Winter’s over, and you want to remove the studs from your snow tires—but perhaps you’ve never done it before. Or maybe you’re moving to a state that doesn’t allow studded tires on its roads.
While putting studs on your tires is a job best left to a professional, removing studs from tires is easy, and you can definitely do it by yourself.
These are some things we’re going to go through in this article:
- How to remove studs from tires step by step.
- How many studs are there on a tire?
- Can you use winter tires in the summer?
- Is it safe to remove studs from tires?
- How much does it cost to have studs removed from tires?
How to Remove Studs From Tires Step by Step
Here’s how to remove studs from tires at home. It’s relatively easy, doesn’t take too much time, and you can usually do it with a tool you already have.
Just remember that once you’ve removed studs from your snow tires, you can’t restud them. There will be dirt and debris in the tire, and the studs won’t grab onto the rubber. This is why you should also never stud old tires, but only brand new ones.
Step 1: Take off the Tire
You’ll need room and you’ll need to use some strength, so taking the tire off the car will make it easier to work on it. You can use a jack to prop up the car while you’re doing stud removal, and keep the tire supported on the ground. You can hold it between your legs to keep it in place.
Step 2: Find Some Lubricant
First of all, you’ll want to grab some kind of a lubricant. Some people use soap, others use WD-40 or Liquid Wrench. We recommend not applying greasy lubricants on your tires, as they might affect the traction of your tires and potentially cause a dangerous situation.
You can still pop out the studs without any lubricant, but they come off easier with something to loosen them up a bit. Try some simple dish soap with water and see if it works.
Step 3: Get the Correct Tools
As far as tools go, you have a couple of different options. Try some of them and see if they work.
The basic tool used for tire stud removal is a flat head screwdriver. It will work on some studs, especially if they are removable tire studs with a round base that are not deep inside the tire.
Others use a pair of pliers for removable studs for tires. Needle nose pliers can work if the studs still have enough of a tip for you to grab them. If the tires and studs are very old and used, a screwdriver may be the better option.
You can also buy a specific tool for stud removal. A tire stud remover could be the right option if your tire studs don’t have a round base but instead are inserted deep inside the tire.
If you’re not sure what the status of tire studs is, you can inspect and even dig out one of them as a test. This way, you can see better which technique will work better for you.
Step 4: Find the Right Movement for the Studs
Dip the tool’s tip in your chosen lubricant, or apply the soap directly on the tire. The right movement depends on the studs and your chosen tool.
Stud Removal Tool
If you have a stud removal tool, just place it firmly over the stud and drive it down to the bottom. Studs on snow tires usually have a bottom that’s inserted quite deep inside the tire, but you’ll need to measure your strength to not damage the tire.
With a screwdriver, drive the tip beneath the stud’s edge and lift up to pop the stud out. You’ll get the right spot after your first 10 or so studs, and you’ll get used to it as you go. Even so, prepare to spend about an hour or more on your car when removing the studs.
With pliers, grab the tip of the stud and pull it upward. Some twisting motion can help you get the stud out, and you can even press it down to loosen it up.
Step 5: Inspect the Tires
After stud removal, you’ll need to inspect the tires for any possible punctures. Especially if your studs were driven deep into the tire, there might be some damage.
You can test for any leakage by submerging the tire in water and watching out for air coming out. Another option is to spray some soapy water or window cleaner on the tire and see if bubbles start forming.
How Many Studs Are There on a Tire?
A typical studded tire will have about 100 studs—between 60 and 120 studs is the average, but it depends on the brand. They’re usually placed in a couple of rows on both sides of the tire.
Can You Use Winter Tires in the Summer?
It depends on where you live. Some states don’t allow for studded tires at all, others only in the winter. You can often use studless winter tires in the summer, but it’s not ideal.
Snow tires with studs will be noisier on the road, and even if you remove the studs they’re not made for the summer heat. The rubber on winter stud tires is designed to have the best grip and performance at a lower temperature, so they’ll likely get ruined faster.
Is It Safe To Remove Studs From Tires?
Yes, it’s safe to remove studs from tires, but always remember to inspect your tires after stud removal to ensure there’s no damage.
How Much Does It Cost To Have Studs Removed From Tires?
Getting studs out of tires is a relatively cheap operation. If you decide not to do it on your own, you can be prepared to pay around $30 to $40 for a set of tires.
Get to Work
Now you know how to remove studs from tires, it’s time to get to work! Grab your pliers or screwdriver and some simple lubricant and start popping them out. It will take you a little while, but you’ll get used to it fast. It will also save some money, and you won’t necessarily need a specialized tool.
Just keep in mind that not all studded tires will be ideal for longer use in the summer. A winter tire won’t have as much traction as with a summer tire, and they’ll wear out a lot faster.