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Discussion Starter #1
So our neighbour is thinking of selling her old winter tires as she traded in her Ody on lease. They are 235/65/16" Blizzak's with very little use (maybe 80% of tread left, if not more).

We have winter wheels with Michelin X-Ice tires but they're really low on tread (bought the van used, and it came with these tires).

What would the Blizzak's (without wheels) be worth? Or should I go for something else?

I'm a bit concerned that they are 235/65/16's which are the OEM size, but in winter normally I'd step down one or two steps in width for snow traction.

Opinions?
Thanks!
 

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Moved to the tires forum.

Please try and step out of the 05+ forum. There is a whole new world outside that one forum. :)
 

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OEM size is fine, just work a price. Remember, with winter tires only the first 50% of tread is really for use. After that, you have the equivalent of half-worn all-season tires. Blizzak special outer rubber differs from lower layer, too, as the maker informs. Winter tires with 11/32" new tread depth are effectively kaput at 6 or 5 / 32". You should not push regular tires below 4/32" in any case, see wet stopping distances at full, at 4 and at 2 /32" video comparisons on Tirerack.com. Scary.
 

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Tread dept is useful on deep water and slush.

On ice it doesn't matter since the contact patch is the same.

On dry surface, you'll get a better handling and still the same contact surface.

On wet, you'll have a better handling too and the same contact surface.

In snow, most of the traction comes from the contact patch and a little from the snow packed between the tread blocks. I don't think that this packed snow should be 1/2" tall since snow have a low mechanical strength. In fact, having a shallower tread may compress snow harder between blocks hand give it more strength! On the other side, the block movement may clear the snow packed on the tire.

So tread depth is useful to clear water or slush from under the tire. And a narrower tire will be better at doing it because there is a shorter distance to the side of the tire.

So an half worn winter tire isn't kaput, but beware of slush or water accumulation.

We often see slush in winter here. It is usually not on the tracks were a car usually rides, but between lines and between tracks. You would usually not get so much trouble if you don't have to cross them. But you'll be usually running on water where there is no slush!

As for water, the aggressive tread pattern of a winter tire should give them an edge vs summer tires.

But I don't like Blizzaks. They are good new, but aren't new very long!

I run on Nokian Hakka 5 SUV. 14/32nd new and they don't wear fast!
 

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They do make difference actually, but not night and day. Its not just about tread depth, its about the rubber compound and very dilibret "cuts" and slots in the tread help to bite into ice. They are not a fad, they are well proven work better than all season tires during winter.

But I dont recommend them personally unless your looking to get every little % increase in traction during winter months. Typically, I dont think it matters if you drive carefully, and they are for winter only requireing storage of a second set of tires/wheels all year round.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
RinconVTR said:
They do make difference actually, but not night and day. Its not just about tread depth, its about the rubber compound and very dilibret "cuts" and slots in the tread help to bite into ice. They are not a fad, they are well proven work better than all season tires during winter.

But I dont recommend them personally unless your looking to get every little % increase in traction during winter months. Typically, I dont think it matters if you drive carefully, and they are for winter only requireing storage of a second set of tires/wheels all year round.
Don't get me wrong, I live where winter tires make a BIG difference in safety and peace of mind as well. I run winters on my car (Acura TSX) and my wife's vehicles have been equipped with winter tires for many years. With the van, we're running winters for sure (we already have a set on OEM steel wheels but the tires are low on tread). I store them in my shed and they are fine there.

I was more concerned with the fact that Blizzak's are reputed as "great" when new, but "no better than all-season" when used past a certain point.

I have a tire depth gauge at home -- I'll check the prospect tires and see what kind of "great" treadlife is left. This particular size of Blizzak came with 12/32" of tread from the factory. If it's under 9/32 now, I will probably pass on the deal as that's already almost 50% used (considering 4/32" is said to be the lowest you want to use winter tires to).

Then again, if I can get 50% used Blizzak's for under $175 that might be a great deal. Who knows...
 

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9/32" is a good deal at $300 since new equivalent tires cost over $500. If you drive even 1500 miles/month and use the tires for 5 months and get 3 years use plus prolong your current "summer" tire life, then don't shortchange the value of these tires. PASS if they are too old in age - be sure you look up how to read the week/year DOT code before you look at them. Old snow tires are not good snow tires, all rubber ages.

It's not tread depth for water dispersal, as suggested above. It's the compound with special tubule ice gripper details that wears on Blizzaks. With respect to L in Canada above, his view of tire technology might benefit from a bit more current reading on the matter - this not to criticize, but to warn future searchers on the subject that they might form their own opinions before taking what we write here as gospel.
 

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curls said:
...if I can get 50% used Blizzak's for under $175 that might be a great deal. Who knows...
If you don't take them, let me know as I live in the area.

