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Good tires for a Cobalt?

falirayfaliray Member Posts: 26
edited January 2016 in Chevrolet
Good morning. What are some good tires for a Cobalt? I've owned my Cobalt for a year. A couple of nights ago St. Louis had it's first snow. While driving my LS in the snow whenever I hit the breaks the car wanted to spin counter clockwise. I turned into the spin to correct this and drove carefully, but I'm sure this is caused by my worn out rear tires. I'll be looking to replace them soon. Suggestions? I'm looking for all season radials preferably 40-60K tread wear.
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Comments

  • zandorzandor Member Posts: 67
    I miss St. Louis winters. On the up side at least this year we're having a St. Louis winter in Chicago.

    I usually go by the customer reviews on tire rack. They collect survey results. You can just select the categories of tire and size and sort by customer rating. I don't just blindly buy #1 though, I look at the individual categories. Usually I pay more attention to the wet and snow ratings than the dry ratings. Then I pick out a few models I consider acceptable and see what I can get locally and at what price.

  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    Always use winter tires in snow prone areas. Saves your life as well as others. Tires are not car specific.
    Check Tirerack. I use Firestone Winterforce. If you want more expensive ones then Bridgestone Blizzak
  • falirayfaliray Member Posts: 26
    I prefer all season tires so I don't have to change them, but if I did get winter tires when would I change them?
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    edited January 2016
    All season tires are not safe below 40 F. Missouri has lots of snow. If you want you and your family to be safe , get winter tires. Change it in late November and early May.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Snow tires on a FWD or RWD car will often outperform even AWD cars using all season tires.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 187,493
    All this talk of winter tires is great, but what percentage of vehicles in the lower Midwest are equipped with winter tires, do you think?

    I think it's probably 1%, at most.

    Also, it's summer tires that are unsafe below 40F, not all-seasons.

    I didn't buy my first set of winter tires, until I bought my first car that came with stock summer tires, which made it a necessity.

    I love winter tires and the safety they add, but I've still never put them on any car that already had all-seasons.

    In an ideal world, we would all swap out tires twice a year, but that probably isn't realistic for the average '07 Cobalt owner. A good set of all-season tires is probably the best choice for most.

    Disclaimers: I actually did have studded snow tires on the rear of my '77 Cobra II, which made for some "interesting" handling on dry roads. And, in a truly ideal world, I would live somewhere that I could leave my summer tires on, all year round.

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    It depends on your climate. On the Colorado eastern range, you don't need 'em as a rule. But snow tires really help with braking and steering in areas that get steady and heavy snowfalls.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    I was impressed with my "all weather" Nokian WR-G2s. A bit pricey and a bit hard to find but I'd use them again for an "all season" tire.

    The Subaru did great in the snow with them, but where they really shined was on the minivan in the rain.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    I am using Nokian as a spare for my elantra and a Sumitomo as a spare for my forester.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    edited January 2016
    Also, it's summer tires that are unsafe below 40F, not all-seasons.

    Wrong. Google it. All seasons loose their grip below 40 F as they become hard.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited January 2016
    "So winter is the only season when an all-season tire offers more traction than a summer tire.

    An all-season tire trades the summer tire's damp-road grip for the ability to remain flexible at well-below-zero temperatures."

    Know Your Tires: All-Season vs Summer (Popular Mechanics)

    "All season tires are a great option for drivers who live in moderate climates and do not encounter extreme cold, ice and snow in the winter months." (Bridgestone)

    "Are all-season tires really all-season? If you live in areas that have a moderately tough winter with some wintry precipitation, the answer will probably be yes. All-season radials are a good enough fit for most drivers that many new cars come equipped with them." (Robertson Tire)

  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    edited January 2016
    stever said:

    "So winter is the only season when an all-season tire offers more traction than a summer tire.

    An all-season tire trades the summer tire's damp-road grip for the ability to remain flexible at well-below-zero temperatures."

