Ford Escape Automobiles Forum banner
1 - 20 of 33 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking too purchase winter tires for the first time and I'm in need of some help.
With so many to choose from I have no idea where to start. Any one have a thought
at what are good ones to buy? Friend of mine suggested buying a Cooper winter tire.

Thanks.

Matt
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
490 Posts
Check the ratings online. Most every manufacturer has snow tires now. Many are quite expensive. I've read/heard a lot of good things about (Firestone) Winterforce. That's the ones I'd buy. They are much cheaper than the Blizzaks, X-Ice, etc. I'm sure the Coopers would be good. Cooper has really seemed to step up their game in the past few years, and has some good tires now.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,977 Posts
It depends on the conditions you expect to drive in. The majority of high-end winter tires are closer to an ice tire - marketed for good performance on city roads that are regularly plowed. Those would be the tires that look like the X-Ice or Blizzak - soft rubber, lots of sipes, and a large tread coverage area. If you are in a more rural area or live in a city that doesn't believe in a snow removal budget, you want to look at winter tires with big, square tread blocks, like the Goodyear Nordics or a severe snow rated A/T tire.

When looking at an ice-oriented tire, there have been a few big breakthroughs in recent years. An earlier improvement for grip on ice was to imbed grit into the rubber. Now the latest and greatest are the "multicell" or micro-bubble tires like the Blizzak, which have millions of tiny bubbles in the tread compound to act as suction cups on ice, and the miniature "water pump" siping like on the X-Ice2, which are special sipes in the tread block designed to pull water away from the surface of the ice. The downside to most multicell tires are that, because the bubbles make the compound very soft, only 50% of the tire is made of multicell compound - once you wear past that point, you are left with traditional winter rubber. The water pump tires claim to work throughout the life of the tire.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,189 Posts
I just bought some today! I purchase one of the top rated and recommended by consumer reports, also users on TR liked them too. General Altimax Artic. I got them on 15" wheels, so they cost $71 a tire. If you go bigger they get more expensive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
72 Posts
Isn't Cooper part of Goodyear now? I haven't researched which tires are even available for the Escapes. Does the Goodyear Silent Armours come in the proper size? The reason I ask is because I put those on my F250 last year and they were awesome in the snow. And they rode nice in the summer also. Not a cheap tire but well worth it in my opinion.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
I just put on a set of cooper M+S tires and rims. They rated it quite well on other sites I'd seen. Kind of surprised that they rated so poor in ice stopping in that comparison. I mean, damn, it's a freaking winter tire.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,189 Posts
Nodnerb said:
I just put on a set of cooper M+S tires and rims. They rated it quite well on other sites I'd seen. Kind of surprised that they rated so poor in ice stopping in that comparison. I mean, damn, it's a freaking winter tire.
Thats consumer reports. I personally have only bought products they rate well. My last 2 snow tire purchases were their two top rated and they were just excellent. But any snow tire will be better than a all season so at least you have a decent snow tire...

Here is what they say about the ice braking
"An excellent choice for driving on snow, but we recommend studding the tire for sure grip on icy surfaces."

Ice braking:
We tested ice braking on a skating rink from 10 to 0 mph.

User reviews say the the tire is great with studs, one reviewer (no studs) says they didnt like them and got rid of them after the season.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
I just bought a set of Firestone Winterfoce UV. So far they are doing well, though we've only had about six inches of snow. During that time, though, there was no slippage or hesitation. I've also noticed a difference during wet conditions as compared to the all-seasons I removed.

As it snows more -- we're going to VT for Xmas -- I will post reviews. And yes, I do intend to hammer on these. ;)

- sG

EDIT:
Now that I'm looking at the ratings, I'm having a hard time believing that they tested the same tires I have on my 'scape. I'm having no issues with the ride, the braking has been better than I expected, and cornering has been on par or better than my all-seasons.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
47 Posts
Instead of opening a new thread I'll tack my question on to this one:

Is it okay to use a winter tire with lower speed rating than the stock tires? For example, my stock tires have a speed rating of T (118 mph) and a load index of 100 (1764 lbs.) I want to get a set of Blizzak's but the speed rating on the tire is R (106 mph) and the load index is 102 (1874 lbs.) I'm not concerned about the speed/load ratings because I want to drive fast on them, I am concerned about the differences in handling between the winters and my stockers. Is there a big difference? Little difference? Is it unsafe all together?

