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  #1  
Old 12-05-2007, 04:20 AM
2008 Escape Hybrid Owner
 
Real Name: David
Location: San Diego, California, USA
Hybrids: 2008 Escape Hybrid
Posts: 280
Default Snow Chains

I need snow chains for winter driving in the California mountains. At times, the CHP requires them on all vehicles, even 4wd/awd.

I have looked at chains, cables and Spider Spikes. Does anyone have experience or comments on these devices? My 08 FEH = FWD.

.

2008 FWD Escape Hybrid
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  #2  
Old 12-05-2007, 08:04 AM
Ridiculously Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: willard west
Location: Beautiful Pacific NW
Hybrids: 2003 Prius
Posts: 1,678
Default Re: Snow Chains

There is no substitute for CHAINS, at least for the cross-links. There are some really good quick-n-easy install tire chains out there in the market these days. Just remember REAR chains first provided you have AWD, and slow she goes with chains on. With FWD you have no choice and DEAD SLOW will be the rule of the day.
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  #3  
Old 12-05-2007, 08:34 AM
Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Mary
Location: St. Paul, MN
Hybrids: 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid 2WD
Posts: 141
Default Re: Snow Chains

I didn't know chains were still legal. They were outlawed here years ago.
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  #4  
Old 12-05-2007, 09:14 AM
Active Enthusiast
 
Location: Denver Area, CO
Posts: 155
Default Re: Snow Chains

I'm a big fan of these:

http://www.tirechain.com/DIAMONDSTYLECARCHAINS.htm


Quote:
Originally Posted by wwest View Post
Just remember REAR chains first provided you have AWD, and slow she goes with chains on.
How do you figure? Our Escapes are FWD / AWD. That is, the power is at the front wheels first and only goes to the rear if slippage is detected. The braking is also mostly at the front. So why should the chains go on the rear first?

The only reason I could come up with is in a funky stop the back end might swing around. But beyond that you should have better control with the chains on the front.

So what am I missing?

.

2005 Ford Escape Hybrid - Titanium Green, 4WD, Appearance Pkg, Leather, Nav System
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  #5  
Old 12-05-2007, 09:51 AM
2008 Escape Hybrid Owner
 
Real Name: David
Location: San Diego, California, USA
Hybrids: 2008 Escape Hybrid
Posts: 280
Default Re: Snow Chains

I see two issues here:

Traction to move the vehicle & traction to keep the vehicle on the road.

For my front wheel drive, moving the vehicle would place the chains on the front. For keepint the vehicle on the road, I do not know which is best. The problem where I will drive is icy 2 lane mountain roads with hairpin turns and 400' drop offs.

I am still thinking front. Has anyone tried cables or Spider Spikes?

.

2008 FWD Escape Hybrid
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  #6  
Old 12-05-2007, 01:47 PM
Ridiculously Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Tim
Hybrids: 2006 Escape 4WD
Posts: 1,401
Default Re: Snow Chains

Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidH View Post
I see two issues here:

Traction to move the vehicle & traction to keep the vehicle on the road.

For my front wheel drive, moving the vehicle would place the chains on the front. For keepint the vehicle on the road, I do not know which is best. The problem where I will drive is icy 2 lane mountain roads with hairpin turns and 400' drop offs.

I am still thinking front. Has anyone tried cables or Spider Spikes?
If its FWD... front. Most of your braking power is weighted toward the front in a vehicle.
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  #7  
Old 12-05-2007, 09:48 PM
Pretty Darn Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Don
Hybrids: 2007 FEH 4WD
Posts: 293
Default Re: Snow Chains

Quote:
Originally Posted by queenfan View Post
I didn't know chains were still legal. They were outlawed here years ago.
It snows a lot more in Western mountains than in other parts of the country (some places get 50 feet+ per year). Therefore, chains are OK and studded tires are generally not.
That said, there are some Italian cables that I've seen that are really slick with springs so they auto-tension. You might want to look around! I think you can make installation easy if you get one of the nifty cheap aluminum floor jacks to go along with the chains.

Last edited by D-mac; 12-05-2007 at 09:52 PM. Reason: incomplete
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  #8  
Old 12-07-2007, 02:28 PM
gpsman1's Avatar
Hybrid and Ethanol Expert
 
Real Name: John
Location: All over the Central U.S.
Hybrids: 2005 Ford Escape FWD, 2000 Honda Insight
Posts: 3,547
Default Re: Snow Chains

I think in the FEH you should ALWAYS put chains on the front.
And probably ONLY the front.
The rear is hardly ever used, and when used, is only used intermittantly.

I have used "cable" type chains on the front one time, on Interstate 80 through Wyoming. There was not a lot of snow, but there was black ice, and the chains really helped. One time, and only once, the cross wind pushed me sideways onto the grassy snow covered shoulder. ( I was only going 25 miles per hour at the time! ) I figured I would get stuck. But nope! The chains and my little FWD hybrid pulled me right back onto the pavement. I don't think my wheels spun at all.

Mary, I don't know what to make of what you say half the time!
Chains are REQUIRED in most western states when it snows!
You get a ticket for not having them! And in Colorado, I think all vehicles over 10,000 pounds must carry them whether it is snowing or not.
( In the Colorado Rockies, it can, and does snow in summer, at 10,000 feet, and although it usually does not pile up in July, you can have black ice at night in July. )

When you bought your car, everyone should have received a pamphlet from Ford that states "cable type chains only" on the FEH and talked about proper use and installation. Due to low clearance in the wheel wells, real old-fashioned chains are not to be used and may damage your car. If you bought your car in Summer, or in a warm state, this paperwork may have gotten over-looked, but should be a part of every new sale.
-John

Last edited by gpsman1; 12-07-2007 at 03:10 PM.
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  #9  
Old 12-07-2007, 03:10 PM
gpsman1's Avatar
Hybrid and Ethanol Expert
 
Real Name: John
Location: All over the Central U.S.
Hybrids: 2005 Ford Escape FWD, 2000 Honda Insight
Posts: 3,547
Default Re: Snow Chains

For the record, I spent 30 minutes looking it up, and tire chains ARE ALLOWED in Minnesota.

Perhaps Mary, there is something special about not using them in the city limits where you live in twin cities. But considering how many miles are in RURAL areas.... Tires Chains are not only legal, but REQUIRED in many places of Minnesota! If you would be willing to find out were they are NOT allowed, that would be helpful. Although I also read that "visitors" are not bound by the rules, and I have Colorado Plates and driver's license.


Minnesota Statutes 2007
"169.72 TIRE SURFACE; METAL STUDS."
Solid rubber, metal, and studded tires; exceptions; permits.
(a) Every solid rubber tire on a vehicle shall have rubber on its entire traction surface at least one inch thick above the edge of the flange of the entire periphery.
(b) No person shall operate or move on any highway any motor vehicle, trailer, or semitrailer, having any metal tire in contact with the roadway, except in case of emergency.
(c) It shall be permissible to use any of the following on highways: implements of husbandry with tires having protuberances which will not injure the highway, and tire chains of reasonable proportions upon
any vehicle when required for safety because of snow, ice, or other conditions tending to cause a vehicle to skid.

Subpart (d) is long, but basically states studded tires are not to be used by residents, but are ok for visitors.

Subpart (e) states that studded tires are allowed for rural postal delivery carriers.
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Old 12-07-2007, 03:10 PM
 
 
 
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