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Choosing tires for a passenger car or light truck can be accomplished in a relatively short amount of time. The only thing left for you to do is look at some web reviews, choose a set of tires that are suitable for your driving demands, and buy them. There is information available on practically every type of tire that has ever been produced for passenger cars and trucks, including some of the less well-known versions.
On the other hand, these are not at all like the tires used on semi-trucks. When it comes to these items, it can be difficult to locate useful information online. Instead, businesses typically rely on the knowledge and expertise they have acquired over the course of their existence, frequently experimenting with a variety of tires to determine which ones perform the best. Some businesses go so far as to test various vehicle models with a variety of tires to determine which configurations perform the best.
When compared to tires designed for passenger cars, these tires have a different set of characteristics that manufacturers look for. For instance, firms are interested in endurance, toughness, and rolling resistance first and foremost, and then with traction, grip, braking, and stability as a secondary concern, rather than grip and traction as the primary concern. In other words, these tires will be utilized for heavy-duty applications, which necessitate resiliency and endurance on the part of the component.
The explanation for this is straightforward: businesses desire tires that will lower their operating costs. Because of this, investing in inexpensive commercial truck tires is not always the most trustworthy course of action to take. Although the initial cost of these tires may be lower than that of premium tires, it is possible that they may not survive as long. There is a possibility that in the long run, more expensive tires will end up being a better financial investment.
In addition, tires that are less expensive may have a higher rolling resistance, which may result in an increase in fuel consumption of 1% to 2%. This can have a significant effect on the amount of gasoline that is used by a fleet of semi-trucks, which is why the best commercial truck tires need to have strong credentials in terms of their influence on the environment.
There are, of course, a growing number of good budget-friendly tires that will last for a long time and will also minimize the amount of gasoline that your fleet uses. That is, of course, presuming that you will be able to locate those models.
You have, fortunately, arrived just in time to get the information you need about the best tires for semi trucks. A list of the top ten tire brands for commercial trucks has been compiled by us in order to assist you in selecting the most suitable tires for your fleet. Within each brand, we will determine which tires are the greatest for the steering axle, which tires are the best for semi-truck drives, and which tires are the best for semi-truck trailers.
We have also developed a comprehensive buying guide for those individuals who are unfamiliar with commercial vehicle tires. You can discover everything there is to know about these products, including what you should pay attention to, by reading the buying guide that we have provided for you.
The 10 Best Semi-Truck Tires Available in 2023
1. Michelin Commercial Tires
You may find these tires on trucks even in the most distant regions on earth; Michelin is by far the most well-known brand when it comes to the production of commercial tires.
Their tires provide an effective combination of robustness and remarkable treadlife, excellent performance in both dry and wet situations, and low rolling resistance, which results in reduced fuel consumption. If you drive primarily on paved roads with your Michelin tires, you can expect their treadlife to be significantly longer than that of any other rival in the segment. Their top models are as follows:
Michelin X Line Energy Z – Steer Tire
We recommend the X Line Energy Z as the best steer tire option from the commercial lineup offered by Michelin. This tire has a comfortable ride quality while also giving the driver with outstanding cornering grip and a great steering feel. In addition, this tire has a plush riding quality. In addition, the X Line Energy Z is incredibly long-lasting; we’ve heard that some companies are getting up to 200,000 miles of treadlife out of it, which is really remarkable.
Michelin X Line Energy D – Drive Tire
We recommend getting the X Line Energy D as your drive tires since not only does it have an amazing grip on dry asphalt, but it also performs exceptionally well on wet and snowy pavement. Despite the outstanding overall performance, you should also anticipate improved fuel efficiency. Some specimens of the X Line Energy D have a treadlife that is greater than 400,000 miles, making it one of the most durable truck tires now available.
Michelin X Line Energy T – Trailer Tire
Finally, the Michelin X Line Energy T is the greatest tire that the company makes for trailers since it has an exceptional load capacity, a long treadlife, and technology that reduces the rolling resistance.
