Get to Know Your Tire

January 18th, 2016

Ever shop for tires and not completely understand all the jargon?  The sidewall of your tire, while seeming a bit confusing, is easier to understand than you think.  The most basic piece of information that everyone needs to know is the tire size and indexes.

What is on the Sidewall?

The sidewall of your tire has a few important pieces of information.  Besides the tire size and speed and load index, your tire sidewall will have:

  -  The Manufacturer and Model of the tire.
  -  The weather rating is listed on some tires as well.
  -  Load and Pressure Warnings
  -  The Manufacturer recommended inflation pressure
  -  Manufacturing detail including materials used and the date it was made.

When you are pruchasing tires, it is good to know what comes on them, but for your vehicle it is the size that matters most.

Where and What is the Tire Size?

The tire size is normally found on side of the tire slightly around from the manufacturer name.  An example of a what a tire size reads is P225/75R16 but what does it mean?

  -  P stands for Passenger.  You may also find tires that say LT standing for Light Truck.  This normally differs by the size of the vehicle that the tire will be placed on based on the frame size and body type of the vehicle.

Tire Sidewall Diagram - Coast Tire & Auto Service - New Bruswick, Novia Scotia & Prince Edward Island  -  The 225 is your tire's width in millimeters.  This is how wide the tire needs to be to fit your vehicles rim.

  -  The second number, 75, is the height of the sidewall from the rim of the wheel to the road, also called the Ratio.  This is also measured in millimeters.

  -  The 'R' means that the tire is a Radial.  This is extremely common.

  -  The 16 is the size of the wheel that the tire will be placed on.  This is typically measured in the diameter of the wheel in inches.

Other information on the sidewall that you may want to take into consideration when purchasing or examining your tires are...

  -  The load index and speed rating.  These typically come just after the tire size on the sidewall.  For example 98T.  The 98 is the load index and the V is the speed rating.  

  -  Each vehicle requires tires that have a specific load index minimum requirement.  The example here of load index rating 98 can support up to 750 kilograms of weight at maximum air pressure, per tire, for extended use.  

  -  The speed rating is equally important.  If you exceed the speed rating for a tire for too long it increases ware and can put your tires, vehicle and personal safety at risk.  The rating of T means that the tire is rated for extended performance at speeds no higher than 190 kilometers per hour.

At Coast Tire & Auto Service we take pride in making sure that your vehicle is equipped with the right tires.  Whether you are doing the Monday through Friday commute or traveling cross country - we're helping keep you and your vehicle safe on the road.

  Tags: Tires, Auto Repair
  Posted in: Tires 101