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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I could use some winter tire advice. I will be purchasing winter tires for my new to me 2012 Chrysler Town and Country Touring-L. I also want to buy decent looking rims as well. I hate those awful looking steel rims that rust and look like crap. Could I get some suggestions as to a good winter tire and where is a good place to buy the rims? Also if I get new rims what happens with the TPMS?

I am looking at some tires at Canadian Tire that are on special right now. They are the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 or the Michelin X-Ice snow and also wondering if checking with the junkyards to see if they have some decent rims that come off a 2012 Chrysler Town and Country.

Would appreciate any advice you can offer.
 

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I could use some winter tire advice. I will be purchasing winter tires for my new to me 2012 Chrysler Town and Country Touring-L. I also want to buy decent looking rims as well. I hate those awful looking steel rims that rust and look like crap. Could I get some suggestions as to a good winter tire and where is a good place to buy the rims? Also if I get new rims what happens with the TPMS?

I am looking at some tires at Canadian Tire that are on special right now. They are the Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 or the Michelin X-Ice snow and also wondering if checking with the junkyards to see if they have some decent rims that come off a 2012 Chrysler Town and Country.

Would appreciate any advice you can offer.
Either of the two winter tires you mentioned should serve you well, being from reputable Tier One tire brands and with positive reviews. By the way, speaking of winter tires at Canadian Tire, I've been quite satisfied so far with their house brand "Certified" WinterTrek tires that I got a set of last year for my 2009 Grand Caravan back when they were on sale at a very good price; I actually wrote the most helpful user review posted on the CT website for them:



I'd say the Certified WinterTrek is a great winter tire to also consider whenever Canadian Tire puts them on sale for a good deal less than their original price, which is much too close to the prices of Tier One brand winter tires.

If you're looking to buy new wheels for the winter, I'd suggest the ART Replica 48 available at WheelWiz and CanadaWheels which replicate the look of the OEM 17" alloy wheels of the 2013-2020 Grand Caravan SXT. As far as used wheels go, anything off of any 5th gen 2008-2020 Grand Caravan or 2008-2016 Town & Country will fit your 2012 Town & Country, but the wheels will need to be at least 17" if your Town & Country either already has or you've upgraded it to the larger heavy-duty (HD) brakes that started being commonly used from the 2013 model year onwards.

You will need to purchase another set of TPMS sensors if you want to retain that feature with a second set of wheels, otherwise you'll have to deal with the TPMS light being lit on the instrument cluster unless it is disabled in the van's programming with software like AlfaOBD.
 
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I have Michelin X-Ice tires for 3 different vehicles and highly recommend them. Shop around though, because I was able to get them a lot cheaper than Canadian Tire.

I hear you on the steelies. One thing to watch with aluminum is in really cold weather, because aluminum shrinks more than steel, aluminum is more susceptible to air loss at the tire bead.

As for TPMS, if you don't want sensors you don't need them. It figures out there are no sensors and you don't even get a light on the dash (that's how my Journey works, I assume the DGC is the same).
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Either of the two winter tires you mentioned should serve you well, being from reputable Tier One tire brands and with positive reviews. By the way, speaking of winter tires at Canadian Tire, I've been quite satisfied so far with their house brand "Certified" WinterTrek tires that I got a set of last year for my 2009 Grand Caravan back when they were on sale at a very good price; I actually wrote the most helpful user review posted on the CT website for them:



I'd say the Certified WinterTrek is a great winter tire to also consider whenever Canadian Tire puts them on sale for a good deal less than their original price, which is much too close to the prices of Tier One brand winter tires.

If you're looking to buy new wheels for the winter, I'd suggest the ART Replica 48 available at WheelWiz and CanadaWheels which replicate the look of the OEM 17" alloy wheels of the 2013-2020 Grand Caravan SXT. As far as used wheels go, anything off of any 5th gen 2008-2020 Grand Caravan or 2008-2016 Town & Country will fit your 2012 Town & Country, but the wheels will need to be at least 17" if your Town & Country either already has or you've upgraded it to the larger heavy-duty (HD) brakes that started being commonly used from the 2013 model year onwards.

You will need to purchase another set of TPMS sensors if you want to retain that feature with a second set of wheels, otherwise you'll have to deal with the TPMS light being lit on the instrument cluster unless it is disabled in the van's programming with software like AlfaOBD.
Yeah I will have to make sure they are 17". My van does have the HD brakes. I thought the sensor was a part of the rim? So if I were to by rims from the wrecker wouldn't the TPMS continue to work?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have Michelin X-Ice tires for 3 different vehicles and highly recommend them. Shop around though, because I was able to get them a lot cheaper than Canadian Tire.

