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The 10 Best All Terrain Tires  Oct 2020

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1
Best All Terrain Tires - IRONMAN ALL COUNTRY M/T All-Terrain Radial Tire Review Ironman
9 . 9
2
Best All Terrain Tires - BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 Radial Tire - 245/75R16 Review BFGoodrich
9 . 4
3
Best All Terrain Tires - Falken Wildpeak AT3W all_ Terrain Radial Tire-265/70R17 115T Review Falken
9 . 0
4
Best All Terrain Tires - Falken Wildpeak AT3W All Terrain Radial Tire Review Falken
9 . 0
5
Best All Terrain Tires - BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 Radial Tire -LT265/70R17/C 112/109S Review BFGoodrich
8 . 5
6
Best All Terrain Tires - BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 Radial Tire -LT275/70R18/E 125/122R Review BFGoodrich
8 . 3
7
Best All Terrain Tires - Falken Wildpeak A/T3W all_ Terrain Radial Tire-265/70R16 112T Review Falken
8 . 1
8
Best All Terrain Tires - Falken Wildpeak AT3W 275/60R20 Tire Review Falken tires
7 . 9
9
Best All Terrain Tires - Falken WILDPEAK A/T TRAIL All- Terrain Radial Tire-265/50R20XL Review Falken
7 . 5
10
Best All Terrain Tires - BF Goodrich 31x10.50R15 Tire, All-Terrain T/A KO2 Review BF Goodrich
7 . 1

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Your Guide To Buying an All Terrain Tire

By #<Author:0x00007facec25cb78>

    All-terrain tires (abbreviated as A-T or A/T), as distinct from all-season tires, are specialized tires for light trucks, all-terrain vehicles, and SUVs (=Sport Utility Vehicles). (All-season tires are designed for basic performance under all weather conditions: summer heat, and winter ice and snow.) All-terrain tires perform adequately both on paved and unpaved roads. If you're traveling on dirt, sand, mud, gravel, or snow, you'll need a tire that's going to have traction and not get stuck. Ultimately, the tire that you choose will depend on the worst weather conditions that you expect to encounter, as well as your tire's size and type of vehicle. But you should get to know some of the parameters that go into choosing tires: aspect ratio,  load index, speed rating, and tire construction are all important pieces of data. If you want to upgrade to a better set of tires, you have to realize that some tires will be suitable for your car, within tolerance, while some won’t be appropriate at all. You have to know which pieces of data and specifications are important.

    To help you make the right choice, we have put together this buying guide including everything you need to know about all-terrain tires to make the correct purchase. It'll help you:

    • Choose the right type of all-terrain tires,

    • See useful tips about that type of all-terrain tires,    

    • Read reviews of different brands of all-terrain tires, and what customers are saying,

    • Select the right brand of all-terrain tires, and

    • Compare prices and find the best deals.

    What makes a tire fit for all types of terrain? The distinguishing features of all-terrain tires are:

    1. The Treads: All-terrain tires must have added grip and open treads to work properly on unpaved surfaces. But when they encounter a paved road, they also have to have good traction. All-terrain tires will be divided into regular and aggressive types: aggressive all-terrain tires will have a deeper tread pattern and wider spaced tread blocks. The disadvantages of all-terrain tires are that their open treads make the tire noisier than street tires. Also, they are made from softer rubber than street tires. That softer rubber means that it will wear out more quickly—it has reduced tread life. In short, all-terrain tires are designed for shorter periods off the road. If you're interested in adventurous traveling off the road for an extended period, look into getting specialized, rugged off-road tires.

    2. The Sipes: The treads of the tire are the rows of rubber on the tire's surface, while the sipes are the small treads within each major tread. You'll frequently see zig-zag siping on all-terrain tires. That prevents gravel from getting deposited in the treads of the tire--that gravel can seriously downgrade the tire’s traction. Also, they are made to not pick up gravel and pebbles in between the treads.  

