I once dug the studs out of a set of snow tires with a screwdriver, so I know they can be removed. Since I have a couple of sets of snow tires with nubs instead of studs, I was wondering if they can be replaced? Anyone ever do this?
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No. I've always heard once the tire leaves the building they will not restud them. The problem is with small rocks embedded in the tire becoming projectiles or puncturing the tire when the studs are shot in.
My experience with studded tires is that after a few years, the studs start to "punch thru" the inner layers and cause small leaks. So it hasen't seemed worthwhile to repair the tires once the studs are badly worn. Usually I plugged the leakers and drove some more, but there would be more leakers over time.
I suppose you could restud your own tires but I would suspect a shop would probably not since by that time your tires are probably on their last legs anyway and it would be a liability for them.
Snow tires wear out well before the tread is gone. Just the nature of the beast.
Good Luck, or move to So Cal, where we don't need no stinking snow tires.
Wearing out before the tread, depends on the tread compound and whether it is studded or not.
As mentioned, the studs will often cause leaks after a few thousand miles so effectively the tire is worn out even though the tread is still there.
Other snow tires without studs usually have two layers of rubber compound. The outerlayer is softer and or spongy, like Blizzaks. Under that layer is normal rubber compound. The soft rubber wears out after about 5,000 miles or so. Then it gets down to the normal rubber and much of the snow tire effectiveness goes away, essentially you just have regular street tires with a blocky tread, which still helps in snow, but not as much as the compound.
I know I have read this in some Car Mag, but can't be sure of my memory now, but supposedly the reason the rire makers don't use soft rubber all the way thru is that the really soft "sticky" rubber squirms too much so you still need stiffer rubber supporting the outer layer of tread.
My experience is that my Studded tires were pretty leaky after 5K to maybe 10K miles. Got so I was always having leakers. My Blizzaks on my other car did fine but I don't think I ever got over 5,000 miles on them before I moved to So Cal. But I had read the Blizzaks effective snow life was 5K or so.
This is what I recall, from my 15 years of driving in snow and ice in Oregon.
I always run studs in winter and have since the winter of 88.
My experience has been that the studs always wear out before the tires are worn out and that is the deal. I just get rid of them at that point. Shops will not re-stud them. It's way too much trouble to do it yourself because you will loose them at speed.
If you are careful and avoid spinning your tires they will last quite a long time. I bought a set for a teenage son and the studs were gone before the first winter was over. (Last time I did that!) I have gotten four seasons out of a set of studs.
I have also learned that there is a big difference in performance (traction,) between studded tires and have been unable to determine what makes one great and another mediocre. But I have had some (just by chance,) that made me feel invincible and I could drive at normal speeds over ice and snow. Others, like the ones I have now, are not a whole lot better than regular snow tires except for stopping on ice.
Anyone have any hot tips on how to judge the performance of these things before putting out the cash and learning the hard way????
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