I hear you on the steelies. One thing to watch with aluminum is in really cold weather, because aluminum shrinks more than steel, aluminum is more susceptible to air loss at the tire bead.

As for TPMS, if you don't want sensors you don't need them. It figures out there are no sensors and you don't even get a light on the dash (that's how my Journey works, I assume the DGC is the same).
If I do decide to go with the steel wheels is there a way to stop them from rusting and looking so awful?
 

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I'm ordering up, today, the Continental WinterContact SI Plus tires that are on sale at Canadian tire this week plus there's a mail in rebate of $60.00. They have road rated it at 98, which is very high. I like the comfort/road noise rating of 100% although tires tend to get noisier as they get worn.


Total price, in Cart, $678.52 plus tax = $778.00 plus there's the mail in rebate after that.

For winter, stick with the steel rims, save your new ones for salt free driving.

Purchase, install and balance your tires at Canadian Tire to qualify for our 5-year Tire Care Guarantee, which provides free tire repair from Road Hazards such as cut or puncture, damage from driving on a flat tire, impact breaks and Manufacturing Defects. Or get FREE tire replacement and FREE spare tire change services with our Replacement Advantage coverage available for a nominal fee. Conditions apply.
ROAD Rated 98

Fuel Economy - 100%
Fuel Economy 100%
Snow Traction - 99%
Snow Traction 99%
Comfort/Road Noise - 100%
Comfort/Road Noise 100%
Ice Traction - 96%
Ice Traction 96%
Dry Traction - 96%
Dry Traction 96%
Wet Traction - 97%
Wet Traction 97%
 

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If I do decide to go with the steel wheels is there a way to stop them from rusting and looking so awful?
Spray them with Fluid Film and put wheel covers on them, is the easy route.

To make them look better requires a bit of work.
Clean with soap and water
Dry
Brush on rust converter to the rust spots only (read directions first)
Do a second application of rust converter (available at Canadian Tire - Rust Check brand))
Spray on a rust preventative black enamel type paint (Tremclad, Rustoleum, Armor Coat (CTC), Whatever)
Let dry and apply a second coat
Treat yourself to fish and chips.
 
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Yeah I will have to make sure they are 17". My van does have the HD brakes. I thought the sensor was a part of the rim? So if I were to by rims from the wrecker wouldn't the TPMS continue to work?
The sensors are not integrated with wheels; rather, they are separate and are installed where the standard rubber valve stems would go:





If you get wheels from the junkyard that have TPMS sensors with them, they should work as long as they're from a 2011+ 5th gen van (2008-2010 vans have a different part number, so sensors from those may not be compatible) and the batteries in them are not yet depleted.

As for TPMS, if you don't want sensors you don't need them. It figures out there are no sensors and you don't even get a light on the dash (that's how my Journey works, I assume the DGC is the same).
I don't know if the 2011+ 5th gen vans are different in this regard, but my 2009 Grand Caravan will have the TPMS warning light on in the instrument cluster unless TPMS-equipped tires and wheels are present, along a "low tire" message and chime at every start-up.
 
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If I do decide to go with the steel wheels is there a way to stop them from rusting and looking so awful?
I just spray paint them every second Spring with a light coat of Rustoleum or similar paint. One can does 8 rims.

Aluminum wheels used in winter will look really awful as the corrode under the clear coat and there is nothing cheap you can do about it.
 

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I don't know if the 2011+ 5th gen vans are different in this regard, but my 2009 Grand Caravan will have the TPMS warning light on in the instrument cluster unless TPMS-equipped tires and wheels are present, along a "low tire" message and chime at every start-up.
Maybe the DGC is different from the Journey. On the Journey, I get the light and chime only on the very first drive after putting on the winters. Then nothing for the rest of the winter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Spray them with Fluid Film and put wheel covers on them, is the easy route.

To make them look better requires a bit of work.
Clean with soap and water
Dry
Brush on rust converter to the rust spots only (read directions first)
Do a second application of rust converter (available at Canadian Tire - Rust Check brand))
Spray on a rust preventative black enamel type paint (Tremclad, Rustoleum, Armor Coat (CTC), Whatever)
Let dry and apply a second coat
Treat yourself to fish and chips.
So if I purchase some new steel rims I would simply spray them with Fluid Film in the fall before I put them on and maybe again in the Spring before I put them away? When you say wheel covers do you mean hubcaps?

Also those winter tires you are purchasing. Would they fit my new to me vehicle, the 2012 Chrysler Town and Country Touring-L? And what are the extra numbers 106T XL after the 225/65R17?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The sensors are not integrated with wheels; rather, they are separate and are installed where the standard rubber valve stems would go:





If you get wheels from the junkyard that have TPMS sensors with them, they should work as long as they're from a 2011+ 5th gen van (2008-2010 vans have a different part number, so sensors from those may not be compatible) and the batteries in them are not yet depleted.



