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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I need to be replacing my original '04 tires soon at about 45,000 miles. Wanting to glean your wisdom on best choice. These will be summer tires only, since I'll get Blizzaks or Arctic Alpins for the winter. My preferences in order of priority are--

1. Gas mileage
2. Noise level
3. Tread wear
4. Dry/Wet handling

It would seem to me that LRR tires would use a harder rubber compound, which would give them the best tread wear as well, but that does not seem to be the case. Anyone know why?

PA P
 

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Not sure about summer tyres but for all-season tyres, the Michelin Energy MXV4 Plus is a pretty good choice. It's LRR, has a nice soft ride, has a super deep groove (it's like the Grand Canyon compared to the Integritys) and long life. We've just replaced our Camry's stock tyres (MXV4 Plus) with another set because we were so impressed with it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I believe the Nokian has only half the treadwear compared to the HydroEdge, right? While treadwear isn't highest on my list to only get half of what the Michelin offers seems a bit crazy.

PA P
 

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Replacement Tires

You asked for list member recommendations. The Nokian is a summer tire that sticks to the road like glue. Like all high(er) performance tires, they are not designed to last as you obviously want. It meets 3 out of the four areas you requested. To say that this recommendation is crazy negates your request for help from this site. If you don't want our recommendations, don't ask.

Good Luck
 

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I'm partial to just about anything from Michelin. I will replace the Integrities with whatever is in the Energy series when that time comes. I've heard good things about other Michelin tires on the Prius which are not LRR, however if anyone knows how to build a quality, soft, and quiet LRR it will be Michelin.
 

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jeromep said:
I'm partial to just about anything from Michelin. I will replace the Integrities with whatever is in the Energy series when that time comes. I've heard good things about other Michelin tires on the Prius which are not LRR, however if anyone knows how to build a quality, soft, and quiet LRR it will be Michelin.
Well about 10 days ago I put a set of HydroEdges on my '02 Prius - what a big mistake!!!! My MPG dropped about 6 miles per gallon. I went to the tire guy today and told him I was going to take Michelin up on their 30 day satisfaction guarantee. I am going back to the Potenzas, not the best tire but if it gets 6 mpg better I will stick with it.

The HydroEdge was making the car do strange things. In places where the car always runs in EV mode it insisted on running the ICE and charging the battery even though it was at 75% or better. These non-LRR played havoc on the car.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Sorry to hear this. I have also had very good exerience with the Michelin's and have been leaning towards the HydroEdge. How ready were they to follow through on their 30 day guarantee?

I have also read from a few others that experienced a drop in the HydroEdge mpg, but then it picked up again after a tank or two. Maybe they will respond here.

In any case, thanks for adding your experience to the mix

PA P
 

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The tire dealer is a very nice guy who has been in the business for over 30 years. When I started telling him, he responded that I was going to ask him something that no one has ever asked. When I did he was a little upset saying this would come out of his pocket. He said to leave my number and he would make some calls and get back with me. About two hours later he called me very cheerful saying michelin would stand behind the product and agreed to take them back with no issues.

I don't think the problem will go away with time. The problem is most pronounced at low speeds, under 35 mph as it is related to rolling resistance. At highway speed it is less of an issue, but still at least a 3 mpg penalty. Evidently the LRR is a big big issue for the way this car operates.
 

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what size tire did you have to get with the Hydroedges to keep the load rating for your Classic Prius? Besides the non-LRR (which, BTW, there is no standard yet for comparing LRR between tire brands) of the Hydroedges, perhaps you had to go to a wider tire for the load rating, meaning a larger surface patch area, and maybe also a heavier tire?
 

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Michelin HydroEdge Tires

I have a 2002 Prius, with HydroEdges. With pressure set to 44/42, I am getting better mileage than with OEM Brigestone LRR tires. Also, I have over 40,000 miles on them, and I think they will go another 30-40,000 -- The Bridgestones were bald at 20,000.

Before our temps went over 100 degrees about a week ago, I was getting 56-57 mpg around town. This has dropped to 46-50 now that I am running the AC most of the time.

Did you check the air pressure? If you were running factory specs, then mileage will be significantly lower than Bridgestones at 50 psi.

Also, Michelin and most other tire manufacturers will replace tires free in the first couple of hundred miles, if they don't work out. Though, I think the dealers expect you to buy another tire from them. Costco and Discount Tire are very liberal on exchange policy.
 

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mrv said:
what size tire did you have to get with the Hydroedges to keep the load rating for your Classic Prius? Besides the non-LRR (which, BTW, there is no standard yet for comparing LRR between tire brands) of the Hydroedges, perhaps you had to go to a wider tire for the load rating, meaning a larger surface patch area, and maybe also a heavier tire?
Yes, you are correct on all fronts. The stock tires are 175/65R14 84S the only Hydroedge tires that will fit the car are 185/65R14 85S. They are slightly wider and are heavier.

