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Old October 31st, 2012, 09:49 AM   #1
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Default snow tires on FWD car in SE Michigan

Thinking about getting snow tires for the old lady. Her current all season tires that came on her car have like 10,000 miles on them, I just rotated them the other day and they have plenty of tread.

I drove my focus trhough the winter last year and had no complaints, but thought she may like the peice of mind/added safety of snow tires. She commutes about 65-80 miles per day.


Is it imperative to buy all 4, or will 2 for the front tires be enough to add a little help with braking and enough traction to avoid being stuck?
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Old October 31st, 2012, 09:55 AM   #2
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After spinning out in my brothers car on M5, I recommend buying all 4 so that doesn't happen to anyone.

He was being cheap and only bought the front 2.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 09:57 AM   #3
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Bill puts bliztech tires (??) on my Fusion - all 4's. They are awesome. I'm more comfortable driving the Fusion in the snow, especially slush across lanes, than any SUV I've had. And of course, I'm pretty sure he found them used on craigslist vs buying brand new.

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Old October 31st, 2012, 09:57 AM   #4
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I don't believe it is imperative. I have driven without snow tires for many years. Yes they do add traction, but if you don't drive a car to its full potential there really is no noticeable difference.
Tire manufacturer will recommend all 4 tires regardless of 2wd or 4wd.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:00 AM   #5
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You definitely want 4 for braking purposes, or the rear will lose traction faster and slide.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:03 AM   #6
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You will definitely need all four. Having two different tires on the front and rear will drastically change handling capabilities, especially on snow and ice.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:04 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtnbikinbryno View Post
You definitely want 4 for braking purposes, or the rear will lose traction faster and slide.
I thought about that, but with all the stability controls and such its hard to even get the car sideways when trying, was adding them mostly to help get out of the neighborhood.

We don't really get that much snow anyway.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:08 AM   #8
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Modern all season tires do a really good job handling the snow. I have them on my Contour and that stupid little car is like a tank. I would think if you went with a dedidicated tread pattern like an agressive snow tire you would sacrifice dry/wet weather braking because of less surface area contacting the road.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:08 AM   #9
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Some bigger tire store chains (like Discount) will NOT install 2 snows on just the front.

Plus, if you get 4 and rotate them like you should, they will last for twice as many winters
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:15 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuggets View Post
Modern all season tires do a really good job handling the snow. I have them on my Contour and that stupid little car is like a tank. I would think if you went with a dedidicated tread pattern like an agressive snow tire you would sacrifice dry/wet weather braking because of less surface area contacting the road.
yes they do, for you and I.

for the lady, snow tires are a worthwhile investment.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:20 AM   #11
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I loved my blizaks and even the hankooks that I had on my altima.

Def don't do just two on the front though. When I worked at discount we would only do two if they went on the rear. Reguardless of fwd or rwd.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:21 AM   #12
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I would do all 4, but they would be 285/50/17. Gonna do it, do it right.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:29 AM   #13
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As most said, do 4, Well worth the investment.

I did these on my wife's Subaru years ago, and was totally convinced on Snows, It made her a Confident Winter Driver. Now I have 4 snow tires mounted on rims for all of our cars, Her Jetta TDI, My Passat TDI, My Plow Truck, Daughters Saab, and Sons Volvo. Wont go through another winter without them.

Keep an eye out on Craigslist, you can pick up a set of four that have been used for one season for 1/2 price of new.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:45 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kickstand View Post
I thought about that, but with all the stability controls and such its hard to even get the car sideways when trying, was adding them mostly to help get out of the neighborhood.

We don't really get that much snow anyway.
If the stability control works that good on ice don't waste the money. If it doesn't which we know is the case, get all 4. If you do only get two I would put them on the rear.
You can control the front by turning the wheel and working the throttle, once the rear breaks traction there isn't much you can do to correct it, so may as well make it harder to break loose in the first place.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:48 AM   #15
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I learned years ago to put the best traction in the rear of a fwd.When you turn a corner on a slick surface the rear will slid out every time.My good freind manages a discount tire and that is there policy also.All four new,matching tires or new tires on the rear only.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 10:57 AM   #16
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x3 on the rear placement if only buying two.

The momentum during a turn causes the rear of the car to accelerate laterally during a turn, you definatly want the best traction on the rear.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 11:04 AM   #17
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you are going to want all 4. We bought ours off cragislist 3 years ago from someone that turned in their lease. Best money ever spent. The Fusion handles snow/slush better than any 4wd SUV or pickup I've ever owned. Road trips in a blizzard aren't an issue.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 11:06 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue XJ View Post
If the stability control works that good on ice don't waste the money.
Nothing works on ice, but the stability control in the focus is annoying as shit, it can't be turned off, and it is very agressive, ANY sort of aggressive driving in the rain or snow causes it to kick on VERY early, it works pretty damn well, but god I hate it.

I am hoping someone comes out with a chip to turn it off, you couldn't even take this car to a track day, although it is a decent handling little car (could be better, but the point remains) the stability control will kick on pretty quickly even when pushed on dry pavement around a corner.

Anyway, I see zero point in putting snow tires only on the rear in this car, the rear end never comes around, even when I e brake it around corners as soon as the e-brake is released the stability control straightens the car right out on snow. I thought maybe putting them only on the front would help for getting out of the neighborhood. But having them matched front to rear makes sense.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 11:14 AM   #19
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All the best stability control doesn't mean shit if the tires aren't reacting with the pavement. I just scoured craigslist daily for a month. Got 4 2 piece BBS wheels with near new snow tires for $200 after the girl wrecked her Jetta (not in the winter, not with those wheels). The wheels alone were worth way more than that.

edit: Even have snows for the XJ. Bought a set of XJ Limited Icon wheels off here for $200, and for $79 a tire plus mounting I don't use the 4x4 unless I want to play and I stop quickly enough that I only worry about being rear ended.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 11:55 AM   #20
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Had excellent results with the Hankook Blizzak knockoffs.
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