Snow in the PNW vs. 95 Bronco? (inexperienced in snow) - Ford Bronco Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 01:43 PM Thread Starter
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Question Snow in the PNW vs. 95 Bronco? (inexperienced in snow)

Holy balls it's been a minute since I've been on fullsizebronco.com!!! Anyway, I moved to Portland/Vancouver area from Tucson a few years ago. I've done plenty of fun casual off-roading in the desert, but now, over the past 24 hours, we've received a serious dumping of snow, about 8-12 inches on ground. My question is simple: How will my 95 Bronco tackle these driving conditions in 4-wheel drive?

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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 01:57 PM
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Mines pretty stock but on 33x10.5 tires and it handled everything I threw at it this past weekend. Anywhere from 8-10 inches I'd say.


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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 02:32 PM
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It all comes down to how you drive, 4 wheel drive doesn't make a vehicle a snow fighter like most people assume. That being said a mostly stock bronco should easily be able to handle a foot or less of snow, just keep your speed down and anticipate every move well before it needs to be made.


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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 02:47 PM
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Also can say you should be more then fine.

The bronco is short though and tends to come around quicker then most people think. If you can find somewhere safe, and wide open, getting to know your bronco in the snow is the best thing you can do. Knowing how its gonna react when it doesn't matter and just goofing around goes a long ways when you only have time to react later.

I wish we had 10" of snow here, sounds like fun.

Also clean you truck off ASAP when the roads are bad, yours looks pretty clean to get ate up winter driving. Be sure to spray out the fenders and such, not just the outside.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 03:03 PM
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Yo Stalefish,
I agree with jtetterton.
As long as tires are good, same size, etc., as well as steering, transfer case, locking hubs...etc.

This is by Ford in 96 Bronco Owners Guide by Hiller Ford
same as most earlier years especially 92-96, except for:
92 through 95 uses the Electronic Engine Control, version Four (EEC-IV, aka On Board Diagnostics (OBD-I)) engine management computer
96 uses the OBD-II (EEC-V) engine management computer;
4WABS (93-96);
RABS (87-92);
Air Bag (94-96);
3 Screw Automatic Locking Hubs (Built from May 95 through 96); Spark Plug Wire Routing & Firing Order (The firing order for 1987-1993 5.0Ls is 1-5-4-2-6-3-7-8. The firing order for 1994- 96 5.0Ls & all 5.8Ls is 1-3-7-2-6-5-4-8.);
R134a in 94-96;
2-piece Spindle Rolling Diaphragm Seal (RDS) used on 5/95 to 96 Broncos & F Series 1/2-ton 4WD;
Mass Air Flow in 95 5.8 California models and in all 96s, other years used Manifold Absolute Pressure Sensor (MAP).
96 5.8 do not have the Air Injection (AIR), Secondary Air Injection; Pump (Smog Pump), Thermactor Air Bypass (TAB) & Thermactor Air Diverter (TAD) Solenoids; Diverter, Check & Bypass Valves, Cross-Over Tube, etc. But 96 5.0 does have the system.
The 96, Vapor Management Valve (VMV) replaces the canister purge valve (CanP valve) used in EEC IV.
The Speed Control Deactivation Switch (SCDS) in a 93 Bronco is located on the driver side frame raii. In 94 through 96 it is on the master cylinder. It has an open recall.
Still researching other differences.
Excerpts;
"Improve your ventilation by keeping all air inlet vents clear of snow, leaves, and other debris.
If the engine is idling while you are stopped in an open area for long periods of time, open the windows at least one inch (2.5 cm). Also, adjust the heating or air conditioning to bring in outside air.
HEATING Set fan speed at MEDIUM or HIGH, the function selector knob on VENT, FLOOR, MIX, or the DEFROST symbol and the temperature control knob on any desired position.

Remove any snow, ice or leaves from the air intake area of your Air Conditioner and Heater System which could block the air intake. The intake area is located at the bottom of the windshield.

Driving Off Road with 4-Wheel Drive
Most vehicles with four-wheel drive are especially equipped for driving on sand, snow, mud, or rough terrain and have operating characteristics that are somewhat different from conventional vehicles, both off and on the road.
The driving tips below will help you learn to use four-wheel drive.
Do not use 4WD LOW on dry, hard-surfaced roads.
Special maintenance procedures are necessary after operating with drive components in water.
Manual locking hubs must be in LOCK position before shifting into four-wheel drive.
When using four-wheel drive, maintain steering wheel control at all times, especially in rough terrain. Since sudden changes in terrain can result in abrupt steering wheel motion, make sure you grip the steering wheel rim from the outside. Do not grip the spokes.
Drive cautiously to avoid vehicle damage from concealed objects such as rocks and stumps.

