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Buying The Right ATV/UTV Tire

When it comes to replacing your tires on your ATV/UTV, there are a lot of options out there. So how do you choose the right tire? Here are some questions that should help you narrow down your options and find the right ATV or UTV tire for your needs.

What Do You Use Your ATV/UTV For?

ATV/UTV tires are engineered for a specific type of terrain or performance. Consider your regular riding conditions when looking for new tires. For example:

  • If you ride in very rocky, soft-packed trails = All-Terrain tire
  • If you ride most often in very wet, muddy terrain = Mud tire
  • If you use your ATV/UTV for hard-packed, off-road trail racing = Racing tire
  • If you are riding in sand or loose gravel = Sand tire

ATV/UTV tires are very specialized and should be used for their recommended terrain.

You will find mud tires handle badly, ride poorly and wear quickly on hard-packed terrain and pavement. Sand tires won’t perform well in deep mud or on rocks. So whatever terrain you use the most, choose the tire that is optimized for that terrain. An all-purpose, all-terrain tire is the most versatile and perfoms best in rocky, soft-packed trails, but it can be used in multiple terrains for short periods of time making them the most common type of replacement tire.

Learn more about ATV/UTV Tire Types

When Do You Need New Tires?

Because of the different types of driving that ATV/UTV tires undergo they don’t wear the way car/truck tires do. If your ATV/UTV tires still have decent tread, inspect the tread lugs for chunking or cracking. If the lug edges are severely rounded and are losing their sharp edges, the tires could be losing traction and may need replacement soon.

It is best to regularly inspect your tires before each ride to ensure that the air pressure is properly set and that there is no obvious damage. If you have multiple punctures, or a large puncture, your tires should be replaced. Tire "slime" and "sticky plugs" are rarely effective for preventing air loss long term.

How Many ATV/UTV Tires Do You Really Need?

Replacing all four tires allows you the most flexibility in choosing a tread pattern that matches your driving demands and provides your machine with optimum traction in mud, hard-pack or any other terrain. Because ATV/UTV's see a variety of harsh terrains, having the best possible traction makes a very big difference for performance and safety.

Many ATV/UTV's are all wheel drive (AWD) or four-wheel drive (4WD), which means that the tires need to be of the same diameter to prevent damage to the drive train and transmission. A large difference in tread depth can cause the tires to spin at different speeds, putting added strain on the drive train and transmission.

What Size Tires Should You Get?

It is possible to change the tire size when replacing all four of your ATV/UTV tires. However, if you elect to change tire sizes, it can alter the way your machine performs. If you decide to change tire size when replacing your original equipment (OE) tires, it is vital that you maintain clearance between your tires and your suspension. If you are not the original owner of the machine, the OE size can be found in the owner’s manual. The previous owner may have already altered the OE size, so it's good to know the OE size so you have a baseline.

Learn more about ATV/UTV Tire Sizing

If you have any questions or need any assistance, stop by your local Discount Tire and we'll get you taken care of.

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