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Old 04-18-2017, 08:13 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by SeaLevel View Post
I have a 2017 Sierra 1500, with the max trailering package, but I bet the tires are the same. If they are, they are Goodyear Eagle LS-2 tires, with a 111S rating. The 111 load index rating is 2403 pounds, with a 44psi max cold pressure. The S speed rating is 112mph.



From the manual: "The Tire and Loading Information label on the vehicle indicates the original equipment tires and the correct cold tire inflation pressures. The recommended pressure is the minimum air pressure needed to support the vehicle's maximum load carrying capacity."



On the door sticker is has 32psi for the front and 35psi for the rear as the recommended cold tire pressures. I'm not near the maximum load carrying capacity, but I have been running at 35psi (front) and 38psi (rear) while towing, for a little more support, and so far the ride has been very good and tire wear isn't apparent. When not towing I go back to 32/35psi. So far I am very happy with the ride, both towing and not towing.

That seems pretty low, especially when you factor in that passenger tires on trucks are supposed to have the load rating decremented about 9%. So at max pressure on a 1500 truck, the effective load rating is only 2187 pounds or so. Running less than 44 psi makes that effective load rating even less. Do you know what your GAWR is? It's likely around 4000 pounds, my Ram 1500 is 3900. That would mean with those passenger tires if you are fully loaded (payload and tongue weight need to be accounted for) those tires would be almost maxed out, if not maxed out load wise. There is really no safety margin left and that's not a situation I would want to be in.
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Old 04-18-2017, 08:25 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by mwkersh View Post
That seems pretty low, especially when you factor in that passenger tires on trucks are supposed to have the load rating decremented about 9%. So at max pressure on a 1500 truck, the effective load rating is only 2187 pounds or so. Running less than 44 psi makes that effective load rating even less. Do you know what your GAWR is? It's likely around 4000 pounds, my Ram 1500 is 3900. That would mean with those passenger tires if you are fully loaded (payload and tongue weight need to be accounted for) those tires would be almost maxed out, if not maxed out load wise. There is really no safety margin left and that's not a situation I would want to be in.
The GAWR is 3950lbs front and 4300lbs rear. As stated in the manual, "The recommended pressure is the minimum air pressure needed to support the vehicle's maximum load carrying capacity."
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Old 04-18-2017, 08:48 AM   #23
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Randy, would you explain why they are crap, and have you ever towed with them?
Trailer weight 6200 lbs, tongue weight 750 lbs, as stated Max Tow package with a WDH, over 9000 miles last summer. The original LS2s tread wear was very quick, at times everything would feel a little "squishy" a lot of extra directorial movement, this became more evident on larger inclines when there was more pressure being applied from the rear.

Not having year's of experience, I thought this was"just how it is" but started researching. There were numerous posts on various forums explaining what I was experiencing.

The original tires are fine for the original truck, they are fine if that truck is completely loaded to it's max weight allowances, when all forces are being applied from within it's own structure. However, when those forces are applied from outside, they are required to do more work and without the stiffened XL or E rated sidewalls are just not cut out for it. Once I put the XLs on, it made a world of difference. They are only a basic "P" rated tire.

Most1/2 trucks in this country are bought and driven as car with a really big trunk, so there is no reason for a manufacturer to set them up for heavy duty long term towing, people with these purposes tend to get 3/4 ton trucks and these are all set up for it from the beginning. I am not saying, nor do I subscribe to everyone should have a 3/4 ton, but I do believe they should set their 1/2 ton up correctly for their situation.

Most towing utility trailers or boats or ATVs around for the weekend would be fine with the original setup.

The OP asked for opinions and input, which is what I provided, and now my reasons for it. I don't think it is responsible for anyone to state that just because they never had a problem, no one else will either.

