Ford Freestyle Tires

saabturboidsaabturboid Member 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.
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Comments

  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    Good idea - if anyone has questions about wheels and tire pressure monitoring systems, ask away.

    Here's a pic to help get it rolling:

    image
  • stevedebistevedebi LAMember Posts: 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 Guest Posts: 52,454
    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?
  • saabturboidsaabturboid Member Posts: 178
    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 Member 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.
  • coldcrankercoldcranker Member Posts: 877
    Replying to #5 post above: I'd get rid of them. www.tirerack.com 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 Guest Posts: 52,454
    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 LAMember Posts: 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 Member 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.

    Mark.
  • saabturboidsaabturboid Member Posts: 178
    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.

    Chad
  • tidestertidester Member 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
  • coldcrankercoldcranker Member Posts: 877
    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 Member 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?
  • jessealanjessealan Member Posts: 11
    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 Member Posts: 2,989
    what does it mean to get the tires "siped"
  • jessealanjessealan Member Posts: 11
    Tire shops have machines that do it. Do a google search on it, I do not want to describe it wrong.
  • saabturboidsaabturboid Member Posts: 178
    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 Guest Posts: 52,454
    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.
  • coldcrankercoldcranker Member Posts: 877
    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.
  • coldcrankercoldcranker Member Posts: 877
    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.
  • fordwrenchfordwrench Member Posts: 70
    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 Member Posts: 468
    Siping often will invalidate any tire warranty.
  • coldcrankercoldcranker Member Posts: 877
    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.
  • jane37334jane37334 Member Posts: 3
    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 Member 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.

    Mark.
  • saabturboidsaabturboid Member Posts: 178
    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 Member Posts: 2,989
    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.
  • coldcrankercoldcranker Member Posts: 877
    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 www.tirerack.com. I replaced my front ones, never rotated, at 20,000 miles, for $48 apiece.
  • sportmansportman Member Posts: 23
    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.
  • saabturboidsaabturboid Member Posts: 178
    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.
  • yoyo123yoyo123 Member Posts: 33
    I also got new tires for my Freestyle. Our Pirelli's lasted about 35k. Lots of highway driving and keeping them inflated. I did have one punture to close to the side, so I had one relatively new tire that was replaced.

    I got the Goodyear Assurance ComforTread. Not a lot of choice in the 18" wheel size. It seemed to be the best value I could find in that size. I didn't want to go back to the Pirelli. I paid $125 per tire after shipping from TireRack. I highly recommend TireRack.

    As for the tires, I am very happy with them. They are quiter than the Pirelli's and I haven't noticed any handling differences. According to the tests, they don't handle quite as well as the Pirelli's but their results were so close that it will be hard to notice in real world driving. The tires are warranty'd for 70000 miles. Yes, they have a "B" rating for temp, but I don't expect that to be an issue as I don't heat up my tires with the type of driving I do.
  • mschmalmschmal Member Posts: 1,757
    The 18 inch Pirellis that you replaces were speed rated tires, you did very very well to get the 35,000 miles out of them.

    Mark.

    Tirerack RULES!
  • saabturboidsaabturboid Member Posts: 178
    We are back with a fresh 2,600 miles on our 17" Yokohama YK520s that we recently installed on our Freestyle. We encountered lots of different types of weather so I feel I can do a proper review.

    These tires have a 60,000 mile warranty and are H speed rated (up to 130mph). Because of the higher speed rating they have a stiffer sidewall and are more robust than the stock Continentals. This results in a more firm but not unpleasant ride. I have also noticed a slight decrease in gas mileage, about 1-2 mpg. I'm not sure how much of this is the tires and how much was the weather, speed, and how loaded our vehicle was.

    In the snow they performed well, not as good as a true snow tire, but well enough to be passable especially with the Freestyles AWD. On the dry they handled very well and gave the Freestyle a more sporty feel than the stock tires. In wet conditions the tires gripped the road well and the tires were always quiet.

    The only thing I was disappointed in was what seems to be poor ice traction. We encountered several areas of icy roads and I had very little traction. I can't say that the stock tires would have been any better since not much except true ice tires with a special compound work well on ice.

    Overall I would recommend these tires for anyone looking for a 60,000 mile all-season type tire for their Freestyle. Cost was $108 each.

    - Chad
  • yoyo123yoyo123 Member Posts: 33
    How did you get such a great price on them? Do you know if that is the difference between the 17" and 18" price? I priced out the YK520's and they were over $140 per tire. I went with the Goodyear ComforTread due to lower price. I am happy with my decision as they are better than the Pirelli's they replaced.
  • coldcrankercoldcranker Member Posts: 877
    Go to a 17" size of 225/65-17 (instead of stock 215) and your choices go way up with more tread width, and they fit well. Try www.tirerack.com , for example.
  • fordenvyfordenvy Member Posts: 72
    Can you get MNS tires from the factory or only touring? because I want to get off the road in the snow when I go up hunting. Is touring good enough with the AWD to get off the road with?
  • saabturboidsaabturboid Member Posts: 178
    The Freestyle is not an SUV and was not designed for offroad use. It was designed primarily as a people mover where 99% of people drive, on the road. ;) It has very low ground clearance compared to an SUV, and the tire size is a bit odd so there aren't any real Mud and Snow tires available for it at all let alone from the factory. Most of the aftermarket offerings are oriented towards the street. Ford only offers one model dependent tire type. With the SE/SEL it is a Continental 17" street tire and with the Limited it is a Pirelli 18" street tire.

