I found a local Nokian dealer and have been prepared to pay the $600 for a
set of four. The fellow said they're good for 50,000 miles. But my Honda
(independent) mechanic told me this morning that, while they're great in
winter, if I run them in the summer they'll wear out quickly. "You'll get
about two winters out of them." He went on to suggest I instead go to
Tirerack or Tires Direct and get a set of Blizzaks on their own wheels for
about the same price. Since they come mounted, I can seasonally change out
the tires myself. The car is a 2004 Accord sedan, 4 cyl.
I had looked at Tirerack some time ago to see what they offer with
tire/wheel combinations, and they say I have to make sure the wheels I buy
will not interfere with anything, such as the brakes... How would I know
before ordering, and isn't that for them to have already figured out per the
car I'm specifying?
No. He's wrong. They actually wear quite well.
He's thinking that they're dedicated winter/snow tires. They're not.
They're just a fantastic all-season tire that qualifies, due to advanced
engineering, for the snowflake emblem of a winter tire.
OK, good. So you're recommending I just get the Nokians put on and be done
with it, yes? :-) That'd certainly make life simpler than maintaining a
whole extra set of tires on their own wheels.
Another related question: the Nokian dealer said I should put a 40 lb
sandbag (or other weight) in the trunk along each side (80 lbs total extra
weights) "because the Accord's rear is so light." Again, my Honda mechanic
disagreed, saying "those weights would lift the front end off the ground."
No, of course they wouldn't lift "off the ground," but would presumably give
the front less traction. ? Is the Honda guy wrong again?
It will change the dynamics of the car away from how the Honda engineers
designed it, yes.
On the other hand, 80lbs isn't much more than an annoyance; the car is
well within its limits to have 160lbs in the back seat (a person), so...
But your mechanic sounds like one of those fathers tossing nuggets of
"wisdom" at his daughter--"wisdom" that he accumulated over years of
driving his 59 Chevy. In other words, I don't really think much of his
Understood. With that in mind, would you recommend I go ahead and put extra
weight in the trunk, or first try driving in snow without it and see how the
car responds/feels? This is a 4-cyl Accord sedan with auto transmission.
Weight distribution is 1964 front, 1249 rear. It was the tire dealer who
suggested I add the weight.
If you put good and identical winter tires on all four corners, you will
preserve the relative handling dynamics that the engineers intended.
Try it without the weight and see what you think. You'll find that it
works just fine that way.
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