If the purpose of your truck is trailering and the weight of it is sufficient to warrant a change out when the current tires wear out, then removing them when new and replacing them with more appropriately​ rated tire makes sense in terms of safety and resale. There are plenty of people out the not demanding maximum performance from their truck that would be happy to save $50 per tire and it would be good money invested for the safety of your family.
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Old 04-18-2017, 09:13 AM   #24
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I believe that P is for "passenger"....The speed rating letter follows the size numbers.
Corrected,
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Old 04-18-2017, 09:48 AM   #25
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You'd think if you buy a max tow package they'd include LT tires too. Guess that's not the way they see it.
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Old 04-18-2017, 11:57 AM   #26
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Those are 4-ply tires.
I have been towing on 4-ply P-rated tires for 7 years, but I don't think it is ideal.
The last time I checked, there were no LT 10-ply tires available in my specific size 20" tires.
Maybe there are more options now.
My tires are DOT dated in 2011, so it is close to time for new tires due to age.
I will pursue the option of getting LT tires again.
I would have preferred that my truck came with 18" wheels rather than 20" wheels to make LT tire buying easier.
The flip-side of that coin is: If it ain't broke, don't fix it. If I have been able to tow on 4-ply P-rated tires since 2010...
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Old 04-18-2017, 01:59 PM   #27
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We have Michelin Defender LTX LT 265/60 r 20, E, and find them smooth and stable on our 2016 Tundra after 22,000 miles. I wouldn't shy away from E rated tires.
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Old 04-18-2017, 02:31 PM   #28
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I recently purchased (3 weeks ago) a 2017 GMC Z71 Sierra 1500 4WD w 5.3 engine, trailer package, 8 speed trans. A bit of xtra weight with Sunroof, auto closing bed cover, running boards. Gas power.
I also purchased 2 weeks ago a 2016 Airstream 28 International Signature.
After reading the posts regarding tires my head hurts. Does it really have to be so complicated? I am a newbie....so
My truck has Goodyear tiers P275/55R20. The tires have 2000 miles on them. I have been told these tires are either 4 or 6ply AND I should have 8 or 10 ply tires for safety etc.
So could you knowledgeable travelers suggest the type of tire I need to replace my current with? Brand, specific detail for size, ply, etc.
What are the pro and con of the change? safety, ride comfort, gas mileage, etc. Please keep it simple,,,and thanks. The AS forum is a great place!!
Having subscribed to this forum for the past five years this is the last place I would look for advice on tires. At the end you will be confused and scared to death getting on the road with your Trailer. Educate yourself by doing your own research.
If your truck came equipped with a set of tires from the factory and the heavy duty tow package as long as you are within the load capacity of the factory sticker on your door you have nothing to worry about. The load capacity of the tires match the overall design carrying capacity of the axles.
My 2012 F-150 EB came with low profile P rated 20" Pirrelly Scorpions. Ran them for 60K miles and replaced them with the same size Michelins Towing a 30' AS with a 1000 lbs tongue weight. Never had any overheating or any other problems with either one. And I have a led foot.
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Old 04-18-2017, 02:35 PM   #29
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Just because you had a specific tire before does not mean the current ones will be the same.

Our Tundra with tow package came with Bridgestone (P275-55-20") tires which are suppose to be terrible for towing. I ran them at max pressure 44 psi and they towed unbelievably well. No sway under any conditions with or without sway control. At 58,000 miles they were worn evenly with about 5,000 miles left and I was leaving on a 5,000 mile trip so I replaced them. I asked for the exact same tire and found the new set to be scary to the point of dangerous. It was like driving with both rear tires flat. I returned those for a set of Michelin Defender LTX. Interestingly, they also were not as stable as the original tires, but not near as bad as the Bridgstone's. I have since changed the hitch head to add 2 sway controls and re-set everything up and it is now about 95% as stable as before.

I suspect either the original tires were higher rated or the design was chnaged on the new set for a softer ride (P rating after all). If I didn't have a new set of 20" Michelin's, I would have opted to go down to 18" wheels and get a true LT tire.
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Old 04-18-2017, 04:49 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by MWL530 View Post
I recently purchased (3 weeks ago) a 2017 GMC Z71 Sierra 1500 4WD w 5.3 engine, trailer package, 8 speed trans. A bit of xtra weight with Sunroof, auto closing bed cover, running boards. Gas power.
I also purchased 2 weeks ago a 2016 Airstream 28 International Signature.
After reading the posts regarding tires my head hurts. Does it really have to be so complicated? I am a newbie....so
My truck has Goodyear tiers P275/55R20. The tires have 2000 miles on them. I have been told these tires are either 4 or 6ply AND I should have 8 or 10 ply tires for safety etc.
So could you knowledgeable travelers suggest the type of tire I need to replace my current with? Brand, specific detail for size, ply, etc.
What are the pro and con of the change? safety, ride comfort, gas mileage, etc. Please keep it simple,,,and thanks. The AS forum is a great place!!
Keep them full of air to the max and run them ,you will be fine...
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Old 04-19-2017, 08:08 AM   #31
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I think I need to clear up a few things.

The number of plies in a tire: In the old days – before synthetic fibers – tires were made out of natural fibers, typically cotton, which only came in a few configurations. Since the inflation pressure is very important to load carrying capacity – and the number of plies is important to inflation pressure – it was common to grade tires on the number of plies.

At the time, tires were bias ply tires (as opposed to radial) and bias tires always come with plies in pairs. (2, 4, etc.)

When synthetic fibers were introduced, the size of the fiber determined its strength, so one could build a tire with fewer actual plies and get the same strength. So the standardizing organizations introduced the concept of “Ply Rating” (PR) based on the old cotton plies.

It didn’t take very long before they realized that people were confusing PR for the number of actual plies, so they went to “Load Ranges” to try to clear up the confusion. That was only moderately successful. The problem continues as many people haven’t fully adopted the new term (even though it has been 50 years!)

So there is only a loose connection between the number of plies and the strength of a tire – and the tire industry has pretty much settled on a construction of 2 body plies (typically polyester), and 2 steel wire belts – with perhaps some nylon cap plies (which don’t actually enter into the strength equation except in an oblique way) – the strength of the tire being determined by the size of the body ply fiber.