I don't know if the 2011+ 5th gen vans are different in this regard, but my 2009 Grand Caravan will have the TPMS warning light on in the instrument cluster unless TPMS-equipped tires and wheels are present, along a "low tire" message and chime at every start-up.
OH Okay! Good to know. I didn't realize they had batteries. Can the batteries be replaced with new just to make sure they work?
 

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I've used blizzak dmv1's for the last 7 years on the van. They have been extremely good winter tires. Just bought some DMV2's, which will go on once it gets colder... Dmv2 is the SUV version of the ws90's. Would have no issue recommending either the x-ice or the blizzak for the van. I bought an extra set of TPMS sensors to put in my ugly rusty steel rims. Every few years, the rims need a good cleaning, and a fresh coat of paint, and they look good again. The van recognizes the new sensors after a few miles of driving - no special tools or programming required (at least on my '14).
 

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I have Michelin X-Ice tires for 3 different vehicles...

I hear you on the steelies. One thing to watch with aluminum is in really cold weather, because aluminum shrinks more than steel, aluminum is more susceptible to air loss at the tire bead.

As for TPMS, if you don't want sensors you don't need them. It figures out there are no sensors and you don't even get a light on the dash (that's how my Journey works, I assume the DGC is the same).
I don't buy that, tires are not solid and also shrink on cold weather.

I would just buy a set of OE wheels at the junkyard. Those wheels should have sensors.

I once asked why people buy steeles for winter time, I was told those wheels last longer than aluminum on salted roads.

I don't buy that either. You just use them for a couple of months, then remove them, clean them and store them.
 

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I use steel wheels on the van, and aluminum on the truck. I use aluminum because I got some cheap from a wrecked truck. Haven't had any issues with them in winter, but wouldn't spend any extra to have them. I use steel on the van because they're less money, and take a hit from a curb better than aluminum.... My opinion, FWIW, whatever suits your preference should be fine.
 

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Personally, I don't change wheels, just change tires. That means new balancing and condition check on a yearly basis. :) Also means lug nuts get beat up by impact wrenches. :(

Sometimes the steel winter wheels have a different rim size to get more tire depth, versus width, for winter traction and pot hole season. That's not needed for the 225/65R17 size, it's for when the rim is only sitting about 3" above the pavement, tire fully inflated.

what are the extra numbers 106T XL after the 225/65R17?
XL stands for extra load
106 is the load index
T is the speed rating

Tire Wheel Bicycle tire Automotive tire Tread



Wheel covers at Canadian Tire:
 
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IMO if you're going to bother with snow tires, go all out and go studded. Normal snow tires ARE better in snow than all-seasons, but not enough for me to care. Studded snows mean you can entirely stop caring about low-speed icy performance, which tends to be the biggest problem. Studs provide enough grip on ice that you can fully stop and restart on hills you'd otherwise have to rely on momentum to get up.

I personally have never put snow tires on a caravan in New England, and my driveway is bad enough that many people can't drive out of it. Depending on how experienced/skilled you and the other people driving the vehicle may be with snow, YMMV. I certainly wouldn't encourage everyone to drive that way.
 

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Personally, I don't change wheels, just change tires. That means new balancing and condition check on a yearly basis. :) Also means lug nuts get beat up by impact wrenches. :(

Sometimes the steel winter wheels have a different rim size to get more tire depth, versus width, for winter traction and pot hole season. That's not needed for the 225/65R17 size, it's for when the rim is only sitting about 3" above the pavement, tire fully inflated.



XL stands for extra load
106 is the load index
T is the speed rating

View attachment 63780


Wheel covers at Canadian Tire:
I've read the only difference would be price, winter wheels are cheaper. Some also supposedly have an extra chemical resistant coat.

Being in Canada, I suppose winters are long. Why you want nice wheels on a short sunmer but ugly wheels during the long winter?
 

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IMO if you're going to bother with snow tires, go all out and go studded. Normal snow tires ARE better in snow than all-seasons, but not enough for me to care. Studded snows mean you can entirely stop caring about low-speed icy performance, which tends to be the biggest problem. Studs provide enough grip on ice that you can fully stop and restart on hills you'd otherwise have to rely on momentum to get up.

I personally have never put snow tires on a caravan in New England, and my driveway is bad enough that many people can't drive out of it. Depending on how experienced/skilled you and the other people driving the vehicle may be with snow, YMMV. I certainly wouldn't encourage everyone to drive that way.
Many places don't allow studed tires anymore. Also, it might be very cold but not snowy or icy. Studded tires shouldn't be used if no ice is present, while you can keep using regular snow tires on those ice-less days.
 
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