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2018 XT Touring CVT
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1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My 2002 Forester owners manual says to put tire chains on the front wheels only. It does NOT say 4 wheels recommended, it says front only.
This sounds nuts.
Every high end tire shop, and every Subaru service manager I asked says it sounds nuts.

Anyone know what gives?

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2010 FXT Limited 4EAT Sport Shift
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1,587 Posts
Here's why Bernie-
In a perfect world, there'd be enough room between the rear suspension gear and your rear tire to allow for snow cables, chains and symmetrical allwheel drive could be symmetrically cabled/chained...but alas!
The requirement for very close all-four tire circumferences, is for high traction surfaces...when you shift to low-traction surfaces such as, sand, slippery wet roads, snow, slush and ice, the problem of different wheel speeds disappears because the tire gives before causing concerns with differentials.
Given that the engine weight is over the front wheels, there's an advantage to having the chains on the front wheels. Until you're climbing steep hills, where the weight shifts to the rear...still the weighted rears and the chained cable fronts continues the initial advantage and SOA is right in their recommendations.
-Quick

My 2002 Forester owners manual says to put tire chains on the front wheels only. It does NOT say 4 wheels recommended, it says front only.
This sounds nuts.
Every high end tire shop, and every Subaru service manager I asked says it sounds nuts.

Anyone know what gives?

(Moderators, if you think this post belongs in another section, please move it there)
 

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Registered
2018 XT Touring CVT
Joined
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1,312 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
If the issue is rear clearance, then the fix is easy.

For winter tires, I was going to get one size smaller anyway (think opposite a smooth, hot, dry racetrack).

205/60-16 will give me one quarter inch extra clearance all around, enough for cable type chains.

The center diff on a manual trans is a viscous coupling, won't that overheat under extended slippage?
 
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