Winter Tire questions and advice

Joined
Mar 8, 2012
Messages
17,041
Location
Colorado Springs
Colder, subjective. Amount of snow, no and ice is nearly unheard of on our streets. Last winter was the only winter in the past 7 years where it snowed more than a couple of inches. It's pretty rare to find an arterial or collector street that hasn't been plowed by the morning. The lack of snow has actually been rather surprising since we got dumped on in 2011 and again in 2014 but never more than a few inches of snow per season since then.
I lived in Chicago, my wife is from there.
Snow, ice, generally depressing weather is something that we cannot compare to Chicago.
CO has more sunny days than Florida, and trust me, that snow that we get, goes away next day.
Mountains are same way, except snow stays and it is cleared fast from the roads.
CO problem is unpredictability. When it snows, it gets nasty. I can sit in a car with open sunroof and 50 degrees, just to get into blizzard and -10 45min later.
 

Pew

Joined
Mar 12, 2018
Messages
2,284
Location
IL
Isn't Chicago a little flat too? Add a few hills to the mix of snow and ice and it becomes a little more "winter tire" place.

Krzyś

Very flat. The only notable elevation in the entire state is the north-west corner. The sears tower is taller than our highest natural point too.

I lived in Chicago, my wife is from there.
Snow, ice, generally depressing weather is something that we cannot compare to Chicago.
CO has more sunny days than Florida, and trust me, that snow that we get, goes away next day.
Mountains are same way, except snow stays and it is cleared fast.

Nowadays, it just gets frigid cold, windy, cloudy, and the last 2mm of dirty, muddy snow on top of the grass to remind us we're in Chicago. The winters here definitely felt like they've drastically changed in the past decade. The last big snow season was 13-14 and almost all the municipalities ran out of salt and some had to swtich to using dirt and sand.
 
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Joined
Mar 8, 2012
Messages
17,041
Location
Colorado Springs
Very flat. The only notable elevation in the entire state is the north-west corner. The sears tower is taller than our highest natural point too.



Nowadays, it just gets frigid cold, windy, cloudy, and the last 2mm of dirty, muddy snow on top of the grass to remind us we're in Chicago. The winters here definitely felt like they've drastically changed in the past decade. The last big snow season was 13-14 and almost all the municipalities ran out of salt and some had to swtich to using dirt and sand.
Possibly. I come there often, and it is not as it was before.
But, generally people believe Colorado is this winter hell, and it is actually opposite.
The problem is that mountains are unpredictable and bcs. steep grades etc. people generally worry about going up, while going down safely is what matters. Most and worse accidents I have seen are going down. Karen from Tampa comes, rents Cadillac Escalade bcs. AWD and big SUV “must be good” in snow and fits environment in Vail. But 5,500-6,000 pounds is not easy to stop on a stretch of 16 miles of I70 where one looses some 4,000ft of altitude. Definitely not easy on Primwell tires that one gets from rental company.
But, worst driving constantly are east of mountains. Mountains here prevent storms from dumping snow on the Front Range. You might get 2ft of best skiing powder in Breckenridge, but here in Colorado Springs, 1.45hrs away, is shorts weather. The storms get broken. But they reignite 50-75mls to the east, and flat ground, no visible objects, trees are a hell to navigate. I am here 9 years and never heard of someone ending up in a ditch in mountains and dying. But east of here, every year there are cases of people missing curve, crashing and freezing.
 
Joined
Jan 3, 2004
Messages
2,775
Location
Illinois
The typical Chicago winter sees a series of 2-3" snowfalls with only a few per season that are deeper. Exceptions of course include 2014 and 2011 which were already mentioned, where we saw a lot of snow; another was 1999 where we had a huge blizzard on Jan. 2 or 3 but nothing - not a flake! - again until March 5. And I think for every inch of snow we get, we get about two inches of salt. Or at least that is what it seems like.

I drive more than most people, especially in the winter, so I use snow tires. They're just better all around in the snow..... Traction, braking, etc.

And the fringe benefit from having winter tires on cheap steel wheels - it keeps the nice alloy wheels from getting ruined. And the taller sidewall makes for a cushier ride!
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2010
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Northeast
Firestone - WeatherGrip .

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Joined
Jan 12, 2008
Messages
499
Location
Long Island, NY
@BigShug681 - any of the top tier would be good for your plan. Look for best deal.

Many never had, never experienced, and will never try for many reasons. If that works for them great. For me and my family the cost of the winter tires is an investment in safety. They cost less than my insurance deductible not factoring in potential injuries. If it gives us the ability to stop sooner or maneuver away from those that can't stop or turn (I've done that multiple times) then it is worth it for me. I've experienced the difference, I also experienced why you should have 4 like the shop recommended and not just 2 like everyone used to use on a RWD.

You can give people all the test results between winter and all season but if they never had the opportunity to try, they don't see the potential value just an added expense and hassle.
 
Joined
Jul 10, 2022
Messages
373
I think many people misunderstand snow tires, or simply have too much pride in their driving to consider them.

For most they really aren't a need. But they are absolutely better in every way when it comes to real winter conditions. The confidence and safety factor added is more than most people realize who have never had them. I'll just wave when I fly by in the snow!
Interesting I always knew in Quebec they are mandatory and remember being say in Montreal in July and seeing cars with 4 snows, because they're like me right now, I don't feel like putting them on 2 cars, i.e. 4x2=jacking car up 7 times (on the other car I do lift the front all at once), they don't feel like doing the reverse to take them off, when the majority of they year will be spent on them.

I can't stand it when I have my snows on and it's 70F or it's raining. But if I'm not mistaken, not mandatory in Ontario but most do have 4 snows and somehow get an insurance break. Apparently places even store tires for customers (maybe Canadian Tire?). It's a totally different mentality. So whether it's pride or not, it is something about resisting. Maybe it's cost too?

The flip side, I once overheard two guys laughing about a woman being sold a brake fluid flush in our Toronto office. I said guys, that's a real thing, every 2 years....brake fluid is hygroscopic. They laughed at me and said I'm gullible to shops selling unneeded services. Weird, huh? Seems as people we're set in our ways! :)
 
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