Tractor tires are essential parts of your machine as they provide traction, maneuverability, and stability. Tractors operate in extreme weather and terrain conditions, so having appropriate tires on Missouri farmland or out in the open country. Understanding your options when buying tractor tires can simplify the process. 

Consideration for choosing the right tractor tires

Decode your tire 

Each tractor tire has numbers and letters printed on its sidewall. These numbers and letters are known as the tire size label and consist of the following:

  • Service Description – Details the function of the tire, such as Agricultural Tires.
  • Maximum Inflation Pressure – Maximum inflation pressure is stated in pounds per square inch (psi). 
  • Maximum Load – Number of pounds the tire can safely support, measured in pounds per linear inch (pli) of the tire’s width.
  • Construction – States tire’s basic model.
  • Rim Diameter – The diameter of the wheel is measured in inches.
  • Load Index – The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) rate capacity. The higher the number, the greater the load a tire can carry.
  • Speed Index – The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) speed and load range. 

Tire width

Tire width is the total inflated width of the tire. It is measured from sidewall to sidewall at the widest point of the tread. Wider tires provide a larger footprint, more stability, and more outstanding performance. There is less ground pressure with a wider tire. The increased width adds to the size of the contact patch, and adding a wider contact patch decreases the pressure on each square inch of the ground. A wider tire is heavier and has better weight distribution.  

Load Index (Ratings) 

Each tractor has an overall load rating that includes weight and maximum carrying capacity. 

A load index is a number assigned to a tire by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), and it indicates what load the tire can carry. It is calculated in pounds per linear (pli) inch of the width.

A higher load index will improve the overall load capacity of your machine. Start your tire search in Missouri with machine weight in mind.

Style: Radial Vs. Bias-ply

Radial tires 

Radial tires are the most common type of tire used on tractors today. They provide improved steering, reduced vibration, and a smoother ride.

Radial tires have belts of steel wires under the tread, which cross over each other at angles. The belts give radial tires more strength, improve their load-carrying ability, and provide better treadwear.

Bias-ply tires 

Bias-ply tires construction has layers of fiber (plies) laid across the tire at angles to form a crisscross pattern.

Bias-ply tires are typically made with heavier, thicker rubber than their radial counterparts and often build up more heat when in use. Heat buildup will cause the tire to wear more quickly and, in some cases, could be a safety issue.

Tire pressure

Tire inflation is a crucial factor in the life of any tire. Inflated tires run cooler, last longer, and perform better.

Checking inflation pressure is critical. Proper inflation pressure will improve the performance and extend the life of your tractor tires.

  • Maintain the inflation pressures equal to the numbers printed on the sidewalls of your tires.
  • Check tire pressure when the tires are cold since air temperature can affect the readings.
  • Check the tire pressure regularly since tire pressure differs each season. 

It’s best to have your tractor tire service done monthly during peak season, especially in wet or snowy conditions when more air pressure is required.

Buy new vs. used tires 

Whether buying new or used tractor tires for sale, always purchase tires from a reputable source. Getting help from a tractor tire expert can simplify the decision-making process.

Worn-out tires can be dangerous, use more fuel, and are less efficient. Measuring tread depth against the manufacturer’s tread recommendations will determine if replacing the tires is necessary.

Outfitting front and rear tires 

The front wheels steer the vehicle while the rear wheels provide the power. When tractor tires need to be changed, it is best to replace both front and back tires. Tires provide a safe, smooth ride and contribute to the performance and efficiency of the tractor.  In most soil conditions, worn out tires may cause a tractor to operate at a higher slip rate resulting

Before you purchase new equipment, consult with your dealer in Missouri to determine the tire recommendations for your particular machine. Search for a tractor tire shop near me or tractor tire services in Missouri. Bobby Henard Tire Service in Missouri is professional, reliable, and trustworthy and can help you make the right decision. They also provide tractor tire rotation and servicing to ensure your tires last for years. Visit their website for more information on new or used tires and other services.