diminishing returns and all that.

    EDIT: also from what i have read the high quality all season tires are not a whole lot different from summer tires

    Still reading and looking to figure out how much worse or better winter tires are on roads that are clean on snow...does temp affect the road? For the wife i am unsure how useful winter tires would actually be since sure drive towards the city...for me. I am sure they will be helpful.

    EDIT 2: Just got done talking to wifey about her experience in this winter weather driving to work and it seems like she really doesn't need winter tires. Unless, cold temps affect traction in some negative way i don't know about on clean roads. She says maybe 25% of the time the roads have snow on them in some form and the rest of the time there is practically 0 snow...obviously excluding the roads by my house and west. For me...different story.


    need more info than this but i might be able to get away with this. I'll have to research this. What are studded winter tires? Any opinions on them?

    EDIT: looking at those videos...don't know how i trust bridgestone talking about bridgestone but i know in CR they got decent ratings...though I am curious on how they do well in hydroplaning when CR says they are not very good verse all season and summer tires. Maybe bridgestone all season suck?

    in video 2...why break in the turn? Doesn't that make it worse? Wouldn't forward pull on the tire be better than just locking up and sliding off the road?

    Well watched all 3 videos and i am a bit curious if you compared the top rated CR all season verse winter tire in all conditions. I might look around CR a bit and see if i can find any more info on there testing. I am more curious out of shear curiosity but it seems interesting.

    After watching videos i do think one set of winter tires would be good to have but it isn't worth having two since my wife wouldn't see a huge improvement.

    Still the videos are not that informative because if you look at the list of all season tires they vary a lot so who knows if they are even a good example.
     
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