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What to Know About Choosing and Maintaining ATV/UTV Tires

What to Know About Choosing and Maintaining ATV/UTV Tires

There is plenty to consider when choosing the right tires for your new or used ATV or UTV, including size, tread, and tire type. Whether you’re replacing or upgrading, picking the right tires depends on how you’re using your vehicle and whether you’re riding on rugged terrain or smooth land. Proper tire maintenance will also keep you safe as you ride, and help your tires last longer. To give you a hand, ATV Trader is sharing more on choosing and maintaining tires for your ATV or UTV.

ATV and UTV Tire Size

See what the stock recommendations are for your ATV or UTV tire size, and check your owner’s manual or with the vehicle manufacturer for tire sizes. Each tire size will be broken down by inches, tread width, and diameter. You may have several tire size options based on what you want for your vehicle and how you’ll be using your four-wheeler for riding. Try to keep within the stock options set for your vehicle to stay safe while riding and to prevent damage.

ATV and UTV Tire Design

You can choose tires based on design, which is broken down by bias-ply or radial ply. Bias-ply tires can be more durable, and have a higher number of plies in a diagonal pattern on the tire, which give you greater traction for off-road muddin’. Radial tires have plies that are perpendicular to the center tread to make your tires favorable for cruising at top speeds on even terrain.

Types of ATV and UTV Tires

There are a number of tire types to consider based on how you’re using your quad. Here’s a breakdown of the basic types of tires.

  • All-Terrain Tires: If you’ve just started riding and are hitting the best ATV and UTV trails for beginners, consider using All-Terrain (AT) tires for different conditions. AT racing tires can be lighter and more flexible for speed and durability. AT trail tires are thick and durable for rocky trails. AT utility tires are larger, thick, and heavy for riding in the most severe weather or trail conditions.
  • Motocross Tires: If you’re racing with your ATV, motocross tires have tightly designed tread knobs for vehicle performance. They give you greater traction while taking corners, landing jumps, and hitting top speeds.
  • Mud Tires: Mud tires can be larger in size and thicker for traction to get your off-roader through mud, dirt, and a little water as you ride.
  • Off-Road Tires: The tread on off-road tires is slightly different than AT tires, but can be stronger and thicker to give you more traction for a variety of off-road conditions.
  • Sand Tires: Sand tires are designed, as you guessed it, for riding in sandy conditions and rolling over the dunes on your quad. They are specifically designed for this type of surface condition to give you greater traction.
  • Street Tires: If you’ve checked your local laws for riding on paved public roads or streets, chances are you may need street-legal tires. This tire type has traction and tire sizes that are designed specifically for the streets, but always check the laws regarding ATV or UTV street tires.

Maintaining ATV or UTV Tires

Maintaining your ATV or UTV tires will keep you safe and comfortable as you ride, and let you get the most out of your tires in the long run. Here are some basics for tire maintenance.

1. Check ATV or UTV Tire Pressure 

No matter the tire size, design, or type, you should regularly check the tire pressure according to the correct PSI. Ensure they’re inflated, and stay aware of the pressure when riding in extremely hot or cold conditions, which could affect the pressure. Keep in mind that rugged riding conditions can cause your tires to deflate faster.

2. Clean ATV or UTV Tires

Every session after you ride your four-wheeler, inspect the conditions of your tires and give them a cleaning. Off-roading can make your tires muddy and dirty with grime, debris, and rocks, which can puncture them and cause corrosion over time. Wipe them down with water, use a cleaner or off-road wash, and scrub them thoroughly during a deep clean.

3. Align and Balance Your ATV or UTV Tires

Rough roads, trails, and off-road landscapes can mess with your tire alignment and tire balance on your vehicle, which can impact your safety and comfort while riding, and cause damage. You can follow steps to align your ATV wheels with tools and balance your tires with weights in your home garage, or you can reach out to an ATV or UTV mechanic for service.

4. Protect Your ATV or UTV Tires

Keep your ATV or UTV parked in a garage, under a storage cover, and out of severe weather conditions throughout the seasons to prevent damage to your vehicle and tires. Avoid storing your vehicle in direct sunlight and extremely high or low temperatures. Even if you are taking out your new or used UTV for casual riding trips, inspect your tires after each use for damage.

5. Replace Your ATV or UTV Tires

Make a replacement and switch out your tires based on the riding conditions, how much you’ve used them, how many miles you’ve put on them, and according to your owner’s manual or manufacturer instructions. Stay on top of your mileage with regular tire maintenance. This will keep you safe and your vehicle running strong.

When it comes to ATV or UTV tires, consider how you’ll be using your vehicle and the riding conditions. You can choose tires based on size, design, and type, and should always give them regular maintenance so you’re getting the most out of your vehicle. If you’re ready to shop for your next new or used ATV or UTV, be sure to see the nation’s largest inventory online at


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Ryan Miller
Ryan Miller

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