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Old 03-29-2014, 10:21 AM   #1
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Tire Tread Pattern for Trailers

Has anyone done any research on the effects of the tread pattern on trailer tires?

When I made the switch to 16 inch LT tires, I wondered what the effect of the more aggressive traction pattern would be. My first though was that it was a good idea because it would help braking. However after thinking about it, I am wondering if the added side to side resistance is good or bad? The plus side is that it will aid in side to side (sway) stability to some degree. The down side on a multi axle trailer is the will be more side to side tread resistance and thus more sidewall flexing and heating in any turning or swaying.

Does anyone have any ideas to contribute to the subject? (other than: why don't I do something worthwhile with my time?)

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Old 03-29-2014, 12:01 PM   #2
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I do not see how better traction can be anything but good. I have been running the 15 inch LTX M/S tires for 6 years now and have not had a problem of any kind with them.
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Old 03-30-2014, 08:00 AM   #3
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First, you don't want the trailer tires skidding before the tow vehicle. So more traction is a plus.

- BUT -

There is quite a bit of variation in traction and you can't tell much by looking the the tread pattern.

Plus, side to side stability is a function of the sidewall, not the tread pattern.

So I think it doesn't matter. You can't know enough by looking at the tread pattern.
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Old 03-30-2014, 10:31 AM   #4
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I think of an all terrain (open block) tread pattern as being compromised for on pavement use. They are designed for traction in mud, and looks. The open tread blocks tend to squirm around, and they can produce noise and heat.

I would think a trailer tire faces demands more similar to the front tires on a truck than the tires on the drive axle.

I would look for a highway rib pattern for less heat, low noise, and tread life. They are designed to handle braking and cornering loads. In my area, I would look for wet weather performance as well, YMMV.

Agree that the sidewall matters just as much.

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