Utility Trailer Tire Load Range

By | June 29, 2022

How to Choice the Best Trailer Tire

We might use our trucks, SUV’s or cars every day of the week, but trailers are the real workhorses of the automotive world. Without them, our toys, work equipment and the larger of life’south necessities wouldn’t get where they demand to exist. But how often do we have stock of the rubber nether our trailers? The answer for near people is “very seldom.” Unfortunately, the trailer tire is one of the most neglected vehicular components rolling down the highway. Some folks don’t even know in that location are trailer-specific tires, and fifty-fifty if they practice many more aren’t aware that trailer tires should never be substituted with car tires.

In sourcing the perfect tire for your trailer, the tire’southward design, load range, size and your trailer’s gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) should all be taken into consideration. To help y’all in your quest for the correct trailer tire, we’ve non only spelled out the key differences between trailer and car tires, but also how bias ply and radial trailer tires differ. In addition, we’ll go over proper air pressure and how information technology correlates to load conveying capacity, appropriate sizing, tread vesture tips and proper tire maintenance. Your tow-rig is already your pride and joy. Let’s make information technology tow your trailer equally effectively and safely as possible.

What Exactly Is A Trailer Tire?

First off, never put motorcar tires on your trailer. The design of a car tire places a lot of emphasis on condolement and ride quality, which entails a more than flexible side wall. The opposite is true for a trailer tire, where a rigid sidewall is what you desire for max load carrying capacity and stability. Trailer-specific tires can be broken downward into two groups: radial and bias ply. Both are in the special trailer (or “ST”) tire category. Many radial trailer tires feature low rolling resistance for optimum efficiency and wear protection. Load ranges for either radial or bias ply tires range from B through F.

Radial Trailer Tires

Radial Trailer Tires

The unique makeup of a radial trailer tire entails an inner steel belt layer that runs at a 90-caste angle from the tread heart line. Radials offer much less rolling resistance than their bias ply counterparts, which means they dissipate heat more finer and as a effect the tread lasts longer. Their low rolling resistance also lends itself to better fuel economy. It’s also worth noting that, unlike bias ply tires, radial trailer tires aren’t known to develop apartment spots when sitting for extended periods of fourth dimension. For seasonal trailers like campers and travel trailers, this is a key selling point for radials over bias ply.

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Bias Ply Trailer Tires

Bias Ply Trailer Tire

Dissimilar in construction from that of a radial trailer tire, a bias ply tire features an inner layer of cross-hatched nylon and steel cords, which sit down at a 30 to 45-degree angle from the tread heart line. In full general, bias ply tires have stronger side walls than radials, which promotes stability and less trailer sway. Rolling down the road, a bias ply tire’s more rigid construction tends to make them run straighter than radials. They’re also typically more affordable than the equivalent radial selection.


Trailer Gross Vehicle Weight Rating

Finding the right tire for your trailer always begins with the trailer’s gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR). GVWR includes the weight of the trailer itself, plus the maximum cargo it can carry (i.east. its “loaded” weight). For example: a 10,000-pound GVWR travel trailer that weighs half dozen,300-pounds empty tin exist loaded with 3,700 pounds worth of cargo earlier reaching its GVWR. In this tandem beam case, each tire would demand to have (at least) a 2,500-pound load carrying capacity. To find out what your tires’ load carrying capacity minimum needs to be, simply divide the trailer’s GVWR by the total number of tires (in our example: 10,000/4 = 2,500). Luckily, trailer manufacturers almost always include tires that (when combined) exceed the trailer’s GVWR by a fair margin.


Trailer Gross Axle Weight Rating

The adjacent detail to expect at is your trailer’s gross axle weight rating (GAWR). The combined GAWR from each axle under your trailer will always exceed the trailer’s GVWR, simply that doesn’t mean you can tow more than GVWR. Along the same line of thinking, but considering you bought tires with a load conveying chapters higher than what the trailer originally came with doesn’t mean you tin overload your trailer.

