Are you less likely to hydroplane in an SUV?

SUV all-season tires

The risk of hydroplaning is present all year round. This is because hydroplaning is a phenomenon where the vehicle rides up on a thin surface of water and loses contact with the pavement. Hydroplaning can occur with both water or slush (melted snow) or any other liquid that comes between the tires and the pavement. Does the fact of owning a SUV protect you from hydroplaning? No actually it doesn’t, it is true that all other things being equal it would take more water or greater speed for a heavier vehicle to lift and loose traction in the same amount of water. The best way however to protect against hydroplaning is to equip your car with a set of good quality all-season tires.

Tires like the Nokian eNtyre C/S SUV all-season tires are good quality tires that come recommended for SUVs and light trucks. This tire has many safety features and even has a driving safety indicator and an aquaplaning indicator on the central rib. This aquaplaning indicator droplet disappears when the groove depth wears down to less than 4mm.The reason the tread depth is so important is as the speed increases and the tread depth decreases the contact area of the tire is dramatically decreased. This means the tireswet grip and hydroplaning qualities deteriorate and the risk of hydroplaning increases. Furthermore, the braking distance is longer and the car skids easier. Hydroplaning does not just pertain to water (Aquaplaning) you can also hydroplane with slush (slush planing). Slush planing is when the snow starts melting leaving slush on the road. This is why even in other season than the rainy season you can experience hydroplaning.

Even tough an SUV fairs better on wet roads compared to a passenger car with all things being equal it is not to say that passenger car with good quality tires compared with an SUV with worn out tires wouldn’t fair better. The best protection against hydroplaning is a set of high quality tires that are in good condition with proper tread depth and properly inflated.

The best thing to do if you start hydroplaning is to stay straight and decelerates to try to regain the feel of the road and control of your car. To try to avoid hydroplaning look ahead and avoid any large puddle and reduce your speed in rainy conditions.

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