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Mustangs in the winter...

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Old 12-08-2011, 03:48 PM   #1
KenLenard
 
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Default Mustangs in the winter...

I'm new here so bear with me. I'll apologize in advance if this is a frequently-discussed topic. What does everyone do in the winter? I know that not everyone can put their car in storage all winter and I also realize that not everyone even experiences winter like some of us. My 1948 Mustang was brutal in snow. Wide, rear-wheel drive tires and a lighter-than-usual car (because of the light convertible top) made it especially dicey in the winter. I can try my best not to drive it but we now have three drivers in the family and there WILL be times when it has to be taken out. I have heard of people putting sandbags, kitty litter and anything heavy they can find to weigh down the car a little bit. Thoughts?
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Old 12-08-2011, 03:49 PM   #2
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Ha, I typed "1948" when I meant "1984". Ugh.
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Old 12-08-2011, 04:01 PM   #3
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LOL - I was going to ask you for a picture of the 1948!

Anyway, I drive my Mustang year round here in southeast Michigan - so it has seen lots of snow. I don't add weight to it and have the Pirelli Pzero Nero all seasons on it. I drive 45 miles one way to work and have never had a problem. I've been through raging blizzards that took me an extra hour to get home and ice storms.

The Mustang is pretty well balanced front to back and I never found any need for the extra weight in the rear end (my 1986 Thunderbird was a different story, that was so light in the back that it was hard to get any traction!).
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Old 12-08-2011, 05:01 PM   #4
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im in nw ohio and my stang is a dd as well, usually not a problem, stock bfg tires, no weight in the back or anything, just be careful with stopping distance if theres snow on the ground, otherwise its not to bad
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Old 12-08-2011, 09:56 PM   #5
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I'm in central ohio and I have Eagle GTs. I don't put any weight in the trunk, but then, I do enjoy sliding a bit. The 2 things to watch out for are accelerating and not moving, and braking and not stopping, of course. There were times last winter when I would slowly accelerate, get in the middle of the street, and get stuck, with oncoming traffic. A few close calls. Also a few times of pushing the brakes a bit too hard and ending up in the grass, but nothing too serious.
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Old 12-09-2011, 07:52 AM   #6
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I for one can not wait to see how my stang does in the winter.
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Old 12-09-2011, 09:27 AM   #7
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I put weight in my trunk, currently 140 lbs of water softener salt (I can put it to use at the end of the season) and dedicated Michelin X-Ice 2 winter tires. Last year I didn't put weight in the trunk but I didn't drive much in the snow at all. The winter tires did just fine on their own.

You will just need to drive with your head, don't do anything brash and take it easy.
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Old 12-09-2011, 10:50 AM   #8
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I drive a manual V6, and no traction control or ABS came with it. Using 235 width Tigerpaws (what it came with when I bought it used from the dealer). WV doesn't get a lot of snow, but tons of ice. I've found that the lack of TCS, plus the open differential produces spinning tires and tail slides with the lightest pressure I can feel on the throttle during frosty mornings (mind you not icy or snowy...just frost on the road).

I highly suspect the tires are bad because:
1. They flat-spot in the cold (I thought this was resolved decades ago with radial tires).
2. I can break tires loose easily in 2nd gear in the rain, and 3rd will spin/chirp just a bit.

Lateral grip of the tires is fine, but taking off on a hill (which WV has tons of, and seemingly stop lights just before the crest of every single one) can easily result in a chirp of a tire (especially when someone is right on my bumper..very common here). Rain and frost so far make for a lot of tire spinning. I'm constantly touching and releasing the throttle pedal, or even jabbing to clutch in to prevent it in severe cases.

I have tried putting about 100 lbs. in the trunk...no difference. The right rear spins either way. Loading the car down with 3 other people, and a trunk full helps, though. I have no power-adders, and don't really drive aggressively. I hope to finish the project that lies in my garage before the first snow, so that I can actually get around town.
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Old 12-09-2011, 10:57 AM   #9
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OMG, not another winter thread...

