Tips for Light-Duty Trucks - Tire Review Magazine

Tips for Light-Duty Trucks

When purchasing these trucks, fleet managers must first consider the tasks the trucks will be asked to perform and where they will reside, with special attention to geography, road conditions and driver habits. Tire dealers, in conjunction with their fleet customers, then have to sort out the optimum tire for the application and expected service conditions. But options are few.

Recently, the Technology & Maintenance Council recognized the growing importance of light- and medium-duty vehicles and formed a new Study Group, S.14, for this sector. Drivetrain durability, ease of component replacement, electrical system upgrades, specialized body fitments and trailer towing have been popular subjects of study. Tire selection should also be given top priority.

Nearly all Class 1-4 trucks are originally equipped with recreational vehicle-type tires derived from passenger-car tire roots. Car-like ride comfort, sidewall and tread styling and low initial cost are properties typically emphasized. They generally have polyester fabric sidewall/body plies (vs. steel for heavier duty commercial service) and are not specifically designed for multiple retreading. They are more like larger versions of small passenger-car tires than smaller versions of the more robust larger commercial truck tires, which emphasize lifecycle cost effectiveness.

Most of the major truck tire manufacturers offer commercial tires in smaller sizes and load ranges to fit Class 3-4 vehicles, which may or may not be available to fleet purchasers as original equipment, depending on the number of units purchased and the ability to navigate the “special order” input and option costs usually required.

Since many of these trucks are all-wheel drive, matched tires, including size, load range, and tread type, will be required on all positions. However, two-wheel drive vehicles can benefit from rib-type tread patterns on free-rolling wheel positions through longer wear, less irregular wear, lower noise and vibration levels and extended removal mileages. Even if OE tires are used, simple circumferential rib designs are preferred over the more aggressive all-season LT/RV designs with segmented shoulders. Traction treads are normally the best choice for driven axle positions, especially if the vehicle is lightly loaded and/or will be used in climates that include winter snow, mud, or on/off road conditions.

The higher unit tread pressure produces more penetration in deform-able surfaces and, therefore, more forward traction and lateral stability than the wider, sporty-appearing tires sometimes used on these vehicles.

If commercial service tires are fitted as replacements for light-duty OE tires, make sure the wheel type, size, and inflation rating are sufficient for the new tires, which sometimes are rated for higher inflation pressures and may require a different rim width.

Also, use a valve assembly rated for the maximum tire pressure shown on the sidewall. Passenger-type rubber snap-in valves should not generally be used for inflations above 40 psi, although special rubber/metal combination valves may be rated higher, and clamp-in all-metal valves are readily available for nearly all wheel types. Note, also, that many alloy light truck wheels are castings vs. forgings for the heavier duty applications. Forged wheels are generally stronger, more ductile than cast counterparts and usually require special O-ring sealing valves.

All of these issues can be addressed with confidence as long as you have accurate information. Fortunately, most tire and wheel manufacturers have knowledgeable representatives, and they are usually the same individuals you would consult for questions about larger tires for Class 6-8 trucks. You just need to ask!

You May Also Like

EVs, Fleet Management to Aid Commercial Tire Growth

The post-COVID market is bouncing back, which will drive market trends in 2023.

new-possibiblites-same-dependable-trucks

When I was a child, rollercoasters were an awe-inspiring combination of power and adrenaline, a towering marvel of speed and terror to be gazed upon with either great anticipation or great fear– sometimes both. I have always loved knowing how things work, and even at a young age, I appreciated the mechanics of it all: the slow, steady, deliberate creaking of the steep climb, and the unseen forces just out of reach methodically pulling riders toward the unknown.

Last-Mile Delivery Tires Set to Outpace Long-Haul Tire Volumes

Prior to the pandemic, the last-mile delivery (LMD) market was booming. So, when COVID-19 hit, and newly-homebound consumers placed even more online orders — retailers like Amazon shortened delivery times to two days, one day, or even same-day services — and the segment exploded. Related Articles – Goodyear Unveils 90% Sustainable Tire – Goodyear Introduces

Ford-E-Transit
Global Tire Manufacturer Ralson Enters US TBR Market

Global tire manufacturer Ralson is entering the U.S. commercial tire market with a new medium/heavy truck tire manufacturing facility and a team of veteran American sales and marketing tire professionals. Ralson debuted its products for the US with its American team at the 2022 SEMA Show in Las Vegas. Related Articles – Maxam Tire Completes

Michelin Releases Agilis HD Z as New Urban and Regional Tire

Michelin North America has released the Michelin Agilis HD Z 19.5 in two sizes to offer fleets with light and medium-duty vehicles durable, long-lasting tires optimized for the stresses of urban and regional environments. The Agilis HD Z 19.5-in. tires will replace the Michelin XZE in two current sizes (225/70R19.5 LRG and 245/70R19.5 LRH) in

Michelin-Agilis-HD-Z-Tire
Yokohama Tire Launches the 716U UWB Regional Drive Tire

Yokohama Tire’s newest commercial tire – the 716U ultra wide-base – is a weight-savings drive tire that carries more profitability for fleets, the company says. It is available now in the US in size 455/55R225. Related Articles – BKT Highlights Ridemax Radial Floatation Tire for AG, Tank Trucks and Spreaders – CEAT Specialty Tires Increases

Yokohama-Tire-716U-UWB-Sidewall

Other Posts

Vredestein Launches New Pinza H/T in US

Vredestein Tires has launched its new Pinza H/T line of tires, a highway all-season tire designed for trucks, SUVs and crossovers. According to Vredestein, The Pinza H/T has unique features that keep the comfort of the driver in mind. Related Articles – Goodyear Adds Wrangler HT Tire to Light Truck Lineup – Comparing Trends in

Vredestein Pinza H_T
Goodyear Adds Wrangler HT Tire to Light Truck Lineup

The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company has added the Goodyear Wrangler Workhorse HT to its Wrangler light truck tire lineup. Goodyear says its Wrangler Workhorse HT provides all-season traction, a confident ride and the strength to go the extra mile. Related Articles – BKT Tires Launches Agrimaxfactor Tire For Tractors – Michelin’s Enviro System Unveils

Comparing Trends in All-Season and All-Weather Tire Segments

When it comes to all-season and all-weather tires, consumer expectations have been a driving force in both segments, affecting everything from OE fitments and sales trends to tire performance. Essentially, consumers want the convenience of not having to swap tires every winter, as well as the safety and performance provided by capable all-weather tires, according

All season all weather vredestein hypertrac
Continental Debuts Enthusiast-Driven ExtremeContact Sport 02

From timed autocross laps to drifting on a skid pad and mastering knee-jerk braking and turns on a raceway, dealers, influencers and members of the media were treated to a crash course in performance racing while testing out Continental’s newest UHP summer tire, the ExtremeContact Sport 02. Related Articles – Mickey Thompson Unveils 42-, 44-in.

Conti-extremecontact-02-closeup