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Published Nov. 15, 2019

Making sure your truck tires are in the best shape possible will help you pull more weight, haul more gear, and climb through difficult terrain. You’ve got a truck—you might as well use it for what it was designed to do. Whether you’re towing a trailer with jet skis or hauling your camper for the weekend, you will need the toughest tires to do the job efficiently without putting too much strain on your truck.

The Best Truck Tires

With the name Michelin, you know you are getting a high-quality tire to keep you on the road longer. The Michelin Defender LTX All-Season tire is durable and designed with enhanced performance and traction control for your truck. Whether you need to take the highway to pick up groceries or track through mud and dirt to get to your campsite, these tires can handle it all— the one exception being heavy, wet snow.

Their M/S rating means they are quite sturdy and rugged; they are capable of handling off-road terrain, highways, and backroads equally well. They offer a quick and short stopping distance on wet surfaces and work even more efficiently on dry roads. Plus, their directional tread pattern allows them to wear down evenly, and Michelin’s Evertread technology keeps them functional for longer. However, they tend to run stiff, which can make the ride a bit uncomfortable. These tires don’t give you that spring or bounce effect when you roll over bumps.

Key Features
  • On- and off-road suitable
  • 2,525 lb load capacity
  • UTQG: 800 A A
Specification
  • Brand Michelin
  • Model Defender LTX
  • Weight 39 lbs.
PROS

Long-lasting tread life

Excellent traction on light snow and wet surfaces

Quick and short stopping distance

CONS

Don’t handle well in heavy snow

Run stiff

Can heat up quickly

If you are in need of a great all-weather tire, the Goodyear Wrangler Radial Tire is a sure bet. It features an aggressive tread pattern design that is capable of handling a wide variety of conditions. However, the tread can also decrease your comfort; these tires make the ride a little rough. Even so, they perform well on wet, dry, or iced-over surfaces and have a strong grip to keep the truck in line.

While it may say Wrangler on the rubber, don’t be fooled into thinking it’s only designed for Jeeps. They are versatile and can be placed on trucks and SUVs as well. Even though their price is low, they aren’t cheap or flimsy. They are capable of withstanding road damage like more robust tires. These tires are beefy and look great, but might not last as long as other tires; they may start showing signs of wear and damage at around 30,000 miles or so.

Key Features
  • Aggressive tread pattern
  • 2,028 lb load capacity
  • UTQG: 300 A B
Specification
  • Brand Goodyear
  • Model Wrangler Radial
  • Weight 29 lbs.
PROS

Rugged-looking and durable

Thick tread pattern

Strong grip on wet surfaces

CONS

The ride may be rough

Potentially shorter life than other tires

Low UTQG

Think of this tire as the older, more mature, and wiser sibling to the Goodyear Wrangler Radial Tire. It’s beefier, more robust, and features a stunningly thick tread pattern. The ride these tires provide is comfortable and smooth, and they work great on any surface. They may resist a bit during acceleration, but that may be due to the thick tread design that allows for a better grip.

With their self-cleaning shoulder blocks, these tires sling away the dirt, gravel, mud, and debris that may stick to the rubber. That makes it easier and more convenient for you to clean them with a hose and soap. They are also equipped with high-angle center tread blocks for improved traction. This reduces road noise, but not by all that much; you may still be able to hear a bit from the tires.

Key Features
  • 3,640 lb load capacity 
  • UTQG: 500 B B
  • Speed rating of Q
Specification
  • Brand Goodyear
  • Model Wrangler DuraTrac
  • Weight 56 lbs.
PROS

Has a high carrying capacity

Self-cleaning

High-angled and thick center tread

CONS

They are heavy

May resist during acceleration

Produce a small amount of road noise

If you need a great versatile tire and price is not an issue for you, then consider the Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain Adventure. It can handle concrete and highways as well as tackle wet and muddy roads or trails. It features an open tread pattern that helps the tire both on and off the road. The tread also allows increased grip, especially in snowy or rainy conditions.

One of the most beneficial features of the Adventure is its twin high-tensile belts reinforced by a layer of tough kevlar. The Kevlar material is designed to both strengthen the tire and provide a more comfortable ride. The multi-faceted symmetric tread design is long-lasting and built to look rugged. Keep in mind that these tires are not compatible with all trucks or styles. You should do your research before purchasing them to make sure they are compatible with your truck.

Key Features
  • UTQG 640 AB
  • 2,469 lb load capacity
Specification
  • Brand Goodyear
  • Model Wrangler Adventure
  • Weight 35 lbs.
PROS

Great warranty

Features twin high-tensile belts

Designed with kevlar

CONS

Pricey

May not fit certain truck models

While it didn’t make our premium selection, the Dynapro HT RH12 is Hankook’s premium brand of all-season truck tire. With their combined long treadwear, comfortable ride, and enhanced traction control, these tires are highly praised for their ability to function on wet and dry surfaces. Although they don’t feature a powerful or aggressive-looking tread, they function quite well.

