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What Makes Ice Cleats Effective on Black Ice

Black Ice

Black ice separates mediocre Ice Cleats from professional, industrial quality ice cleats. Most people assume that all Ice Cleats work on black ice. However, many ice cleats are ineffective on black ice.

The key to traction on ice is penetration. Penetration is even more crucial on black ice because black ice offers no friction. Black ice is even more treacherous when

  • there’s water or a layer of snow on top of the ice;
  • in frigid temperatures when ice is denser;
  • when black ice is on a sloping or uneven sidewalk, driveway, or parking lot; or
  • worst of all, there's a combination of all of these conditions.

There are three crucial considerations when selecting the best ice cleats for traction on black ice.

  1. The key to penetrating black ice, or any ice, is the aggressiveness of the Ice Cleat’s traction system. The least aggressive method uses wound steel coils that generate traction using hundreds of very non-aggressive edges.
    The most effective ice cleats on black ice are those with aggressive tungsten carbide studs with a small surface area (sharper) best able to penetrate the ice like those found on Winter Walking Ice Cleats. It's no different than trying to drive a blunt nail vs a sharp one.
    The recreational ice cleats sold in most sporting goods, hardware, and department stores fall somewhere in between coils and sharp tungsten carbide spikes.
  2. The second most important consideration is well-distributed spikes in adequate numbers to assure that at least one aggressive spike contacts the black ice at all times. Constant contact with the ice is critical because once you lose traction it’s tough to recover.
  3. The third crucial consideration is strong, dependable straps that won’t break and maintain the alignment on the ice cleats on your footwear. If you lose an ice cleat in the middle of an open parking lot covered with black ice, you’re in trouble. That’s because walking on black ice without ice cleats is almost impossible.
    Walking with just one Ice Cleat is almost as bad as not wearing any ice cleats. Furthermore, retrieving an ice cleat and trying to put it back on while standing on black ice is an experience no one should attempt.

I can’t guarantee the ice cleats I recommend will prevent you from slipping on black ice. Any Ice Cleat, no matter how well-made, can break or find a way to come off your shoes or boots. However, I can guarantee that, in my professional opinion, the Winter Walking Ice Cleats I recommend will reduce the risk of slipping on black ice more than any other ice cleats on the market.

Ice Cleats with the Best Traction Are Not Always the Best Choice

This may seem counterintuitive. However, there are other considerations in determining the best ice cleats. If you're constantly transitioning indoors or in and out of a vehicle, the most aggressive and effective ice cleats might be impractical. Aggressive ice cleats require that you remove them before going indoors because of sharp studs

  • will damage interior floors; or
  • be slippery on smooth, hard floors.

Constantly having to remove and put ice cleats back on won't use them because it's too inconvenient. Examples include delivery drivers, policemen, postal workers, or people living in or commuting into the city.

Even if you're only going indoors occasionally, you may be physically unable to remove and put ice cleats back on. This would include senior citizens, people with disabilities, and those recovering from surgery. However, my recommended Winter Walking Ice Cleats with Transitional Traction provide excellent traction on black ice. You can wear them on most indoor floors and while driving. The traction isn't as good as my most aggressive ice cleats, but you'll use them, and they will protect you.

Some companies restrict drivers from wearing full-sole ice cleats. These companies are concerned with ice cleats restricting the driver's ability to move between pedals. Therefore I'll recommend the best heel-only ice cleats.

Full-Sole Ice Cleats for Ultimate Traction on Black Ice

Always opt for full-sole ice cleats whenever possible. Having well-distributed aggressive tungsten carbide studs across the entire bottom of your shoe or boot

  • provides far better traction especially on uneven ice; and
  • allow you to walk naturally because of spikes at the base of the heel and at the front.
Rough, Uneven Ice

Winter Walking HIGH-PRO Ice Cleats

Winter Walking HIGH-PRO is my #1 Recommendation. No other ice cleats will protect you better on black ice. But you have to remove them before going indoors or driving.