Thanks for any input!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
H4XOR said:
Instead of opening a new thread I'll tack my question on to this one:

Is it okay to use a winter tire with lower speed rating than the stock tires? For example, my stock tires have a speed rating of T (118 mph) and a load index of 100 (1764 lbs.) I want to get a set of Blizzak's but the speed rating on the tire is R (106 mph) and the load index is 102 (1874 lbs.) I'm not concerned about the speed/load ratings because I want to drive fast on them, I am concerned about the differences in handling between the winters and my stockers. Is there a big difference? Little difference? Is it unsafe all together?

Thanks for any input!
There will be a difference in handling with any winter tire. They are softer at the best of times, never mind on cold winter days when an all season is a rock compared to a winter tire.

But, no you are fine. There will be a handling difference as with any tire change, but the trade off is being able to drive safely and confidently through snow and ice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,189 Posts
SGecko said:
EDIT:
Now that I'm looking at the ratings, I'm having a hard time believing that they tested the same tires I have on my 'scape. I'm having no issues with the ride, the braking has been better than I expected, and cornering has been on par or better than my all-seasons.
Well any winter tire will perform better than a all season, which in turn will show an improvement that you will notice. Also they could be the same but here is how they rate them:

Snow traction:
Snow traction reflects the distance our test car needed to accelerate from 5 to 20 mph on moderately packed snow.

Ice braking:
We tested ice braking on a skating rink from 10 to 0 mph.

Dry braking:
Dry braking is from 60 to 0 mph.

So that tire will work in snow but it may not have as good of distance/time as the higher rated ones.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,977 Posts
H4XOR said:
Instead of opening a new thread I'll tack my question on to this one:

Is it okay to use a winter tire with lower speed rating than the stock tires? For example, my stock tires have a speed rating of T (118 mph) and a load index of 100 (1764 lbs.) I want to get a set of Blizzak's but the speed rating on the tire is R (106 mph) and the load index is 102 (1874 lbs.) I'm not concerned about the speed/load ratings because I want to drive fast on them, I am concerned about the differences in handling between the winters and my stockers. Is there a big difference? Little difference? Is it unsafe all together?

Thanks for any input!
You're okay with a lower speed rating, but the load rating affects your recommended tire pressure. The higher load rating means a slightly lower pressure, but at just over 100 lbs of variation, this will be close to a mere PSI in difference. In my opinion, the best winter tires are Q-rated - shows that there has been little compromise for handling or zoom-zoom ability.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
47 Posts
Okay, cool. Thanks for the replies! Hopefully this will help other people out too.. I thought it would be okay but wanted to check before I got winter tires for safety and then end up screwing myself over because the rating is different. I guess I never really thought about it before on previous cars, or just ran all-season tires.

Thanks again!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks all for the answers.
I ended up going with the Nokian Hakkapeliitta. I tell you these tires are sweet.
Very smooth ride.
Amazed at how quick I can stop on the snow and ice. Even driving though a foot of snow
I felt in total control.
Love them!!!!!!!!!!
Getting them for my Alero this weekend.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
Hex said:
I ended up going with the Nokian Hakkapeliitta. I tell you these tires are sweet.
Very smooth ride.
Amazed at how quick I can stop on the snow and ice. Even driving though a foot of snow
I felt in total control.
Love them!!!!!!!!!!
They are the preferred snow tire for most of the folks I know up in Vermont. Very good choice.

- sG
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,189 Posts
Nokian Hakkapeliitta 5? or the R's?
5's are recommended, cool! never heard of that brand, sound canadian though ;) haha... just looked at their site, are they based out of VT?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,977 Posts
Nokian is based out of Norway - sister company of Nokia, I think.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,189 Posts
Squishy said:
Nokian is based out of Norway - sister company of Nokia, I think.
yes just read their company history. Very neat. The euro's seem to have much better tires, the Generals from Germany seem to be superb tires as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
I have tesed all kinds of tires over the years , the best test for ice is my driveway after a bit of freezing rain , 500 ft downhill , I'll tell you blizzac , michelin arctic ice , and hakopalita , all end up sliding down the hill with 0 control . Only thing that really works on ice is studs . Used to drive over 100,000 miles a years in all weather and on the highway with freezing rain studs have saved my life at least 30 times ! Other cars have started spinning all around me on many occasions , and thanks to studded tires I was able to steer around the cars and trucks .
I am so glad Quebec has made winter tires the law , tired of cars hitting me because they can't stop in time .
 
1 - 20 of 33 Posts
Top