Perhaps the most crucial feature of these tires is their symmetric tread design. The pattern wears evenly, provides little to no noise in the cabin, and handles effectively on both wet roads and dry concrete. They feature a stiff center rib for enhanced steering and an improved response time in slick conditions. However, this may make the ride a bit more uncomfortable and stiff as well.

Key Features
  • UTQG 700 B A
  • 2,756 lb load capacity
  • 70,000-mile treadwear
Specification
  • Brand Hankook
  • Model Dynapro HT
  • Weight 39 lbs.
PROS

All-season tire

Functions great on slick or dry roads

Long-lasting tread

Low amount of road noise

CONS

Ride could be stiff

Don’t look or feel aggressive

Small tread pattern

For a more aggressive and robust Hankook tire, consider the Dynapro ATM RF10 All-Terrain tires. These feature a molded and specially engineered independent block and symmetric tread design. Combine that with the enlarged footprint of the tire and you get enhanced grip and boosted acceleration off the line. However, the sidewalls may end up wearing down well before the actual tread.

The tread comes in a wraparound design, which gives the tires a more rugged and chiseled look. It also gives the truck more traction on muddy and snowy terrain and helps protect the sidewall and rubber against cuts, abrasions, and bruises. They don’t, however, handle well in deep wet snow. They include stone ejectors that toss away rocks, pebbles, and dirt so that the rubber doesn’t get punctured. On top of all of that, the tire features two high-strength internal steel belts reinforced with a nylon cap ply for improved strength.

Key Features
  • UTQG: 560 A B
  • Radial all-terrain tires
  • 2,601 lb load capacity
Specification
  • Brand Hankook
  • Model Dynapro ATM RF10
  • Weight 37 lbs.
PROS

Wraparound tread provides a rugged look

Great for all road conditions

Performs well in snow and mud

CONS

Not designed for deep snow

The sidewall writing may be white instead of black

The sidewalls may not last as long as the tread

BFGoodrich is another tire company that understands how to make a high-quality tire for any situation. Its Terrain T/A K02 model certainly looks tough enough to handle anything you throw at it—and, in this case, it lives up to its appearance. It has both a sleek and aggressive design to it, so it looks great on any truck. The high-void all-terrain tread pattern is developed with interlocking tread blocks, improved siping, and multiple self-cleaning features to keep dirt and mud off the rubber. However, you may not want to use them on extremely slick surfaces when they wear down. As they get older, they can weaken and their overall traction on wet surfaces becomes poor.

One of the best features of these tires is their upper shoulder protective armor that guards the sidewall from punctures. Each tire also includes twin steel belts, each reinforced with spirally-wrapped nylon and a 3-ply polyester cord sidewall for additional strength and durability. You will end up paying a lot for a set of four tires, but not as much as you’d pay for a set of our premium choice.

Key Features
  • 3,750 lb load capacity
  • Designed for trucks, Jeeps, and SUVs
Specification
  • Brand BFGoodrich
  • Model T/A KO2
  • Weight 59 lbs.
PROS

Sleek and aggressive-looking

Protective sidewall shoulder armor

Unique tread pattern

CONS

Can be quite noisy

Pricey

Poor traction on slick roads when worn down

We can’t leave out the truck drivers who spend the majority of their time off the road. For those who wander the path less traveled, these Milestar Patagonia M/T Mud-Terrain Radial Tires are ideal. They feature a meaty high-void tread pattern that is scientifically engineered to bite into the ground for improved traction. Due to their size, however, you may need to rebalance them more frequently.

One huge benefit of the thick tread is its self-cleaning capabilities. Mud, dirt, and caked-on soil don’t stand a chance against these tires. They are capable of flinging off debris so you don’t spend hours cleaning and detailing every inch of the rubber. However, they don’t handle thick snow all that well. Each tire is developed with a dense 3-ply sidewall for extra protection.

Key Features
  • Radial tires
  • 3-ply sidewall protection
  • 2,270 – 2,535 lb load capacity
Specification
  • Brand Milestar
  • Model Patagonia M/T
  • Weight 38 lbs.
PROS

Robust and tough

Excellent off-road traction

Self-cleaning properties

Firm and bitey grip

Quiet

CONS

They may need to be rebalanced frequently

You might need a lot of weights to balance them

Not the best in snow

Best Truck Tire Buying Guide & FAQ

Truck tires come in many styles, but all are designed to help you haul more weight and equipment with extra efficiency. There is much more to a truck tire than just making sure your truck gets from point A to point B.