2. Bridgestone Commercial Tires
In terms of quality, durability, performance, and cost, Bridgestone is Michelin’s most direct opponent. Bridgestone also competes with Michelin. It is difficult for us to endorse either Michelin or Bridgestone as the superior brand because we find them to be so comparable to one another. However, we have heard that when driven over uneven surfaces such as dirt and gravel, Bridgestone tires seem to survive a little bit longer than other brands. Their top models are as follows:
Bridgestone R284 Ecopia – Steer Tire
The R284 Ecopia is Bridgestone’s top choice when it comes to steer tires for their truck tires. This tire offers the most advanced technology available for reducing rolling resistance, which can result in significant cost savings for your business. In addition, the tire provides an extraordinary level of grip and steering precision, regardless of whether the surface is dry or wet. It is remarkable that companies are getting approximately 150,000 kilometers out of this tire in their operations.
Bridgestone M726 ELA – Drive Tire
Because of its remarkable longevity, the M726 ELA is the drive tire that comes highly recommended by our team. We’ve heard of businesses using these tires for more than 400,000 miles, which is a very big number in and of itself. In addition, the M726’s deep tread offers the driver with exceptional traction on slippery conditions, including snow, ice, and even mud. These advantages are a result of the tire’s design.
Bridgestone R197 – Trailer Tire
The R197 from Bridgestone is the company’s top-of-the-line product for trailer tires. Even when used on uneven ground, this tire has an incredible treadlife and offers the driver with an excellent overall performance. It also has high hauling capabilities, technology that reduces rolling resistance, and outstanding treadlife.
3. Continental Truck Tires
Another brand that has a strong presence in the market for commercial vehicle tires is Continental. Their products are noted for their exceptional performance, particularly in adverse conditions; yet, they also have an excellent treadlife, reasonable cost, and ground-breaking ratings for fuel economy.
Continental HS3 – Steering Tire
The Continental HS3 line of tires is one that we recommend using for steer tires. We’ve been told that these tires work exceptionally well not only on paved surfaces that are dry but also on those that are wet, as well as over snow, dirt, and gravel. In addition, you should get approximately 150,000 miles out of these tires, which places them towards the top of the class in terms of longevity.
Continental HDL2 – Drive Tire
The HDL2 tire comes highly recommended for use as a driving tire. Because it has a tread pattern that is both deep and aggressive, this product performs exceptionally well on surfaces that are both wet and covered with snow. In addition, the treadlife of the HDL2 is around 350,000 miles, and it has outstanding low rolling resistance, all of which contribute to improved fuel economy.
Continental HT3 EcoPlus – Trailer Tire
The Continental HT3 EcoPlus is not only the best trailer tire the company makes, but it is also widely considered to be among the best trailer tires available. The exceptional durability of the HT3 is the primary reason for this, since this tire is able to tolerate carrying a great deal of weight on its shoulders. According to the manufacturers, the treadlife is around 200,000 miles, which is remarkable for a trailer tire.
4. Pirelli Commercial Tires
It’s possible that the high-performance car tires that Pirelli produces are what you’re most familiar with, but they also make excellent truck tires. Their top models are as follows:
Pirelli H89 Plus – Long Haul Steer Tire
The H89 Plus is the most effective steering tire that they offer as part of their selection of commercial tires. The tread pattern with stone retention, which prevents debris from getting inside the tire, is mostly responsible for the approximately 150,000-mile lifespan that companies receive out of this tire.
Pirelli H89 Drive plus – Drive Tire
The H89 Drive Plus is an ideal choice for a drive tire since it performs exceptionally well on a variety of terrains, including dry, wet, snowy, and icy conditions. The H89 Drive Plus offers a comfortable ride for the driver, and businesses will be pleased to see that the treadlife is rated at 320,000 miles.
Pirelli H89 Trailer – Trailer Application
Last but not least, the H89 trailer tire has exceptional sidewall toughness in addition to an extraordinary treadlife, which makes it an excellent choice for businesses that want to get the most out of their investment.
5. Goodyear Commercial Tires
Goodyear had some difficulties in the past with their commercial tire lineup, but now they are back in the game with a strong product offering. Just make sure you get a tire from the “G” series, because the company’s other goods aren’t quite as nice. The fact that Goodyear commercial tires, just like Michelin tires, can withstand up to three retreadings is one of the best features of these tires.
