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Optima H426 Tires - No traction in snow?

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Old 02-24-2013, 01:51 PM   #1
ksav8r
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Optima H426 Tires - No traction in snow?

I had my first real snow experience in my 2011 Explorer this past week and it was a disaster. After entering a parking lot I got stuck. 3 hours later I had dug out enough to get out after getting stuck multiple times in the lot. While this was going on, dozens of vehicles, all makes and models i (2 wheel drives, 4 wheel drives, front and rear wheel drives) were coming and going in the same snow depth with not a single one of them getting stuck. This happened 3 more times after leaving the lot trying to get home. The tires just spin and can't get any traction (my tire pressure was correct).
Are the Optima H426 tires that came with the 2011 Explorers truly an all weather tire or is that just bull? Have others here had this experience with them? I will not drive in the snow again with these tires. I guess I'll need to buy new ones after only 12,000 miles and drive my wife's Honda Accord until then when it snows.

Paul
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Old 02-24-2013, 02:05 PM   #2
swshawaii
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You're not alone.

http://www.tirerack.com/survey/Surve...irePageLocQty=

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires....l=Optimo+H426#
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Old 02-24-2013, 02:29 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by ksav8r View Post
I had my first real snow experience in my 2011 Explorer this past week and it was a disaster. After entering a parking lot I got stuck. 3 hours later I had dug out enough to get out after getting stuck multiple times in the lot. While this was going on, dozens of vehicles, all makes and models i (2 wheel drives, 4 wheel drives, front and rear wheel drives) were coming and going in the same snow depth with not a single one of them getting stuck. This happened 3 more times after leaving the lot trying to get home. The tires just spin and can't get any traction (my tire pressure was correct).
Are the Optima H426 tires that came with the 2011 Explorers truly an all weather tire or is that just bull? Have others here had this experience with them? I will not drive in the snow again with these tires. I guess I'll need to buy new ones after only 12,000 miles and drive my wife's Honda Accord until then when it snows.

Paul
Welcome to the Forum ksav8r.
I am sure you will get some various opinions on this subject. I traded in my Hankooks for Yokohama Parada Spec-X tires as soon as I left the dealership because they had a more aggressive tread.
The main reason was that I picked it up in March and I was unsure of what the weather was going to be like. We have had some good snow storms in that month before. I did some checking on Hankooks in general and the reviews for Winter driving were not very good.
So called all-season (really are 3 season) tires are not designed for Winter driving regardless of whether you get snow or not. The Hankooks like all non Winter tires start to lose grip at 43 degrees F on bare pavement.
Then in the Fall I bought dedicated Winter tires and mounted them on the Explorer Base model 17" steel wheels and run them in place of my 20" wheels from the end of October to the end of March.

It would also be helpful if you show which model you have in your vehicle specs. That way it will show in the left margin where your forum name is and it would allow members to give the correct info on any questions/concerns you have.
Good luck.

Peter




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Old 02-24-2013, 04:12 PM   #4
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I live in NHand have had zero problems driving in the snow as well as my wife who is the primary driver of the Ex. We live in the woods and are usually one of the last streets plowed. They are not as good as winter tires but again, have had no issues driving in 4-5 inches of unplowed snow.
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Old 02-24-2013, 05:24 PM   #5
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Thanks for the links. I wish I had found them before this snow came
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Old 02-24-2013, 05:34 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by peterk9 View Post
Welcome to the Forum ksav8r.
I am sure you will get some various opinions on this subject. I traded in my Hankooks for Yokohama Parada Spec-X tires as soon as I left the dealership because they had a more aggressive tread.
The main reason was that I picked it up in March and I was unsure of what the weather was going to be like. We have had some good snow storms in that month before. I did some checking on Hankooks in general and the reviews for Winter driving were not very good.
So called all-season (really are 3 season) tires are not designed for Winter driving regardless of whether you get snow or not. The Hankooks like all non Winter tires start to lose grip at 43 degrees F on bare pavement.
Then in the Fall I bought dedicated Winter tires and mounted them on the Explorer Base model 17" steel wheels and run them in place of my 20" wheels from the end of October to the end of March.

