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C-MAX in the snow?

snow chains

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21 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   jamouton

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 06:24 PM

Reading the owner's manual, I see that snow chains are not supposed to be used on the C-MAX.  Living in California and interested in going skiing, I don't think that will work.  Chains are required whenever there is snow in the mountains.  Anybody heard anything different?

 

Jerry









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#2 OFFLINE   shaners

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 05:26 AM

I don't think there is enough clearance in the front wheel wells to fit chains in there without them tearing up the inner fenders.  We have only had one snowfall here in Western PA so far this winter.  My wife said the stock Michelin tires were not very good and she had problems stopping, starting and turning, so I ordered a set of 16" aluminum wheels and Michelin "X-ice 3" tires for her car.



#3 OFFLINE   valkraider

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 01:02 PM

Every car I have had for the past 10 years has said that chains were not supposed to be used.  I have used chains just fine on all of them.

You do need to get low clearance chains, and make sure they are on well and not loose.

 

Your mileage may vary, use at your own risk.



#4 OFFLINE   ldm

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 02:25 PM

It might be worth while to check out the cable traction devices.  They seem to have the advantage in close clearance areas.

 

This is a pretty good article:

 

http://www.automedia...ccr20011201tc/1

 

This is the cable chain I will probably purchase:

 

http://www.scc-chain...s/Trac_SZ6.html


Edited by ldm, 07 December 2012 - 03:04 PM.


#5 OFFLINE   Jus-A-CMax

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 03:45 AM

The SCC Super Z6 cable chains are the way to go. Low profile. I use them all the time with my Jags for a number of years on the 19" wheels with low profile tires and not much room in the wheel bay. Today I ordered a set for Max, same brand.

 

SZ137 is the model number, fits the 225/50-17 tires that are on all our CMaxs.



#6 OFFLINE   CNCGeek

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 02:05 AM

The SCC Super Z6 cable chains are the way to go. Low profile. I use them all the time with my Jags for a number of years on the 19" wheels with low profile tires and not much room in the wheel bay. Today I ordered a set for Max, same brand.

 

SZ137 is the model number, fits the 225/50-17 tires that are on all our CMaxs.

I'd be interested in what you think of the cable chains for the C-max.  The reviews are mostly positive on amazon, but most negative reviews mention fit problems, or failures possibly related to sizing.



#7 OFFLINE   shaners

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 08:48 PM

The Michelin X-ice 3 tires we put on our Cmax are awesome.  We passed several ppl in the ditch tonight...  my wife couldn't make them spin without help from the ICE (gas motor).  I think the Cmax with good snows will tackle anything within reason.


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#8 OFFLINE   Jus-A-CMax

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 01:06 AM

I'd be interested in what you think of the cable chains for the C-max.  The reviews are mostly positive on amazon, but most negative reviews mention fit problems, or failures possibly related to sizing.

 

I just did a thread on my experience driving to Mammoth mountain and using the Z6, in the "Lounge" section. I also dumped some shots as to how the Z6 chain looks on the CMax 17" wheels and also the possible issues with, taking them off that is. Check it out...

 

No fit problem at all. It's solid and I have many years with the SCC Z6 chains, abliet its on a different car. None of them broke, and no issues with them. Ok, I lied, I lost one yellow plastic clamp, that was my fault. What people don't understand with these Z6 chains or any other cable chains is that you have to drive < 30MPH and even slower if its just the road with no snow or ice.

 

Ideally, you want the chained wheels to be over snow as that is what they are designed for - but there are idiots who fang at > 30mph on wet tar roads with no snow - thats how they are destroyed.

 

A little common sense would go a long way to preserve your chains and your car but its not that common, especially for Angelinos (or for this whole state for that matter).


Edited by Jus-A-CMax, 28 December 2012 - 01:08 AM.


#9 OFFLINE   oregonpete

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 03:11 PM

Anyone have any experience with Spikes Spiders on a C-Max? I have them for my My 2002 Envoy which supposedly also couldn't take chains, and they work great. Very quick and easy to mount and unmount. However, they are ridiculously expensive ($550-600). 

 

I'm going to buy the SCC Z6 chains for the C-Max for the time being, just to have for emergencies (and to comply with Oregon's chain law), but when the Envoy is gone i probably won't replace it with another 4WD SUV and might want to go with Spikes Spiders or something similar on the C-Max. 



#10 OFFLINE   jdbob

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 03:45 PM

I'm going to buy the SCC Z6 chains for the C-Max for the time being, just to have for emergencies (and to comply with Oregon's chain law), but when the Envoy is gone i probably won't replace it with another 4WD SUV and might want to go with Spikes Spiders or something similar on the C-Max. 

 

Note that traction tires also meet the legal requirement in Oregon. A couple of the common traction tires would be the Michelin X-Ice and the Bridgestone Blizzacks.



#11 OFFLINE   oregonpete

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 04:11 PM

Note that traction tires also meet the legal requirement in Oregon. A couple of the common traction tires would be the Michelin X-Ice and the Bridgestone Blizzacks.

Thanks, but I only drive in the snow a few times a year, and most years I never have to use chains at all.  I really don't want the expense and inconvenience of two sets of tires for this really limited use, but that may change when the Envoy bites the dust, depending on what we replace it with.


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#12 OFFLINE   JohnnOhio

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Posted 16 December 2013 - 10:14 AM

Drove mine in the snow for the first time today.

 

Not much traction from the tires that came on the car. Had problems turning and stopping but not too bad.

 

The biggest problem was the @#$%hole drivers on the road with me. They were tailgating and cutting me off all of the way to work. 3 lost control and went off of the road. Thanks to the anti lock brakes I was able to slow down enough to keep for crashing into them. Got to work late but I got here in one peace. I normaly drive my truck on snow days but didn't think it was that bad outside.



