For owners of 4×4 trucks, few components of the vehicle are more important than the tires. Particularly those who utilize their 4×4 vehicles for a variety of potential off-roading purposes, having the right tires will not only keep you safe, but maximize your performance in a variety of areas.
At Pro Audio Pro 4×4, we’re proud to offer a huge variety of 4×4 truck accessories and vehicle upgrades, from bed liners or lift kits to everything you might need when it comes to quality tires. If you are thinking about new tires for your truck, our team will sit down with you to help you choose the perfect type to fit your needs, plus combine this with other upgrades like lifts if you require it. Before you dig into this area, however, it’s important to have a general understanding of truck tires – there are a ton of options out there, and knowing the qualities you want to prioritize can go a long way to simplifying your process and also helping you make the best choice. This two-part blog will dig into everything you need to know here.
Tire Marking Basics
For starters, many truck owners don’t pay enough attention to the markings found on their tires. Virtually every modern tire in existence has some kind of markings along the sidwewall – these are here for a purpose.
Tire markings tend to note things like size, load range and the kind of tire being used. With a quick look at a tire you’re considering, our pros can tell you how big a tire you can fit with a leveling or suspension lift kit, plus what’s best for your vehicle that won’t risk any chassis or fender rubbing.
Tire Marking Types
Let’s get a bit more specific on tire markings, including some direct areas they speak to:
- Size, ratios and description: Generally found in larger lettering and numbering near the outside of a tire’s sidewall, you’ll see a set of markings that tends to begin with a single letter, then various numbers. This letter will often be a “P” – this means the tire is meant for a passenger vehicle. The numbers will refer to length and width of the tire, its radial and the wheel diameter.
- Traction and temperature grades: Also usually on the outside, but sometimes in smaller letters, you’ll see markings related to traction plus the maximum cold inflation and inflation grades for the tire.
- Composition, materials and safety codes: Finally, on the very inside of the sidewall next to the metal wheel, you’ll find smaller numbers and letters. These go into the tire ply composition and materials used, plus the US DOT safety code for each tire.
Tire Tread Considerations
Once you’ve figured out the size and tire material you’re looking for based on its markings, it’s time to look at the tread you want. This generally depends on the primary purposes the vehicle will be used for, though other factors are involved as well. In part two of this series, we’ll dig into the three most common tire tread types to consider.
For more on 4×4 truck tires, or to learn about any of our car audio installations or other vehicle upgrades, speak to the staff at Pro Audio Pro 4×4 today.