Long time ago, choices in the tire market is very small. Today, there are different tires for different application. A tire for racing might not be legal on national roads and the tires on your car will not cut it in the racetrack. With all these attention to tire features, it is sometimes confusing why trailer tires are sometimes forgotten.
Everyone may not own a trailer. But the number of people who hauls trailers is considerably large especially in the United States. When it comes to a trailer-hauler scenario, most people would spend all the time maintaining the tire on the hauling vehicles. But losing a trailer tire while you are hauling it could just be as dangerous as blowing a tire in your vehicle. Therefore, it is best to pay attention to trailer tires as well.
One of the first things that you should consider when it comes to trailer tires is the kind of tire you use. If the said tire in question needs replacement, use a tire rated for trailer use only. Usually, tires for trailer have the “ST” mark on its sidewall which stands for “special trailer”.
Never use a tire with a different designation as only the special trailer tire is designed to fit the needs of the trailer. For example, a tire with a P designation which stands for passenger will not be able to hold the weight of the trailer. There are cases though when an ST tire will not be suitable for a trailer. This happens when the weight of the trailer is more than the recommended load for the ST tire. In these cases, a truck tire will serve well.
Every part of the ST tire is designed to fit the needs of the trailer. For example, compared to a similarly sized P tire or LT tire which stands for light truck, the ST tire is narrower. This is because the trailer tire does not need a bigger footprint which is the need for tires used for driving and steering. Since the trailer tire is not used for steering, it does not need a bigger footprint.
Lowering the heat on the tires increases optimizes its lifespan. Due to this, trailer tires have shallower treads compared to the tires used for passenger cars and light trucks. Also, the shallow treads does not allow the tire to wiggle which in turn reduces the risk of the trailer swaying from side to side.
Just like the tires on any vehicle, trailer tires also need to be inflated to the right level. Under inflation tends to reduce the lifespan of the tires as while running, more part of the tire will be in contact with the road thus creating excessive wear and tear.
Overloading is also an obvious reason for the disintegration of a trailer tire. Determine how heavy the trailer is before picking the trailer tire replacement. Never attempt to use a trailer tire which is not designed to carry heavier loads. This could only lead to problems in the long run.