What’re ATV tires?

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ATV tires are designed for off-road conditions and come in various types for different terrains, such as mud, sand, snow, and trails. Paddle tires are ideal for sand, while mud tires have wide-spaced treads for maximum grip. Trail tires are general purpose tires that can accommodate rock and mud, while race tires are designed for added cornering bite. It’s important to choose the right tire for your riding style and conditions.

All-terrain vehicle (ATV) tires are made for ATVs, four-wheeled motorcycles also called “four-wheelers” or “quads.” Fewer ATVs are three-wheeled trikes, a model that was discontinued for several years in the ’80s and ’90s due to safety concerns and is now more popular with enthusiasts who prefer it for its increased maneuverability. ATV tires are large, chunky, wide-profile tires designed to perform well in a variety of commonly encountered off-road conditions.

There are ATV tires for every type of terrain and general purpose ATV tires. ATV tires that are designed for specific conditions, such as mud or sand, will perform better in those conditions than general purpose tires.

ATV mud tires, for example, have wide-spaced irregular treads for maximum grip in muddy conditions. The wide flat spaces between the treads allow the tire to sink into the top layer of mud, allowing the treads to buy. While mud tires are great in the mud, they don’t grip as well in dry trail conditions.

If sand dunes are more your style, you’ll want paddle tires. These ATV tires are probably the most recognizable type of tire due to their strange appearance. The tires are smooth and globe-shaped, with only a few raised bands running horizontally across the tire’s face. The horizontal treads act as paddles, giving these tires their name. Paddle tires are specifically designed for excellent performance in sand, but are not suitable for other terrain and can be damaged when riding on trails. Paddle tire bikes are usually dragged right into the sand.

ATV snow tires are slick tires that also have horizontal treads, but in this case the tread pattern resembles snow chains. This pattern makes the tires grippy even in reverse, and the tire compound is soft to stay flexible on ice, allowing for better grip. Snow tires are only designed for use on snow and ice.

Trail running is probably one of the most popular types of ATVs. Trail tires typically need to be able to accommodate some rock and mud as well, making these ATV tires general purpose tires. However, not all trails are the same. In wetter regions, road conditions will be very different than in desert and dry regions, so there are many types of ATV tires to choose from in this category.

Trail tires look more or less like mud tires, but the treads are tighter and generally have a regular pattern. If conditions in your area are snowy in parts of the year or muddy, choosing ATV tires with slightly more spaced treads will be more comfortable. If your route is on sun-hardened, compacted dirt, a tighter pattern will generally work better. If conditions are mixed, something in between is likely to suit your purpose.

ATV racing is a popular sport with ATV tires specially designed for this purpose. ATV race tires are wide profile tires with small evenly spaced square treads. These knobby tires typically have a tread length across the shoulder for added cornering bite.

Before investing in a good set of ATV tires, discuss your riding style and conditions with a professional sales representative to get the best option for your purposes. Tires designed for the terrain you’ll be driving on will not only be safer and perform better, but they’ll also last longer.

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