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Ford Freestyle Tires

saabturboidsaabturboid Posts: 178
edited May 2014 in Ford
As the stock tires wear out on our Freestyles many of us look to other brands, models, and even sizes to replace them. Let's discuss the different tires/sizes we've tried on our Freestyles and how they've affected ride, handling, and traction in the dry, rain, and snow.


  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Good idea - if anyone has questions about wheels and tire pressure monitoring systems, ask away.

    Here's a pic to help get it rolling:

  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "Good idea - if anyone has questions about wheels and tire pressure monitoring systems, ask away. "

    I don't think the FS has TPMS...
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    One of these days the mandate will be implemented; a decision for setting the date is supposed to happen this month. (link)

    Since the devices save lives, I guess the question becomes why doesn't the Freestyle (and every other make/model) offer them?
  • For those of you who have already bought new tires for your Freestyles, how many miles did you get out of the stock tires? We are near 30,000 miles on our 17" Continentals and I'm a bit leery heading into winter if they will be adequate. They aren't worn down all the way to the tread bars, but much of the usable tread is gone.
  • bruneau1bruneau1 Posts: 468
    this picture is of the Pirellis which are a bit noisy and don't wear well. the 65 series Contis are softer but less sporty. i want to keep the 65 series and go to a 225 width in a tire with low noise and a smooth ride. The Freestyle needs a car tire, unless you live in Wisconsin or some place like that.
  • Replying to #5 post above: I'd get rid of them. had them on sale for only $48 each, and I ordered two recently. Tread depth really matters in winter. "Discount Tire" stores in Colorado will also sipe each one for $10 each, and its worth it -- breaks up any water/ice boundary layer better, and bites snow slightly better, too.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    I ran across a WSJ article yesterday that says that all model year 2008 cars and light trucks must have these gizmos by Sept. 1, 2007. So they're coming (and you can get aftermarket ones now).
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "I ran across a WSJ article yesterday that says that all model year 2008 cars and light trucks must have these gizmos by Sept. 1, 2007. So they're coming (and you can get aftermarket ones now)."

    Not necessarily "gizmos", the legislation allows for the manufacturer to use the ABS system to sense if one tire is lower. That is a pure software change.

    So the mandate is not for tire pressure caps that transmit data (like Toyota uses), but rather for some system that monitors the pressure.
  • mschmalmschmal Posts: 1,757
    The Ford TPMS (non-ABS system) uses sensors that are "strapped" to the inside of the rim, not in the valve. I would assume that the sensors are better protected this way.

  • Coldcranker,

    The stock Continentals are indeed very inexpensive at TireRack, but these tires are cheap for a reason. They may be fine in areas with little or no winter weather, but they leave a lot to be desired in the snow belt. I really want to get higher quality tires on our Freestyle.

    I'm leaning towards Nokian WRs or Goodyear Assurance TripleTreads. Both are all season tires but oriented more towards snow/ice traction than most. I live in Minnesota where it snows 6 months of the year, so this is an important factor for me. I also like the fact that both tires are H speed rated rather than the T rating of the stock Continentals. This means they are of a more robust design in order to pass the more rigorous government speed test. Even if you don't drive 130mph (can the Freestyle even go that fast?) a higher speed rated tire will offer you a greater margin of safety even in normal driving conditions.

  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    can the Freestyle even go that fast?

    I don't think any vehicle should be going that fast on the highway.

    tidester, host
  • We have no test data to prove the Continentals are bad. I went through a winter in Denver on them and did fine (anecdotal evidence). They are rated AA for traction/temperature. Many tires have a B in there somewhere, and I'd generally avoid those. Still, we can assume that the Michelin Latitude X-Ice tires available are very good on ice/snow, and the larger Goodyear Fortera TripleTred in the 225/65-17 size has the snowflake-on-the-mountain rating which is quite rare and does mean they are superior in snow compared to most other all-season tires. Most people just guess when buying tires, so I'd stick to the ratings/tests. Some will say those tests don't mean a thing, and I've found those people don't have any reasonable foundation for their opinion.
  • kpevavkpevav Posts: 41
    Which tires for the Freestyle would be best for Florida -- lots of rain in the summer, high temperatures, relatively dry winters, and no snow or ice?
  • I had my continentals siped and it did awesome in snow and ice. I also had a highlander awd and the freestyle was much better in those conditions. Now when these conti's where out I will opt for a something else probably because of how great I hear some of the other tires do.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    what does it mean to get the tires "siped"
  • Tire shops have machines that do it. Do a google search on it, I do not want to describe it wrong.
  • Siping is the process of cutting slits into the solid rubber blocks all around the tire. Special machines that some tire shops have do this. What this does is add many additional biting edges to the tires that give them additional grip in icy/snowy conditions. Siping definitely does increase traction in slippery conditions but may cause the tires to wear faster. The siping machine companies claim this isn't true, but if it wasn't why don't the tires come siped from the factory?

