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Winter tires - dedicated wheels or not?

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Old 12-11-2017, 05:27 AM
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Default Winter tires - dedicated wheels or not?

I have bought a few sets of winter tires - with dedicated wheels in the last few years for the convenience factor when bring to the service station to swap out @$20.00 to do so is a deal. I asked one of my friends who has a MB AMG about his winter tires (Michelin Ice) and he says he didn't buy a dedicated set of wheels (expense factor) and just has his service center change the tires on the rims. I can see the expense savings on not having to buy another set of wheels, but I would think there could be some actual tire damage with swapping out tires on the wheels. Am I wrong in thinking that? What do others do - dedicated winter wheels or swap out the tires on existing wheels?
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Old 12-11-2017, 05:34 AM
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Around here (Pacific Northwest), I suspect 80-90% of people have an extra set of tires, and swap them every year.I suspect only those with enough funds to drive Audis and the like, and have the means to have an extra set of rims. (Of course, then we are saving... either by switching them over ourselves, or a quicker experience at the tire place.)

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Old 12-11-2017, 05:46 AM
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Yes, it's not that great to always be swapping the tires. Having a dedicated wheel will definitely was definitely the way to go for me. My replicas were under 1K CAD and I'm very happy w/ them.
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Old 12-11-2017, 09:44 AM
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Also, every time they put the wheels on the machine to change the tires there is a chance of wheel damage. On the plus side, swapping the tires on the rims forces you to get them rebalanced periodically.
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Old 12-11-2017, 09:48 AM
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I have a dumb question - where do you store your tires when you're not using them? In your garage? How do you get them there? I can't imagine 4 tires fitting in the back of an A4.
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Old 12-11-2017, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by avignon View Post
I have a dumb question - where do you store your tires when you're not using them? In your garage? How do you get them there? I can't imagine 4 tires fitting in the back of an A4.

To the OP, I recommend extra wheels because I've had damage done on my wheels from the machines removing the tires out of them. I'm also assuming it adds a lot of strain to the tires getting stretched like that in a yearly basis.

I always put 2 tires in the rear and 2 tires in the back seat, just covered in black plastic bags. You just gotta roll them around where I store them in my backyard. You can store them at dealerships or tire shops but I don't like paying unnecessary fees unless you have a bad back or something.
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Old 12-11-2017, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by JDA_yeg View Post
To the OP, I recommend extra wheels because I've had damage done on my wheels from the machines removing the tires out of them. I'm also assuming it adds a lot of strain to the tires getting stretched like that in a yearly basis.

I always put 2 tires in the rear and 2 tires in the back seat, just covered in black plastic bags. You just gotta roll them around where I store them in my backyard. You can store them at dealerships or tire shops but I don't like paying unnecessary fees unless you have a bad back or something.

That's what Iv'e done for my A4 - BUT IT IS TIGHT. I store in my garage.
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Old 12-11-2017, 10:51 AM
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I find that while the initial cost up front is greater to buy a set or 2nd rims, in the long wrong it's likely cheaper. Many of us have very high-dollar optional wheels on our cars, and the opportunity for damage to have tires swapped back and forth year after year is a real issue. I always enjoy the convenience of simply jacking up my own car and swiping out the tires, and I can do so whenever I decide the weather warrants it at my convenience. This also allows me to rotate the tires easily, so I save a little money on both rotations and mounting each year. A set of quality non-oem replica wheels have never given me any issue, and I get to enjoy the look of two cool wheel designs throughout the year....easily for under $1000. Plus winter salt and nasty potholes don't threaten your nicer OEM summer rims. I have had great success selling them as well when I change cars (if they don't fit the next car I get), and I've always recouped at lease1/2 of what I paid for the wheels. Also, I usually drop down a size smaller for a winter tire than gives me a little better ride in the cold temperatures and nasty road expansion joints, and this notably improves comport in the winter months (I mean, I'm not tracking it in the winter anyhow). If you do the math over a few years it's certainly clear it can save money to have a complete winter wheel package. Honestly, the only downside is having to store them (but you were going to have to put the tires somewhere anyhow right, so is this really any different???) and the initial upfront cost.
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Old 12-11-2017, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by farmerjones View Post
I find that while the initial cost up front is greater to buy a set or 2nd rims, in the long wrong it's likely cheaper. Many of us have very high-dollar optional wheels on our cars, and the opportunity for damage to have tires swapped back and forth year after year is a real issue. I always enjoy the convenience of simply jacking up my own car and swiping out the tires, and I can do so whenever I decide the weather warrants it at my convenience. This also allows me to rotate the tires easily, so I save a little money on both rotations and mounting each year. A set of quality non-oem replica wheels have never given me any issue, and I get to enjoy the look of two cool wheel designs throughout the year....easily for under $1000. Plus winter salt and nasty potholes don't threaten your nicer OEM summer rims. I have had great success selling them as well when I change cars (if they don't fit the next car I get), and I've always recouped at lease1/2 of what I paid for the wheels. Also, I usually drop down a size smaller for a winter tire than gives me a little better ride in the cold temperatures and nasty road expansion joints, and this notably improves comport in the winter months (I mean, I'm not tracking it in the winter anyhow). If you do the math over a few years it's certainly clear it can save money to have a complete winter wheel package. Honestly, the only downside is having to store them (but you were going to have to put the tires somewhere anyhow right, so is this really any different???) and the initial upfront cost.
Well said and if I go with snow tires - still deciding, I;m going to continue to do what I have previously and get a dedicated set of wheels.
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Old 12-11-2017, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by bob m View Post
Well said and if I go with snow tires - still deciding, I;m going to continue to do what I have previously and get a dedicated set of wheels.
Like F. Jones says
Drawbacks: 1)High initial cost but with a payback of ~ 5years, so may not work if you change cars often. 2) can be dangerous if you are not good at simple mech. work.
Advantages: 1)Change wheels when weather dictates 2) Use smaller rims/fatter tires for worse winter road conditions 3) More convenient if you change wheels yourself. Only 40 min. and I'm old. You can dig out the little rocks that lodge between sipes and roughen the ride, garage won't do it. 4) Minimize damage to rims from the ham-handed. 5) A chance to inspect brake pads.
If you do buy a second set of wheels, stay away from cheap aftermarket. They are a pain in ways you do imagine.and you will not get much back on resale.
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