Off-road tyres are designed to provide excellent traction in off-road environments. They are used by farmers, gardeners and landscapers. This category of tyres is often referred to as arboreal (i.e. made for trees). These include car, bike, boat and all-terrain vehicle (ATV) tyres for extreme terrains like mud or snow.
Tyres During Cold Weather
For most vehicles, including cars, two hard tyres are normally used for maximum traction. These are called the front and rear four-wheel drive (4WD) tyres. This allows for maximum traction when driving on slippery ice or snow. Also, driving on ice or snow is possible even when the vehicle is empty. This means that there will be no risk of damaging the driveline because the centre differential can be locked in to give maximum traction over any given terrain.
Tyres During Hot Weather
When the weather is hot, four soft tyres are used for traction. For simple reasons, tyres that are hard with little rubber coverage will overheat during long journeys on hot roads. The heat generated by the vehicle body will be transferred to the tyres during initial accelerations. This may lead to high tyre temperatures. Such high temperatures may reduce the grip of the tyre resulting in accidents or flat tires.
How to Choose the Right Tyre
Off-road tyres come in many different types and different manufacturers, each with their own characteristics and also varying budget prices. These go beyond the normal choices of car tyre brands and additional features such as tread pattern and compound. A new set of off-road tyres will be a huge investment for you and there is a lot of thought that has to go into the process before purchasing for maximum safety, performance and reliability. Below some very helpful tips to those who are looking to make those choices…
Traction: Tyres have a wide range of traction properties that can be changed to suit the type of driving you will be doing.
Grip: Tyre grip is a very important property as it tells how much your tyres will stick to the road under the force of centrifugal force. This is very important for off-road driving as you need maximum traction.
Serviceability: This tells how easy it is to repair the tyre. These are very important for off-road driving as you need to be able to handle various punctures and damage comfortably. As off-road tyres are often used in harsh environments, they need to be able to withstand sharp objects piercing through their treads. It also needs to be able to withstand punctures caused by sharp rocks.
Length: This is the distance from the rim to the bead of a tyre. It is also known as tread width or tread depth.
Width: This is the measurement in millimetres from one side to another of a tyre. It can be in various shapes and sizes so it can fit different wheels and axels.
Diameter: The diameter of a wheel, axle or wheel bolt is measured in millimetres. In tyres it specifies how much space there is between one side of a tyre and the other.
Speed Rating: The speed rating of a tyre is a safety factor that determines the top speed at which a tyre can travel without being damaged.
Load Index: The load index of a tyre determines the weight it can carry, based on the diameter and the width of the tyre. This is very important for off-road tyres as they carry a lot of weight in off-road vehicles.
Tire Ply: The ply in a tire is an extra layer of material that is fused to or wrapped around another ply.
When purchasing an off road tyre, the most important thing to consider is the safety of the tyre. Some good off road tyres will come with an independent safety rating to ensure you are getting a quality product. The rating consists of 1-5 stars, with 5 stars being the highest. Independent testing is important because not all manufacturers conduct their own tests on their products.
1. A Good All Rounder
This is one of the most important features to look for when choosing the right off road tyres. Off-road tyres are designed for all terrain use. They can be used on grass, mud or snow and are therefore guaranteed to give you the best possible grip wherever you drive them. This is especially important if you intend to use your vehicle during both winter and summer months because many of them rely on good traction during different seasons.
2. Tread Design
A good off-road tyre tread design will have a centre pattern so that mud and water can be pushed away from the vehicle’s wheel to the outside of the tyre. This is important for off road driving where you may be driving through deep mud or snow, which could cause damage to your oil, drive shaft or gearbox.
3. Bead Wire
The bead wire in an off road tyre is the wire that creates the bond between the tyre and wheel. If you purchase a quality tyre, it will be made with a very strong and durable wire. This will ensure that no matter how large or heavy your vehicle is, your tyres will always remain firmly attached to your wheels even on very rough and hard terrain.
4. Rim Protection
Many off-road tyres come with inner rim protection.
What is the Best Off Road Tyre Brand in the UK?
We recommend Maxxis as a good brand of tyre, on both price and quality.
They specialise in motorcycle and ATV tyres. They are a reasonably priced, good quality tyre when compared with other major brands. In the UK, mudslingerztyres.co.uk stocks a large range of Maxxis tyres.