Goodyear Marathon LHS – Steering Tire
For the steering axle, we suggest going with the Marathon LHS, which is a tire that offers exceptional performance, consistent wear, and remarkable efficiency in terms of fuel consumption.
Goodyear G572 Fuel Max – Drive Tire
We advise going with the Goodyear G572 Fuel Max tire for the drive axle because it features one of the most advanced low-rolling-resistance technologies now available on the market. In addition, this tire features a premium reinforced casing, which assures an amazing treadlife. Additionally, this tire has finely siped grooves, which provide outstanding dry and snow traction.
Goodyear Fuel Max SST – Trailer Tire
When it comes to the trailer, the Fuel Max SST provides an exceptional level of performance in addition to exceptional durability and low fuel usage. In addition, for your peace of mind, this tire comes equipped with puncture sealing technology.
6. Cooper Roadmaster Tires
In our opinion, the Roadmaster series of tires offered by Cooper is the most impressive collection of economically priced options. These tires offer incredible longevity and treadlife, good performance, exceptional fuel efficiency, and outstanding support in the United States. They are a great investment.
Cooper Roadmaster RM832 EM – Steer Tire
We propose the Roadmaster RM832 EM steer tire from their lineup due to its good fuel efficiency, amazing performance, and outstanding durability with stone protection ledges. You may find these characteristics in this tire.
Cooper Roadmaster RM852 EM – Drive Tire
On the other hand, the RM852 EM is your best bet when it comes to selecting an axle for the drivetrain. This tire has exceptional traction on snowy and icy roads thanks to the three-dimensional micro-gauge siping that is embedded throughout its tread. In addition, the RM852 reduces the amount of fuel consumed by any truck.
Cooper Roadmaster RM872 EM – Trailer Tire
Last but not least, the RM872 EM offers a performance that is dependable as well as long-lasting for long-haul trailers.
7. Yokohama Commercial Tires
Yokohama is yet another firm that provides economically sensible commercial tires without compromising on the overall performance of their products.
Yokohama 101ZL Spec-2 – Steering Tire
For the steering axle, they provide the 101ZL Spec-2, which has outstanding performance, an incredible treadlife, and remarkable fuel efficiency compared to other options in their inventory.
Yokohama 709ZL – Drive Tire
In contrast, the 709ZL has a remarkable treadlife, enhanced fuel-efficiency, and exceptional mileage, all while costing a significant amount less than its rivals. Even more impressive is that Yokohama backs this tire with a seven-year warranty.
Yokohama BluEarth 109L – Trailer Tire
Finally, the BluEarth 109L delivers great fuel efficiency for the trailer axles, without sacrificing load ratings or stability. This is made possible by the innovative design of the axle.
8. BFGoodrich Truck Tires
A subsidiary of Michelin, BFGoodrich specializes in producing commercial tires at a cheaper price point than its parent firm, Michelin, but still provides transportation businesses with products that are highly desirable. All of BFGoodrich’s truck tires come with a warranty that is valid for five years.
We choose the BFGoodrich Highway Control S as the tire for the steer axle from among the products offered by BFGoodrich. This tire offers improved fuel economy, a longer treadlife, and improved traction on wet and icy roads, making it a good choice for driving. We propose the DR454 for the driving axle due to its superior traction in both dry and wet conditions, as well as its ability to reduce fuel consumption.
Last but not least, the BFGoodrich Highway Control T trailer tire offers great fuel efficiency, long treadlife, and even treadwear.
9. Toyo Commercial Tires
Toyo is a Japanese corporation that places a strong emphasis on providing outstanding value to its clients. Their tires are well-known not only for their inexpensive prices, but also for their longevity, performance, and efficient use of fuel.
The M177 steer tire, the M647 drive tire, and the M157 trailer tire are all part of Toyo’s collection of commercial tires. Each of these tires offers exceptional treadlife, superior fuel efficiency, and durable casings for transporting heavy loads.
