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Im planning on getting some snowtires for the winter months on my 2006 prius.I been hearing about snowtires on steel wheels and was wondering its advantage?I really dont know much about steel wheels.Was planning on getting the tires and fitting them on the prius stock rims,then in the spring putting the all seasons back on.Any info of advantages or disavanages of what im planning to do would be a help!Thanks
 

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Steel wheels are heavier, cheaper, and uglier than alloy wheels.
Remounting on the same wheels two times a year is an added expense and hassle. My preference is snows on steel. That's my $.02.

PA P
 

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actually, I ran blizzak ws50's on steel wheels on my wife's old Accord. They were great. When I went to get snows for my prius last year, no one seemed to have steel wheels available, including tirerack.com. So,
I bought alloy wheels (Sport Edition) that were about $85 each, and mounted the new Blizzak Revos on them. Instead of going with Tirerack, I got the local Tires Plus store to match the tirerack total price. (Tirerack charges about $85 for shipping, but no sales tax to my state of MN.) The Revos were great. There is a good comparison test of the Revos, WS50, X-Ice, and I think the Dunlops on the tirerack website. My impression after researching the matter is that the X-Ice might be a better choice for deep snow, but that the Revos are the better choice for icy roads. In MN, ice is probably more the issue and, in any event, I'm more worried about dying in an icy crash than getting snuck in deep snow.

This year, Tirerack.com has steel wheels in stock for $49 each, and a selection of alloy wheels for about $90 each. If you don't mind swapping them yourself, tirerack ships them to you mounted and balanced.

The pros of going alloy is that they are lighter, and nicer-looking. The cons are that they are subject to corrosion from road salt, and will cost you a couple hundred bucks more. If you go with steel wheels, tirerack (or your local WalMart) has various plastic covers that look pretty good.

Right now, I am trying to find a snow package for my wife's new Hybrid Camry. There is some (mis)information out there that wheels for the Camry XLE can't go on the hybrid...Tirerack hasn't measured the hybrid yet, so won't sell wheels for it. I talked Tires Plus into ordering a set of sport editions with Revos for me to try anyway. I am confident they will work.

rpm
 

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PA Prius said:
Steel wheels are heavier, cheaper, and uglier than alloy wheels.PA P
You can't do much about the weight of steel wheels, but a set of wheel covers can improve the looks quite a bit. E.g., here's the wheelcover I have for a 15" multifit wheel:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v103/JayGoldstein/Wheelcovers2.jpg

I've thought about using these wheels on my Prius, but the Tire Pressure Monitoring System on the 06s complicates using anything but the OEM wheels.
 

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I don't think the tire pressure monitoring system is anything to worry about. When your winter wheels are on the light will be on. No big deal. Cover it with tape if it bothers you. ;)
 

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I've got steelies for my 01 Subaru Impreza RS. The benefit is that I'm not wrecking my nice alloy rims in the New England winters. I'd learned my lesson by denting an alloy rim going into a curb. The other benefit is that you can just swap the wheels in the winter instead of having to go through the expense and hassle of remounting your snow tires on the rims each year. Third benefit is that I don't get the snow buildup inbetween the spokes on my alloys and unbalances my wheels on the highway.

Plus the steel wheels aren't ugly in my eyes...the make you look badass, and show that you're taking care of your nice alloys by garaging them all winter.
 

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My snows are mounted on steel wheels that a local tire dealer installed along with Hakkapeleita Rsi's. I did it to avoid repeated tire mounting and balancing twice a season. The only problem I have is one or more than one of the steel wheels is slightly out of balance as whenever I brake going down hill, at the bottom there's a slight shuddering that mimics warped brake rotors, but it's not the rotors since it never happens when the alloys are on.

As to wheel covers/hubcaps, I'm pleased with the ones I purchased last winter. They look a little like the alloys:

http://wheelskin.com/Merchant2/merchant ... CH+HUBCAPS
 

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I was in the same boat as rpm, but I got the X-Ice on the same wheels he has. For our snow fall boy what a difference over the OEMs. An added plus is it does save on the OEM tires, so I may not have to spring for those replacements anytime soon. I was surprised how well the alloy wheels held their shine and lustre throughout winter, but then again, I waxed them before I put them on.
 

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Neither Sears nor Costco have steel wheels available for winter tires. Both of them told me to check with a salvage yard. I will try that, but I'm wondering whether any other cars take the same size wheel and have the same bolt pattern as the second generation Prius? If not, there won't be anything available since the Prius only comes with the one alloy wheel.

So, is anyone aware of a website or other place where I can cross reference wheels between makes/models? I also have four Blizzaks on steel for sale from my former Jetta III and I'm wondering who else I can market them to.

PA P
 

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US 2001-2003 Toyota OEM Prius rims are:
14x5.5" 100mm bolt circle, (not sure if 40 or 45mm offset), 4 hole
(same wheel as the older 1993-2002 Corolla, and the pre-2004 Echo)

US 2004-current Toyota OEM Prius rims (not 2007 Touring) are:
15x6" JJ, PCD 100mm, 45mm offset, 5 hole
(same wheel as the Matrix and the newer (2003-?) redesign of the Corolla)


I am selling my steel rims in the For Sale - Private forum here.(NHW11: http://www.priusonline.com/viewtopic.php?t=8670 , NHW20: http://www.priusonline.com/viewtopic.php?t=9477 ) I think I have a buyer for the NHW11, but not for the NHW20 yet.

I bought the steel rims because they were a little cheaper than the OEM alloy rims. Assuming that you have the storage space, it is easier/cheaper to swap out summer/winter tires 2x a year, than it is to stress out the tires by popping them off and remounting and rebalancing them each season on the same wheel. (It's also easier to damage the softer alloys by constant remounting than it is with steel.)

My original thoughts were to keep my OEM tires for another season or two, until they were completely worn out, and think about replacing them in the future. (After the first winter, I felt that the OEM tires were too worn to handle the Boston MA suburb winters (and my sloped driveway).) I needed snows for last winter, so I bought a tire/wheel combo. I went with the Nokian WR All Weather Plus tires, as they were the only 4-season tire on the market at the time (UTAQ rating for normal use, but with the Severe Weather emblem (snowflake on mountain) denoting a full snow tire). I figured that I'd use them for winter use only, use the OEMs for summer until they were worn, and then I'd decide if I'd just move the Nokian WR A.W.P. tires onto the OEMs for full-time use, or if I'd get a more dedicated summer/LRR tire or a more dedicated winter-only tire and keep the WRs for summer... After I moved, since I no longer had the luxury of storage space, the WRs went on the OEM alloys for full time, OEM tires scrapped, and the rims went up for sale. (The 2004 is now sold to family, and she didn't want to do the seasonal swap/storage, so same deal with WRs on alloys, steel wheels for sale.)
 
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