Bridgestone Blizzak WS70 Winter Tires

by Simon 44 Replies latest jw friends

  • Simon

    So, after 3 and a bit winters in Canada I finally invested in a set of Winter tires. Up till now I've had a good set of all-seasons (Goodyear Assurance TripleTred) and they have been very good even coping with a sudden Calgary freeze last winter that saw accordian buses sliding back down the hill we were on (scary!) and general chaos on the roads.

    But, driving on the Deerfoot on solid polished sheets of black-ice in rush-hour traffic is not nice and you could feel the car getting more than a little vague at times. It has AWD and is really good in the snow but I had to nurse it especially on the super-polished bits that develop at stop-signs and traffic lights. It's almost worse when it's melted a little and you are on pavement most of the time but suddenly on ice when you turn off onto a slip-road or side-street.

    CanadianTire didn't inspire me with much confidence ("urm, yuh ... we have 17 inch tires and can sell you some 16 inch rims for them too", WTF?!?) so I ordered some Bridgestone Blizzak WS70's from TireRack mounted on rims. The delivery was very quick (less than a week from the US to Canada) and I bought a Torque Wrench and Hydraulic Jack from Costco (I figure if I have to switch tires twice a year I may as well get equipped for it!).

    I put them on tonight and went for a 'spin' (pun intended) around the block. Wow, they are AMAZING! Accelerating and braking like a lunatic, even on the polished ice at traffic lights and the ABS didn't have to kick-in - it's like they defy physics. They seemed very quiet - I can't wait to try them on the commute to work tomorrow and will be searching out some polished ice to brake on (don't worry - I do check my mirror first!).

    I feel like an idiot for spending previous winters on all-seasons. I knew winter-tires were 'better' (the worst winter tires are better than the best all-seasons) and I don't really have any frame of reference as they are my first winter-tires but I wasn't expecting them to be this much better. The ones I got did get very, very good reviews which I've linked to below.

    The bottom line is: if you live anywhere where you get more than trivial amounts of snow and ice and are driving around on all-seasons then you are an eedjit like I was - get yourself a set of winter tires and be safe. If you want a really good set of winter tires then I can recommend the Blizzak WS70s and also TireRack - they had the most accurate information online for sizing (again the CanadianTire online recommendations were ridiculous) and I've only heard good things about them.




  • Scully

    You have that much snow and ice already?

    Sheesh. And I was considering a conference in Calgary in February. Thanks for helping with the decision making process. LOL

  • Simon

    We went from lovely 15/20 degree weather to -33 all of a sudden - last week we were the 2nd coldest place on earth bested only by an arctic research station at -37 (and they don't have to commute to work!). We got some snow to go with it and it all got very packed down very quickly. It's warmed up a little now but there is still plenty of snow and ice around and more forecast (yes, bring it !!).

    BTW: The stock tires I had (on a Jeep) were 215/55R18 so I ended up going for 215/65R16. TireRack have a great site for putting together a package and telling you what alternative sizes will fit.

  • thetrueone

    Great choice on tires Simon, they are said to be one of the best for icey roads and snow.

  • Scully

    Your tires are definitely bigger than mine. Mine are P195/55R15. And Canadian Tire works fine for me, too. I'd rather pay someone else $35 to switch them out every 6 months than risk breaking a nail.

  • VampireDCLXV

    I'm having good luck running Hankook Optimo 4S all weather tires on my all-wheel-drive car. I admit, though, that I don't see quite as much snow and cold where I am...


  • Jadeen

    Quite a few drivers from a car forum that I used to visit sang praises for Blizzaks. They definately recommended them.

  • Simon

    I debated taking them somewhere for fitting but changing wheels twice per year on 2 vehicles will soon add up and it's less convenient than just doing it yourself plus it's really not that difficult.

  • Scott77

    Mr. Flipper, please take notice of this thread. I recall you stay in an area with heavy snow fall if I am correct.


  • wobble

    Here in the U.K we have had half a snowflake and temperatures nudging 0 deg. Cent so the whole country has ground to a halt.

    Snow tires ? they wouldn't buy them here if we did get proper winter weather, tight-assed Brits.

    Actually we have had about 20cm. of snow just where we live, and the temp. is - 2 C at 10am.

    Yesterday my son no.2 set off for home from south London, a distance of 35 miles, at 2.45pm and did not arrive home until 8.45 pm, all that time stuck in non-moving traffic. 15 to 20 cm. of snow fell quickly in the area , and people just abandoned cars and blocked the roads, lorries got stuck and jack-knived etc. Chaos.

    A lot of the problem here is that ,as we do not get much snow or ice very often, people do not know how to drive in it.

    I watched a women in a huge 4x4 come past my house, "too fast" I thought, and sure enough, at the junction, 30 yards past my place, she shot out of the end, across the road and smacked into the kerb on the opposite side, no damage done, but only 'coz no other vehicle was around.

    They don't realise that 4x4's with ABS, but ordinary tires, slide on ice as well as my sledge does.

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