10. General Tire Commercial Truck Tires
General Tire is an American firm that places a primary emphasis on providing long-lasting and high-performing truck tires at pricing points that are more affordable than those offered by premium competitors. In spite of the affordable pricing, numerous businesses are overjoyed with the product’s longevity and its capacity to save money in the long term.
The General HS steer tire, the General HD drive tire, and the General HT trailer tire stand out as our top picks from among their offerings. These materials offer outstanding performance in a wide range of situations, including rain and snow, durable casings for transporting large cargo, high treadlife, even wear, and enhanced fuel efficiency.
Buying Guide For Commercial Truck Tires in 2023
1. Features of Commercial Truck Tires
Tires designed for commercial trucks are distinct from those designed for passenger cars and light trucks in a variety of ways. In this case, comfort and performance are not the primary concerns; rather, the emphasis is placed on longevity, cost-effectiveness, fuel consumption, and stability. In this region, employers frequently prioritize numerical qualifications over previous driving experience.
However, there are also intangibles such as a guarantee and technical assistance that can entirely affect the experience of owning these tires. These factors frequently determine the success or failure of a truck tire brand, which is why many well-known brands in the passenger-car industry are unable to achieve the same level of success in the truck industry.
Let’s take a look at everything that you need to think about before making a purchase of tires for a commercial truck.
Quality and Durability
The level of quality and durability of a product has the greatest impact on whether or not a buyer makes a purchase. The most cost-effective tires are those that have a longer lifespan, particularly when applied to a larger fleet of tires.
In addition, rugged tires are an absolute necessity for pickup trucks that are operated on uneven terrains, particularly mud and gravel. Even though this occurs most frequently with trucks utilized in the mining and oil industries, it is possible for any truck to encounter roads with uneven surfaces.
When it comes to its longevity, the tread of the tire is by far the most crucial component to consider. That portion of the tire that makes contact with the ground is called the tread. The tread wears down with time, which is detrimental to the overall performance of the tire, particularly when driving on wet or icy roads. When there is not enough tread left on the tire, the tire is rendered worthless.
When it comes to cost efficiency, a tire’s tread wears down faster than the rest of the tire. To put it another way, the frequency with which the tires need to be changed will increase. Look for tires that have a lengthy treadlife if you want to get the most bang for your buck over the course of their ownership.
Today, practically all truck tires are equipped with some type of technology that reduces the rolling resistance of the tire. Because of this, the engine needs to exert less force in order to maintain the same level of acceleration as before. When you examine a whole fleet of tires, a fuel reduction of up to 3% is clearly not negligible, and these tires typically offer savings of that magnitude or higher.
However, the reduced rolling resistance offered by some tires of poorer quality comes at the expense of their overall performance. Tires that have a better low-rolling-resistance typically have lower levels of grip and traction, particularly on surfaces that are slick.
In light of this, premium tire manufacturers offer the greatest goods available on the market today in terms of the combination of fuel efficiency and performance.
Even while performance might not be the first thing that comes to mind for the organization, it is still very important in order to maintain a reliable fleet. Tires that are of a higher quality typically have superior traction, increased levels of grip, and much improved stability at greater speeds.
Because of this, the number of incidents involving trucks will go down as a direct result of the use of these tires. It goes without saying that having quality tires can not only save the lives of truck drivers, but also reduce the costs involved with accidents. On top of that, if the trailer’s tires have a great performance on the road, the cargo inside will be a lot less likely to be damaged.
Therefore, performance should not be compromised. Although it’s possible that you won’t be the one to drive on these tires, think about all the other drivers who spend the better part of their life behind the wheel. We are of the opinion that they are deserving of a set of tires that are secure and dependable.
Warranty, Maintenance, and Retreadability
In the long run, purchasing an extended warranty could end up saving you a significant amount of money. Extended warranties are provided by many premium manufacturers for their semi truck tires. These warranties often cover multiple sorts of faults as well as up to three retreads of the tire itself.
As a result of this, we strongly advise that you read the warranty information provided on each commercial truck tire that you are considering purchasing in great detail. It’s possible that some manufacturers will provide longer warranties, but they won’t cover retreads if they do.
But what exactly is treading again? The tread of the tire is removed and then replaced with a fresh one throughout this operation. When it comes to truck tires, the tread is typically the first part to deteriorate, especially in comparison to the sidewalls, which can remain in good condition for a very long time.
