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Thread: snow tires

  1. #1
    Guest

    snow tires

    I find the stock tires are really not that good in the snow....any suggestions? Have used Bridgestone Blizzacs on my older van and theyare great, also the Nokians but am concerned they will not be the right tire for the Accord Hybrid...dealer says stock tires are fine?????

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  3. #2
    Guest

    snow tires

    Michael, see my April 10 blog report here at
    http://www.hybridcars.com/blogs/blog...th=4&year=2005 for a report on using cable-chains on my 2004 HCH regular tires. (Much better than putting on snow tires.)

  4. #3
    Guest

    snow tires

    I've used Blizzaks before and they are great. Lately I've been using Vredestein snow tires and they also work well. The Vredesteins are also highway tires, whereas the Blizzaks are not as good at high speeds due to their soft "rubber." I think the Vredesteins would be better for the Prius since (I think, not sure!) they would have lower rolling resistance, since they have a harder rubber. They have a more aggressive tread design, so even with the harder rubber they grip very well.

    I called up a Vredestein rep several years ago when I bought my first set and he told me that the Blizzaks are probably better initally, but as the tires wear out, the Vredesteins will maintain their grip better than the Blizzaks.

    The Blizzaks are probably better if your streets are generally covered in snow, whereas the Vredesteins are probably better if you live where the snow gets removed pretty well and you can drive on pavement for a few days between snow falls.

  5. #4
    Guest

    snow tires

    Been using studless winter tires on two hybrids for three years - they work fine. Can recommend both the Bridgestone Blizzak and the Dunlop Graspic - they are studless designs that give good snow traction, good ice traction, and don't eat the road. Also, they don't have the studded snow tire "howl," which allows you to put them on earlier and leave them on later than you otherwise might, as well as run them through the summer if they're worn to the point where they don't have another winter left in them.

    The rolling resistance on any winter tire is higher. Big deal. It's winter, and you do what you have to do. In my experience, studless winter tires will lower your mileage about 5%. That's not much when you consider that driving in zero-degree conditions will net you about 20% less mileage than driving in 40-degree conditions.

    For the safety of everyone else on the road as well as yourself, if you drive in winter conditions, use winter tires. All those wizards that you see upside-down in the ditch (SUV's) or right-side-up in the ditch (cars) thought they didn't need them, or were told by some idiot dealer that the standard all-season tires were fine.

  6. #5
    Guest

    snow tires

    I recommend you folks who are making recommendations on snow tires let others know where you are located. I've lived in CA, WI, upstate NY, NJ, CO, and VA and I can assure you: the snow conditions and needs are different in all places as can be seen by the recommendations which while they differ, are all probably correct in the right area.

    For example: except when stuck, I had never used chains until I recently moved to CA. Here, however, chains are mandatory when there is even a hint of snow (ie. in the mountains) so snow tires do no good and low resistant (3 season) tires are just fine all the time. In the northeast, studs are not even allowed so snow tires are the best you can do. In CO, studs are great, while in VA, all season's handled about everything I'd ever need.

    I'm sure hybrids will be about the same as ICE but I would be curious to see how they handle in slippery conditions. ie, when sliding down a hill in the snow, putting a car in neutral usually helps to control skidding - does this work with a CVT hybrid? It would be fun to find a snow covered parking lot and play with a hybrid to see what kind of unnatural things one can do with them in the snow like one can with ICE's. If any of you folks in snow country have any experiences like this, I'd enjoy hearing about them.

  7. #6
    Guest

    snow tires

    Hi there. I live in Thunder Bay, ON, Canada. I just bought a set of Dunlop Graspic winter tires. I`ve read that these are supposed to be a quiet ride. I get a howling noise when driving on patches of dry pavement. Any idea as to what causes this (camber)? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks

  8. #7
    Guest

    snow tires

    The stock tires on my Honda Civic Hybrid, due to their low rolling resistance, really suck in snow. (I live in Northeast Ohio, under the shadow of Lake Effect snow) For a small sacrifice in fuel economy, I went towards Goodyear's winter tires, and have not slid at all this winter compared to last winter.

  9. #8
    Guest

    snow tires

    There are only a couple of states that ban studded tires. When looking for a list of states I found this report that has some good general snow tire info:
    http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/winter/studt...l_Nov_2002.pdf

    But I did find what I was looking for. This list is very helpful.
    http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/winter/states.PDF

    None of the northeastern states ban studs like someone else stated. Unless, Maryland is considered in the northeast. I think Maryland has changed their laws on studs from when this list was created. I know out of state people can drive in Maryland with studs so you don't have to worry about passing through. It is kind of funny that Michigan has an outright ban. They get lots of snow and their roads are already crap so studs aren't really going to change things. Hope this info helps.

  10. #9
    Guest

    snow tires

    In response to "ex-EV1" my winter hybrid experience has all been in western Colorado, with the exception of a Xmas trip to Tucson in '04. I used to live in the northeast, but that was before such wonderful things as Blizzaks/Graspics/etc.

    Although most states allow studded tires, do yourself a favor and go studless, but only with a high traction studless such as the Blizzak. Not living with the howl of studs on pavement for four or five months is worth every extra nickel. I have been driving on Blizzaks/Graspics for nine years now.

    One thing to watch out for with a Hybrid in winter is the strong braking effect created by regenerative braking. In low-traction conditions, this can cause your front wheels to briefly lose traction when you let off the gas. Good to do your slowing down before you get into corners, which is not bad advice on slippery roads in general.

  11. #10
    Guest

    snow tires

    Last winter I drove my 2003 Honda Civic Hybrid with cable chains up and over Echo Summit and down the long grade into South Lake Tahoe in about a half a foot of snow. I downshifted for the downgrade and held the concensus speed limit of 30 MPH easily. I was watching out for it but didn't notice any grabbing as you describe - possibly because of the cable chains.

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