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Trailer tires: Steel belted radials or polyester

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by greenchoppers, Nov 4, 2009.

  1. greenchoppers

    greenchoppers LawnSite Member
    Messages: 162

    Hello all,

    I was wandering how many people out there are running steel belted radials versus polyester tires on their trailers. My trailer (Big Tex 6'x16' open top) came with 2-ply polyester tires all the way around. A friend told me that it would be better (and cheaper) to run used steel belted radial tires on the trailer instead of polyester.

    Another friend told me not to get rid of the polyester tires as they tend to last longer, can handle more weight, and are skinnier than steel belted radials (easier to back up with skinny tires as compared to wider tires).

    I visited www.tirerack.com this evening and found no polyester tires.

    So my question is, is it better to run steel belted radials or polyester tires on your trailer? With either opinion, I would like to know why you do or why you don't prefer one tire over the other.

    I am trying to make an informed decision based on facts and not what somebody heard on the street. Thanks.
  2. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    What makes your trailer's tires wear?

    That is the first question you have to find the answer to.
  3. zman2307

    zman2307 LawnSite Senior Member
    from OR
    Messages: 328

  4. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,699

    I have Goodyear Marathon steel belted radial trailer service tires on my trailer. Radials tend to be stronger, have less rolling resistance and are more impact and puncture resistant. The last thing I want to have to do is fool around with trailer tire issues first thing in the morning.
  5. Nosmo

    Nosmo LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,216

    Here is something you should not do . Whatever tires you choose for your vehicle do not mix them eg. radials with non radials especially on the same axle.

    I used to sell Michelin tires and Michelin recommends not mixing their tires with other radials. The recommendation might have changed since the 1970's but I still do not mix tires.

  6. grass4gas

    grass4gas LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 568

    I got rid of the radial tires on my 2nd trailer after the first year because I was constantly plugging them. They will pick up more nails, screws, etc., because most radials have a softer profile which makes them prone to punctures. My first trailer came with bias ply tires. Because they have a more rigid profile, they are less likely to punctures. I have gone through 2 seasons with the bias ply and "NO" flats, and there is still enough tread life for at least another year.

    I put about 4 thousand miles a year on the trailer, so you can make a comparison.
  7. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Messages: 7,051

    Think about it for a minute. Do you really believe that crap? They want you to replace a bad tire with one of theirs. Then they are the only company that recommends rotating a radial side to side.
  8. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,699

    Uh yeah. You should'na said that.

    I have Goodyear Marathon ST225/75R15 load range C on my trailer. I put them on at the beginning of last season. You can view them here: http://www.goodyear.com/rv/products/marathon.html. They come with 10/32" of tread. I just measured mine. I'm down to 8/32". I usually go about 4500 miles a year so at that rate If I replace them at 3/32" I will have driven about 30,000 miles vs. your 12,000. Not much of a comparision if you ask me. I've had no flats either.
  9. rlitman

    rlitman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,732

    Radials were designed to give more steering response to the front wheels. As such, they can exert more lateral force, and will give your trailer more opportunity to push you around.
    Bias-ply tires are better suited to "following".
  10. grass4gas

    grass4gas LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 568

    I could care less about how many miles I get out of a tire. I am more concerned about punctures than miles. If I get three years, great. If I only get 2, so be it. The point is I feel better using bias ply over radials.

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