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I have them on my older OBW, and they're excellent--with two caveats: they can be a bit noisy on some road surfaces, and they do tend to pick up alot of small stones. Handling is great in dry, wet or snow conditions, and braking is very good too. The problem for installing on the XT is that they are not speed rated for our cars (we need a V tire, and the HydroEdge aren't made for those speeds.)
 

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I just picked a set of this tires for my 2012 outback.. Ill post my driving experience after they are installed..
 

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i don't often run them personally but i am a big fan of michelins because i feel like that's the one brand i can recommend to folks that always performs well no matter which model tire is bought. other brands have great tires...but have a few lesser ones too.

tire rack and other online retailers often have substantial reviews as well.
 

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I had just about decided that the Hydroedge was the tire I wanted on my 2001 base OB wagon. Then one tire place told me it was a T-rated tire and the OB needs an H-rated tire, even though I don't drive fast at all. T-rated tires have better treadwear and are quieter. How important is sticking with an H-rated tire?
 

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It is a liability thing. Many tire places will not replace with a lower speed rating than what came from the factory.
 

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I installed a set of Hydro Edge tires about a month ago. I am very happy with them, I have no snow experience with them, but they really are more "planted" in the rain than the Continentals were. They feel a bit firmer in general, but not in a bad way.

I did have one issue initially, one of tires was defective. I had vibration around 65 mph and up. Firestone did a road force check and the tire was too far out of round. I bought the tires from the Tire Rack and they promptly sent a replacement and arranged for UPS to pick up the defective tire. I've never had a bad tire from Michelin, so that bothered me, but everyone made it good, so no complaints here.
 

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H is rated to 130 MPH, T is rated to 118 MPH. Find another tire place. Most people shouldn't be driving 118 anyways.
Good points, and just what I said to the guy. He said T and H are not only speed ratings, but load ratings as well, and a T tire is not 'strong' enough for the OBW. I suspect that to the extent that's true it reflects the OBW's design as a sometimes off-road vehicle. You might understandably want stiffer sidewalls when driving over rocks. I never drive off-road, and the popularity of the HydroEdge in these forums suggests there haven't been problems either running the tires or getting them installed. Is that right? Has anyone been advised not to install T tires on an OBW?
 

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There is a separate number for load rating. Both the OEM tire and the HydroEdge have a load rating of 97 which equates to 1609 lbs per tire.

This guy is officially lying now or severely uneducated about the products he sells. I would go somewhere else in either case.
 

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There is a separate number for load rating. Both the OEM tire and the HydroEdge have a load rating of 97 which equates to 1609 lbs per tire.

This guy is officially lying now or severely uneducated about the products he sells. I would go somewhere else in either case.
This is very helpful. Thank you.
 

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I think the speed-rating is more to improve emergency-maneuver handling than a load-rating issue.

Dave

Bingo! H rated tires will perform better than T rated tires at ALL speeds. Thus, even though you don't drive at speeds over 100mph, you will have better traction and performance in avoidance maneuvers with higher rated tires. When I was selling tires, our policy was that we would go down one rating from factory original (would go up as high as you like).

If anyone is concerned with keeping the V rating, check out the Good Year Assurance TripleTred. It is comparable to the HydroEdge and available in limited sizes with a V rating. It also has a comparable warranty at 80,000 miles, which is exceptional for a V rated tire.
 

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Higher speed rated tires do no automatically have better traction than a lower speed rating tire. The biggest difference between a higher speed rated tire and a lower speed rated tire is its ability to dissipate heat. As a tire spins faster against the ground it generates more heat and it needs to be able to dissipate that heat fast enough to sustain certain speeds. The next major difference is corner ability.

Traction is a completely separate rating from speed and is also weather condition dependent. Either way, all tires have a UTOQ Traction rating which specifies how well the tires stop on wet concrete and wet asphalt. Both the OEM tire, the Michelin HydroEdge and the TripleTred have an A rating (Possible ratings are AA, A, B and C).

The type of tire that the vehicle comes from the factory with almost always correlates to the max speed of the vehicle set by the manufacturer from the factory. If your car came with H rated tires then the manufacturer most likely has the speed governor set around 130 MPH. It should be noted that 2010+ Outbacks come with a speed governor of 118MPH and they come stock with T rated tires.

Also the TripleTred is only available in H speed rating in the sizes that the original poster would need (225-16R16). Also the V rated TripleTred has a 70k warranty. The H rated and below have the 80k warranty.
 

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I guess I wasn't clear, but you are correct. Higher speed rated tires do not necessarily equate to better traction as it relates to the tire's traction rating. However, the traction rating applies to wet weather braking performance. This doesn't necessarily equate to handling. When I said "traction and performance" I was referring more to handling/maneuverability (i.e. high-speed cornering). Generally speaking, a higher rated tire will perform better (in dry conditions) in this sense than a lower rated tire, all other factors being equal.

As for the TripleTreds, you are once again correct. The V rated version only carries a 70,000 mile warranty. I just checked the Tire Rack warranty info, which contradicts the Good Year site. I also didn't pay attention to what size tire the OP needed. Still 70,000 miles for a V rated tire is pretty dang good.

Tire Rack: Goodyear*Assurance TripleTred

GoodYear: Assurance TripleTred All-Season | Goodyear Tires
 

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I just went and did some more looking and I'm not sure how we got on the topic of V rated tires anyway. From what I've seen, the OP's car came with H rated 225/55R17 tires. Thus, the H rated TripleTred will work just fine and offer the 80,000 mile warranty. That's a pretty hard combination to beat in my opinion. They may not perform (handle) quite as well as some other options, but they are a nice riding tire and last a long time if you care for them properly.
 

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70k warranty on a V rated tire is awesome.

I have heard mixed reviews from Outback owners about uneven wear with the Tripletreads over time but they have redesigned them so that may not be an issue any longer. I have also read the glowing reviews about their snow traction.

I personally think that Michelin makes better tires compared to Goodyear but I have nothing to back that up with...lol
 
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