    Know Your Tires: All-Season vs Summer (Popular Mechanics)

    http://www.autoblog.com/2012/12/20/the-time-to-buy-snow-tires-was-yesterday/

    Edmunds could be sued for misleading advise on winter tires . All season tires are no substitute for winter tires below 40 F
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited January 2016
    I'm still searching - interesting that most of the sites that sell tires (Discount, General Tire) want you to get another set at 40 to 45 degrees. The manufacturers (Bridgestone, Michelin) say all seasons are fine for most people all year long.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    Won't All-Season Tires Work Just Fine?

    By design, All-Season tires are a compromise intended to provide acceptable traits under a wide variety of conditions. However, that compromised goal prevents them from being a master of any one of them. The All-Season tire tread designs and compounds that are engineered to provide extended mileages and durability under the summer's sun are less effective in winter's freezing temperatures, and through snow and on ice. Specific winter tires deliver much better snow and ice performance than All-Season tires because their tread designs and tread compounds are engineered to master those conditions, while summer tires are engineered to deliver better handling in the rain and on dry roads. Why not have the best tires for each of the conditions you'll encounter?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Yeah, but "fine" compared to what?
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited January 2016
    Don't see anything there about 40 or 45 degrees. :p

    I'm done with twice a year tire/wheel changes. Had enough of that back in my studded tire days.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    All season in northern states is a different ball game then all season in the southern USA. Better not to mislead the viewers or one can get sued.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited January 2016
    I'll just name the manufacturers as co-defendants. I purchased three new cars in Anchorage and they all came with all-seasons on them.

    From that Michelin link - "All-season tires are designed to perform well in a large range of conditions".
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    stever said:

    Don't see anything there about 40 or 45 degrees. :p

    I'm done with twice a year tire/wheel changes. Had enough of that back in my studded tire days.

    Laziness is no excuse for correct advise. This is not about gasser or diesel, synthetic oil or dino oil . It is about life or death situations.

    We all know that tires are a compromise. One tire can't be the fastest on the track, most controllable in the snow, and longest wearing. The Ultra High Performance tire that grips the track with tread temperatures of 200° is incompetent as its tread compound becomes like "hard plastic" at below 32°. Today's 80,000-mile tires require tread designs and compounds that maximize long, even wear... not winter traction. And while many of today's all-season tires (Original Equipment, touring and performance) address some of these issues, they still emphasize longer wear, a quieter ride or greater performance...not winter traction.

    Only winter tires are designed to excel in the colder temperatures, slush, snow and ice that many parts of the country experience for three or more months a year.

    It's also important to note that the recent advancements in electronic driver aids, such as ABS and traction control don't provide more traction. They only help prevent drivers from over braking or overpowering the available traction of their tires. The only thing the driver can do to increase traction...to actually get more grip and control... is install better tires.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    edited January 2016
    Right today no cars or vehicles could venture out in PA or NJ or NY or MD or DC unless they had winter tires. The blizzard has dumped nearly 2 feet of snow in less then 24 hrs.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited January 2016
    Well, if I lived in St. Louis like @faliray, my first choice would likely be the "all-weather" Nokians. I wouldn't get a second set of winter tires. All-seasons would be my second choice. Which one? Dunno... I see that Michelin has jumped onto the "all-weather" bandwagon now too.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    edited January 2016
    stever said:
    Well, if I lived in St. Louis like @faliray, my first choice would likely be the "all-weather" Nokians. I wouldn't get a second set of winter tires. All-seasons would be my second choice. Which one? Dunno... I see that Michelin has jumped onto the "all-weather" bandwagon now too.
    All weather all season  tires are like Jack of all master of none tires . I have four vehicles in my family . Two of them have winter tires installed in November and removed in April . Better safe then sorry . Extra 1000 $ for two sets of winter tires are my insurance for safer winter driving as I live in PA with sub zero temps every year and severe snow 
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    Your points about safety are well taken. When it comes to winter driving it's the tires. Well, first, it's the driver. Then the tires. AWD or 4WD are way down that list.

