Firestone has a range of winter tires for all types of transport. Among this variety, there are tires designed for light and medium-sized trucks. One of these tires is the Winterforce LT and we will talk about them in this review.
As already mentioned, there are a large number of different tires on the market. Among them, there are winter tires for large trucks and there are universal solutions suitable for SUVs and minivans. But there are few specialized tires for light and medium-sized trucks. Meanwhile, given the specifics of the operation of light trucks, which are largely commercial vehicles, special tires are needed.
The wrong selection of winter tires for commercial vehicles can lead to a decrease in the economic efficiency of using the vehicle, unplanned downtime, and even road accidents. Therefore, starting in 2012, the US and Eurozone countries introduced the “Alpine” tire standard - 3PMSF. Compliance with this standard can be identified by the snowflake-shaped logo on the sidewall of the tire set against a backdrop of 3 mountain peaks.
Compliance with the 3PMSF standard means that the tires are suitable for use on dry, wet snowy, and icy road surfaces. Tires labeled 3PMSF provide light trucks with increased grip and better traction than conventional tires. Winterforce LT tires with the 3PMSF symbol make winter driving more predictable, more comfortable, and much safer.
About Winterforce LT tires
Winterforce LT is a winter studded tire. It has removable pins where a pin has a diameter of 12 mm. The use of studs is useful when driving in icy conditions, while the rest of the time, the surface layer of the tread itself provides sufficient grip.
The tread pattern of these tires is formed by a system of large longitudinal and lateral grooves. In addition, there are a number of small 3D lamella grooves. All grooves together form a system that effectively removes water, slush, and loose snow from the tire-to-road contact patch.
As with all winter tires, the Winterforce LT uses a special rubber compound. As a result, the tire does not harden even in severe frosts, which avoids deformation and accelerated tread wear. As with most modern Firestone tires, the Winterforce LT has a reinforced casing that provides extra reinforcement. As a result, the tire retains its original configuration and does not deform when cornering. Again, the extra reinforcement helps prevent tire damage even when the vehicle is fully loaded.
The Winterforce LT, despite its winter tread, has a low noise level compared to winter tires from other manufacturers. The noise level is low, even despite the use of spikes. However, low noise levels are a hallmark of all modern Firestone tires.
The composition of production materials and design features
Winterforce LT tires are radial, which means the most efficient breaker placement in the carcass. Since tires are used on light trucks, that is, most often in commercial vehicles, they have reinforced sidewalls and a center rib reinforced with metal belts. Both are necessary so that the tires are not damaged when hitting curbs, speed bumps, and other obstacles that may be hidden under a layer of snow.
Structurally, these tires are reminiscent of the steering tires of long-distance trucks. The only difference is in size, weight, and seasonality of use. Of course, the Winterforce LT is lighter and more compact than large truck tires. But the Winterforce LT is stronger than regular pickup tires.
In addition to the design features, the running characteristics of the Winterforce LT tires are largely determined by the tire composition, or rather the composition of the manufacturing materials used in the tread molding. As with all modern Firestone tires, the top layer of the tread is made from a mixture of rubber and silicon dioxide (silica). The use of a silica filler ensures the very characteristic plasticity of the material, even at very low temperatures.
An important point is that the rubber used when casting the tread is not monolithic, but porous. As a result, when the tread is rubbed, pores are opened, which in the contact patch with the road provide additional friction and, as a result, additional grip, which is necessary for acceptable handling.
In the areas of stud fixation, the upper tread layer has an additional seal, while the inner layer is softer. As a result, when driving on ice, the thorns dig into it. While the car drives onto the asphalt, the spikes fall into the tread. Thus, the studs work when needed, and the rest of the time, the grip is provided by the tread pattern. The advantage of this solution is that the resource of the studs increases, they are slower, wear off while handling improves on different surfaces.
Winterforce LT is a tubeless tire, and therefore the manufacturer initially faced the question of how to ensure maximum tightness. For this, the inner surface of the tire was covered with a layer of elastic and very dense latex, which already excludes air leakage. In addition, the bead of the tire is specially reinforced with a pressure ring, which also contributes to tightness.
Practicality of operation
As already mentioned, Winterforce LT is a tire designed for installation on light trucks, that is, on commercial vehicles. Therefore, initially high requirements are imposed on these tires in terms of practicality of operation. And imagine these tires meet such requirements.
First of all, the Winterforce LT is durable and will last one and a half to two times longer than other tires in the same class. In addition, the Winterforce LT has very little rolling resistance, making it easier to maintain a constant speed. Again, good tire balancing results in more fuel economy. Already everything that has been listed suggests that these tires are practical. But Winterforce LT is also extremely reliable, which means your light truck can be used without unplanned downtime. In general, from the point of view of the practicality of use, Winterforce LT has some advantages!
How they ride
Based on reviews regularly posted by Winterforce LT owners, these tires exhibit optimal handling on a variety of surfaces. But, oddly enough, these tires ride on ice and rolled snow better than on dry surfaces. Perhaps this is due to the peculiarities of the tread pattern and the presence of studs.
And of course, all the owners of these tires note a high level of comfort, which is not found in other tires. Many car enthusiasts say that the cabin has become quieter and there are practically no vibrations on the steering wheel, even though the tires are studded. We think these are good reasons to opt for these tires.
By the way, one more important point - given the excellent running characteristics, the price of these tires does not seem high. It is adequate and perhaps even affordable since at that price you probably won't buy anything like it.
Winterforce LT is a special tire with special properties. Tires of this type are available from many manufacturers, but Firestone's Winterforce LT offers optimal handling in temperatures down to -40 ℃ and is inexpensive. Isn't that what you wanted for your truck? We recommend purchasing!