It would also be helpful if you show which model you have in your vehicle specs. That way it will show in the left margin where your forum name is and it would allow members to give the correct info on any questions/concerns you have.
Good luck.

Peter
Thanks Peter, I'll probably start looking for other tires. Unfortunately we have another storm coming tomorrow
This is my 3rd Explorer and I had never had problems in snow with the previous models. I bought this one in 2011 but we had a nonexistent winter last year fortunately. My previous 2 were 4WD but I hardly ever used it so went with 2WD this time. Not sure how much 4WD would have made a difference in this case given the total lack of traction.
I updated the model but haven't seen where to enter all the specs. I will look around some more.

Paul
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Old 02-24-2013, 05:45 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by blwnsmoke View Post
I live in NHand have had zero problems driving in the snow as well as my wife who is the primary driver of the Ex. We live in the woods and are usually one of the last streets plowed. They are not as good as winter tires but again, have had no issues driving in 4-5 inches of unplowed snow.
Hello, I'm glad they're working out for you, wish they would for me . One spot trying to get home was at an intersection that had been plowed, it was very slightly uphill with maybe 2 inches of new snow (no ice). Just set there spinning when the light turned green. I finally had to back up to flatter ground about 50 feet, time the light and accelerate hard to make it through the intersection. Again all other vehicles around me here were not having a problem.
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Old 02-24-2013, 05:45 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by ksav8r View Post
I updated the model but haven't seen where to enter all the specs. I will look around some more.
Look no further. Scroll down to "thread display options".

http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/...do=editoptions
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Old 02-25-2013, 12:28 AM   #9
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Hello, I'm glad they're working out for you, wish they would for me . One spot trying to get home was at an intersection that had been plowed, it was very slightly uphill with maybe 2 inches of new snow (no ice). Just set there spinning when the light turned green. I finally had to back up to flatter ground about 50 feet, time the light and accelerate hard to make it through the intersection. Again all other vehicles around me here were not having a problem.
We have owned our 2013 XLT for about two weeks...
I live in south Denver and the last two snow storms I have skeptically taken the Explorer out to test the tires performance. I have never owned Hankook and still don't trust them but, in their defense I have had zero issues with their snow traction and stability. Case and point we live on top of a hill with 12% incline and we were hammered with 16" of wet spring snow today. The explorer has performed as well as any of the previous German branded cars with expensive rubber shoes.
As stated I will replace these tires at the first hint of poor performance but, so far no issues...
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Old 02-25-2013, 09:59 AM   #10
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I had this concern when I first bought my Ex Sport. I immediately contacted the service manager at my dealership to get the Yokos that Peter is running. You won't believe it, he talked me out of them! He asked me to give the Hankooks a try before I spent money on different tires. Now that I have driven in some light and deep snow in Northeast Ohio, I can tell you that they aren't the worst tires I have had, but they also aren't the best. I would say that the TireRack reviews are pretty much spot on.

To the original poster, I would highly recommend a dedicated set of snow tires, especially considering where you live. I think the Hankooks would be ok had you gotten 4wd. Unfortunately, with the 20" wheels, our options for a great all-season tire are very limited.




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Old 02-25-2013, 10:04 AM   #11
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Smartas, Do you have the Hankook Optimo H426 versions on your XLT? If you have the 20" wheels, you would have them. Otherwise, the XLT usually gets the 18" Michelin Latitude Tour HP.




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Old 02-25-2013, 02:50 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by ksav8r View Post
I had my first real snow experience in my 2011 Explorer this past week and it was a disaster. After entering a parking lot I got stuck. 3 hours later I had dug out enough to get out after getting stuck multiple times in the lot. While this was going on, dozens of vehicles, all makes and models i (2 wheel drives, 4 wheel drives, front and rear wheel drives) were coming and going in the same snow depth with not a single one of them getting stuck. This happened 3 more times after leaving the lot trying to get home. The tires just spin and can't get any traction (my tire pressure was correct).
Are the Optima H426 tires that came with the 2011 Explorers truly an all weather tire or is that just bull? Have others here had this experience with them? I will not drive in the snow again with these tires. I guess I'll need to buy new ones after only 12,000 miles and drive my wife's Honda Accord until then when it snows.