    There is a difference between "all weather" tires and "all season" tires though.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    stever said:
    . There is a difference between "all weather" tires and "all season" tires though.
    Most likely a marketing gimmick , Rubber compounds for summer and freezing winter and snow are different . All weather will still be a compromise . 
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    Maybe, but I'm still impressed with the two sets of Nokians I had in recent years.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    stever said:

    Maybe, but I'm still impressed with the two sets of Nokians I had in recent years.

    I am going to put Nokian Rotiva all weather ATV tires on my SUV this summer.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Member Posts: 5,427
    Here is what Bridgestone says about the differences between winter and all season tires. http://www.bridgestonetire.com/tread-and-trend/drivers-ed/winter-snow-tires-vs-all-season-tires

    Where most drivers err is in understanding that a brand new set of all season tires will perform much better than a set that is half worn in winter weather. Every consumer advice article out there concentrates on trying to educate vehicle owners about the minimum tread depth (2/32") but that has nothing to do with what someone needs when the weather gets really bad. An all season tire with 6/32" tread will lose a significant amount of grip as compared to a new all season tire on ice or in snow. Meanwhile a dedicated winter tire worn to 5/32" tread depth will roughly match the capability of a brand new all season tire, but is no way near as capable as a new one.

    Now take the need for some to impose their perspectives and twist this into a price/profit argument and you have shops that can't sell tires to the consumer even when they could truly benefit from the replacement without having to subject themselves to being called greedy rip-offs. At 5/32" my Escape's all season tires need to be replaced as they are not suitable for bad weather anymore. If that was for a customer I wouldn't even get to consider selling them a set. They pass inspection because they are above the minimum tread depth and we don't get to use any other criteria from which to base a recommendation.

    FWIW. I'm putting a new set of all seasons onto my Escape this week and I'll be driving all over the Northeast US and won't be concerned at all. If I wanted to, I could go to a set of dedicated winter tires easily but with the way that this year has gone, I'd be taking them back off in eight to ten weeks from now. Instead I'll just plan on putting another new set of all season tires on next winter just like I do every year.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited January 2016
    >Where most drivers err is in understanding that a brand new set of all season tires will perform much better than a set that is half worn in winter weather

    That's my issue with the tire reviews at Tire Rack and the other online tire shops. Just about any new set of tires will feel great the first week or two of ownership, and that's when most people write their reviews.

    (Doc's also in PA, @carboy21).
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    edited January 2016
    stever said:

    >Where most drivers err is in understanding that a brand new set of all season tires will perform much better than a set that is half worn in winter weather

    That's my issue with the tire reviews at Tire Rack and the other online tire shops. Just about any new set of tires will feel great the first week or two of ownership, and that's when most people write their reviews.

    (Doc's also in PA, @carboy21).

    But he also said that he puts a new set of all seasons every year :smile:
    I use a set of all seasons for 9 months and one set of winter tires for 3 months for the last 4 years !!
    Or you could use this all year round for next 5 years amazon.com/gp/product/B00VJ5T5S8?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=ox_sc_act_title_1&smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER
    B)
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Member Posts: 5,427
    edited January 2016
    I also drive about 50K a year........
    About 95% of which is interstate based and I would ruin a set of winter tires each year while the all seasons would not be sufficient for heavy rain by the end of the second year.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    I'm ready for a Tweel - they supposedly work in snow.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 187,493
    Some of you need to return to the real world of passenger car tires.

    I live in an area that has been below freezing for the past week or more (way below freezing), and one car in a hundred has winter tires. This area, like most areas north of the Mason-Dixon line, sells a ton of SUVs and AWD cars, and virtually none of them get swapped out for winter tires.

    Go as far North as Chicago or Detroit, and unless it's a car that came with summer tires, almost no one is riding on winters.

    Every tire dealer in the Midwest sells 99% all-season tires. Are they all criminally insane?

    @Stever I've had a set of Nokian WR. While they may call them "all-season", they still have the snowflake symbol that qualifies them as winter tires. You can't really compare them to a regular Bridgestone or Michelin all-season. Won't argue how great they are.. they are great. I would have put them on my wife's X3, if they came in the proper size. Had to settle for all-season Bridgestones (gasp!).

