The Cooper Discoverer SRX Tire is considered to be a streamlined firebrand of a tire, lacking elegance but making up for it in attitude.
It truly is a sleek-looking tire. However, there are some problems with it as well, including a recall on Discoverer tires thanks to the sidewall’s integrity (or lack thereof).
The Cooper Discoverer SRX wasn’t included in the recall, but the RTX, AT3, and AT3 4S were.
Cooper Discoverer SRX problems range from the lack of any meaningful ice traction and deep snow traction, along with some squealing reported when hard cornering and a bit of noise that starts when the tire has experienced decent wear.
No matter how well lauded, providential, or exceptional a tire seems to be, there is always a caveat; a fly in the ointment so to speak.
That’s the case with the Cooper Discoverer SRX as well. However, don’t let that deter you, as this is still a pretty exceptional tire.
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Common Problems with The Cooper Discoverer SRX Tire
In March of 2021, Cooper issued a recall on several Discoverer tires. Fortunately, the SRX was not amongst them.
However, it’s interesting that these recalled tires were all experiencing problems with the sidewalls.
The affected tire’s sidewalls were essentially exploding, for lack of a better defining characteristic.
Since the SRX has the same technology as a few of these tires (namely the Stableedge technology), it’s worth at least a little bit of curiosity.
Poor Handling in the Snow and Ice
Of course, this is a problem with most tires that are not designed almost exclusively for ice and snow conditions.
The Cooper SRX is basically an all-season tire for SUVs and CUVs, not an ice tire for hauling an Escalade across Minnesota in the winter.
The traction of the tire is largely lost on anything more than a dusting of snow and ice on the road.
If you run into a patch of black ice with Discoverer SRX tires on, keep that wheel as straight as you can until you pass over it because you’re in for a ride.
Snow is the same way. The Discoverer SRX is very good at diverting water away from the tire and keeping the rubber on the asphalt.
It doesn’t do so well at diverting snow and slush, the latter of which snow quickly becomes after landing on the hot top.
This is not an off-road tire either, and it will handle mud in much the way that it handles snow and slush, which is to say, not at all.
Cooper was focused on creating a quiet, comfortable ride on the highway, not on churning through mud holes and driving through Antarctica.
Most of the features that the Cooper Discoverer SRX comes with are functional features. However, all tire companies are always a bit liberal with their extravagant and overly dramatic descriptions of these features.
Watching a commercial on the Discoverer SRX, you would think that the tire can levitate the SUV.
The reality is that it’s a good tire that doesn’t perform very well on mud, snow, ice, or freezing slush.
If you want better performance and traction in winter conditions, you need to use some chains.
While this interesting little side not on the Discoverer SRX has nothing to do with how well the tire handles, which is exceptional when taking a tight corner or just rolling down the road at a high rate of speed, it’s still a complaint that customers frequently make.
Apparently, the Cooper Discoverer SRX is quite the squeaker if you take a corner too hard with it.
That means making a hard left to get out into traffic before someone T-bones you or rearranges your SUV’s rear end.
It’s not really a braking issue either. It simply squeaks when you take hard turns. It’s not an issue that’s prevalent in all vehicles.
But it probably boils down to the weight of your SUV and other potential factors that have little to do with the tire.
Noise at High Speeds
We’re throwing in the noise complaint as more of a last-minute side note. It’s really not that bad, but some consumers will find themselves more irritated by it than others.
Though the decibels never get very high, not like what you would find in giant off-road tires, the Cooper Discoverer SRX does get louder as the miles add up.
Dealing with Handling in Snow, Noisy Tires, and Squeaky Cornering
If there is one thing that you can say about all tires that always rings true, it’s that you have to maintain them properly.
How to Maintain Your Cooper Discoverer SRX Tires?
Here are some of the most important steps you need to take in order to prolong the life of your Cooper Discoverer SRX tires:
- Have your tires properly inflated
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- Check your tire air pressure monthly
- Rotate your tires regularly every 5,000-6,000 miles
- Get a wheel alignment every year
- Assure that your tires are balanced correctly
Will that eliminate the squeaky cornering noise, the loud highway noise, or the poor handling on ice? Maybe. Maybe not.
But it certainly can’t hurt the tire, and you would be surprised at how many consumers complain about a tire’s handling, and when they take it in, the tire mechanics discover that the tire has low air pressure.
How to Reduce Road Noise when Driving with Cooper Discoverer SRX Tires?
The number one thing to do when your tires are too loud is to ensure they are properly inflated.
With a tire pressure gauge, you can check if your tires have the correct air pressure.
The lower the air pressure, the more the tire’s surface area comes into contact with the hot top. You want to reduce that with proper air pressure.
Otherwise, you will need a compressor if the air pressure is insufficient.
The only other thing you can do is soundproof your vehicle’s interior. Installing these kinds of tires means dealing with the noise that they create.
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Soundproofing your vehicle’s interior is not cheap, but you can accomplish it by filling the doors, trunk, and/or wheel arches & installing vibration dampers on the car floor with sound-proofing material.
What Else Can You Do About These Issues?
The problems with the Cooper Discoverer SRX are subtle and not easily eliminated. If the tire squeaks during hard turns, then the tire squeaks during hard turns.
Outside of adequately maintaining the tire and keeping its psi in check, there’s very little you can do for that. The same holds true for high-speed noise as the tire gets older.
On snow or ice, a lower psi, something that gets a little bit more tire real estate on the asphalt, will help.
However, this is still a standard all-season tire at the end of the day, not an ice tire.
Is The Cooper Discoverer SRX a Good Tire?
Some people purchase tires like the Discoverer SRX and install them on vehicles that are not in one of the above classes and then gripe about how they perform.
That’s why it is often challenging to locate detailed disposition on a tire’s fundamentals and features, such as tread wear, durability, handling, brake speed, etc.
When you find it, the waters are a bit muddied by all of those who used the tire in an inappropriate application.
When you’re through sorting the wheat from the chaff, you discover (choice of the word intended) that the Discoverer SRX is an exceptional tire, well-made, and it comes with a 70,000-mile tread wear warranty, which is a little above what would be considered the industry standard.
The desire with the Cooper Discoverer SRX was to create a tire that was designed for inner-city driving, with all of the stopping, accelerating, braking, and cornering.
To that end, Cooper was largely successful, despite the caveats mentioned above.
The Cooper Discoverer SRX comes with what Cooper terms Stableedge Technology.
This is supposed to mean that it has a reinforced sidewall that is especially resistant to twisting, which is a force that occurs most significantly in turns.
In addition to the Stableedge tech, it also comes with a silica compound in the tread system, designed to reduce tread wear and increase the longevity of the tire.
Based on numerous reviews of the tire, it largely succeeds in this mission.
All Things Considered
The Cooper Discoverer SRX is an exceptional tire with a few quirks that may aggravate some consumers and nothing more.
If you own an SUV or a CUV, you may consider looking into this tire as it remains a highly rated tire and comes with a decent tread wear warranty.