A four-wheel drive vehicle has advantages over two-wheel drive vehicles in snow and ice but can skid like any other vehicle. If so equipped, keep the vehicle in four-wheel drive if icy or slippery conditions exist.
Avoid sudden applications of power and quick changes of direction on snow or ice. Apply the accelerator slowly and steadily when starting from a full stop.

Drive cautiously on wet or snowy roads:
Do not quickly move the steering wheel unless necessary.
Drive slower than you normally would.
Give your vehicle more distance to stop.
To stop on ice, shift to Neutral below 10 mph and gently pump brakes. (Consider using one of the lower gears.)
miesk5 note, I try to stay in 2nd with the E4OD.
Read more, such as about tire chains.

If you have manual locking hubs, lock them before driving and just shift between 2H & 4 H as necessary.

Tire Circumference Differences; "...The ability of four-wheel drive and all-wheel drive vehicles to divide the engine's horsepower between its four tires is especially useful on loose or slippery surfaces such as sand and dirt, as well as on wet, icy or snow-covered roads. However it's important to remember that in order to transfer this extra power, the four-wheel drive and all-wheel drive vehicle's driveline mechanically connects the tires so they work in unison. Four-wheel drive and all-wheel drive vehicles are equipped with additional differentials and/or viscous couplings that are designed to allow momentary differences in wheel speeds when the vehicle turns a corner or temporarily spins a tire. However, if the differentials or viscous couplings are forced to operate /100%.jpg of the time because of mismatched tires, they will experience excessive heat and unwarranted wear until they fail. This necessitates that four-wheel drive and all-wheel drive vehicles use tires that are very closely matched. This is because different diameter tires roll a different number of times each mile as a result of the variations in their circumferences. Tire diameter variations can be caused by accidentally using different sized tires, tires with different tread designs, tires made by different manufacturers, different inflation pressures or even tires worn to different tread depths. As an example of different tire diameters resulting from tires worn to different tread depths, we'll compare two 225/45R17-sized tires, a new tire with its original tread depth of 10/32-inch and a second tire worn to 8/32-inch of remaining tread depth. The new 225/45R17-sized tire has a calculated diameter of 24.97", a circumference of 78.44" and will roll 835 times each mile. The same tire worn to 8/32-inch of remaining tread depth is calculated to be 1/8" shorter with a diameter of 24.84", have a circumference of 78.04" and will roll 839 times per mile. While the difference of 1/8" in overall diameter doesn't seem excessive, the resulting 4 revolutions per mile difference can place a continuous strain on the tires and vehicle's driveline. Obviously, the greater the difference in the tires' circumferences, the greater the resulting strain. This makes maintaining the vehicle manufacturer's recommended tire inflation pressures and using "matched" tires on all wheel positions necessary procedures to reduce strain on the vehicle's driveline. Using "matched" tires means all four tires are the same brand, design and tread depth. Mixing tire brands, tread designs and tread depths may cause components in the vehicle's driveline to fail. Mismatched tires or using improper inflation pressures for all-wheel drive and four-wheel drive vehicles can also result in immediate drivability problems. Some Control Trac equipped vehicles in 4Auto mode may exhibit a shutter on acceleration and/or a noise from the front driveline and transfer case while driving. Some all-wheel drive and four-wheel drive vehicles may exhibit axle windup or binding while driving. Some four-wheel drive vehicles (manual or electronic shift) with a two-wheel drive mode may refuse to shift "on the fly" into 4x4 Auto or 4x4 High at highway speeds..." read more, esp. Matching Tires By Shaving Them to Maintain Equivalent Tire Tread

See my partially recovered Bronco web site ...Will need to clean up dead links & add many more new links some day. Thanks to Mr. Schwim!
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 03:20 PM
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Last winter I had a new set of 33x12.5 studded duratracs on 15x10 white wagon wheels, on my '90, w/front leveling coils only.
I took it through a snow covered field trying to follow an old friends driveway for about 1/2 mile in.

She plowed on through a good 16" of snow and when I got to his place, I realized I had turned the hubs but hadn't even locked in 4x.
Came back out w/out 4x again, since she did so well. I think you'll be just fine in the deep. It's the slippery, sloppy road stuff that gets to be a bigger problem.