    I'm not arguing the efficacy of winter tires. I'm riding on a set, right now. It's just not realistic for the great majority of people driving $5K cars. If you live in Minnesota, or Buffalo, YMMV. Picking the worst winter storm in decades on the East Coast as an excuse to get winters is a fallacy. If it's that bad, just stay home, like the Governor says.

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  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited January 2016
    My WR-G2s were advertised as all-weather tires - the extra attraction was that they were good all year long. (Nokian link)
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    edited January 2016
    Go as far North as Chicago or Detroit, and unless it's a car that came with summer tires, almost no one is riding on winters.
    =================================================================================
    That is why you get all those cars sliding and crashing on Interstate entry/exit ramps and getting gridlocked on the Interstate. In Austria/Switzerland/Germany it is mandatory to use winter tires during winter. In USA fools drive in old bald all seasons during winter and you get 100 car pileups during snowfalls on the interstate.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 187,493
    stever said:

    My WR-G2s were advertised as all-weather tires - the extra attraction was that they were good all year long. (Nokian link)

    Go to your link, and look at the bread crumb at the bottom of the page:

    Frontpage - Winter tires - Nokian WR G2

    :)

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    So much of this depends not only on climate but on the needs of the driver--if he has a choice of avoiding the roads in the case of extremes, or not. Dedicated snows are for when you must get through, or when you know your part of the world is going to get dumped on regularly all winter long.

    I have no real idea of what winter is like in St. Louis so I can't say which way to go here.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    I have lived in St Louis. The snowfall can be horrendous.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760





    What tires would you use here ? All weather ? All seasons ? Winter and snow ? LOL
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Member Posts: 5,427
    Two feet of snow? You need these. http://www.tirechain.com/
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    edited January 2016

    Two feet of snow? You need these. http://www.tirechain.com/

    Thanks ! My 4Runner in the pic is 4X4 and has Firestone Winterforce tires and they drove like there was no snow or ice :smile:
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited January 2016
    Meh, I rode my bike on plowed streets like that.

    :p

    Seriously, remember that 4WD won't help you stop any faster and it's easy to outdrive your tires, especially when there's ice hiding underneath the snow.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    That's true. The only actual advantage of AWD is to accelerate better.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Member Posts: 5,427
    carboy21 said:

    Two feet of snow? You need these. http://www.tirechain.com/

    Thanks ! My 4Runner in the pic is 4X4 and has Firestone Winterforce tires and they drove like there was no snow or ice :smile:
    The post office gets around in 2.5l rear wheel drive Grumman LLV's. All they have to do is put chains on.

  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    Yeah, but they aren't gonna buy any more of them. (Wiki)
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    Try driving with chains on a normal road  :p 
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Member Posts: 5,427
    carboy21 said:

    Try driving with chains on a normal road  :p 

    Did that all the time when I had my tow truck. In fact it had all kinds of chains in every compartment. What was so difficult about that?

  • falirayfaliray Member Posts: 26
    Wow, I'm glad my post sparked so much comment. One thing that does turn me off about winter tires is that I read I need to buy 4 winter tires to maximize their effectiveness. I would consider buying two winter tires and putting them on the rear of my Cobalt to stop the car from wanting to spin when I hit the brakes in the snow. Would this be a good set up?
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Member Posts: 5,427
    That would be safer than just two on the front but that won't stop the rear of the car from wanting to come around. That could still occur, but it would be less likely under most circumstances.
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760
    faliray said:

    Wow, I'm glad my post sparked so much comment. One thing that does turn me off about winter tires is that I read I need to buy 4 winter tires to maximize their effectiveness. I would consider buying two winter tires and putting them on the rear of my Cobalt to stop the car from wanting to spin when I hit the brakes in the snow. Would this be a good set up?

    You need to put on the front wheels in FWD car
  • carboy21carboy21 Member Posts: 760

    carboy21 said:

    Try driving with chains on a normal road  :p 

    Did that all the time when I had my tow truck. In fact it had all kinds of chains in every compartment. What was so difficult about that?

    So I can carry as many chains as I like in my trunk and drive on summer tires in snow B)
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