What To Look For When Buying The Best Tires For An SUV?
SUV tires are a difficult thing to shop for because they fall into a category between passenger and light truck tires. For this odd gray area, I have listed three things you want to look for in SUV tires and why to help make your tire purchase process much more manageable.
Light Truck Or P-Metric?
You will see a lot of tires that are available for SUVs come in light truck sizing. Even though they will work, unless you have a three-quarter-ton SUV or do heavy off-road driving, there is no reason to go with a light-truck tire.
P-metric tires are much lighter and offer a more comfortable ride and better fuel efficiency due to having less heavy plies in the sidewall.
Depending on what you use the vehicle for will determine which you need.
All-Season or All-Terrain?
All terrains are offered from all major tire brands, and whether they are the best option for you will depend on what you use the vehicle for. If you work at a site off-road or like to take your SUV on trail runs, all terrains would be better suited for you. Maybe you live in regions with harsh winters and need tires to perform year-round. All terrains provide much better winter traction than all-season tires.
All-season tires are better suited for anyone whose vehicle spends all its time on the road. They will offer a smoother, quieter ride than their off-road counterparts. All seasons are the most popular tire by far because they are offered in the most sizes and fit any vehicle, whether it’s a crossover, sedan, truck, or SUV.
Making sure you purchase the correct tire size is crucial. Even going to one size smaller than what is recommended can result in the tire being unable to carry the vehicle’s weight. When a tire can’t carry the vehicle’s weight, it can lead to tread separation or complete tire failure.
To find the correct tire size for your vehicle, refer to the placard sticker in your door jam. The size will be stated on it and look something like 265/70R17.
How Much Do SUV Tires Typically Cost?
Tire price is a significant factor when deciding what tires to buy. Nobody wants to walk into a tire store blind and get sticker shock from how expensive tires are now. I went ahead and compared prices from retailers like Amazon, TIreRack, SimpleTire, and many more. Here is what I found.
Four New Tires
When shopping for four brand new tires on your SUV, you can expect to pay anywhere between $600 and $2000.
Two New Tires
Should you only need to buy a pair of brand new tires, you can expect to pay between $400 and $1000.
It is always recommended to replace your tires in sets of four to ensure proper treadwear and to prevent any potential mechanical issues, especially if it is an all-wheel drive.
If you only need to replace a single tire, you can expect to pay between $150 and $500.
It is never recommended only to replace one of your tires unless your other three have brand new tread. Replacing one tire can cause your new one to wear out much faster and change how the vehicle handles.
How Long Should Your SUV Tires Last?
Mileage expectancy will vary depending on factors such as your driving habits, climate conditions, tire quality, and the vehicle they are installed on. The majority of tires that I have seen on SUVs wear out between fifty and seventy thousand miles.
For anyone to achieve long tread life, it is crucial to maintain your tires. I have listed some tire maintenance tips below.
- Tire rotation every five to eight thousand miles
- Maintaining proper tire pressure by performing air checks once a month
- Ensuring your wheel alignment is within the vehicle manufacturer’s specs
Does the Year of Your Vehicle Matter When Buying New SUV Tires?
The year of your vehicle may matter when deciding what quality or how much to spend on a set of tires. Many customers I have helped in the past were never likely to pull the trigger on a thousand-dollar set of tires for their thirty-year-old car since they weren’t sure how long they would keep it.
Anything Else Worth Knowing When Buying SUV Tires?
When buying SUV tires, it is always a great idea to look for any rebates or specials being run. Tire sales associates will not always be inclined to share manufacturer rebate incentives, so always ask.
Most tire retailers will run the best deals of the year on major holidays like Presidents Day, Fourth Of July, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. If you need tires and a major holiday is coming up, it may be in your best interest to wait if you can.