HIGH-PRO Revolutionary Features

  • 26 2mm Tungsten Carbide Studs 
    • provide excellent traction on ice and black ice;
    • are more studs than on any other stretch traction device; and
    • are molded in for greater retention and durability.
  • Tungsten Carbide Studs last far longer and stay sharper than the carbon steel spikes found in most competing ice cleats.
  • Patented Heel Spike allows walking naturally without using any new, special skills.
  • Studs are designed to stay uniformly sharp throughout their useful life.
  • Permanent studs are more comfortable than replaceable studs.
  • 1-Piece Molded Proprietary Synthetic Compound Straps 
    • are extremely durable;
    • resistant to chemicals and other contaminants;
    • have no memory and never stretch out of shape;
    • stay flexible at low temperatures; and
    • have a unique characteristic that grips the surface of your footwear to prevent it from slipping out of alignment.
  • Sole/Heel (colored) material is harder material than upper stretch portion so sole/heel have greater abrasion resistance and durability while upper has greater stretch.
  • The Dimpled Foot Bed grabs the bottom of your shoe or boot to prevent the device from sliding out of place.
  • Aggressive Tread Pattern is self-cleaning and provides traction in snow, slush and mud.
  • Wide Straps provide large surface areas to keep the ice cleats properly aligned.
  • Multiple Ridges on the inside of the heel strap help prevent ice cleats from slipping off the back of your heel.
  • Easy On / Easy Off because...
    • patented Dual Pull Tabs make it easier to grab hold of the ice cleats while stretching them over your shoes and boots;
    • patented Dual Density Construction makes it easier to stretch; and
    • Uni-Foot Design (No Left... No Right) eliminates the hassle of having to locate the left or right cleat.
  • Versatile because HIGH-PRO
    • fits over all types of shoes and boots;
    • provides traction in all slippery winter conditions; and
    • is safe to wear while driving.
  • Patented Open Design 
    • stays securely on footwear, and
    • is lightweight & compact.
  • Bright Blue Color facilitates compliance monitoring.
  • Sizes: JD6625-S Small, JD6625-M Medium, JD6625-L Large, JD-6625-XL Extra Large, JD6625-XXL Extra Extra Large
  • Model: JD6625
  • Made in the Taiwan
Winter Walking
HIGH-PRO Ice Cleats
$39.95 /pr.
Winter Walking HIGH-PRO Ice Cleats JD6625.
Winter Walking HIGH-PRO Ice Cleats JD6625 Dual Material Construction
Winter Walking HIGH-PRO Ice Cleats JD6625 Front Straps
Winter Walking HIGH-PRO Ice Cleats JD6625 Dual Pull Tabs
Winter Walking HIGH-PRO Ice Cleats JD6625 Side View.
Winter Walking HIGH-PRO Ice Cleats JD6625 Interior Surface.
Ice Cleats JD6625
$39.95 /pr.
Buy Ankle Strap Kit JD3800*
Fits All Sizes
$4.47 /pr.
*Not included in Volume Discount

HIGH-PRO ice cleats Demo Video

5 5 / 5 Stars
I could not have had a better company to do business with...
"It was the best experience both speaking with and purchasing from Nolan J. Noecker. I first called to inquire about them. Nolan was full of information. He made ordering, explaining and all facets of the order process just wonderful. I could not have had a better company to do business with. We will order again when we need these. They are a fabulous product.

We have given out his name and the company's name to many, and we've had many people look at our feet with the ice cleats on and want to know about them. They are fabulous. I have to say that they grip to everything. Ice & snow and sludge and truly one could dance on these weather dangerous elements wearing these ice grips. We've had many compliments as well.

Nolan was a great customer service rep for this product. Johnny on the spot for sure. I talked to him about many things for this product. I can't say enough great about him, the ice cleats, the company, the website, all of it. Thank you, Nolan, for a great experience like I've not had in a very long time. You get 5 Stars for fabulous "customer service." , Canton, OH 01/03/18
5 / 5
Based on 3 Reviews

Winter Walking LOW-PRO Ice Cleats

Winter Walking LOW-PRO is my top recommendation for people constantly going in and out of doors, vehicles, or have difficulty putting ice cleats on and taking them off. LOW-PRO is also safe to wear while driving and on most indoor floors without damaging them. So you can leave LOW-PRO all day.

