Trailer Tires Bias or RadialMaddy Scheinost
Radial or Bias?
Should My Trailer Tires Be Radial Tires or Bias Ply Tires?
There’s a lot of information to unpack when you’re deciding whether you’ll be better off using radial tires or bias ply tires as your trailer tires. Bias ply has been around much longer and many trailer manufacturers equip their trailers with bias ply tires. But at the same time, radial tires are generally assumed to be superior in terms of ride and wear. They’re also typically the more expensive choice. But it’s really not that clear cut, which is why the tire experts at Treadworld came together to offer you a few tips to help you answer the bias ply vs radial trailer tires question.
What’s the Difference Between Radial Tires and Bias Ply Tires?
The difference is in the construction of the tires, with their names referring to the angle that the reinforcing belts cross the tire carcass. A bias ply tire is sometimes referred to as cross ply because that’s the nature of the construction—body ply cords extending diagonally from bead to bead (where the rubber makes contact with the wheel.). These cords, typically a combination of polyester and steel to enhance strength, cross the tire at a 30 to 45-degree angle to the direction of travel, with successive plies laid to form a crisscross pattern. Radial tires are built with these cords running at an angle that’s 90-degrees to the center of the tire, across the tire body from bead to bead.
What’s important to this discussion is the result. Bias ply tires tend to have stiffer sidewalls which provide an advantage on unpaved roads and in harsh environments like agriculture, and at slower speeds or when used infrequently. Radial tires tend to flex more leading to a smoother ride, better traction and stability, and less treadwear. They also tend to run cooler, which can contribute to longer life. Overall, they’re a better choice for longer, faster runs and use with travel trailers on paved roads.
Can Bias Tires Carry a Heavier Load?
In earlier days, bias ply tires were known to be better for carrying heavier loads, but that’s no longer true as today’s ST steel-belted radial tires have closed that gap.
How to Tell Which Tires You’re Running Now
There’s a simple way of telling whether you’re running radial trailer tires or bias ply trailer tires. Just look at the tire size printed on the sidewall of each tire. If there is an “R” in the size, it’s a radial ply tire. If not, it’s bias ply.
So, in a nutshell, there’s no mystery here—the difference between bias and radial trailer tires comes down to tire construction, and the one that’s best for you depends on how and where you’ll be trailering.
Count on Treadworld for All Your Trailer Tires Needs
If you’re looking for replacement trailer tires or trailer wheels and tires, count on us here at Treadworld to provide you with exactly you want, from our wide range of dependable styles and huge selection of sizes. All our RubberMaster Trailer Tires are manufactured to strict tolerances from top rubber compounds, then triple-tested for quality, balance and uniformity before being X-rayed to be sure they’re perfect. Easy ordering, fast shipping plus your satisfaction is guaranteed with our no-hassle Ultimate Advantage Warranty. Don’t hesitate to contact our tire experts via live chat or email with any questions you may have, and to get the ideal trailer tires—or the perfect ATV tires, UTV tires, lawn and garden tires, and many others—from our extensive selection.