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Old 02-19-2009, 09:53 AM   #1
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My Jeep sucks in snow/ice conditions i need advice

The main reason i bought my Jeep is to help me deal with the harsh Chicago winter condition. I thought that Big tires combined with 4 wheel drive should do the trick. I've had my Jeep for almost 2 months now and i have to say it's terrible in snow/ice conditions. I've slid/skid/or spun out on numerous occasions going at an easy to moderate speed. This morning i slid out going 20 mph 150-200ft from the stop light.

My tires have good treading on them with deep ridges and my brakes are brand new. Is there something im missing?

thanks

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Old 02-19-2009, 10:49 AM   #2
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Driving style has alot to do with it... I live in one of the biggest snow band belts with Lake Effect and dont have any issues at all and I typically see lots of people with SUVs in the ditch cause they think ohh I have 4wd drive I can go fast... wrong..... LOL

Bigger tires really dont mean anything, especially on ice and 4wd on ice only help aid in traction, if you loose traction on ice you slide regardless....

If its manual let the tranny do the work by down shifting, if it's auto use D1 & D1 for those speed, it's lower geared then OD

Also with the brakes you cant just stomp on them and most Jeeps do not have ABS either

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Old 02-19-2009, 10:59 AM   #3
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Oversized tires (wide/high flotation) and mud tires don't do well on icy/snowy maintained road ways. I have 33-12.50 mud type tires on mine and they suck on the roads for everyday driving. I have to slow way down to maintain control. These tires do very well in deep snow when aired down because they ride on top of the snow.

The best tire for winter street driving is tall and skinny, all-terrain or better yet an ice tire.
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Old 02-19-2009, 11:03 AM   #4
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what brand name and style do oyu have? and what size?
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Old 02-19-2009, 11:27 AM   #5
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Quote:
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Oversized tires (wide/high flotation) and mud tires don't do well on icy/snowy maintained road ways. I have 33-12.50 mud type tires on mine and they suck on the roads for everyday driving. I have to slow way down to maintain control. These tires do very well in deep snow when aired down because they ride on top of the snow.

The best tire for winter street driving is tall and skinny, all-terrain or better yet an ice tire.
X2 on 4point's comment.. Mud tires are horrible in the snow/ice.. The best snow tire I have come across is the BFG At. I can remember an older pathfinder I use to have which pulled better w/ Stock Goodyears in snow and ice than when I added BFG MTs..

The most important thing to remember is that your Jeep has and extremely small wheel base which is far easier to get squirrely on you.. As you may also know; they are not the easiest vehicles on the road to drive as the steering wheel can be quite responsive. Trust me; i do a ton of Mountain driving in some of the most extreme conditions on the planet and I do not take my Jeep unless I am out to play... My snowmobile is a GMC Yukon and if she is having problems; I don't need to be on the road (nor do other drivers)!! Much like in Los Angeles, where turn signals are a sign of weakness; up here, Tire chains will afford you the same title..
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Old 02-19-2009, 12:55 PM   #6
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Old 02-19-2009, 12:57 PM   #7
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big tires with big lugs means that they will pack up with snow and become drag racing slicks.. ideally for snow you want smaller block like treads that have siping..
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Old 02-19-2009, 07:02 PM   #8
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My TJ sucked last winter. I ran BFG AT but they were worn. New BFG AT on the TJ this winter and it never gave me a problem.
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Old 02-19-2009, 07:35 PM   #9
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The bigger the tire's footprint, the worse it will be on icy or snow-covered streets. Narrower tires put more pressure onto a smaller surface area which improves traction on slick surfaces. If you were to check out what kind of tires are on Jeeps in Alaska for road use, for example, you'd find that they use tall skinny "pizza cutter" tires up there.

At the very least, make sure your tires are aired up properly. Airing them down or not running them at a high enough air pressure will just make the problem worse by making the footprint bigger. You only want a big footprint when in deep offroad snow for extra flotation to help keep you on top of the snow.
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Old 02-19-2009, 07:43 PM   #10
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To solve your problem. I have two beagles... Strap them to a sled and you wont have any problems. Straight trade for your TJ?...lol

I have 32x11.5's for summer and 31x9.5 for winter. Its a HUGE difference in traction on snow and ice.
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Old 02-20-2009, 10:37 AM   #11
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thanks for all your responses! i can fully understand why my tires arent really doing the trick. guess i'll just have to slow my driving down even more and let the engine brake for me. probably for next winter i'll have to invest in new tires.
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Old 02-20-2009, 10:47 AM   #12
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No real need to invest in new tires, especially if your current tires are still in good condition, why spend the extra money that could be put towards something else for the Jeep.