    3. The Sidewalls: The sidewalls of all-terrain tires are made from thicker rubber, so as to be able to go over gravel and rocks and not puncture or split. You'll see all-terrain tires made from three layers of rubber. You'll also notice that all-terrain tires may have “side biters”--treads on the sidewall that protect the tire and allow for extra traction on mud and loose surfaces.

    Based on all the consumers' reviews we've scanned, these are the top things they mentioned about their new stuff:

    • Muddy terrain:  When going into deep mud, people find that the all-terrain tire will not behave well. It's better to have special mud tires for deep mud since they will be able to “clean themselves” by letting the mud slip through the treads. The all-terrain will be suitable in shallow mud.

    • Traveling on rocks: All-terrain tires can travel on rocks, but then it would be best to drive with lower pressure in the tires. That will allow the tire to deform when encountering jagged rocks. All-terrain tires will not perform as well as mud tires on jagged rocks (mud tires are made from especially thick sidewalls), but they are better than tires for light trucks (abbreviated “LT”).

    • Protection against damage: There are tires that have special features to reinforce them against damage. For example, the Federal Couragia M/T Mud-Terrain Radial Tire - LT235/75R15 104/101Q has side biters shoulder lugs (cross grooves on the edge of the tread of the tire) and a strong protection block that keeps the tire from suffering damage from impacts, abrasions and cuts. The Hankook DynaPro ATM RF10 Off-Road Tire  265/70R17 113T is made to prevent risk of the tire getting punctured. The BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 Radial Tires have a tougher sidewall rubber, which is split- and bruise-resistant. It has thicker shoulder rubber, extending to the sidewall for better protection. It also has an advanced computerized deflection design, so as to deflect any protruding objects that could damage the sidewall.

    • Tire Codes: If you look at a tire’s sidewall (the part that is visible when you attach the tire to the car’s wheel), you will see a series of codes. Here is a key to some of the codes. Let’s say that you see the following code: P215/65R15 95H:

    • Tire type: The first letter in the tire code is the tire type: In the example, the letter P indicates that the tire is for a passenger vehicle. You’ll also see “LT” (for Light Trucks, which need higher inflation pressures than a passenger car), “ST” (for Special Trailer), and “T” (Temporary, for spare tires). There are all-terrain tires that are special for more rugged vehicles. For example, the General Tire General Grabber AT2 Radial Tire is an all-terrain tire for jeeps, light pickup trucks, and SUVs.

      • Definition: Metric tires: If there is no letter in the tire code, it indicates that the tire is a Euro-Metric tire. Metric tires will typically have a higher load capacity. You can replace non-metric tires with metric tires--but you shouldn’t replace metric tires with non-metric tires. It is also not good to mix metric and non-metric tires either. The best is to replace tires with new tires that are the same size and load capacity.

    • Tire width: The next three digits in the code is the tire width in millimeters. In our example, it is 215 mm.

    • Aspect ratio: The next two digits after the slash mark indicate the aspect ratio: This is the ratio of the height of the tire's cross-section to its width. In this code, the aspect ratio is 65. This means that the height is 65% of the tire's width. In numbers, that translates to a height of = .65 x 215 mm = 139.75 mm.

    • Tire Construction: The letter that follows describes how the tire’s layers are wrapped on top of the inner liner. This can be:

      • “R” for a radial tire, where the layers of material run radially across the tire.  (A radial tire has a series of plies of cord to reinforce the tire, where the network of cords is called "the carcass". The cords can be polyester or steel inlaid with layers of rubber. Radial tires have tread blocks that are slanted from the center of the tire's tread to the outer rim. They give better traction on dry snow and dirt. This is as opposed to circumferential tread tires: These have tread blocks in a straight line around the tire's circumference. This design disperses water, so these tires give good traction in the rain, but do not perform so well on dirt or dry snow.)

      • “B” for a bias belt, where the sidewalls and tread are the same material, and

      • “D” for diagonal.

