Sr. Citizen on Snow Tires Question

Hello,
Thanks so much for all the previous help on this. Am in my late 70's now, and frankly this all gets a bit confusing.
Would like to recommend for daughter-in-law something safe, and smart.
Recommending something is a big responsibility, and want to make the right suggestion.
If you could put up with a few more dumb questions from me, would be most appreciative.
TireRack doesn't carry Nokians, so I've been trying to dig out the info. from other sites, but there are just so many compromises involved. Worse than buying a new car, for sure.
Car in question is a 2010 Elantra SE. Live in New England outside of Boston.
a. For the Michelin X-Ice XI 2, is this tire designed to be left on over the summer ? Sure is a pain to change them.
b. I guess the Nokian Hakkapeliitta R is meant to be changed over twice a year. True ?
I have on my car the Nokian WR G2, which I like very much for all conditions, but for what they charge, the thread wear is really poor.
So, I am thinking of recommending the following:
1. If she does Not want to change over twice a year, the Michelin X-Ice XI 2
(if I'm right that one doesn't have to with this tire ? and, it's studless, right ?)     [good in summer ? thread wear ? caveats ?]
2. If she wants the "ultimate", safe, true snow tire (studless), and Is willing to change over twice a year, the Nokian Hakkapeliitta R
[pricey; woth the cost ? caveats ?]
Any and all thoughts and opinions would be most appreciated.
Again, thanks for all the help; really nice of you folks to take the time to help me out.
Bob
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Bob,
I've always had good luck in what I read from actual user experiences over at tirerack.com. I've been very, very pleased with Kumho tires on my 02 Sonata. Here is Chicago, we get some nasty snow and ice and they handle pretty well.
Here's a bunch in the $100 range rated highest to lowest by users: http://www.tirerack.com/tires/TireSearchResults.jsp?filtering=true&width 5/&ratioU&diameter&autoMake=Hyundai&autoYear 10&autoModel=Elantra&autoModClar=SE&sortCodeD950
Here's what some Hyundai owners have said about the Hankook Optimo H727 (has the highest rating for the 2010 Elantra SE): http://www.tirerack.com/survey/SurveyComments.jsp?additionalComments=y&commentStatus=P&tireMake=Hankook&tireModel=Optimo+H727&fromTireDetail=true&autoMake=Hyundai&autoYear 10&autoModel=Elantra&autoModClar=SE&partnum5TR6H727&tirePageLocQty=%26partnum%3D055TR6H727
- Thee Chicago Wolf [MVP]
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On 9/15/2011 9:01 AM, Bob wrote:

Bob
Any winter tire including the X-Ice and the Nokian will need to be changed over. Although not mandatory, the tire will wear faster than an all-season and you will probably notice a deterioration of tire adhesion as the tire is not designed for warm weather driving. There are a variety of things to consider, as you have found out, including cost/benefit, availability, the hassle of changing over and of course the #1 consideration - will my daughter be safer with a winter tire. Some are subjective and some are objective. Best of luck!
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I've been thinking about tires recently. In my long life, I've been to a number of tire shops, and haven't felt good about most of them. I mean, for openers, most of them didn't have an air gauge or inflated my tires to wrong or uneven pressures.
My latest experience with the local branch of the large chain, Big O, produced this response when I brought in the car to have a puncture repaired. I found the car sitting outside the shop in the same condition as when I brought it in:
"The tire is more than five years old: your tire has expired." I replied, "That's horseshit. Give me back my keys."
Yet, there's one reason why I'm not too hot on buying "mail order." Things happen to tires. Like, you drive across an alligator with his teeth-up. Your mother-in-law is pissed off at you and shoots one of your tires. Your car falls off a cliff, lands at an angle; one tire gets punctured by a sharp hamburger.
In other words, you need a new identical tire fast: real fast. That probably won't happen with that outfit on the web. It may be worthwhile to form a friendly relationship with a good, dependable local tire shop.
After my bad experience at the chain store, I went to just such a shop. $10 took care of the repair (half the quote from Big O): "Oh, I only had to break one bead, so it's half price."
Richard
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Seems like suddenly 4 years is the limit and we have to toss the tires no matter how much tread is on them. Took a good lawyer and marketing guy to dream up that system of selling tires.

You make a good point. We have such a shop in town. He also has free tires. Yes, they are used, but absolutely free and only $5 to have mounted. As a teenager with my first car, it was tough to keep it in tires. Now a couple of generations later, my grandson is of that age and low income so he goes to Kelley's and looks for used tires with some tread to keep him going. Denis has built a business of loyal customers because he takes care of them. He'll lend you a tire if he does not have what you want to replace a damaged tire. No extra cost, in two days you go back and he puts the new tire on. His prices are very good, better than the big chains.
I'd be embarrassed to take my mail order tires to him to be mounted.
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I forgot parts of my earlier quote. It should have read,
Service Writer: "The tire is more than five years old: your tire has expired. We're not allowed to repair it." Me: "Who is it that is not doing the allowing?" Service Writer: "We're not allowed to repair a tire that's more than five years old." Me: "That's horseshit. Give me back my keys."
The following day, I called another tire chain's HQ who have the same policy. With a bit of grilling, I discovered that this policy had originated from the firm's legal department.
I also discovered that a state politician in Oregon or Washington was trying to turn this abuse into state law!
I've been driving on good-quality tires all my life, at times, pretty old ones: I've never experienced any dangers due to age. This is an outrageous corporate hustle.
Ed Pawlowski wrote,
"We have such a shop in town. He also has free tires. Yes, they are used, but absolutely free and only $5 to have mounted. As a teenager with my first car, it was tough to keep it in tires. Now a couple of generations later, my grandson is of that age and low income so he goes to Kelley's and looks for used tires with some tread to keep him going. Denis has built a business of loyal customers because he takes care of them. He'll lend you a tire if he does not have what you want to replace a damaged tire. No extra cost, in two days you go back and he puts the new tire on. His prices are very good, better than the big chains.
"I'd be embarrassed to take my mail order tires to him to be mounted."
This is a heartwarming story, Ed. As I get older, personal relationships with the people I do business with become more and more important. Price isn't everything at all. I've become fed up with most large corporations and their power games.
In their favor, some large retailers have liberal return policies, and this is appreciated when some product doesn't live up to expectations.
Yeah: my experiences with many tire shops have been marginal: bad pressures, unremovable lug nuts, sloppy work. But there are the really good independents, too, and I feel that I should honor them with my business. Tire Rack's a nice idea, but when my tire's suddenly wrecked because I drove over a bolt on the freeway at 65 MPH, who will be there for me?
If I live in California, I'm driving in Iowa, and I bought the tire at Costco, Costco may come through nicely for me. But mostly I drive here in my own vicinity, and Larry's Tire Express (El Sobrante) has done a few very honorable repairs for me. Will Costco repair a tire? Tire rack?
I'm really thinking about these issues, and Larry's coming out on top.
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