Speed Ratings

Speed Rating Trailer Tire

An additional thought on trailer tires is to ever check its speed rating. Fifty-fifty though yous might be able to become a great bargain on a heavy-duty, fourteen-ply set of tires, the speed rating may be lower than you lot think. Near trailer tires’ maximum speed ratings check in at 65-mph. Running a 65-mph-rated tire 75-mph down the highway can increase its aggrandizement pressure as much every bit ten-psi without the trailer seeing whatsoever increase in load. Among the numbers listed nearly the edge of the rim in the photograph in a higher place, you lot’ll find an “N.” This speed rating means the tire’s maximum rated speed is 87 mph.

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Load Carrying Chapters Explained

Load Carrying Capacity Trailer Tire

A trailer tire’south load carrying capacity should exist selected based on your trailer’s GVWR and GAWR information, but instead of matching your trailer’s GVWR information technology pays to add a little insurance. In the photo shown above, each tire on a single-wheel, tandem beam toy hauler is rated for a maximum of 2,830 pounds. The fully loaded trailer (i.due east. its GVWR) tips the scales at 9,995 pounds, merely the tires—provided they’re inflated to maximum pressure—tin handle 11,320 pounds in theory. As well take note that in dual wheel applications each individual tire’s carrying chapters checks in at a lower, 2,470 pounds. This is typical.

Stick With the Same Tire Size

Tire Size Chart Travel Trailer

Regardless of whether or not you cull radial or bias ply trailer tires, it’s best to stick with the trailer manufacturer’s recommended tire size. To this extent, keep the load range the same (or at least close to the original tires’ load alphabetize number, which is visible on the sidewall). As well refrain from mixing and matching different tires. Different brands, models and types may wear differently and have varying load carrying ability. Also make sure that your spare is the same size and has an identical load carrying chapters. If you need the spare and it can’t handle the same weight equally the others you could wind up on the side of the route again.

How to Make Trailer Tires Last

Air Pressure Trailer Tire

Trailer tire longevity begins with air force per unit area. E’er check, inflate or bleed air pressure level when the tires are cold and make sure you apply an accurate gauge. Once a month or before setting out on a lengthy journey, e’er ensure that air pressure is where information technology’s supposed to be. For trailer tires, this unremarkably means running them at their maximum rated inflated pressure for utmost load carrying capacity. Simply as important, keep all tires on an axle the same force per unit area. Under-aggrandizement leads to poor fuel economic system, hinders maximum braking potential and decreases a tire’due south handling.

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Rotate Every 5,000 to half-dozen,000 Miles

Tire Rotation Interval Travel Trailer

Just like your motorcar, truck or SUV, rotating your trailer tires every v,000 to 6,000 miles will allow the tires to wear as evenly as possible. It’s also worth keeping tabs on tread wear with a tread depth gauge. In general, trailer tires should be replaced once tread depth reaches three/32-inch. Regardless of condition, trailer tires should be replaced every vi to eight years—and immediately if abnormal habiliment, corrosion or other harm is spotted. Keeping relatively new tires on your trailer can save you more than than just the hassle of having to install your spare in the centre of a trip, it can save y’all from experiencing the kind of blow-out that causes fender, flooring and body damage to the trailer.

Ane of Your Tires’ Biggest Enemies is the Sun

Cover Travel Trailer Tires

The life of a trailer tire is a hard i. Unlike the tread fitted to your car or truck which may spend most of its time in a garage, trailer tires are typically exposed to the elements year-round. On top of that (literally), many trailers perpetually have weight on them, such as with enclosed box trailers and travel trailers. In our experience, the well-nigh subversive force your tires face is prolonged exposure to sunlight. After extended fourth dimension soaking up its UV rays, the sun dries out the oil present in the tire’s compound, leading to dry out-rotting and corrosion. The best style to preserve the life of trailer tires is to get them out of the sunday, exist it by parking the trailer under shelter or (virtually affordably) shielding them with tire covers.

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Source: https://www.drivingline.com/articles/how-to-pick-the-best-trailer-tire/