If you live in an area where you have winter conditions during the year, you will need to equip your SUV with proper winter tyres that are approved for winter driving. If your tyres don’t have a winter-approved symbol on the sidewall of the tyre, then they are not suitable for winter driving and you should refrain from driving. You will need proper winter tyres to tackle these conditions. Summer tyres will get very hard at low temperatures and will not be able to provide the grip that you will need to stay safe while driving. Don’t be fooled by the fact that SUV summer tyres sometimes can look quite rugged and give the impression that they can handle any terrain. You need SUV winter tyres. The pure fact that the rubber compound hasn’t been optimized for cold weather and you will loose almost all your grip, especially on ice, should deter you from driving.
For driving in icy conditions you should buy SUV studded tyres. They will be able to provide you with the grip and stability that you will need to have, to be able to drive safely. The metal studs dig into the ice to give you the necessary grip for safe driving. The tread is also optimized to be able to handle snow as well as slush. With slush you also have to be careful that your car doesn’t loose control due to slushplaning, which is winter’s equivalent to aquaplaning.
You also need to make sure that the tyres are in good condition, that there are no tears or cuts on them. Check that the tread depth is above 4mm and that the tyres are correctly inflated. With lower temperature the pressure goes down, so it is important to check the tyre pressure regularly. Also if you drive with a fully loaded vehicle, you should check it. Low tyre pressure decreases the grip and stability. The wear of the tyres will increase of the tyres have low pressure, causing you to have to buy new ones earlier than intended. Another negative impact is that the rolling resistance increases, which causes your SUV to consume more gasoline, which can be quite costly with today’s gasoline prices. So try to check the pressure when you stop at the gasoline station.