    Whether or not the stock tires will work off road for you depends on what you mean. Is it a gravel road? Then fine. It is going to be rock crawling on big boulders and digging through deep mud. I don't think so.
  • fordenvyfordenvy Member Posts: 72
    Thanks for the insight. I think I'll stick with my explorer, I just thought I'd look into something that rides better and gets better gas mileage, I guess thats not realistic for Ford standards to be able to get 2 for 1.
  • saabturboidsaabturboid Member Posts: 178
    It isn't a Ford limitation but one of physics. A body-on-frame SUV with high ground clearance is what works best for off road use, but this design is not conducive to great fuel economy due to its weight and high drag coefficient. The Freestyle is made with a lighter unibody construction allowing it to be lighter and with lower ground clearance it has less drag both of which enable better gas mileage than your Explorer.
  • stmssstmss Member Posts: 206
    My Pirelli P6 are now gone and good riddance. They lasted a whole 55,000 km and were below legal limit on tread. I have replaced them with the Goodyear Assurance. As earlier posts state, not much choice in 225/60/18. Goodyear was not my first choice. I tried to find a Michelin Primacy but no luck. I had to put something on before it rained again (serious).

    This vehicle is leased and it is the third time I have leased but only the first time I have had to replace tires before the lease expired. I am not so happy. I have much higher expectations of tires than 55,000 km. Is this all we should expect from OEM tires?
  • freealfasfreealfas Member Posts: 652
    not sure why 55kk is not acceptable, people seem to want grip, high mileage and them to last forever. Tires are a wear item, they are what are between you and the road, 55kk seems more than acceptable for tire life from oem.
  • stmssstmss Member Posts: 206
    I consider it not acceptable based on my recent experience with my other vehicles/tires in last 10 yrs.

    My 99Volvo at 166,000 km. Ran summer (V rated Michelins) and winter (Gislaveds) to 130,000km, replaced the summer then but still running the same winter (they will be retired this winter).

    Ran my 01 Sabb to 95,000km (V rated Michelins) and sold the car with considerable tread remaining (also ran winter Pilots for about 1/3 of that mileage).

    Ran my 99Isuzu to 75,000km and turned it back in at lease end with no tire penalties.

    So, it is just my experience that 55,000km is low.
  • freealfasfreealfas Member Posts: 652
    cool, I just don't see a need for tires lasting much beyond 3 years or so as the compounds can start to break down, they get harder, etc. I just would never fathom wanting or having tires that lasted 60k miles, that's just to long in my book regardless of the tread depth, you are buying a harder tire to begin to get that kind of rating and it is only going to get harder and in rain and or cold weather the harder the tire the worse performance but you know that with the switch out to winters...

    I see 25k-35k miles as just about right for wear and a compromsise between life and performance. I do the winter switch as well on my wifes car for the commute so with the 2 sets you are stretching your investment out...
  • stmssstmss Member Posts: 206
    My Pirellis are only 20 mnths old. I am just a bit peeved that I am putting new tires on a lease. I just hope that when I return the vehicle in 16 months I don't have to do it again (which I think would be close if I put the P6 back on). I just hope the Goodyears will last a bit longer. Being in Canada, we don't get the nice low Tirerack prices you see in these posts, despite the dollar now being within 10%. And being 18", not the cheapest.
  • mschmalmschmal Member Posts: 1,757
    Little trade secret. Your local Ford dealer my have a price match guarantee. Bring in the Tire Rack print out....Just don't tell them you heard about it from me!

    Mark.
  • goracegirl51goracegirl51 Member Posts: 1
    At least you got 55,000 km from yours. We only got 11,000 miles on the first set and 13,500 on the replacements. Now at 24,500 miles, we are in need of a third set of tires on our 2005 Freestyle AWD Limited (18"). Any suggestions?
  • freealfasfreealfas Member Posts: 652
    a 4 wheel alignment....not that you/dealer may not have tried that already but that sounds a little more than premature tire wear
  • stmssstmss Member Posts: 206
    I don't know what to say. Thats terrible. I don't think you should be replacing tires more often than wiper blades. What brands/models have you replaced and what are you going with the 3rd time?

    Is the dealer (or tire shop) diagnosing any specific wear patterns that would indicate something wrong with the truck (eg, alignment as suggested?) Or are they getting unusual service - road condition, temperature?

    I know it can't be from doing brake stands or burning rubber at the stop light ;)
  • bobw3bobw3 Member Posts: 2,989
    I'm still on my original Continental tires on my 2005 SE FWD with 45,000 miles. I'm also actually on the original wiper blades too, but I use those wipes on the windshield so the water rolls right off when you're driving, so I don't use the wipers very often.

    What sort of wear did you have at 11K and then 13K miles on your tires that required replacement? Was it even wear, one side, etc?
  • stevedebistevedebi LAMember Posts: 4,098
    The Limited comes with 18" tires, which are automatically going to last less time (they are higher profile than the Continental 17" tires). That is one factor...
This discussion has been closed.