Why You Need Truck Tires

Tires come with their own weight capacity, and you may be straining them and your truck by not having the most heavy-duty tire.

Benefits

  • Truck tires increase your vehicle’s carrying capacity so you can haul more weight.
  • They can improve the performance of your truck, boosting its horsepower and speed.
  • The best truck tires allow you to power through off-road terrain more effectively.
  • Having better truck tires can save you cash at the pump by improving your gas mileage.
  • The thick rubber and wide tread provide improved traction so the truck doesn’t slide around on wet surfaces.

Types of Truck Tire

There are three types of truck tires you can find for your vehicle. These sets of tires will allow you to drive on- and off-road, tackling mud and dirt trails, slick roads, and dry surfaces with ease.

All-Season

All-season tires are beneficial for trucks that drive in all types of weather, especially on slick surfaces. Generally, nearly all stock tires are all-season to allow the vehicle to handle better throughout the entire year. They offer a comfortable ride with improved grip and traction control.

All-Terrain

An all-terrain truck tire is built to handle concrete as well as dirt, mud, and water while off the road. They are durable and long-lasting, so they remain consistent through both difficult terrain and smooth asphalt. One downside is they can be quite loud on the highway and have a lower fuel economy.

Mud Tires

Mud tires are also referred to as off-road tires. They are designed to handle more effectively off the beaten path, helping your truck climb over hills, rocks, and rivers. They have enhanced grip and traction to keep the truck more stable and secure during the drive.

What to Look for When Buying Truck Tires

Whether you have a light truck or a heavy-duty pickup truck, you will need the best tires for your particular job. If you need tires that feature improved road performance, you can easily find a set that works for you. However, if you want to run through mud or snow, you need the right size and tread pattern to drive effectively.

Load Capacity

All tires will feature a maximum load capacity to let you know how much weight they can carry. Look for a letter ranging from A to F stamped on the sidewall of the rubber. You will need to know the weight of your truck before purchasing the tires.

Size

You will also need to know the size of the truck tires you are considering. You can find the size written in the truck’s owner’s manual, or you can check the sidewall of your OEM tires. Check for anything written similarly to “P215/60R15.” The first set of numbers measure the width of the tire in millimeters, while the second set measures their height equal to 60 percent of the tire’s width.

Tread Pattern

You should also pay attention to the type of tread pattern your tires come with. You can find three types of treads, and they all offer different benefits for your truck. Symmetrical treads generally last longer due to their thick groove patterns. The rubber will wear down more evenly so you can drive on them longer. Unidirectional treads move in one single direction and are the most common in tires. However, you will need to make sure they are rotated more frequently. Asymmetrical treads are developed with more traction control and are most often used on sportier trucks or trucks built for racing. They can also be used as winter tires or mud-terrain tires.

Tips for Buying and Using Truck Tires

You may think tires are just meant to carry your truck and get it from point A to point B, but they provide your vehicle with much more opportunity. Whether on smooth concrete or difficult terrain, tires are built for all sorts of purposes.

Tips

  • You may want to consider getting tires with a higher carrying capacity to tow or haul trailers and cargo.
  • You should perform routine maintenance on your tires to ensure they are in the best possible condition. It is recommended to have your truck tires rotated every 6,000 to 8,000 miles. 
  • For a more comfortable and smooth ride, you should check the tire pressure of each tire. If they are over or under the required amount, you could lose gas mileage and risk a blowout.

Best Truck Tires FAQ:

Q: How often should I check the tire pressure?

Consider getting into a monthly routine to check the tire pressure and other components of your truck. You should also check the tires before any long trip and during sudden shifts in temperatures. Your tires may lose air if the weather is warm one day and dips below freezing the next.

Q: Do tires have a maximum speed rating?

Yes, all tires will have a maximum speed capacity. To prevent damaging your tire and truck, you should make sure you never surpass their speed rating. To find it, you can read the last letter on the sidewall. This will either be an S, T, H, or V, and only applies to a brand new tire. Those that have been damaged or punctured may have lost structural integrity, and their speed rating will likely be much lower.

Q: How can I clean the tires?

Dirty tires are something you will encounter when driving, but you can easily clean them off by doing a few things. You could use a hose to spray off dirt, salt, and other road debris. Alternatively, you could use sprays and conditioners specifically designed for rubber tires. You may also need to use a scrub brush and warm soapy water to get in between the grooves.

Our Top Pick

If you’re looking for the best truck tires, we recommend the Michelin Defender LTX M/S All-Season Radial Tire set for a good balance of traction and performance without a hefty price tag.

Sources

  1. How to Rotate Your Tires

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