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  #1  
Old 11-29-2006, 01:27 PM
Dougman Dougman is offline
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Silverado 2500HD Tires: 235/85R16 vs. 265/75R16

I've read all the current and past threads on the topic and researched all the tire vendor websites... and I am still on the fence. I don't want to reopen old wounds, so I'll keep this as specific as possible: For a 2006 Chevy Silverado 2500HD (Ext. Cab/Reg. Bed) to be used for mostly residential snowplowing with the stock, steel 6.5 inch wide wheels... which is the superior tire size for best fit & function: 235/85R16 or 265/75R16? Unless someone has a better suggestion, I am going with Bridgestone Blizzak W965 tires. Here is their official spec comparison:

LT235/85R16 Service Description: 120/116Q, Load Range: E, Speed Rating: Q, Sidewall Styling: BW, Article Number: 150-789, Approved Rim Widths: 6.0-7.0, Measuring Rim Widths: (6.5), Overall Tire Diameter: 31.8, Overall Section Width: 9.3, Tread Width: 7.2, Static Load Radius: 14.7, Tread Depth (32nds): 18

LT265/75R16 Service Description: 123/120Q, Load Range: E, Speed Rating: Q, Sidewall Styling: BW, Article Number: 156-477, Approved Rim Widths: 7.0-8.0, Measuring Rim Widths: (7.5), Overall Tire Diameter: 31.9, Overall Section Width: 10.5, Tread Width: 7.6, Static Load Radius: 14.8, Tread Depth (32nds): 19

Spec-wise, there is obviously not much difference. The 235 is a little narrower at the tread and might fit the stock 6.5 inch wheel better. The 265 is 0.4 inches wider at the tread and might bulge a little with a slightly under-width stock rim. But that's all I can get from the specs. What about in the real world? Is there any practical difference? Do they drive differently in snow, on ice or on a dry highway? Any more (or less) dry highway noise? Or should I just give up on a scientific comparison and toss a coin???

Dougman
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  #2  
Old 11-29-2006, 03:12 PM
Earthscapes Earthscapes is offline
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I wouldn't go with a smaller tire than the stock 245/75/16 as they are small enough to begin with.
I do run 265/75/16's on my 90'&02' on stock rims. The 06' only has 6k so no tires needed yet, but that will get 285/75/16's when the time comes.
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Old 11-29-2006, 05:00 PM
jay723 jay723 is offline
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I am in the same boat. I can not make up my mind as to which size. The 235's will be better in the snow, due to less snow to push aside to get traction. The 235's will also help with mileage with the smaller foot print, and will be cheaper. The 265's will fill out the wheel well better. That is what I come up with. I would like to hear from some people running 235's.
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Old 11-29-2006, 05:06 PM
Plowfast9957 Plowfast9957 is offline
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So why not go with a 245 as a happy medium? Thats what usually comes on that truck from the factory.
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Old 11-29-2006, 05:42 PM
jryden145 jryden145 is offline
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A 235/85/16 is the about the same height as a 265/75/16. The 235/85/16 is just narrower than the 265/75/16/. Narrower would be better for plowing.

J
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  #6  
Old 11-29-2006, 05:52 PM
Earthscapes Earthscapes is offline
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I disagree with the narrower tire is better for plowing.
Your not out trying to drive through 12" of mud or snow, your out there with the blade down in front of you. So in actuallity your making a bigger footprint on the pavement, which gives you better traction.
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  #7  
Old 11-29-2006, 06:13 PM
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tires

excellent point earthscape..

needless to say .. i just put on 4 new bridgestones on my 2002 HD ,

size ... 265/75/R16


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Old 11-29-2006, 08:28 PM
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Go for the skinny ones

I run BFG T/A 285 75 16 on summer rims

and Cooper Weathermaster MS 235 85 16 for the plow season and


Very happy with both

THX
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  #9  
Old 11-29-2006, 09:36 PM
Dougman Dougman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jay723
I am in the same boat. I can not make up my mind as to which size. The 235's will be better in the snow, due to less snow to push aside to get traction. The 235's will also help with mileage with the smaller foot print, and will be cheaper. The 265's will fill out the wheel well better. That is what I come up with. I would like to hear from some people running 235's.
That's about the long and short of it. I was over at the local Cooper dealership this afternoon after I posted. He wants to sell me the Cooper Discoverer MS. 265/75's are $10 more than the 235/85's... no big deal. He says the Bridgestone Blizzak W965's will wear out too fast. Anyone else feel that way?