If you can afford it, garage the Stang and get a beater. If not, then putting dedicated snow tires on and adding about 150-200#'s in the trunk will help make the Stang more tolerable. But that's just it: "tolerable". I've driven over 35 years of northern PA, NJ and Illinois winters (before hauling my ol' azz south) in many, many vehicles and the Stang is one of the worst; TOLERABLE at best.
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Old 12-09-2011, 11:19 AM   #10
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I'm doing pretty good.
I've got a set of Blizzak WS-70's on mine, plus about 280lbs in the trunk. I seem to be getting around a lot better than I expected. Just watch your braking and never come to a complete stop, it can be hard to get going again.
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:52 PM   #11
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I have Michelin X-ice Xi2 dedicated for the inter and i put about 250lbs in the trunk when it snows. I have had 0 problems for 3 years so far. Use your head when driving, you should be in any car anyhow. I have driven a lot of front wheel drive cars that were 10 times worst in the snow than my mustang.
I give the snow tires a lot of credit.
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Old 12-09-2011, 01:10 PM   #12
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Please be advised, the liquid chemicals the city sprays on
before the snow, are worse than the snow itself.
Watch for glossy pavement!
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Old 12-09-2011, 02:44 PM   #13
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+1 on the blizzaks.. just got the LM-60's, best snow tire on the market.
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Old 12-09-2011, 02:49 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KenLenard View Post
I'm new here so bear with me. I'll apologize in advance if this is a frequently-discussed topic. What does everyone do in the winter? I know that not everyone can put their car in storage all winter and I also realize that not everyone even experiences winter like some of us. My 1948 Mustang was brutal in snow. Wide, rear-wheel drive tires and a lighter-than-usual car (because of the light convertible top) made it especially dicey in the winter. I can try my best not to drive it but we now have three drivers in the family and there WILL be times when it has to be taken out. I have heard of people putting sandbags, kitty litter and anything heavy they can find to weigh down the car a little bit. Thoughts?
You can keep the gas tank full. That puts weight over the back tires too.

I garage my Vert and drive a Subaru.
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Old 12-10-2011, 06:26 AM   #15
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Mine has been in the last 4 winters in the St louis area. We have never put weight in the back. We live in an area with alot of hills and its manual tran. so we have some problems getting around in the larger snow falls, really more than an inch or 2 and we dont attempt to drive it.
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Old 12-10-2011, 07:36 AM   #16
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^^^^kinda funny as 1 or 2 inches here is a very light dusting lol
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Old 12-10-2011, 08:45 AM   #17
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Same here, an inch or two and no one even notices!

My brother lives in St. Louis and the first year he was there they had a "snow storm", about 2 inches. He drove into his office and thought it was really strange that there were so few cars on the road. After an hour he called his partners and asked where everyone was - they said "you made it to the office in all this snow?". He laughed and said - "give me over a foot and I might have a tough time driving but this is just a light dusting"
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Old 12-17-2011, 08:33 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alkemist View Post
I put weight in my trunk, currently 140 lbs of water softener salt (I can put it to use at the end of the season) and dedicated Michelin X-Ice 2 winter tires. Last year I didn't put weight in the trunk but I didn't drive much in the snow at all. The winter tires did just fine on their own.

You will just need to drive with your head, don't do anything brash and take it easy.
Be careful with that, I used to service reverse osmosis water machines that also had water softeners in them. Figured carrying the salt in the back of my truck (hard bed cover) would be a good idea for the winter. Well, as it turns out not all the bags are sealed that well and a little water did a lot of damage in rust when it mixed with the salt and I didn't notice it until spring.

I know my trunk in my 2012 seals up pretty well, but this is just a warning to be careful and make sure none of that salt gets out.

I'm looking forward to this winter going from a 4x4 f150 to the V6 mustang. Although I never realized how much I would hate driving in the snow, not from a handling standpoint as much as the idea of what that road salt is doing to my poor car.
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Old 12-22-2011, 04:01 PM   #19
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I put 225/60 17" Blizzaks on my 2010 GT. Work great. We had 9" of snow in Denver last night. Drove 75 miles to the airport and back. No problems. A lot of people were sliding around. The Blizzaks made the car firmly planted. No added weight in the back either.
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Old 12-26-2011, 09:08 AM   #20
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I'll echo the use of dedicated winter/snow rated tires. I've run the same set for several seasons on the wife's 2005 4.0L/auto vert, and having good tires makes all of the difference.
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Old 12-26-2011, 09:08 AM
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