Are winter tires necessary?? - Page 4

View Poll Results: What tires do you have for winter weather?

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  • Kept Stock Summer Tires

    4 10.81%
  • Added All Season Tires with stock rims

    5 13.51%
  • Added All Season Tires with steel rims

    1 2.70%
  • Added Winter Tires with stock rims

    10 27.03%
  • Added Winter Tires with steel rims

    17 45.95%
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This is a discussion on Are winter tires necessary?? within the Suspension & Wheels forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; Originally Posted by pmacey For those who owned the older WRXs that came stock with All Season tires (what year ...

  1. #46
    Lando Calrissian DemonWRX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmacey View Post
    For those who owned the older WRXs that came stock with All Season tires (what year did the WRX start coming with Summer Performance tires?), did you buy dedicated summer and winter tires?

    -MACE-
    Looks like first summers were 2009....the 2008 seems to have come with those dismal Potanza RE92 things....from 09 on they have come with Dunlop SP Sport 01
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  3. #47
    Registered User olenderc's Avatar
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    seems like most people enjoy the altimax and are a solid price too?

  4. #48
    Lando Calrissian DemonWRX's Avatar
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    Yeah, if you were to judge just on price alone you would think they were a budget crap tire, but they are really good tires......depending on size and deals, they are $100-$130 a tire (average is about $123 each)
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    I have been driving in snow for over 30 years. It is no big deal. If I find I have a problem, I will buy all season tires, not snow tires. I had a 2004 WRX without snow tires and never had a problem. I think years of driving experience counts for something. If you feel safer with designated snow tires, by all means buy them. I can assure everyone, I value other's safety as much as mine, and am a responsible driver. I had a RWD BMW with snow tires and still had some difficulty. With AWD, it would have to be a really bad storm not to be able to get around.

  6. #50
    Registered User pmacey's Avatar
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    I'm with you Callahan, below is a pic of my 2005 WRX with the factory Bridgestone All Season Tires...was out early morning after it snowed overnight, and found this field of new snow, after driving some 25 miles on un-plowed local roads, highways, parkways, and than snow covered dirt roads...I am a proud member of the D.N.S.S.T club:

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    NOTE: DO NOT DRIVE YOUR WRX WITH SUMMER PERFORMANCE TIRES IN THE SNOW!

    -MACE-

  7. #51
    Master Baiter EJ257's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Callahan
    I have been driving in snow for over 30 years. It is no big deal. If I find I have a problem, I will buy all season tires, not snow tires. I had a 2004 WRX without snow tires and never had a problem. I think years of driving experience counts for something. If you feel safer with designated snow tires, by all means buy them. I can assure everyone, I value other's safety as much as mine, and am a responsible driver. I had a RWD BMW with snow tires and still had some difficulty. With AWD, it would have to be a really bad storm not to be able to get around.
    A/S tires can "make due" through the wintery months, but it will not compare to a proper tire designed for use in snow. Is your intention to run the A/S tires year-round? If so, you're giving up performance; a decent summer tire will net you traction vs a high-end A/S tire in the warm/dry months, the same way a winter tire will do so in the cold/snowy months. If you're not planning to run A/S tires year-round, you're pissing in the wind, as you're already swapping wheels/tires, why not opt for the best performance in the colder/snowy months?

    I run dedicated setups: budget-friendly summer tires (Cooper RS3-S) for the warmer months, and studded snows (Nokian Hakkapeliitta 7) in the winter. In the summer months, all things being equal, I probably can net 3-5+ MPH faster in a turn than you would with whatever A/S tire you decide to buy. In the winter months, you probably gain some dry traction grip (due to the studs), but would likely be stranded at the base of my driveway with your A/S tires due to ice, and instead of driving up, you'd be walking up, even after putting 300-400lbs of salt down per application. If ice wasn't a concern and I ran a performance winter tire, I could probably get a similar gain in cornering speed vs your setup, and still have better snow traction to boot.

    I go back to this analogy...would you rather cut a tree down with a hand saw or a chain saw? Both will get the job done, but one will do so more efficiently.
    Last edited by EJ257; 11-22-2012 at 04:26 PM.
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  8. #52
    Registered User pmacey's Avatar
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    How do dedicated summer and winter tires perform in the spring and fall during the cool/damp months...certainly no better, and probably worse than a good UHP All Season tire.

    Any experience with a UHP All Season tire during the spring and fall months?

    BTW, the best tank in the world can still get stuck in ice...
    Last edited by pmacey; 11-22-2012 at 04:39 PM.

  9. #53
    Master Baiter EJ257's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmacey
    How do dedicated summer and winter tires perform in the spring and fall during the cool/damp months...any experience?
    Better than an A/S tire. Both tires have an optimum temperature operating range; go outside it, and you're going to get less than stellar results.

    That's the benefit of a dedicated set vs a "jack of all trades" set: tire manufacturers are able to focus their efforts on getting as much traction as possible in a given condition, rather than having to figure out how to get the best traction in all conditions. Consider a scale: one measures items to the pound, and one measures to the gram; which do you think will be more accurate?
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  10. #54
    Moderator   Sasquatch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Callahan View Post
    I have been driving in snow for over 30 years. It is no big deal. If I find I have a problem, I will buy all season tires, not snow tires. I had a 2004 WRX without snow tires and never had a problem. I think years of driving experience counts for something. If you feel safer with designated snow tires, by all means buy them. I can assure everyone, I value other's safety as much as mine, and am a responsible driver. I had a RWD BMW with snow tires and still had some difficulty. With AWD, it would have to be a really bad storm not to be able to get around.
    ~33 years here. Experience is irreplaceable. I had a CDL to drive trucks and buses at one time. Logged a lot of miles in some pretty awful weather.

