Initial Review, 9000 Miles on Tires
January 05, 2012
This is my second set of Winterforce tires since 2004, which at that time weren't even branded as Firestone. I prefer studdable snows over the studless as I feel the studless are a waste of $. I have used many types of Winter tires dating back to the '90s, with some being a repeat purchase.
In any event, these are decent tires that I would place second (though a distant second) in the studdable category. The wet, & especially ice traction leaves a bit to be desired. My only consolation is that I got an amazing deal on them, & I knew at the time that they would probably be a little disappointing based on my awesome experience with the General Altimax Artics. These are significantly better, even if it costs you an extra $100/set. The ice traction is that disappointing & now I know where Consumer Reports is coming from on their poor ranking as well. If $ is tight (like it was for me), they're 1000x better than All Seasons but not the best available.
On the plus side, I try to break them loose in snow & it doesn't happen. Treadwear is great as well (for Winter tires). At 6K when I put them back on in Dec. 2011 I was looking at 12/32" Front, 14/32" Rear on my heavy FWD Odyssey. My rough calculations is 36K-42K of life at this rate if they don't wear-out on the edges, which Odysseys are notorious for (not the tire's fault). This is phenomenal, & exceed the Generals on a much lighter car ('09 Civic) that would be done around 30K due to starting with only 12/32" tread. The Winterforce's extra 2/32" of tread is definitely a selling point for those on a strict budget & if you encounter little ice in your Winter conditions these would be a better choice due to longevity for your dollar. I encounter a ton of ice in the Winter, so no more Winterforces for me though for the right person/conditions they are are great choice & tire.