$39.95 /pr.
LOW-PRO Ice Cleats on winter boots
LOW-PRO Ice Cleats Dual Material Construction
LOW-PRO Ice Cleats Transitional Traction
LOW-PRO Ice Cleats Front Straps
LOW-PRO Ice Cleats Heel Straps showing patented Dual Pull Tabs.
LOW-PRO Ice Cleats side view on winter boots and dress shoes.
LOW-PRO Ice Cleats showing a dogtooth surface that helps to prevent them from slipping out of place.
Ice Cleats JD6610
$39.95 /pr.
Buy Ankle Strap Kit JD3800*
Fits All Sizes
$4.47 /pr.
*Not included in Volume Discount

LOW-PRO Ice Cleats Demo Video

Aggregate Review
Aggregate Ratings
4.86 / 5
Based on 7 Reviews
Overall Satisfaction?

26 1mm tungsten carbide studs and aggressive self-cleaning treads provide excellent traction on ice, packed snow, deep snow, and black ice.

If you don't mind the bright color, these are the ice cleats to get that you can safely wear driving your car. Most people don't care about color. However, some people, like limousine drivers, prefer something more subdued.

If color matters, scroll down to find the all-black Winter Walking ALTRAGRIPS-LITE LOW PROFILE Ice Cleats.

ALTRAGRIPS-LITE are also available in XXL and XS.



Buy AltraGrips-Lite LP
Ice Cleats JD3615
$45.97 /pr.
Buy Ankle Strap Kit JD3800*
Fits All Sizes
$4.47 /pr.
*Not included in Volume Discount

AltraGrips-Lite Demo Video

Heel-Only Ice Cleats

I always recommend full-sole ice cleats whenever Company Policy doesn't prohibit their use while driving. It's critical that every stud is useful on both full-sole and heel-only ice cleats.

However, aggressive, effective studs are more crucial on heel-only ice cleats because you depend upon far fewer spikes to gain traction.

Therefore, choose Winter Walking HEEL-GRIPS™ with 26 2mm tungsten carbide studs if you're not constantly going in and out of doors. That's because you have to remove HEEL-GRIPS before going indoors because of the longer spikes will damage interior floors and may be slippery on smooth, hard surfaces.

Choose Winter Walking LOW-PRO HEEL™ with 26 1mm tungsten carbide studs if you're constantly going in and out of doors because they're safe to wear on most interior floors.

Winter Walking HEEL-GRIPS Ice Cleats

Ice Cleats JD325
$34.95 /pr.
LOW-PRO HEEL Sizing Chart
Men's Women's Size
16½+ --- XXL
12½ - 16 --- XL
9½ - 12 11½+ L
6½ - 9 8½ - 11 M
--- 6 - 8 S
Replacement Straps*
Fits All Sizes
$5.00 /pr.
*Not included in
Volume Discount
*Not included in Volume Discount

Winter Walking LOW-PRO HEEL Ice Cleats

Ice Cleats JD325
$34.95 /pr.
LOW-PRO HEEL Sizing Chart
Men's Women's Size
16½+ --- XXL
12½ - 16 --- XL
9½ - 12 11½+ L
6½ - 9 8½ - 11 M
--- 6 - 8 S

Replacement Straps*
Fits All Sizes
$5.00 /pr.
*Not included in
Volume Discount
*Not included in Volume Discount

Ice Cleats and Shoe Attachment Volume Discounts

Your discounts are Here's how the Volume Discount shows in your cart. This example shows a 10% discount. Your actual discount will depend upon my current discount policy and the quantity purchased.
Ice Cleats Volume Discounts

Winter Walking Ice Cleats Low Price Guaranty

No one is more dedicated to helping you find the best Ice Cleats and keeping you safe. I work very hard to bring you the most informative online store that's fast, easy-to-use, and mobile friendly. I don't want to lose a single sale based upon price alone.

Therefore, if you find a lower DELIVERED PRICE from a legitimate online store (not auction sites) selling authentic, new Winter Walking Ice Cleats, I'll match or better that price.

Fits Shoe Sizes
Based of Steel Tip Shoes
Men's Women's Footwear Length Range
in Inches*
15+ --- 14½" - 15½" XXL
13 - 14½ --- 14" ‹ 14½" XL
10 - 12½ 12+ 13¼" ‹ 14" L
8 - 9½ 10 - 11½ 12½" ‹ 13¼" M
5 - 7½ 7 - 9½ 10¾" ‹ 12½" S
--- 4½ - 6½ 10" ‹ 10¾" XS
*Measured on the bottom of your shoe or boot from the tip of the sole to the base of the heel.
LOW-PRO Sizing Chart
Fits Shoe Sizes
Based of Steel Tip Shoes
Men's Women's Footwear Length Range in Inches* Size
13½ + --- 14" - 14¾" XXL
11½ - 13 --- 13¼" ‹ 14" XL
9½ - 11 11.5+ 12¾" ‹ 13¼" L
7 - 9 9 - 11 11¾" ‹ 12¾" M
5 - 6½ 7 - 8½ 10¾" ‹ 11¾" S
*Measured on the bottom of your shoe or boot from the tip of the sole to the base of the heel.