    I too have made do with A/S for many years. Had zero issues with the RE92s for 4 seasons. Last year I tried to get through one last season on A/S Falken ZE912 Ziex. A much better dry than snow tire, they had worn down to 4-5/32". Too low - I knew better.

    One 2" fresh snow untreated road morning commute I lost grip for a second, just enough to kiss the hillside just off of the road. Hurt my pride more than the WRX. You never know what driving situation will come at you.

    I'm giving winter tires a try this year. Seeing what great summer tires can do in the warm weather I want to see what true cold weather tires are capable of. I'm already impressed with the dry and wet handling of new Dunlop Wintersport SP 3Ds. As much as I loathe snow, I'm looking forward to see how these tires will enhance the already excellent AWD.
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  11. #55
    Master Baiter EJ257's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sasquatch
    I too have made do with A/S for many years. Had zero issues with the RE92s for 4 seasons. Last year I tried to get through one last season on A/S Falken ZE912 Ziex. A much better dry than snow tire, they had worn down to 4-5/32". Too low - I knew better.

    One 2" fresh snow untreated road morning commute I lost grip for a second, just enough to kiss the hillside just off of the road. Hurt my pride more than the WRX. You never know what driving situation will come at you.

    I'm giving winter tires a try this year. Seeing what great summer tires can do in the warm weather I want to see what true cold weather tires are capable of. I'm already impressed with the dry and wet handling of new Dunlop Wintersport SP 3Ds. As much as I loathe snow, I'm looking forward to see how these tires will enhance the already excellent AWD.
    Driving experience is only part of the equation. A loss of traction is a loss of traction; no amount of driving experience can help you there. The only thing driving experience can do is get you to potentially safely recover from said loss of traction, or mitigate your damages in the process. My former boss has more driving experience than either of you, and totaled his WRX on A/S tires (RE92s) when he hit black ice on the Interstate. He was able to mitigate the circumstance and only wreck his car. Whether dedicated snows would've saved the car is unknown (even studs wouldn't have guaranteed he regained traction), but it certainly wouldn't have made the situation worse.

    While a UHP all-season tire will likely out-handle a generic snow tire, you've opted for the performance snow. You should see a gain in cold weather cornering traction with the WS3Ds along the lines I stated earlier (3-5+MPH). Obviously, in snowy conditions, you're not really going to be pushing the limits, but it will certainly have better snow traction than whatever A/S tire you would choose to throw at it.
    Last edited by EJ257; 11-22-2012 at 04:50 PM.
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  12. #56
    Moderator   Sasquatch's Avatar
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    Yep. While the on center steering feel has gone somewhat mushy, the WRX still handles in a predictable pleasant manner. The cold weather rubber compound has got to be better than the Ziex's. I still feel connected when the temps drop to the low 20's.

    Tire makers now offer several grades of tires based on weather and your preferences. Why not take advantage of the one best suited for your driving?
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  13. #57
    Registered User pmacey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EJ257 View Post
    Better than an A/S tire. Both tires have an optimum temperature operating range; go outside it, and you're going to get less than stellar results.

    That's the benefit of a dedicated set vs a "jack of all trades" set: tire manufacturers are able to focus their efforts on getting as much traction as possible in a given condition, rather than having to figure out how to get the best traction in all conditions. Consider a scale: one measures items to the pound, and one measures to the gram; which do you think will be more accurate?
    Ok, nice research, sounds logical...do have to ask: have you had experience with a UHP All Season tire during the cool/damp spring and fall months, in a WRX?

    FWIW: never owned a set of dedicated snow tires, and drove my 2005 WRX pretty hard (within limits) in heavy rain and snow storms, and on mud, dirt, and snowy pot hole filled roads, on the factory A/S tires, and always felt confident of their performance and ability

    That being said, curious to find the low and high optimum operating range for my new Conti Extreme: Dry, Wet, Snow Ultra High Performance All Season Tires.

    I will say, driving experience does count, as others have posted (I don't wanna tell you all how many years I've been driving...you guys may start calling me GRAMPS)

    Digging the feedback!

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  14. #58
    Moderator   Sasquatch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmacey View Post
    I will say, driving experience does count, as others have posted (I don't wanna tell you all how many years I've been driving...you guys may start calling me GRAMPS)
    How old? Go for it.
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  15. #59
    Master Baiter EJ257's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmacey
    Ok, nice research, sounds logical...do have to ask: have you had experience with a UHP All Season tire during the cool/damp spring and fall months, in a WRX?
    I have not driven a WRX/STI extensively on A/S tires in cold/winter months (just designated driver duty). A/S tires would not make it up my driveway, so it's not an option for me. I have driven enough vehicles on A/S and dedicated tires to know that I would prefer to run dedicated sets, however; AWD, RWD, and FWD.

    Quote Originally Posted by pmacey
    FWIW: never owned a set of dedicated snow tires, and drove my 2005 WRX pretty hard (within limits) in heavy rain and snow storms, and on mud, dirt, and snowy pot hole filled roads, on the factory A/S tires, and always felt confident of their performance and ability
    Like has been said already, A/S tires can make due. Drive a car with dedicated sets, and you'll kick yourself for ever wasting your time on the "jack of all trades, master of none" tires...

    Quote Originally Posted by pmacey
    That being said, curious to find the low and high optimum operating range for my new Conti Extreme: Dry, Wet, Snow Ultra High Performance All Season Tires.
    That is something you'd likely have to get from Continental, but it's likely going to be a vast range, since they're designed for both winter and summer months.
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  16. #60
    Registered User pmacey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sasquatch View Post
    How old? Go for it.
    Ok Whipper Snapper (LOL)...I'm coming up on 45 years of experience driving in the snow

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