    • Wheel Diameter: The next two digits in the code is the wheel diameter--the size of the wheel in inches from end to end, upon which you place the tire. Here, in our example, the metal wheel is 15" in diameter.

    • Load index: The next two digits is an index that tells you the maximum load that the tire can support when properly inflated. There is a conversion table to convert the number to the weight limit in pounds and kilograms. So, in the BF Goodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 Radial Tire - 275/60R20 119S, the load index is 119, which can bear a load of 3000 pounds. With the BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 Radial Tire - 285/75R16 126R, the load index is 126, which can bear 3638 pounds.  

    • Speed rating: This is the maximum speed capability of a tire. It is given as a letter, ranging from “A1” (3 mph) to “Y” (186 mph). In our example, “H” indicates that the tire can go at a maximum of 130 mph, or 210 km/h. It is not recommended to exceed the speed rating.

    • DOT symbol: If says "DOT" on the sidewall, it means that the tire complies with all Motor Vehicle Safety Standards of the Department of Transportation ( = DOT).

    • Tire Identification Number (TIN): This is a code consisting of 8 to 13 numbers and letters written on the sidewall to identify the factory location and date of manufacture.

    • UTQG: This stand for “Uniform Tire Quality Grading”--this is a system to provide info about tires' traction, treadwear, temperature capabilities.

    • Speed ratings: You should note the manufacturer's maximum speed for the tire.

    • Traction rating: This is the tire's ability to stop on wet pavement or asphalt. The grades go from “AA”, “A”, “B” and “C”. “AA” will indicate a tire that has better traction when traveling in a straight line and braking, but will not take into consideration how the tire performs when turning.

    • Treadwear warranty: This is the amount of mileage that the manufacturer expects the tire to be able to handle, without compromising the performance. But experts say that you shouldn't rely solely on this number when buying tires.

    • Temperature ratings: The temperature tolerances on tires are rated from “A” (highest, that can go over 115 mph) to “C” (lowest, that must not exceed 100 mph). The fact that an “A” grade can handle higher temperatures means that the car can risk going at higher speeds as well.

    • All-terrain, All-season, and Mud-terrain: Besides all-terrain tires, you’ll see mud-terrain and all-season tires. This might create some confusion, so here are some words of explanation:

      • Mud-terrain tires (such as the BFGoodrich Mud-Terrain T/A KM All-Terrain Radial Tire LT255/75R17/C 111Q) are used for off-the-road driving, when you’ll encounter rocky or loose soil. They have the disadvantage that they are somewhat noisy and give a rough ride--it might be difficult for passengers if you go a long distance. You will see tires with the code “M & S” or “M + S”--this stands for “Mud and Snow”. There is also “M & T” or “M + T”--this stands for “Mud and Terrain.

      • All-season tires have a shallower tread depth and a milder pattern than all-terrain tires. The all-season tends to be smoother on a pavement and on packed snow than an all-terrain tire. But the all-terrain tire is better for stopping and turning on packed snow, and can also handle traveling in deep snow, better than the all-season tire. (Of course, specialized snow tires are the best for winter: they are made from a special rubber that is able to withstand extreme cold and still remain flexible. The deeper treads also give it better traction on snow and ice.)

    B.F. Goodrich-- was founded by Benjamin Franklin Goodrich in 1870 in Akron, Ohio. They started as manufacturers of rubberized hoses and belts, but then started to expand to first bicycle tires and then automobile tires.​

    Dick Cepek Tires and Wheels-- is a tire company that was established in 1958 by Dick Cepek. Their headquarters is in Stow, Ohio. They specialize in adventure tires—tires that have to perform in a variety of environments, for trucks, jeeps, SUVs and 4X4s.​

    General Tire—was founded by William F. O'Neill and Winfred E. Fouse in 1915 in Akron, Ohio, as an outgrowth of the Western Tire & Rubber Company. Their aim was to make a premium replacement tire—at first, their tires were for industry, and then later they expanded to passenger cars.


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