It amazes me the difference in mpg, although I have to admitt that I can corner faster in them. The drop is as much as 7 mpg is slow speed local driving, that drops to about 3 mpg on the highway.
 

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Re: Michelin HydroEdge Tires

Phoenix said:
I have a 2002 Prius, with HydroEdges. With pressure set to 44/42, I am getting better mileage than with OEM Brigestone LRR tires. Also, I have over 40,000 miles on them, and I think they will go another 30-40,000 -- The Bridgestones were bald at 20,000.

Before our temps went over 100 degrees about a week ago, I was getting 56-57 mpg around town. This has dropped to 46-50 now that I am running the AC most of the time.

Did you check the air pressure? If you were running factory specs, then mileage will be significantly lower than Bridgestones at 50 psi.

Also, Michelin and most other tire manufacturers will replace tires free in the first couple of hundred miles, if they don't work out. Though, I think the dealers expect you to buy another tire from them. Costco and Discount Tire are very liberal on exchange policy.
Wow that is great mileage that you get. I thought I was good getting around 52 in town when being really conservative with my driving. Although your temps probably help as we are colder and have a lot of hills. Your drop with AC is much more than mine though, so I guess it all evens out.

I had the same problems with the Bridgestones as you, at 20K miles they are just about shot. It is interesting that the OEM Bridgestones had a wear rating of 160, but the ones being sold now are 260 - still not very high but a lot better.

I was running the potenzas at 42/40, I am running the hydroedges the same way although with great trepidation as they are only rated for a max pressure of 44 versus the potenza's 50 psi.

The dealer is going to replace the hydroedges with potenzas on Weds unless I change my mind. I like the slightly better handling, but the constant reminder of how worse the gas mileage is causes mental pain.
 

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Michelin HydroEdge Tires

The reason the mileage drops so drastically here in Phoenix (and probably all of the desert southwest) is that the AC runs almost continuously when the outside temperature gets over 105. It frequently gets in the 110 to 114 range later in the summer, though it is actually almost worse when the monsoons come. Then, the humidity goes from the low teens to about 60-75 percent AND about 105-112. It is really bad when you go outside at midnight and it is still over 100 degrees!

Before you take those tires off, I'd try pumping them up to max 44 psi. I know that this sounds scary for people who are used to running 28-32 psi, but it is common for other vehicles. I have an old Chevy pickup truck that has load range E tires that are rated at 80 psi -- talk about scary. (I don't keep them pumped up that high, though.)

As for other vehicles, our travel trailer has "D" range tires, and Airstream (and most other trailer manufacturers) recommend keeping them pumped up to the max rated 65 psi.

So, the HydroEdges will be fine at 44 psi cold (and don't let air out if they go over this; that's normal when they heat up). I have run 44/42 for over three years and 40,000 miles with no ill effects. They even wear evenly, which is a little surprising.

I think you will find that even this little increase in pressure will make several mpg's difference. Also, the longer you own your car, you'll find little ways to push the mileage up.

I drive the same route everyday,and have experimented with different roads and speeds to tweek my average city commuting mileage from 48-51 up to 55-57 mpg. Here are a couple of tips that might work for you.

When experimenting with driving a little slower to increase mpg, I found out that the traffic lights that are red at almost every intersection, are synchronized at a slower speed. The speed limit is 45 over most of my in-town route, and the lights are synchronized at about 41 mph. By driving at the slower speed, I get the advantage of the slightly better mpg AND hitting almost every traffic light green -- the only thing better than regenerative braking is not stopping at all!

Also, I floor it off of traffic lights up to 30 mph, and then use the cruise control to accelerate on up to 40-42 mph. I don't understand how the theory of not using the batteries got started, but it doesn't make any sense to me. It sounds like most people on this board try to accelerate slowly enough that they don't use any battery power. Actually, if you watch the screen, the poorest mpg occurs when accelerating. So, it seems to me that using the battery power to get up to speed faster shortens the dwell time of acceleration, lowering the fuel consumed. Electric motors get maximum torque from a stall, so it only makes sense to use it to the max, when the Atkinson ICE is putting out the least torque.

