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Snow Chain

Discussion in 'Model X' started by K-MTG, Nov 8, 2016.

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  1. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    I am in SoCal but plan on going either to Snow Valley (San Bernardino Mountains) or Kirkwood (Lake Tahoe) next month. I recall a few years ago when it snowed, they asked each car (in San Bernardino) "Do you have chains?", I didn't so they turned me back. (Not sure if they were checking if I had chains on my tires or if I had them in my car (trunk, etc...).

    So I bought chains at PepBoys for my Acura MDX for around $80 or so. It became helpful on a following trip in 2012, I was told to install chains before preceding to the top of the mountain. So I paid some guy $50 and he installed my chains and obviously it made the ride quality all bumpy.

    Do I need chains for my X? My standard tires do have the M + S. Tesla is selling them for $500: Tesla — Model X Snow Chain - Trak 4X4

    Is that my only option? Seems very pricey for something I probably won't even use since it doesn't rain/snow in California anymore.

    I also have to consider charging, I can make it up to the mountain but I don't have anyplace to destination charge during my stay.

    Thanks
     
  2. aesculus

    aesculus Still Trying to Figure this All Out

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    Calif law says you have to have appropriate tire chains in the car (2 driving wheels), even when you have awd and mud and snow tires (R2). The truth is that they always close the highway before they get to that point (R3). So if you have a set of chains in the car and tell them that if they ask, and you have AWD and M&S tires (standard on 75/90D X's) you are good to go. BTW I have never had them ask me if I had chains. In fact they just ask if I have AWD and M&S tires and that's it. I drive at least 40 days a winter past potential chain inspection sites.
     
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  3. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    Appreciate the info, looks like I should be fine! My Acura MDX though was also AWD with M + S tires so not sure why they told me to put them on.

    I would purchase the chains if they were under $100 just to be safe but I don't know which ones are compatible.
     
  4. McManX

    McManX Member

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    I get asked if I have chains on a relatively regular basis in the central Sierra, never have actually used them but usually have them. I bought the tesla chains and it seem like they are the only option because the suspension prevents full wrap around the back of the wheel type chains.

    Also if you do get the chains you should also get a lug nut cap remover because the chains don't fit over the caps on the stock 20"s. Tested mine in the garage a few weeks ago.

    IMG_0075.JPG.jpeg
     
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  5. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    Any situation where they mandated you had your chains on?? Can I carry my old Acura MDX chains in the trunk so if they want to check I have them
     
  6. McManX

    McManX Member

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    Never been required to put them on (with all season / 4wd but otherwise were required). Whenever I was asked if I had chains they just want you to say yes and wave you to go on, I have never had to show them. If they want to see them, I guess your Acura ones would probably work but that kinda defeats the purpose, should have some that fit or wait out the storm.
     
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  7. FlatSix911

    FlatSix911 918 Hybrid

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    You do not need chains with AWD and M+S (mud and snow) rated OEM tires. :cool:
    I drive over Donner pass to Tahoe on a regular basis in the winter and have never needed chains.
     
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  8. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    I would assume an X without chains would be better than any of my other current vehicles with chains (Acura RDX (FWD), Acura TLX (Sh-AWD), Cadillac ELR (NO-WAY)...

    I only had one snow failure several years ago, my 2004 Acura MDX (4-WD) slipped into a snow pile when I was driving downhill. Another car was also stuck but I was able get out using the VM-4 Lock Feature which is like a slip start feature.
     
  9. McManX

    McManX Member

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    Yah I agree, X will probably never need chains. I don't plan on using them, just have them for compliance and emergency purposes.
     
  10. ohmman

    ohmman Maximum Plaid Member

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    FWIW, I made a costly error on my MS using aftermarket "Z" chains last year. Damaged the rear suspension and the repairs were well over the $500 Tesla chain cost.

    I'll be buying the Tesla store chains.
     
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  11. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    How did it damage the car?

    Where did you go that required you to install chains?

    I would assume I could check online if I need chains or not and hold off? Or do you think I should buy the $500 chains?

    Sorry for all of these questions, living in SoCal I lack the knowledge of cold-weather driving.
     
  12. McManX

    McManX Member

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  13. ohmman

    ohmman Maximum Plaid Member

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    My S is not AWD. This was over Donner Pass coming home from Tahoe. It tore up suspension parts because, even at under 25mph, the chains moved enough to rub it. I had them on the car only over the pass where it was required, no more. Lesson learned.
     
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  14. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    Wow! I would assume you only needed chains cause your S wasn't AWD? I wonder if we can get a chain rental system from Tesla or owners like they did with the Chademo adapter.
     
  15. BigMskiman

    BigMskiman Member

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    Concur with the rest, pack any kind of chains you have in a box for that rare occasion when a check-station attendant asks to verify.
    This is for Tahoe & surrounding area (my pass is at Bear Valley). You will never install them unless it's killer-miserable out there.

    Have to say those TM chains look fine, I may get some anyway........
     
  16. someTimesJoe

    someTimesJoe Member

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    Seems like the only proper choice are the Tesla chains. $500 is steep for chains that I may never use. I've driven through chain control checkpoints a few times and only once was I asked if I had some and to put it on. It's only been once where it was so bad they turned everyone around as well.

    I'm going to Tahoe next month and debating on getting a set just for emergency and compliance as someone else stated above. Hasn't rained or snowed much yet and with my luck, it'll be storming the weekend I go.

    Found the manufacture's website for the chains that Tesla sell. Looks pretty good quality but they don't ship to the US.

    Find your trak
     
  17. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    Did you have AWD in the car you were told to put chains on?

    Also, it seems that the Tesla chains aren't even compatible with my standard 20 inch Tesla silver wheels? Is that correct, it only works with the helix wheels? Thats disappointing
     
  18. someTimesJoe

    someTimesJoe Member

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    Nope I didn't have a AWD at the time I was asked.

    On the Tesla site, it says 20" Tesla Wheels but the diagram shows and says Helix. Someone in the thread above put it on the standard 20" with the lug cover removed and I'll assume the Helix, you would just need to remove the center cap only as the lugs should be exposed underneath.
     
  19. K-MTG

    K-MTG Sunshade Captain of TMC

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    If you did have AWD would they let you go?

    So I should be fine with my standard silver tires or would Tesla void my warranty or would it just not work with my tires??
     
  20. McManX

    McManX Member

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    I put the chains on the standard wheel (see above). Just have to remove one lug nut cap.
     
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