#13 OFFLINE   Laurel

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Posted 17 December 2013 - 07:08 PM

We have snow tires on our C-Max.  We rarely get snow on the south coast of British Columbia, but when it does happen it is a zoo here with everyone in the ditch because no one knows how to drive in the snow and no one has snow tires on.  I have to say I will be glad when Spring comes as the snow tires make the ride very noisy and rough feeling, but I do feel much more confident in case we do get a dump of snow.  The ride with snow tires makes the C-Max feel more like a Jeep ride versus a nice smooth ride--not totally unpleasant but very different.


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#14 OFFLINE   Laurel

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Posted 20 December 2013 - 01:46 PM

We just had our first snow fall of the year.  We have about 10-15 centimeters of wet snow which is still falling.  I drove Tip in the snow for the first time with the snow tires.  I would say the performance with snow tires is so so compared to our former cars which all had snow tires.  The rear end does lose traction more than I thought it would. I thought the battery weight would help stabilize the rear end more than it does.  If I lived in a snowy climate, I guess I would have another car for winter driving as driving the C-Max in snow reminds me a bit of driving a pick up in the snow (a pick up with weight in the bed).  Another consideration is the snow here is very wet which probably differs a lot from Bruce driving in Kamloops or other C-Maxers driving back East in dry snow.



#15 OFFLINE   Ryan McEachern

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Posted 20 December 2013 - 08:37 PM

Hey Laurel,

I made three trips to town today in the C-max too, I chose it over the truck to give it a good test. I was pretty impressed - I didn't notice the back end breaking free at all, but the Energi has a much, much heavier battery back there, so maybe that helped. What tires did you go with? We are running Michelin x-ice3.

Sounds like you north shore folks got more snow than us valley folks, as expected I guess. We are sitting right at 12cm exactly right now, switching between a light rain and snow.

#16 OFFLINE   Bruce Z

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Posted 20 December 2013 - 09:40 PM

Snow is definitely different up here in the interior. We saw about 15cms and it is still coming down. Was out and about most of the day and really enjoying the drive. It is also different to drive in up here as we are a little more ready for it and maybe even used to it. The news was definitely portraying the snow in the mainland as quite the problem where as the news here locally it was just another day with a bit more snow but not all the hype it gets when it happens in Vancouver. Enjoy the white stuff and Merry Ho Ho to everyone and their Cmaxes.
Cheers,

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#17 OFFLINE   Laurel

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Posted 20 December 2013 - 09:48 PM

Ryan we put the Nokian Nordman tires on Tip.  The lightness in the rear end is just enough to make me a little more cautious.  I have driven lots in Ottawa and Winnipeg so I do have a feel for cars in the snow--this lightness would make me take it a bit slower on the Coquilhalla  I did some testing on the back roads and it does sudden stops on ice and snow quite well.  Did notice one rear end slip when I put hill assist on going down a big hill with lots of slush so that woke me up.LOL  I think the weight of the vehicle could make a person a little too confident. 

 

Bruce I just saw your post. It is quite amazing concerning the ineptitude of Vancouver drivers in the snow.  It seems about 25% of them don't have a clue in the snow.  Hwy 99 going into the city this morning was a mess with several cars in the ditch and sirens screaming all morning around here.  Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone.


Edited by Laurel, 20 December 2013 - 09:53 PM.


#18 OFFLINE   Ryan McEachern

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Posted 21 December 2013 - 12:53 PM

Laurel,

Yes, definitely going to be a learning curve for me/us with the regenerative braking coming on when on hill assist. The effect of hill assist to the driver is just like the front brakes ONLY coming on, on their own, usually right when you dont want them on.

On our drives back and forth to Chase and Kamloops, we have been careful to turn the hill assist OFF anytime the roads aren't totally bare. Driving in the "L" setting on the eCVT will have the same effect, when you take your foot off the gas in "LOW" it is just like having ONLY the front brakes applied lightly.(This can be dangerous in some situations)

Merry Christmas!

edit: spelling

Edited by Ryan McEachern, 21 December 2013 - 12:55 PM.

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#19 OFFLINE   Laurel

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Posted 21 December 2013 - 01:23 PM

Good point/tips Ryan.  It is easy to forget that this car drives very differently in the snow.  I was trying various modes yesterday in the snow going up and down some bill hills locally including using "L".  Overall things were a lot safer without the hill assist or going into "L" which did surprise me a bit.  I was glad to have some practice time in the snow before we undertake a trip through the Rockies or even up to Manning Park for some cross country skiing.

 

A cool site locally this morning is watching our Anna's Hummingbirds at their feeders.  We have rain hoods over the feeders but right now the rain hoods have about 10 centimeters of snow piled on them and the hummingbirds are drinking and flying around in the snow covered terrain.  Our Anna's stay all winter as this is a bit of a micro climate.


Edited by Laurel, 21 December 2013 - 01:26 PM.

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#20 OFFLINE   Ryan McEachern

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Posted 21 December 2013 - 08:54 PM

That's amazing. My Mom has had Anna's stay before, but it is a bit hit and miss. We built a house quite close to hers, but only seem to get Rufous. I have lots of different foliage planted for my beehives, but the hummers don't seem to like our yard that much. Too many bees perhaps?

We have a red fox hanging around this winter though, which is very cool, a first for us.

Back on topic of winter driving in the snow, we are headed up to Chase on Tuesday - it's an odd numbered year, so we spend Christmas with my in-laws. I have had the blessing of rescuing a few folks on our winter jaunts, but I am having a hard time figuring out where to put my shovel in the C-max. With my truck, and the old minivan, there was never really a limit to gear, just throw whatever you want in there.... now everything has to be considered carefully. I guess I'll have to get a compact shovel to go with our compact car. :)
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