RinconVTR, I highly recommend them as they do make a HUGE difference in traction. In Quebec and northeast Ontario, they are a MUST HAVE when driving in our climate. You can have AWD, traction control and all the doo dads but they make no hell of beans if you don't have snow tires all around! WE KNOW OUR WINTERS AND WE KNOW WHAT IT TAKES TO DRIVE IN THEM!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
whoa said:
If you don't take them, let me know as I live in the area.
I will let you know. I have a tread depth gauge and will measure them tonight if she's around to open her garage for me.
 

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homer's van said:
It's not tread depth for water dispersal, as suggested above. It's the compound with special tubule ice gripper details that wears on Blizzaks. With respect to L in Canada above, his view of tire technology might benefit from a bit more current reading on the matter - this not to criticize, but to warn future searchers on the subject that they might form their own opinions before taking what we write here as gospel.
You wrote about the first 50% of ALL winter tire while only Blizzaks have a different compound. My message was about all other winter tires...

homer's van said:
with winter tires only the first 50% of tread is really for use.
I'm all ears to know about what I don't know about winter tire technology. Your turn. (I have very high expectations, give me a lesson, please!!!)

I don't know how you'll be able to explain the different compounds that you suggest there is on my Hakka 10, 1, 2, 4 and 5 (Hakka 7 next time!). Good luck! People at Nokian may be interested in what you have to say about that. I can give you a few personal email there as I had many contacts with them... (in the US and in Finland)

So it's up to you for current reading on that matter! You may have to write a new gospel!

P.s. : 15 years ago, few people knew about Blizzak (and their dual compound) and even less knew about Nokia's Hakka (now Nokian). General, Vredestein, Maragoni, Pirelli, Gislaved, name it, I know them... (350 cm of snow/yr here)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Two of the tires have 10/32" remaining (new is 12/32" on this size of Blizzak). One tire has 9/32", and one has between 7 and 8/32" remaining.

So two are really almost new. Two are used but still within the 55% "super" compound that Blizzak's have.

Should I offer around $275 considering one tire is worn more than the other 3? I do know she'll probably try to show me the receipt that shows she paid nearly $800 for them (mounted and balanced) two winters ago.

Thanks.
 

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Tires cost more in CAN, hard to value if $800 when closer to $500 in US, but how can you lose if you would have to spend $800 new there retail?

Where's she gonna get more without dealing with the Craigslist crazies that she should not invite to her house!
 

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homer's van said:
I was hoping to get more up to date technical infos about winter tires since I was told by you that I need a more current reading on the matter. Why don't you let all of us benefit from your knowledge?

Some technical questions I have :
Are the square studs obsolete?
Is there a better substitute to carbon black than silica?
Is there a better way than twisted sipes to make a siped tread block stiffer?
What is the impact of friction on snow traction?

And I would have so many more...!
 

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Well, you have so many fancy questions! Does anyone really talk about those things anymore in 2010, though? (Besides, how are they even relevant to readers of this site who might later search the words 'snow tires' and find your assertion that tread depth is not so critical for the Blizzak tires this OP asked us about?)

Up to date data on Blizzak technology is readily available on the WWW. You totally miss the point of how those tires work when you simply and globally dismiss tread depth as an issue other than for hydroplane resistance.

First, you explicitly stated "On ice it [tread depth] doesn't matter since the contact patch is the same." This is just flat wrong with the tires our OP asked about with their microcell construction on the outer 55% of the tread. This construction, of course, is likely why you observe that Blizzaks wear out faster than other winter tires. So, to help you update your familiarity with this tire line from 15 years ago - and I only speak as a consumer of these tires and other brands, not as a tire engineer - here are a few current and relevant Blizzak points from just one merchant source:

On Blizzak specifically:
http://www.tirerack.com/winter/tech/techpage.jsp?techid=116

and

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Bridgestone&tireModel=Blizzak+WS60&PID=3724396&AID=10398365&

and on tread depth: I guess you want to see this -- that is, unless your tire testing lab has already developed its own top-secret answers ;-)

http://www.tirerack.com/winter/tech/techpage.jsp?techid=163

and my personal favorite related to tread depth:

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tiretech/techpage.jsp?techid=157

Of course, this is all just one source (even if the leading one) directed at consumers like me and not fancy talking tire showoffs or anything like that. You could find other sources yourself - or, perhaps, simply dismiss this altogether. Others might form their own opinions on Blizzaks from easily accessed current material, as I suggested above. I researched them and formed my own opinions after owning many sets as well as Nokian and other winter tires over the years, too. Luckily, though, I don't live in the Arctic where folks seem to take even polite disagreement so very, very hard . . .

Your original note above said nothing about "other tires" just your opinion about all winter tires' tread depth and water/slush. Future searchers here about the OP's Blizzaks need more facts about that specific tire, I believe. If you disagree, go pound some sand - or snow, LOL!
 
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