Do you know how much of the expected performance of your beloved Jeep actually depends, not on the engine or transmission capabilities, but on the tires, plain and simple as this. I always hear people talk about the off the ground clearance or angles at which their SUV can go up the muddy and slippery hills, but often times forgetting that unless one got a set of tires with well developed grousers, they won’t make it past first several meters. On the other hand I see a couple of lifted Wranglers in my neighborhood, with huge Paris-Dakar type of tires, whose owners never go off the road, but pay extra cash for extra fuel consumption, while always remaining on the asphalt.
So thinking of a new set of tires for your Jeep, first you need to consider where you are going to use your SUV? If you will only be toting your kids around to school and soccer practice, then there is there is no need to get high performance off-road tires, as they will be noisy and will increase the fuel consumption. On the other hand, if you often go off-road and this is why you have a Jeep, the H/T (highway terrain) tires will not do the job, and you will need to invest in a M/T (mud terrain) set with developed aggressive type tread.
So first you need to decide on the type of tires: there are three of them and namely:
H/T – (highway/terrain) designed to be used predominantly on the highways (80% highways; 20% undemanding off-road)
A/T – (all terrain) the most universal tires for SUVs (50% highways; 50% off-road)
M/T – (mud/terrain) purely off-road high performance tires (20% mud; 80 %off-road).
That’s all, not to forget, that A/T or M/T tires do not replace the winter set, in fact just like with regular cars, you are supposed to have both summer and winter sets.
The other considerations are to take into account:
Rim size – as different Jeep models have different rim sizes, or the one that the previous user used may differ from the one originally installed by the manufacturer.
Speed rating – typically printed on the tire:
P, Q, R, S – the most common types, designed for speeds in between 150-180 km/h.
T, H, V – for fancy and fast SUVs, supporting speeds from 180 to 240 km/h.
Longevity of the tires, indicating the amount of miles the tires will last. Obviously that the mud/terrain tires will not last long on the asphalt surfaces, and the same is true for highway tires in the conditions of serious off-road.
And lastly the price, which also needs to be taken into consideration. Chances are that you will be able to find a good deal at discount sales in your local stores, however nowadays, more and more popular and inexpensive, becomes the method of ordering SUV tires online. More on the best deals on Jeep tires and comparison of brands in the upcoming posts.