It is still pretty common for folks to mistakenly think a – say – 10 PR tire as having (and needing) 10 actual plies – when they could use as little as a single body ply.

Passenger car tires: When tire standards are published, they try to describe the application the tires are designed for. However, these descriptions are general in nature and tires can be used in a variety of different applications. The best example is in pickup trucks and vans – where the smaller sized vehicles (1/2 ton and smaller) use large p type tires, and and 1 ton vehicles use LT tires.

Specifically, P type tires (commonly called Passenger Car tires) can be used for small trucks, small vans, small trailers, 3 wheeled motorcycles, and other diverse applications.

Also, small pickups and vans could use an LT tire – and many do. This is all about sizing the tire for the load carrying capacity – and typically, LT tires can carry more load than a comparably sized P type tire, because an LT tire is designed for a higher inflation pressure. But otherwise, LT tires are the same as P type tires.

I hope this clears up a few things.
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Old 04-19-2017, 09:40 AM   #32
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So...
All that to say P-rated tires on a 1/2 ton pickup is OK, even when used exclusively to tow an Airstream trailer?
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Old 04-19-2017, 01:43 PM   #33
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So...
All that to say P-rated tires on a 1/2 ton pickup is OK, even when used exclusively to tow an Airstream trailer?

That depends on the tire load rating and the 1/2 truck in question.

If the tire has the load rating for the vehicle application and total load anticipated that tire is OK.

If the tire is rated for 2000 pounds (and there are 4) and the 1/2 ton pick up has a GVWR of 9000 pounds, then the tire is not sized for the application.

The same confusion with load ratings on tires occurs in trucks or pick up trucks. The lines get blurred based on old ratings (started over 60 years ago) Half ton, 3/4 ton, 1 ton or heavy half ... Some of this is marketing.

As an example for trailer towing with a F 150 (half ton if you will) a GCWR (gross Combined Weight Rating) can range from 5000 pounds to 12,000 pounds. Depends on engine, axle ratio, body type and trailer type.

It is a complex world we live in and mostly because consumers want choice for different applications. So not all P rate tires will work for all 1/2 trucks. Some will, some won't, it is ultimately up to the consumer to know what will. The help of a tire professional at the point of purchase.


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Old 04-19-2017, 03:34 PM   #34
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I would still say the LT is a better tire for towing frequently due to the generally having a firmer/harder rubber compound, stiffer sidewalls, and additional tread strength. Case in point, although not towing, we do a lot of off-roading with Jeeps. Almost every time out someone with a passenger tire pops either the sidewall or punctures the tread. Rarely does that happen to someone running an LT version of either an All Terrain or Mud Terrain tire in our groups. This information about passenger and light truck tires maximum pressure vs load rating is accurate, but it doesn't tell the whole story. An LT tire is made for more heavy duty use over a passenger tire. It's a stronger tire that holds up to abuse better. Period.
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Old 04-19-2017, 03:50 PM   #35
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I replaced the tires on my 1/2 ton last year. Most of the LT tires I found had AT or MT tread, which I did not want. I ended up going with an P-metric tire with an XL load rating. I was worried about the sway I read people talking about with P tires compared to LT tires. I couldn't tell any differnce.
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Old 04-19-2017, 04:33 PM   #36
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So...
Maybe Michelin Defender or LTX?
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Old 04-19-2017, 05:32 PM   #37
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Old 04-19-2017, 06:19 PM   #38
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Both of these ^ are good choices. I ran the Long Trail on an Excursion towing a 6000 pound TT and it was a really great setup, just super long (Excursion + 29' foot trailer). The Michelin LTXs I have had on a full size Ford van and my daughters Jeep Cherokee. It was great tire. The van we towed a 17' TT, so not much weight, but the tires still were great performers.
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Old 04-20-2017, 08:58 AM   #39
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I replaced the tires on my 1/2 ton last year. Most of the LT tires I found had AT or MT tread, which I did not want. I ended up going with an P-metric tire with an XL load rating. I was worried about the sway I read people talking about with P tires compared to LT tires. I couldn't tell any differnce.
My experience exactly the same. No sidewall issues load issues etc. The origina 20" Pirelli Scorpion tires that came with my 2012 F150 had 2800 lbs load rating. Perfectly matching the rear axle rating.
I serously dabut that Ford would chance installing a marginal tire on a 65 k pick up with 12000 lbs tow capacity.
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Old 04-26-2017, 08:09 PM   #40
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P is a speed rating - 93 mph. "L" actually has a lower speed rating
Check out rating information on tire rack or discount tires for better information

I do think that yourtruck load rating is based on the factory installed tires

Clarification

P or LT before the numbers signifies Passenger or Light truck

There is a "Service Description" after the rim size. It might look like 110/113 T The numbers are a Load Index number and the Letter is the speed rating. Tire Rack has a good tech page.
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