See the ATV Tire Facts You Must Know Before You Buy!
Let us take the frustration out of your next ATV tire buying experience.
This exclusive report will give you the 5 basics you need to know
before you buy another 4 wheeler tire. Why is this important?
Only because tires are the single most important piece of equipment
on your ATV! All the engine and suspension mods in the world are wasted
without tires. Fact is - with the right tire - you might not have needed
all those engine and suspension pieces in the first place!
Tires influence the ride, handling, and traction of your
ATV more than anything else. The trick is to match the kind of riding
you do with the best tire for that combination of ATV and riding
situation. So let's get it on!
ATV Tire Basic 5 Facts You Must Know.
Deep lug mud tire.
1. Tread Pattern - There are 4 basic tread patterns
for an ATV tire. The best one for you depends on what kind of terrain
you ride on the most, or want to ride on (sand dunes for example).
- The Jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none tire of the ATV world. But for
general trail riding in most of the country, this will be your weapon
Designed to have decent ride and handling on
most types of terrain. You can find tires within this category that are
designed to favor one kind of terrain more than another.
usually mean mud. Look for a little more tread depth with a bit more
space between lugs for better self cleaning. These will give you better
traction in the goo without wearing as fast as real mud tires.
- If you ride in mud most of the time, there is no substitute for the
real thing. ATV mud tires are all about going forward in sloppy
surfaces. Unfortunately, that means they're not that great at doing
Not too bad on other soft surfaces, you'll pay
the price if you ride them in rocks or on hard pack terrain. And when I
say "Pay the Price", that means in rapid wear, rough ride, and unstable
Also called paddle tires because that's pretty much what they look
like. Except the fronts which normally have a couple of simple ribs
around them. Sand tires are an either or proposition - if you ride the
dunes you must
have them - but they're no good for anything but sand.
In fact they are so
specialized, most folks just keep at least a pair of rear paddles
mounted for when they get the urge to get sand in their shorts.
- Racing tires are a whole specialty by themselves. Special tread
designs and compounds are engineered for specific track conditions. If
you're a racer, you are already well aware of those differences. If not
- well it doesn't really matter.
Most racing tires have a flat
profile and are intended to run on medium to hard packed terrain (think
motocross). If that's the kind of trails you ride, they could work on a
sport ATV, but there are probably better choices in an all terrain type
2. Tire Size - You know the little numbers on the
sidewall? Those tell you what the tire size is. What are the pros and
cons of changing the tire sizes from stock? Let's check it out.
of the tread.
Pros -increased cornering traction and better acceleration and braking
on some surfaces.
Cons - more steering effort and increased stress on suspension
components. May cause tire rub on some ATVs.
Pros - Improved grip in soft terrain like mud and snow. Easier steering
Cons - Less grip on most hard surfaces and more of a tendency to follow
or diameter of the tire
diameter - Lowers center of gravity and ground clearance.
Similar effect to lower gearing (engine turns more rpm).
Reduces tippines but more likely to high center in rough terrain.
Accelerates faster but has less top speed.
diameter - Raises CG and ground clearance. Effects of
More likely to tip over but has increased ground clearance.
Slower acceleration but higher top speed.
Increased stress on drivetrain and brakes.
Ratio (Sidewall height)
sidewall - Requires a taller wheel to maintain stock
Stiffer sidewall is less compliant in the rough, but more stable at
- More compliance and better ride in rough low speed terrain. More
unstable at higher speeds. More sidewall area is more prone to
3. Tire Profile - Flat or Round
- Common on racing tires and sport ATVs. Good high speed stability on
medium to hard terrain. Stiffer sidewalls for predictable sliding when
Commonly found on utility and 4x4 ATVs. Good traction and ride at
slower speeds in rougher terrain and softer surfaces like mud.
4. Tire Construction - Bias or Radial and Ply rating.
- Old school type construction. Less flexible sidewalls with rougher
ride and a tendency to "skate" while cornering.
Can be built with more plies for better puncture resistance and
- Radial- Current technology for an ATV tire. Has
more flexible sidewall for a better ride and cornering
Less rolling resistance and longer wear.
- Back in the day the ply rating meant the actual number of plys or
layers used to make the tire. Today it's a strength rating based on the
old ply ratings.
The higher the ply rating the more toughness and resistance to
5. Price - Two Ways to Go.
- If you didn't already know, the price of an ATV tire can send you
into sticker shock. With so many brands and types of tires to choose
from, you may want to pick a price range before you start shopping for
Then limit yourself to considering tires in that
price range. It really sucks to find the perfect tire only to find out
you can't afford it!
- Lucky you! Your job is a lot easier. Just pick the tire that does the
best job for your kind of ATV and your kind of riding.
If money is really no object then just buy several sets of specialty
tires and you'll be ready for any kind of terrain.
Remember these five basics and you'll look forward to your next ATV tire buying session.
Guide to ATV Tires.
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