Paul
I had EXACT problem in deep snow with my fwd Ex. Then I turned of the traction control and all was well. Why? In deep snow the Traction Control brakes the slipping wheel and reduces the throttle until there is traction. If it is real slick the car doesn't move. Turning the system off in deep snow or sand helps you take advantage of variable and slight traction opportunities. Off course snow tires are much better!
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Old 02-25-2013, 06:40 PM   #13
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With a snow forecast of 12-18 inches the next 24 hours I opted to replace the tires today with Bridgestone Alenza HL tires. I'll report back how they performed.

Paul
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Old 02-25-2013, 06:44 PM   #14
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I had EXACT problem in deep snow with my fwd Ex. Then I turned of the traction control and all was well. Why? In deep snow the Traction Control brakes the slipping wheel and reduces the throttle until there is traction. If it is real slick the car doesn't move. Turning the system off in deep snow or sand helps you take advantage of variable and slight traction opportunities. Off course snow tires are much better!
I did turn it off after I initially got stuck and still had problems. The tires just couldn't get any traction and would spin with it off (and do nothing when on). Maybe I got the lemon batch of these tires.
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Old 02-25-2013, 07:09 PM   #15
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Hello, I'm glad they're working out for you, wish they would for me . One spot trying to get home was at an intersection that had been plowed, it was very slightly uphill with maybe 2 inches of new snow (no ice). Just set there spinning when the light turned green. I finally had to back up to flatter ground about 50 feet, time the light and accelerate hard to make it through the intersection. Again all other vehicles around me here were not having a problem.
I didn't realize you had 2wd. I have awd so clearly that is why I have no problems unlike you. Hopefully the new tires are an improvement for you.
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Old 02-26-2013, 12:00 AM   #16
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Smartas, Do you have the Hankook Optimo H426 versions on your XLT? If you have the 20" wheels, you would have them. Otherwise, the XLT usually gets the 18" Michelin Latitude Tour HP.
Yes, I have the 20" wheels with the Hankook Optimo H426.
I'm hoping that my current positive experience with these tires is not short lived... I hate to come across as a brand snob but I just can't feel overly confident with Hankook.... Bridgestone, Michelin, Pirelli yes but, not Hankook....
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Old 02-26-2013, 12:02 AM   #17
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I didn't realize you had 2wd. I have awd so clearly that is why I have no problems unlike you. Hopefully the new tires are an improvement for you.
+1

Have you thought of getting a completely separate winter set up with dedicated winter tires using a narrower size for better traction...
Just a thought...
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Old 02-26-2013, 09:07 AM   #18
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I did turn it off after I initially got stuck and still had problems. The tires just couldn't get any traction and would spin with it off (and do nothing when on). Maybe I got the lemon batch of these tires.
"Spin with it off(and do nothing when on)" says it! My Ex (fwd 20" Hankooks) does have the worst front drive performance by far in snow that I have experienced. It is true that everyone passed me, even an old rear drive Mercury. Turning off the TC changed the Ex from scary to poor, but at least I got home.
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Old 02-26-2013, 09:21 AM   #19
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"Spin with it off(and do nothing when on)" says it! My Ex (fwd 20" Hankooks) does have the worst front drive performance by far in snow that I have experienced. It is true that everyone passed me, even an old rear drive Mercury. Turning off the TC changed the Ex from scary to poor, but at least I got home.
That is why they make decicated Winter tires. Although some so called all seasons may have been better, they can't match a dedicated Winter tire for either snow or cold bare pavement traction.

Peter




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Old 02-26-2013, 03:25 PM   #20
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That is why they make decicated Winter tires. Although some so called all seasons may have been better, they can't match a dedicated Winter tire for either snow or cold bare pavement traction.

Peter
True, Peter, but I have driven in Wisconsin snow for 45 years. The shock of being passed by a rusty Chevy Cobalt and a rwd Mercury and everyone else while my Ex was literally immobile was a first. It was a combination of wide tires and a very aggressive traction control. No snows on the cars passing me. I respect your opinion...nothing beats snow tires, but don't dismiss the surprise that many of us have with the unusually poor snow performance of the fwd Ex with these 20" tires.
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