It will save you a significant amount of money to replace the tread on your fleet tires rather than buy new tires. In addition, if the replacement is done in an authorized repair center, the new tread ought to last just as long as the original one did when it was first installed.
Having said that, the tires will not have the same amount of longevity if the retreading is not performed well. Furthermore, because the tread may completely separate from the tire in this scenario, it is possible that operating a vehicle while using these tires may be risky.
There is technical help available from every manufacturer of truck and commercial tires; however, the level of assistance provided by each manufacturer differs in quality. For your own piece of mind, we advise selecting tire manufacturers who provide complete retreadability over the entirety of the tire’s lifecycle, repair of flaws, quality craftsmanship, and routine tire inspections.
In addition, quality technical support will offer guidance on how to make the most of their products in order to reduce the amount of treadwear that occurs and increase overall performance. You ought to get the impression that the tire manufacturer is working with you and providing assistance to help you enhance revenue. Premium tire manufacturers typically provide exceptional levels of technical support for their customers, but the cost of their products is significantly higher.
2. How to Maintain Commercial Truck Tires Properly
Because commercial truck tires are frequently put under substantial loads, they need to be tested on a regular basis to ensure that they are free of even the tiniest flaws. The following is a rundown of every step that must be completed before you hit the road:
- Before you get on the road, make sure you check the tire pressure when the tires are cold. Tires that have been improperly inflated will wear out more quickly, and they will not offer the driver with the highest potential level of stability.
- Before you go out on any journey, you should perform a pre-trip inspection of the tires to check for damage such as cracks, chips, and gouges. By doing so, you may assure the well-being of the driver as well as the cargo.
- Tires that do not comply with the regulations set forth by the CSA and the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) must either be repaired, retreaded, or replaced. In the event that this is not the case, the FMCSA may assess a penalty of eight points for a gap between the tread and the sidewall, or for a tire that has an audible leak. FMCSA may additionally assess a penalty of three points if the vehicle’s weight exceeds the tire’s maximum load capacity or if the tires have an improper air pressure.
- Make sure to rotate your tires on a regular basis to prevent uneven treadwear.
- You can extend the life of your tires by removing debris from them and washing them along with the wheels.
- Maintain safe driving practices at all times! Not only does adhering to posted speed limits make driving a safer activity, but it also helps truck tires retain their tread for longer.
3. Sidewall Markings and Treadwear Indicators
Sidewall markings on every commercial truck tire include information about the product’s dimensions, maximum load ratings, load index and speed rating, treadwear, traction, and temperature grades, internal composition of the tire, U.S. DOT safety standard code, reinforced marking (if any), and ECE type approval mark and number. These markings are intended to ensure that the tire meets all applicable safety standards.
The majority of tire manufacturers also include treadwear indicators on the tread of the tire. These signs can clearly indicate a tire technician when the tread has worn down to very low levels and should be replaced. When the treadwear signs become visible on a tire, this indicates that the tire should either be retreaded or replaced with a new one.
4. Commercial Truck Tire Recycling
The spontaneous decomposition of tire rubber might take anywhere from fifty to eighty years on average. Because of this, the best thing to do with old truck tires once they are no longer useful is to donate them to a recycling center. In this manner, not only will you reduce your negative impact on the environment, but you will also save money. After some time has passed, the rubber can be recycled into products such as asphalt, floor mats, soil additions (mulch), and artificial grass (AstroTurf).
Buying truck tires requires a significant amount of time and research in many cases. Because purchasing the incorrect tires for your fleet can frequently result in a financial loss, you should make sure that you purchase the appropriate tires to meet the requirements of your fleet.
We are convinced that the tires that we have supplied for you in our Top 10 list will provide you with a performance that is both dependable and long-lasting, and that they will, most importantly, save you money in the long term.
In spite of this, it is always to everyone’s advantage to test the products on a portion of the fleet, because certain tires perform better in the aforementioned situations than others do.
In conclusion, one of the most important things you can do to extend the life of your tires is to ensure that you inspect and repair them on a regular basis.