As advised... find a good, open parking area of something similar and just go much about some. Learning the reaction of your Bronco in those slippery conditions is priceless.


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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 04:10 PM Thread Starter
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Wow thanks for all the commentary!!! I'm gonna head across the street to the elementary school parking lot and get warm and fuzzy with it in the snow. There's about 12" now and I live on a hill with a 10% or so grade.
I have noticed that my steering has been wicked loose. How stiff and accurate is your steering?
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
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Well - took that snow like a ****in CHAMP!!! Love this damn truck!
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 09:05 PM
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As stated, brake and steer like each wheel is only held on with a single lug nut. 4wd may provide acceleration advantages over others, but you are equally disadvantaged at stopping and turning, please don't forget that. Physics are a bitch.

Also, as your snow melts on the road ways, please make sure your wiper fluid is topped up. Carry an extra bottle in the car with you, too. And make sure it's rated for freezing temps.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 09:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stalefish View Post
Wow thanks for all the commentary!!! I'm gonna head across the street to the elementary school parking lot and get warm and fuzzy with it in the snow. There's about 12" now and I live on a hill with a 10% or so grade.
I have noticed that my steering has been wicked loose. How stiff and accurate is your steering?
10% grade doesn't seem like much. It comes down to tires that work for winter, including their age and tread left. Then speed, never get overconfident, it's interesting you have all the snow, usually you get ice. you have ABS as well, and 4 wheel low is very helpful in slowly navigating a hill, especially down. Once your truck gets going down, if it's slick at all, it usually takes a long time to stop and it's hard to correct if you lose steering control.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 10:02 PM
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be careful with the snow/slush built up between lanes, if it is pretty thick,my 78 will tend to swap ends VERY quickly if I am not careful changing lanes, even after driving it for 25 winters I still need to respect its limits

also watch when snow is deeper at curb side,if you hit deeper stuff it will pull you in faster than you can say oh shit

have fun and remember just because it can go like hell through deep snow, you still need to turn and stop!

around here a good % of vehicles in the ditch crashed up and upside down on bad road days are 4x4 or awd vehicles that people think are invincible
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 10:09 PM
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Always remember - SAFETY first!

Four wheel drive works wonders when starting and maintaining control in wet and or slippery conditions, but it is USELESS - when stopping. Every vehicle has "four wheel brakes". You have absolutely no advantage whatsoever when braking or trying to stop just because your vehicle has four wheel drive.

Have fun, but be safe while doing it!

Very good advice given already, find a large, empty parking lot and have some fun learning how to control the vehicle under varying braking and / or sliding situations.

When we lived in Michigan I used to try to get my wife to practice driving in the snow by going to an empty parking lot and "playing". She wouldn't have any part of it.

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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-12-2017, 12:12 AM
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great advice being given here. one of the simplest explanations I've ever heard... "it's kinda like driving a boat, on land."
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-12-2017, 01:55 AM Thread Starter
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Agreed - fantastic advice fellas!! Thanks so much!!

Jay-

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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-12-2017, 07:08 AM
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Just thinking out loud, Reading this it sounds like first time with now so maybe also first time in cold(ish) weather (maybe not). I would suggest not running your tank empty and a bottle of heat will not hurt anything either. I feel this is especially important with the bronco tank given its shape/size its a little more prone to condensation and such then other vehicles.
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post #16 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-12-2017, 03:03 PM
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Driving a boat on land is a perfect description!

I kept tire chains in the Bronco in winter, the snow always seemed to turn to ice pretty quick and it was nice to slap them on at a moment's notice. Doesn't get much better than a Bronco running through the woods in a foot of freshly fallen snow!
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post #17 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-13-2017, 09:05 AM
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I spent most my driving life in a Jeep, 2WD pickup or work van tackling the Midwest winters so a Bronco should eat it up. The only time I got in trouble is if I got in a pretty good drift, then I had to back out and take a couple stabs at it to beak through.
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post #18 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-13-2017, 09:08 AM
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Just like mud but washes off a lot easier.
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post #19 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-13-2017, 02:10 PM
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A couple of things I was thinking about on my way to work this morning in the ice was to:

A) Only drive as fast as you are comfortable with
B) Don't let the guy behind you freak you out for going slow, just let them by when you can safely.

I haven't driven on dry pavement (read ice and or snow) for weeks now. I do tend to drive faster than most so the people doing 25 can be annoying but then I always remind myself that not everyone is comfortable on ice/snow and I give them plenty of room until it is safe to get around.

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Well try snatch next time.
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