Are you running MTs or ATs????
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Old 02-20-2009, 10:51 AM   #13
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I am running cooper mt's and at some points it gets a little squirmy but that is when you back off a little and drive. There is no reason to be doing 40 mph the other nite I was doing 30 and well the people that pasted well most ended up in ditches. I have to pull them out. Big tires small tires just slow down a bit and take turns with a little more care and you will get the hang of how a jeep handles in the ice and snow.
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Old 02-20-2009, 11:07 AM   #14
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Blizzacks

If you still have stock rims the blizzaks are GREAT! Personally I run the Dunlop graspics (a bit cheaper) and they are like putting claws on a car/jeep. The are made of softer rubber and have small micro indentations that stick to ice.
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Old 02-20-2009, 11:30 AM   #15
that's what she said

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4 wheel drive does not mean 4 wheel stop.
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Old 02-20-2009, 12:18 PM   #16
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Depends what tires! Some say it doesnt really matter what tires, but to a certain extent it does. But then again, certain ice cant be controlled on... I would try not to drive as aggresivly.. id get Bigger tires than stock and get them a little nobby ( my odl xterrains did amazing on snow and ice)

little expensive but worth it!
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Old 02-20-2009, 02:50 PM   #17
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One more thing about good tires for driving on ice or snow-covered roads... sipes! The more sipes in the tire's tread, the better traction it will have on such surfaces. If you have unsiped tires, some tire stores can cut sipes into them for $10-11 per tire which will provide a dramatic improvement in traction on slick surfaces. Just make sure they only sipe the inner tread blocks and leave the outside tread blocks unsiped for strength reasons.

Good snow and ice tires like Blizzaks have a lot of sipes in the tread. I had sipes cut into the tread blocks of my old BFG Mud Terrains and then into my Goodyear MT/Rs. Sipes can even help reduce tread wear since they help the tire to run cooler.
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Old 02-20-2009, 03:39 PM   #18
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oh just checked what tires i have and it's bfg AT. im thinking that i still need to get used to driving the jeep in the icy conditions. it's just bothers me that in the same conditions i feel that my audi a3 handles better than my jeep and i bought my jeep for the winters. going 45 on the highway i can feel the tires squirm underneath me and it's an uncomfortable feeling and then seeing a smaller car going 20 mph faster irks me as well.
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Old 02-20-2009, 04:01 PM   #19
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An AT on the ice wouldn't make me happy either.
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Old 02-20-2009, 04:17 PM   #20
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also why wouldnt wider tires with bigger groves be better for the snow/ice conditions? would you want as much rubber to the ground?

but then again the skinny tires cut probably cut through the ice better and actually get to the pavement? is that the theory?
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Old 02-20-2009, 06:25 PM   #21
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but then again the skinny tires cut probably cut through the ice better and actually get to the pavement? is that the theory?
You got it. Like skinny ice skate blades give you better turning and stopping ability on ice than, say, wide waterskis could. And for the same reason that big wide tires hydroplane on wet streets far easier than skinny tires do.
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Old 02-20-2009, 08:39 PM   #22
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dont let the engine slow you down drive it old school use neutral to slow down that way the rear isnt trying to push the front .
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Old 02-20-2009, 08:43 PM   #23
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Do you have Auto or Manual???

If manual down shift letting tranny do the work vs braking or in neutral until slow down to down shift.

If auto I would let D1 & D2 do most of the work since it's geared lower then the OD.

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Old 02-20-2009, 08:49 PM   #24
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Do you have Auto or Manual???

If manual down shift letting tranny do the work vs braking or in neutral until slow down to down shift.

If auto I would let D1 & D2 do most of the work since it's geared lower then the OD.

Chris
Dont understand this - why would you down shift on ice? to slide the rear
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Old 02-20-2009, 08:53 PM   #25
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no not down shifting.... shifting into neutral until rpms & speed come down to allow you to down shift... down shifting on the ice would definatel make squirrely... guess it didnt come out right when I typed it.

Since he was talking about both snow & ice conditions.

I run MT's and live in the Lake Effect snow belt in NE Ohio & PA area. I constantly have to deal with heavy wet snow & ice and my MT's handle eveything great. Alot has to do with drivng style as well as experience. For example the past 2 days we've been hit by snow & ice and I always see SUVs fly past me... funny thing is that they ar usuaully the same ones I'm pulling out of the ditch about 20min later. Experience & driving style plays a big role.

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Old 02-20-2009, 09:42 PM   #26
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sorry dude just dont get the down shift idea. i understand where you live . we only get 3 to 4 feet a year usually 1 to 4 inches at a time .

my style - take it outta gear in snow - snow will slow you down dramatically
- take it otta gear on packed snow or ice - no drivetrain push
i understand the concept of the down shift i just wont be doing it
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Old 02-21-2009, 04:00 AM   #27
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ditch the bfg at's.

every snow/ice condition is different.
a big wide tire is better than an a skinny little one
air down a few pounds
siping can be a BIG improvement for about 12.50 a tire.

ive lived in Alaska all my life, born and raised. ive yet to see a condition in snow/ice where i wished i had skinnier tires. I always let more air out to make them a little fatter. i run 16-18 psi highway in winter, 20-24 psi highway summer, 4-9 psi when i want flotation.
all depends on the conditions.
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Old 02-21-2009, 11:49 AM   #28
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I agree with Sean, I run lower pressure and trxus MTs and my jeep is very stable. the trxus MTS have thee most sipes on a MT.
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Old 02-21-2009, 07:31 PM   #29
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lots of experts on here. Everyone has difference of opinions/experience as you will also.

- take your time, learn your Jeep and you'll be fine.
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Old 02-21-2009, 08:15 PM   #30
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I don't want to upset the faithful but I've never had a Jeep that I would consider good in the snow...light weight, short wheelbase, no traction control of any kind, oversized tires...these are all things that are great for flotation or finding traction in the rocks...less than ideal for a greasy snow covered piece of tarmac...you'll learn to compensate...sliding can be big fun

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