HIGH-PRO Sizing Chart
Fits Shoe Sizes
Based of Steel Tip Shoes
Men's Women's Footwear Length Range
in Inches*
13½ --- 14" - 14½" XXL
11½ - 13 --- 13¼" ‹ 14" XL
9½ - 11 12+ 12¾" ‹ 13¼" L
7 - 9 9 - 11 11¾" ‹ 12¾" M
5 - 6½ 7 - 8½ 10¾" ‹ 11¾" S
*Measured on the bottom of your shoe or boot from the tip of the sole to the base of the heel.

Crucial Ice Cleats Sizing Tips

  1. You can go by the shoe sizes. However, the actual size of the shoe or boot can vary significantly for the same foot size. So option two below is a better way to select the correct size.
  2. Measure the length of your shoe or boot. Measure the bottom from the tip of the sole to the base of the heel. Measure on "the flat", don't wrap around. We want the length. Then find the size on the sizing chart with the Footwear Length Range that spans the length of your footwear. Measure carefully. Measure twice. Our goal is to get you the right size on the first try to make you as safe as possible as soon as possible.
Ice cleats Sizes are unisex that fit men's and women's shoes and boots according to the sizing charts.
Always try your ice cleats on as soon as you receive them for two reasons.
  1. You want to be ready for the bad weather. Don't wait until the ice is on the ground to find out you need a size exchange.
  2. I can't do free size exchanges for ice cleats that have been used because I can't resell them.

What should I do if the length of my shoe or boot is extremely close to the breakpoint of a size range? Should I choose the next larger size? For example, assume the length of your boot or shoe is just under 12½". You look at the specific size chart for ice cleats you're buying. Assume for this example the Medium has size range of 11½" to < 12½" and a Large is 12½" to < 13". For regular shoes and work shoes, stick with the smaller of the two sizes your considering. If you're planning to use your ice cleats on heavier winter boots, choose the bigger size.

I'm planning to use the ice cleats on both my shoes and boots. But they're different lengths. What should I do?

If the difference in length is small, order the size for the larger boots. Purchase the optional Ankle Strap to use when you use the ice cleats on your shoes. The ankle strap will make sure they stay on. If the difference in length is significant, you may need two sizes of ice cleats. That's because you want the ice cleats to be snug, so they not only stay on your footwear but also stay aligned.

I have a large company. There's no way I can measure everyone's footwear.

I understand. Go by shoe sizes. I'll be happy to exchange sizes later on. However, please make sure you haven't used the ice cleats outdoors.

Is the measuring technique 100% accurate?

Nope. It's accurate most of the time. Measuring is far superior to go by shoe size. 
Ice Cleat Ankle Straps
Winter Walking Ice Cleats fit securely on most shoes and boots. Most people do not need or use the Ankle Strap. However, Ankle Straps add an additional level of comfort, knowing your ice cleats will stay on your footwear. It's more critical to consider Ankle Straps if you

What Free Ice Cleats Size Exchanges Means

No store works harder than we do to get ice cleats sizing right on the first try. If you measure your footwear as I advise you to do in my Sizing Tips, Size Exchanges are rare. However, when Size Exchanges are necessary

This policy is consistent with and exceeds competing stores Free Exchanges policies. If you have questions, please call me at 610-670-2549.

The last thing I want is for you to be disappointed in your purchase or feel that I mislead you or treated you unfairly. So, in the unlikely event you're not totally satisfied with your ice cleats or shoe traction devices purchased from me, I'll refund your money and pay for the return freight. Call me at 610-670-2549.

My satisfaction guarantee is unconditional. However, I'll ask you why you're not satisfied because I want to know if

You Won't Find a Better, Safer Place to Buy Ice Cleats!

Here's why buying ice cleats from us gives you peace of mind.

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