At 30 mph, I click the cruise control up, instead of holding the control arm up. This causes the mpg to stay at around 30-35 mpg, instead of 20-25. Sounds like not much of a difference, but this adds up to 1-2 mpg overall. Also, Phoenix is really flat, but it's a valley so it slopes slightly. I have found that I am going slightly uphill on the 17 miles going to work, and slightly downhill coming back home. So, I don't worry too much about mpg on the trip to work; but I try to coast as much as possible on the trip back home. By looking way down the road to the next intersection and with a little planning, I can start clicking down on the cruise over a half mile from the intersection and coast for most of the way. I just click once or twice until the screen goes to 99 mpg, then everytime the ICE starts, I click down once again to shut it down.

By the way, accelerating like a bat out of hades also gets you ahead of the crowd so that they don't get upset when you decrease your acceleration rate at 30 mph. They are usually just catching up to me when I get to 42 mph.

If I zero out the screen before leaving in the morning and coming home at night, I get about 45-46 mpg on the trip in, and about 60-65 on the trip home, for an overall 55-57 for the roundtrip.

Little changes like this add up as you learn the tricks that work in your home area.

Oh, and highway cruising in 115 degree weather is the pits on mileage. 75-80 mph in the desert translates to 38-42 mpg; however, that's still a whole lot better than the 5.5-7.0 we get with the old Chevy pickup.
 

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Wow that is interesting. If I read it right, and I ask this because it sounds so wrong, you are saying that you get better mileage by flooring the accelerator from a light rather than accelerating slowly? I always do the exact opposite. I try to slowly pull away from the light always using electric and only once I get up to about 20 mph does the ICE kick in. Can you verify that I am understanding this correctly.

You really think I should stick with the Hydroedges over the Potenzas? Its just so painful seeing 46-47 mpg on the display when I am used to seeing about 51-52.
 

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Michelin HydroEdge Tires

Maybe the 2002 Prius is quite a bit different from the newer model years, but the ICE comes on when accelerating only slightly, and it is almost impossible to use all electric when coming up to speed in normal traffic. That's why I figure if the screen reads 15-20 mpg, I might as well floor it.

I know it doesn't sound like it would work, but it does for me. I'd just try it for a day during your normal commute and see if your mileage improves.

As for the HydroEdges, I'd do what seems right to you. I just feel that the HydroEdges handle a lot better than the Potenzas on my 2002. The OEM Bridgestones at 50 psi wandered a lot and followed tar strips like train rails. The HydroEdges handle more like "normal" tires to me. Also, although I live in the desert, I travel to San Francisco several time a year. And, the HydroEdges have really paid for themselves when I drove in rain storms for several hundred miles, and there was 1-3 inches of standing water on I-5. Speed was limited to 45-55 mph due to visibility, but not by hydroplaning. These tires are great in the wet.

I took an initial hit when the HydroEdges were first put on my Prius, but I found out that Discount Tire had only put in 36 psi even though I asked for 44. The mileage came up several mpg after I pumped them up to 44/42, and another couple of mpg after break in (which took several hundred miles).
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
So Kirby, did you keep the HydroEdges or trade them in?

PA P
 

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I somewhat reluctantly decided to keep them. My thinking went this way. They will last much longer than the Potenza tires, so I will save money there. I should be able to use the car in the winter with them avoiding the cost of snow tires which would be a must have with the Potenzas saving me money there. There is definitely a milage hit, but not as bad as I was originally getting. While I told them to inflate them to 42/40 they only inflated them to 35 all around. Once I upped the pressure the milage has improved some, but not up to what I was getting. We are averaging about 47 mpg with these while we were getting about 49-50 with the old tires. But, I figure the savings on tires plus the safety of better handling is worth 2-3 mpg.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks, this is helpful. We need to replace our original Integritys in the next few months. They are currently at 45,000 and rather smooth on the sides since the former owner was running them below 30 psi. You now make me lean towards the HydroEdge and I am thinking there may be less of a difference between them and the Integrity than between them and the Potenzas.

What have others experienced in mpg change in the move from Integrity to HydroEdge?

PA P
 

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Michelin HydroEdge Tires

It's 110 in Phoenix, and I'm still driving with the AC off and the windows down. MPG on last tank was 56.5 (on MFD). I have HydroEdges with about 45,000 miles on them, and running them at 44/42 psi.

It's supposed to be 112 tomorrow, so the AC will probably be on the rest of the summer. A few weeks ago, I used the AC for a whole week, and the mileage dropped to 51.5 mpg. However, temps were in the low 100's then.

As soon as it gets to over 110 everyday, and 100 at night, the mileage will probably drop to 44-46 like last summer; because the AC runs almost continuously (during the day -- at night, it's better, without the heat load from the sun).

That's still more than double the mileage we get with our '98 Camry V6, and 8x what we get with our '78 Chevy Pickup w/454 V8. Needless to say, the other car, and especially the pickup, don't get driven much.
 
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