Why you should have separate wheels for winter and summer


To quote the Beatles, “Little darling, it’s been a long and lonely winter.” And in many parts of the country, it went on much longer than expected, with snow continuing to fall even into May. Personally, I always feel that I am tempting The Automotive Powers That Be when I swap the winter boots for the summer sandals, but it has to be done sometime.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.hagerty.com/articles-videos/articles/2018/05/14/why-you-should-have-separate-wheels-for-winter-and-summer


For those without a air compressor I recommend the $40 electric impact wrench (120VAC) from harbor freight. This combined with impact sockets and a floor jack will make quick work of your twice yearly tire/wheel switch. When remounting I only lightly snug with the impact and finish them off with a torque wrench.

I also highly recommend anti seize on the back of the wheels as Rob mentioned. Without it the wheels on my 04’ 325xiT were nearly impossible to remove, resulting in me pounding on the tires with my foot to finally break them free (zero fun).

In addition to checking brake pads this is a prime opportunity to flush the brake fluid. I like to do this every 1-2 years to keep things fresh.


@zackrobinson81- Great tips. I recently purchased an electric impact made by Rigid (find where I purchased it here) and cannot recommend purchase of one enough. No hose or compressor to deal with and still hits with force of (claimed) 450 ft/lbs and has a clutch to prevent over tightening lugs on installation.


While this is very useful info for DIYers, there is another alternative. I have dedicated summer and winter tires, both sets mounted. The tire store where I purchase my tires (Jack Williams here in Eastern PA) swaps them out for free every spring and fall. I’m sure there must be many other retailers willing to do the same.


I use an 18V Ryobi P1830 impact wrench. It works great and there is no cord or hose!