But he was funny about the size thing. He says the 235/85 will likely plow better but that everyone with a Chevy/GMC 2500HD gets the 265/75 "so the truck will look like a truck"!

That about says it all I guess. Go for the probable small advantage in snow/ice performance... or make your truck look like a truck should look!

Dougman
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  #10  
Old 11-29-2006, 09:43 PM
Dougman Dougman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plowfast9957
So why not go with a 245 as a happy medium? Thats what usually comes on that truck from the factory.
My daughter calls my oem/stock 245/75's "weenie tires." I've got to admit it... they look like the Chevy dealer played a nasty bad joke on me. No complaints on ride or capability, but they are not snows. And if I've got to buy new snows anyway, I want to dump the "weenie" look as well. Of course, either the 235/85 or 265/75 will solve the weenie issue in terms of diameter... so now it's plowing performance vs. "making the truck look like a truck" as the tire dealer said.

Dougman
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  #11  
Old 11-30-2006, 04:18 PM
jay723 jay723 is offline
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so what are you going to do?
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  #12  
Old 11-30-2006, 05:20 PM
Dougman Dougman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jay723
so what are you going to do?
Funny you should ask! Just got back from doing it!

After shopping around for the Bridgestone Blizzak W965's and finding no stocking dealers (I like to see in person what I'm buying) and higher than expected prices, I took another hard look at the Cooper Discoverer MS. Lucky me... It just so happens that the Cooper dealer (another family-owned business) two towns over had four of the 265/75's in stock for me to see. His price was also within my budget. He did not have any 235/85's.

It turns out that everyone in the tire store owner's family uses the Cooper Discoverer MS on their trucks and SUV's in wintertime, including for plowing. It was no lie either as the vehicles were all parked right there in front for me to see! For a tire store owner's family who could drive on any snow tire ever made, that really impressed me.

Seeing the tire tread in person convinced me that going with the 265/75's would not be particularly detrimental to the cause. Narrower may have been better, but the 265/75 did not strike me as overly wide. Hardly! In fact, I was amazed at how fast the wheel wells "swallowed up" those supposedly oversized tires. Holy Cow. Maybe not "weenie" tires anymore... but not exactly monster truck-sized either. After examining the end result, I was glad I didn't go any narrower.

Driving with the bigger snows is a little funky compared to my stock OEM tires, which were impressively solid and functional for their tiny size and all the bad reviews. I tow some awfully heavy stuff and those stock tires drove nice and never let me down. The new snow tires seem a bit "squishy" and soft right now, but not objectionably so.

Another minor point: While Chevy seems to "diss" any tire size other than stock, they do seem to suggest the 265/75's are an okay alternative tire size in the owner's manual that came with my truck. No mention of 235/85's. While this is no definitive statement by any means, and perhaps I read far too much into it, I figured it could help me on a warranty issue *if* tire size ever came up.

Dougman
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  #13  
Old 11-30-2006, 05:26 PM
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i would go w/ the 235,s they will cut through the snow better
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Old 11-30-2006, 05:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snowsniper1
i would go w/ the 235,s they will cut through the snow better
But didn't you see where Earthscapes said that isn't true? In spite of all the evidence and knowledge to the contrary?
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Old 11-30-2006, 06:00 PM
Earthscapes Earthscapes is offline
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Hey moron,