    If you live in a place that doesn't get winter weather then siping will do nothing for you.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Apparently some of them do come siped from the factory, from skimming some reviews and surveys at Tire Rack (one example).

    I opted out on siping the all-season's on my minivan, but it doesn't see much snow any more.
  • Siping is most beneficial on ice, and only a little on snow. The extra edges break up the ice/tire boundary conditions a little. It also can help prevent hydroplaning as the edges protrude as the tire deforms near the ground. Siping raises the running temperature some, bad during the summer, although its not excessive.
  • Bridgestone Alenza is probably one of the best for hot, wet conditions. Goodyear TripleTred is also right there. No hard data to go on, but those tires seem to be good wet tires. The stock 17" Continentals are rated "A" for temperature and up to 118 mph for heat rejection, so sticking with the stock ones is fine as well.
  • Siping is for wet traction ONLY. It gives water a way to get out from between the tire & the ground. The only way a tire is good for snow / ice is when the rubber compound is designed to stay soft in cold temps. A tire that comes siped is designed with harder compound so it doesn't deform under the weight of the car with the sipes cut into it.
  • bruneau1bruneau1 Posts: 468
    Siping often will invalidate any tire warranty.
  • fordwrench,
    You are thinking of longitudinal grooves, not siping. Siping is actually composed of many horizontal, across-the-tread cuts, very thin as if with a razor blade. They provide more biting edges to help break up boundary layers of ice/water/tire.
  • I got 30K and am planning to replace them with Michelins.
    First time I ever had to replace OEM tires so quickly...FORD is going down the tubes and the Freestyle experience is showing why.
  • mschmalmschmal Posts: 1,757
    What tires are you replacing? Contis or Pirellis?

    The Pirellis are speed rated, you would be lucky to get 30k out of them.

    The Conti's are cheap tires and definately you don't want to get a second set of them.

  • We just passed 30,000 miles on our OE 17" Continentals. They still have some tread left but are almost to the wear bars. I plan to replace them in the next month before a big road trip around Christmas.

    A couple of thoughts about the longevity of tires; Just because a tire lasts a long time isn't necessarily a good thing. Some tires last forever because the rubber compound is very hard but that correlates to poor grip, especially in the winter when cold temps harden the rubber further. This is why I try to stay away from 60 to 80 thousand mile rated tires. Plus rubber hardens with age anyway even if the car isn't driven much. So unless you are driving 20,000 or more miles a year an 80,000 mile rated tire will get hard and noisy and practically unusable long before they wear out.

    The other end of the spectrum are the 30,000 mile tires like the OE Continentals, but they are are a pain since they have to be replaced so frequently. I believe the happy medium is a 40 - 50 thousand mile rated tire. They get replaced just often enough to keep the rubber fresh but not so often that they are a drain on your bank account.

    One other thing that hasn't really been discussed here. For those of us that have AWD Freestyles we must replace all four tires at once to prevent uneven wheel speeds which can damage the AWD system, and we should rotate our tires frequently to keep the front and back tires evenly worn. This isn't as important for FWD Freestyles.

    - Chad
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,992
    I have over 43,000 on my OEM Continentals, and last week when I got my oil change they measured my tread depth as 6/32 on the front and 5/32 on the rear. 3/32 or below means time for new tires, so I think they're holding up pretty good.
  • I'm a bit perplexed by all the Continental-hating out there. Remember its a TR tire, rated AA as well. It may be true its a little short on tread depth, but their only $48 apiece on I replaced my front ones, never rotated, at 20,000 miles, for $48 apiece.
  • Yup, Chad,
    The Freestyle with that :cry: wimpy :cry: little 3 liter engine will come pretty darn close to that number - with an Audi A4 trying to keep up.
  • I had new tires installed on our AWD '05 Freestyle SEL. After 31,000 miles the stock 17" Continentals were very well worn. As many here may have noticed there is not a lot of choice in the 215/65/17 size. I opted for the Yokohama YK520. This H rated all-season tire is rated for 60,000 miles and according to the reviews does well in snow. This was a priority since I live in the north but didn't want true snow tires that I'd have to change out twice a year. I also wanted an H rated tire because they are of a higher construction quality than the S and T rated offerings.

    We are about to embark on a 2,600 mile road-trip across the northern tier of the US and into the Rocky Mountains. I'm certain by the time we get back in a couple of weeks I'll be able to make a full review. So far the only difference I've noticed is the ride is a bit firmer than with the stock Continentals, but that is to be expected when moving from a T to an H rated tire.
This discussion has been closed.