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Whether you spend most of your time in the mud, dirt, snow, or other non-standard driving conditions for work or pleasure, or you typically stay on paved surfaces, choosing the right tires for your performance needs is vital to your truck’s performance. However, with many types of tires on the market, deciding what to purchase may be a little overwhelming.
Like many other after-market automotive purchases, the key to tire purchasing is to determine where you spend most of your time driving your truck. If you are primarily going in street conditions with little off-road ventures, you wouldn’t necessarily choose the same truck tires as if you spent a lot of time in non-standard driving conditions.
Often, the differences in wheels and tires for street or off-road driving are so significant that it may not be a bad idea to keep two sets of tires and wheels, one for each purpose. However, two sets of wheels and tires may not fit into everyone’s lifestyle; in that case, you’ll need to understand how street and off-road tires perform so that you can make the best purchase for your needs.
While highway all-season tires work well for driving on paved and gravel roads, they tend to fail quickly when taken off-road more challenging terrain. If you spend around 70 percent or more of your time on paved surfaces, all-terrain tires should work fine for you, but when you do go off-road, use caution and check your tires often.
Standard tires are typically 4-ply and are enough to keep your truck stable on the road while providing flexibility, agility, and comfort while you drive. However, 4-ply tires may fall victim to punctures and damages by sharp objects encountered off-road easily. If you are enjoying an off-road ride and hit a bump the right way, you may damage your rims, potentially leading to wheel damage.
The upside is that, on the highway, standard tires offer decreased rolling resistance for better fuel economy, good grip in normal conditions like rain, and an overall comfortable ride.
Off-road tires are significantly more challenging on roadways than standard tires and are built with rugged endurance and performance in mind. Ten-ply off-road tires are tough enough to traverse gravel, mud, rock, and deep snow without much worry of damage.
However, if you only have off-road tires on your truck, you’ll notice a big difference in how they perform on the highway than in non-standard driving conditions. Off-road tires offer lower fuel economy on roadways, lounder driving noise, and less stability cornering than standard tires do in flat-top situations.
The bottom line is, when you are searching for the perfect tires for your truck, consider how you plan to spend the majority of your drive time to determine what type of tire is best for you.