Choosing the “All Weather” tire for harsh winters and the other seasons

I’ve had to drive in some of the worst weather to go be with people in their time of need as a pastor. My wife’s Grandpa Roy was a GM mechanic all his life and he’d always say, “Your best insurance policy is a good set of tires.”

Last weekend I came to the conclusion I need new truck tires before winter. We have long, harsh winters for much of the year here in Northern Minnesota. If could afford two sets of tires for both summer and winter that is probably best. I don’t want to switch tires every six months from summer tires to winter tires – I want tires that work good year round. And the weather can switch from warm and sunny to an ice slick blizzard without notice up here where I live. What if I could just get one set of tires that were as good as snow tires in the winter but still worked great in the summer?

It appears the solution is an “All Weather” (better for winters than “All Season”) tires certified by the “Three-Peak Mountain Snowflake” symbol stamped on the tire sidewall.

Click these links to learn about “All Weather tires” and the “Three peak mountain snow flake badge”

I put Toyo Celsius All Weather tires on my wife’s car a couple years ago and they’ve been great. While I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on this new set of truck tires, I also didn’t want to waste money on poor quality rubber (or plastic). So I did my research and narrowed my list from 15 possibilities down to my top 3. For the last five years I have been driving on a great set of “Michelin Defender LTX” highway tires but they are expensive to replace.

I decided the best value to meet my needs might be a set Kenda Klever A/T2 KR628 tires after I found a great deal online. My other two top choices were “Yokohama Geolander A/T G015” and “Falken Wildpeak A/T3W.” I’ve had Kenda bicycle tires for years – maybe their truck tires are good too? It sounds like higher quality and lower price is something Kenda in Ohio is striving for. The video voice over sounds like the MotorTrend TV guy I’ve heard for years, giving their video credibility. The call to action in this video script is a perfect example of how I was taught to make good sales presentations/videos. Anyway, Kenda deserves a chance because they’ve done a great job with marketing and they have a lot of positive reviews.

Car dealers that supported stock car racing used to say, “What wins at the track on Sunday, sells on Monday” and this Kenda tires at the dirt track video is good marketing, too.

The most important thing is that I am a good steward of the resources/money God gives me and that I have reliable transportation to get where I need to go to fulfill God’s will for my days. There are so many other things I would rather spend money on than tires, but I am blessed to be able to buy new tires that fit my budget to get prepared for new opportunities in the midst of bad roads and extreme cold this coming winter.

How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet (or maybe tires) of those who bring good news!” Romans 10:14-15 (NIV)

Only time will tell if the Kenda tires I just bought are really a good year-round tire for back roads, hot tar, deep snow and slippery ice. And the other unknown is how how much they will affect my fuel economy compared to a highway tire (review site say it is only 3% less fuel economy). I will update this article in the future and let you know how these work out on my second generation Chevy Avalanche truck (yes, it’s a truck it says so on my vehicle registration). Now I just need some deep snow to try them out.