I never said narrower wasn't better in the snow or mud, I said "while pushing with the blade down, the wider tire makes more contact with the pavement."
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Old 11-30-2006, 06:07 PM
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And the more contact you make, the more the weight is distributed over more of a slick surface. Therefore less weight and less traction. I don't think you need to call me names, but if you need to to make yourself feel smarter, then suit yourself. You're still wrong, and I think the vast majority of snow plowers will agree with me on this one. It's really not even worth arguing about since we are only talking about the difference between a 265mm wide tire vs 235mm wide tire. If it were a 33-12.50 or something then you would see a big difference. Which is not to say it can't be done, plenty of people plow with wide tires. But a wide tire is not better on snow, plowed or other wise. Have a lovely day.
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Old 11-30-2006, 08:54 PM
Antnee77 Antnee77 is offline
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All I know is, I have been running 265/75-16 Pro Comp ATs for around 9 months now and they have been great on dry pavement, light off-roading, and in the snow. They grip just fine for me and I have never gotten stuck. And I have had no problems with them on the stock rims. They are a great upgrade from the small stock tires and have no rubbing issues with a stock suspension.
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Old 12-01-2006, 06:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Earthscapes
I disagree with the narrower tire is better for plowing.
Your not out trying to drive through 12" of mud or snow, your out there with the blade down in front of you. So in actuallity your making a bigger footprint on the pavement, which gives you better traction.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Earthscapes
Hey moron,

I never said narrower wasn't better in the snow or mud, I said "while pushing with the blade down, the wider tire makes more contact with the pavement."
Earthscapes,
You're out on an island on this one. When it comes to driving in the snow, narrower is better, ALWAYS. If you actually think about it, unless you're plowing roads, most of the driving you do is with the plow in the UP position, going from place to place, and if it's during the storm, the worst of conditions are then, when you need the traction the most.

From my perspective, name calling here will get you nowhere. There are a lot of great guys here with a wealth of knowledge and experience and we're all just trying to help.
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Old 12-01-2006, 06:53 AM
Dougman Dougman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Motorman 007
When it comes to driving in the snow, narrower is better, ALWAYS. If you actually think about it, unless you're plowing roads, most of the driving you do is with the plow in the UP position, going from place to place, and if it's during the storm, the worst of conditions are then, when you need the traction the most.
In theory... and generally in practice... I'll bet you are probably right. Certainly traction is important plow up or plow down... in snow and/or ice... and within reasonable limits, physics being what they are, tire/tread design aside, narrower tires should generally give better traction

My problem is that we are talking about a relatively small difference in tread width between the 235/85 and 265/75. It is not the inch plus that the tire size designation suggests. It is 0.4 inches according to Bridgestone. And in the case of these particular two tires, we are talking about a specialized... almost extreme... severe snow and ice tire design which tends to concentrate (i.e., reduce) actual tread-to-road contact area. I'm guessing that the design of these two tires here are far more significant in terms of winter performance that the 0.4 inch tread width difference.

The bigger issue for me personally was best fit and function in the broader sense. In other words, what would give me the best and safest truck performance in *all* winter driving situations including wet, dry and sanded/salted roads. Most of my winter miles will *not* be in deep snow or on untreated ice. And I can always use chains in ultra-extreme situations (where I probably shouldn't be out anyway).

Like I said above... seeing those 265/75's installed, I am certainly glad I didn't choose to go even narrower. Theoretically, even narrower possibly could have been better in some situations, but these are already narrow enough for my taste. In the end, going more narrow than even my stock "weenie tires" just didn't sit right with me. I'll bet I am still more narrow that most pickup trucks on the road today using those lighter-duty flotation tires.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it. I respect and appreciate ALL opinions that have been expressed here. I thank all you guys for your thoughts and advice.

Dougman

Last edited by Dougman; 12-01-2006 at 06:56 AM.
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  #20  
Old 12-01-2006, 05:10 PM
Ron's Lawncare Ron's Lawncare is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Motorman 007
Earthscapes,
You're out on an island on this one. When it comes to driving in the snow, narrower is better, ALWAYS. If you actually think about it, unless you're plowing roads, most of the driving you do is with the plow in the UP position, going from place to place, and if it's during the storm, the worst of conditions are then, when you need the traction the most.

From my perspective, name calling here will get you nowhere. There are a lot of great guys here with a wealth of knowledge and experience and we're all just trying to help.

so a 6'' wide slick will go through the snow better than an 8'' wide snow tread? my point is tread design is just as important as tire width.
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