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Winter tyres and snow chains for dummies!!

T

TeamLee

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Messages
3
Location
London
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T6 Ocean 150
Hi there,
We’re taking the Cali to the French Alps in January and need to get winter tyres. I’ve read loads of threads but I’m still a bit unsure. Hope you can help.
Currently I have Devonport alloys with 235/55/17 factory fitted tyres. I see it’s recommended to get 215 tyres. Does that mean I need new wheels? What size would fit on my current alloys without new wheels.
Also, do you need snow chains on 2 front wheels only, or on all 4 wheels?
Told you it was advice for dummies!!
 
paradise city

paradise city

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Messages
163
Location
Ireland
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 150 4Motion
I can't answer the tyre size question.

The snow chains are only for the front 2 wheels, even on a 4motion.

Sent from my CLT-L09 using Tapatalk
 
Trebor

Trebor

No looking back .
VIP Member
Messages
464
Location
Bournemouth
Vehicle
T5 SE 180 4Motion
Hi there,
We’re taking the Cali to the French Alps in January and need to get winter tyres. I’ve read loads of threads but I’m still a bit unsure. Hope you can help.
Currently I have Devonport alloys with 235/55/17 factory fitted tyres. I see it’s recommended to get 215 tyres. Does that mean I need new wheels? What size would fit on my current alloys without new wheels.
Also, do you need snow chains on 2 front wheels only, or on all 4 wheels?
Told you it was advice for dummies!!
Hi Team Lee . 215 tyres are best for winters . They do fit standard alloys . People usually get a set of steel wheels and leave winters on steels then it’s just straight swop for summer . Alternatively you could fit 4 season tyres on your alloys and leave on all year .
I have a set of Husky snow chains for front wheels bought from Club shop for cali for sale in used accessories section here . They’re unused . Selling because they don’t fit my BF Goodrich tyres now .
 
Last edited:
Calimili

Calimili

Messages
126
Location
Frankfurt
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 150 4Motion
No new wheels needed, in the long run it may be more convenient to mount winter tyres on a separate set of wheels too. chains just for front .
 
bigmac77

bigmac77

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Messages
933
Location
North Wales
Vehicle
T5 SE 140
Do you need winter tyres? I’m not certain you do, if not just get a set of chains. Far cheaper than four new tyres and you may find you don’t need them most of the valley routes are free of snow and it’s only the mountain roads that tend to get covered with any degree of regularity. The snow clearing is carried of quickly and efficiently.

Anyone with local knowledge wish to clarify whether winter tyres are required in the French Alps?
 
Beeechke1

Beeechke1

VIP Member
Messages
87
Location
Redhill Surrey
Vehicle
T5 SE 180
Hi this link covers the requirements across Europe, in short the answer is in France No for Winter Tyres and Yes for Snow Chains, and the Gendarmerie do often check before allowing you up to resort if its snowing.
 
paradise city

paradise city

VIP Member
Messages
163
Location
Ireland
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 150 4Motion
I had neither last year and almost came a cropper outside Tignes! Have both this year so feeling a lot more confident for a run to the Alpes.

Sent from my CLT-L09 using Tapatalk
 
clarinetbcn

clarinetbcn

T5.1 Beach 140
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Messages
396
Location
Barcelona, Spain
Vehicle
T5 Beach
Do you need winter tyres? I’m not certain you do, if not just get a set of chains. Far cheaper than four new tyres and you may find you don’t need them most of the valley routes are free of snow and it’s only the mountain roads that tend to get covered with any degree of regularity. The snow clearing is carried of quickly and efficiently.

Anyone with local knowledge wish to clarify whether winter tyres are required in the French Alps?
It's not just about snow, at low winter temperatures the composition of summer tires becomes hard and inflexible, leading to a smaller footprint and reduced adhesion even on dry roads.
 
bigmac77

bigmac77

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Messages
933
Location
North Wales
Vehicle
T5 SE 140
It's not just about snow, at low winter temperatures the composition of summer tires becomes hard and inflexible, leading to a smaller footprint and reduced adhesion even on dry roads.
Not necessarily, in dry conditions summers tyres would probably stop quicker. Anyway I’m not advocating anyone should take any risks but don’t get hung up on buying winter tyres for what may be a one week trip from the UK to the Alps. Chains yes, tyres no.
 
clarinetbcn

clarinetbcn

T5.1 Beach 140
VIP Member
Messages
396
Location
Barcelona, Spain
Vehicle
T5 Beach
This very informative video supports that, but watch out when it gets wet at about 2 degrees!
Look likes all seasons are the best choice for OP.
 
Kenny Marsh

Kenny Marsh

VIP Member
Messages
7
Location
Doncaster
Vehicle
T5 SE 140
Hi TeamLeee, I'm in Tignes now and have winter tyres on my winter 16" steels, it has been dumping it down with snow and I cannot believe how good the tyre grip is. France was supposed to be making winter tyres a legal requirement, not sure where they are with that but as others have said chains are a mandatory requirement up the mountain. If I'd not had winter tyres I'd have been blessed with fitting my chains several times last week and that's not a nice job in these temperatures and conditions. I came out last year without winter tyres and it's scary, you cannot drive everywhere on cleared roads with chains and people sometimes unfortunately wait until they are stuck before fitting chains which causes major tailbacks on these narrow roads, which is dangerous. Highly recommend winter tyres, have a great trip.IMG_2744.JPG
 
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Exige

Exige

VIP Member
Messages
22
Location
Bristol
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 204
Glad to hear about the snow in Tignes. We will be there in two weeks. In relation to tyres absolutely agree about benefits of winter tyres. I think you really need both winter tyres & chains to be safe & stress free. Winter tyres cope with 90% of driving (slush etc) & the chains for when it gets serious. Do practice putting the chains on before you go. I’m getting quick practiced now, but still a bit stressful when on the side of a road, snowing hard & family watching!
 
sbmcd

sbmcd

VIP Member
Messages
650
Vehicle
T5 SE 180
Glad to hear about the snow in Tignes. We will be there in two weeks. In relation to tyres absolutely agree about benefits of winter tyres. I think you really need both winter tyres & chains to be safe & stress free. Winter tyres cope with 90% of driving (slush etc) & the chains for when it gets serious. Do practice putting the chains on before you go. I’m getting quick practiced now, but still a bit stressful when on the side of a road, snowing hard & family watching!
Last time I had to put on chains it was a night in a blizzard, do not forget you will probably need overgear, decent gloves you can fit chains with on, a snow shovel to clear round the wheels and a head torch. That is why it is much better to have decent snow tyres than just summers and chains, chains should be seen as a last resort in my opinion. I also believe auto tensioning chains are worth paying extra for so you do not have to stop to tighten.

I use these https://snowchains.co.uk/product/?brand=Weissenfels&model=Clack-and-Go-SUV&pID=RTS-107&p=RTS
 

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