Choosing tires for On/Off-Road

Choosing the Best Jeep Wrangler Tires

If you are an adrenaline person who values outdoor activities and adventures, you definitely have to drive off-road at some point. If not, how will you be accessing those hidden prime fishing locations or that secret camping spot that can only be accessed by bumpy, beaten remote trails? When accessing such adventurous spots, it crucial to use four-wheel drive vehicles preferably a Jeep as they are designed to handle such terrains. After buying a Jeep that you have always been desiring after years of saving, the next thing you want to do is to take your new ‘toy’ for a test drive on an off-road you have always been dreaming off. But before going for a test drive, it is important to find out the best Jeep Wrangler tires for both off-road-& on-road tires as they are crucial in complementing the car’s overall performance.

Jeep Wrangler Tires

While Jeep engines have been designed to withstand even the toughest off-road terrains, the tires are the key determinants of your it’s overall performance in such conditions. Good Jeep tires make the difference between an off-road giant and a craven off-road wonder. Choosing the best tire for your most prized possession can be a daunting task especially if you are a first-time Jeeper. You won’t know which tire is best for rock crawling rigs, or mud terrain and even all terrains be it off-road or on-road.

Nevertheless, choosing the best tires for your Jeep begins by first understanding the purpose of your Jeep. Ask yourself, how do I plan to use my Jeep? Do you plan to use as any other general car to run day to day errands or you want to use it for adventure and other fun-filled activities? Knowing the purpose of your Jeep means that it will be chosen tires based on the terrain you are most likely to drive on nearly all the time you are driving. Tires that are geared towards a particular terrain provides the car with grip and traction crucial for the engine’s overall performance; therefore, it’s essential to choose ideal tires for every terrain. Below are the best Jeep tires you can choose for every terrain depending on the purpose of your newly acquired vehicle.

1.    Best Tires for the Daily Driven Jeep

A daily driven Jeep means that driven on off-roads as well as pavements in all seasons. All-terrain radials tires with plenty of treads are best for the daily driven Jeep in all seasons. If you choose to employ a mud terrain tire in your daily driving, you are likely to experience poor handling, and acceleration feels on the highway. This is because mud tires have a soft sidewall which significantly limits its performance on the highway attributed to sidewall flexing. It’s also dangerous to drive on a highway with mud tires since the large knobby aggressive tread pattern makes it prone to skidding which could cause fatal accidents.

Best tires for the daily driven jeep include the Goodyear Duratrac or BFGoodrich K02 designed with firm but pliable sidewalls to handle a wide range of terrains well enough. Some advantages of these tires include:

•    Reduced noise levels.

•    Good balance between on and off-road

•    Prolonged tread-life than other mud tires.

2.    Best Tires for the All-Terrain Jeep

The ideal tire for the all-terrain Jeep is the All-Terrain (AT) tires which are built for the paved roads but still offers sufficient traction in adverse weather condition. It also performs exceptionally well in light-off road terrains. These tires encompass slightly larger channeled tread blocks and spacing which makes them highly efficient in directing water out of the treads thus preventing any type of hydroplaning on paved roads. However, the large tread pattern makes all-terrain tires prone to cupping (uneven wear) and balding causing the tire to oscillate or bounce slightly which could be significantly limit the performance of the vehicle.

The best all-terrain Jeep tires should have slightly larger tread patterns that can handle effectively on snow, sand, or light dirt terrain. The slightly larger thread patterns limit its capabilities in terms of off-road ability. However, closer channel gaps placed on all-terrain tires enable it creates a balance between paved and off-road use. This again limits its performance in muddy conditions since the thread compacts quickly with mud making it lose traction. Nonetheless, all-terrain tires are a great choice when you are planning to drive your Jeep on paved roads as well as light trail and during severe weather conditions.

Pros

•    Enhanced fuel economy

•    Long wear lifetime

•    Quiet on paved roads

•    Performs better on weather conditions and sandy terrain

Cons

•    Limited off-road capability

•    Prone to cupping

•    Performs dismally is mud conditions

3.    Best Tires for Jeep driven on Off-Road-Mud Terrains

The Jeep mud tires (MT) designed with a more aggressive tread pattern are best off-road tires for Jeeps. They have more pronounced tread blocks combined with greater channel gaps which make them suitable for off-road mud terrains but can still perform well on paved roads. The large chunky like treads allow more debris through the tire channel filling those channels and compacts them quickly allowing the vehicle to gain traction.

Jeep mud tires also perform excellently on rocky terrain with the large treads providing a layer of protection against possible punctures from rocks. In rocky terrain, the tire pressure should be decreased to increase the footprint and to make the large treads conform to the terrain to provide better traction.

The primary undoing of mud terrain tires is that they are also prone to cupping, but these can be averted by proper tire balancing and timely maintenance of suspension and steering components. Poor fueling economy, tire longevity, and loud road noise are other disadvantages of mud terrain tires. Nevertheless, if you are planning to drive your Jeep Wrangler on off-road muddy or rocky terrain, then a mud tire is the best choice for your Jeep.

Pro:

•    Excellent traction on off-road muddy or rocky terrains

•    High resistance to puncture

Con:

•    Extremely loud on paved roads

•    Poor fuel economy

•    High rate of tire wear especially on paved roads

•    Prone to cupping

 

4.    Best Tires for Jeep Driven on Rock Crawling Rigs

If you are thinking of rock crawling, then you should go for good flex, big side lugs, and aired down tires which should increase the contact area and provide sufficient traction. Best tires for rock crawling should not only provide adequate ground clearance but also offer plenty of grip without necessarily tearing up the trail. Some of the best rock crawling tires include the Baja Claw or BFG A/T KO tires which offers plenty of ground clearance as well as substantial traction. It’s good to upgrade your brake discs and pads after installing heavy rock crawling tires as they usually take longer to brake. Heavy tires may be nosy on paved roads but provide excellent experience on off-roads.

5.    Best Tires for Jeep Driven During Winter

The winter season is usually characterized by plenty of snow coupled with very low temperatures. These conditions may significantly limit the performance of your Wrangler, and therefore you will need the Jeep Wrangler snow tires best suited for extreme winter conditions. Winter tires are skinny and usually cut through snow-filled pavement providing better acceleration and short stopping distance to prevent skidding and loss of control of the vehicle. In some places, snow may be several inches deep, and your car may sink. In such circumstances, you will need a shovel if you don’t have a winch or any recovery gear.

6.    Best Tires for Jeep Driven on Sand

Driving on sand can extremely be uncomfortable especially when you are accelerating. Wider tires are a better choice for driving on sand however you will need to air them down to avoid spinning and digging holes on them. Airing down your tires also give you more traction, better weight distribution, and will allow your Jeep float better on the sand.

7.    Best Tires for the Universal Jeep

The saying that a Jeep Wrangler never dies is true as they are rebuilt and customized to attain that modern look. However, finding new tires for your Universal Jeep may be challenging as old models were built with 15” or 16” wheels not produced today. Nevertheless, you can adapt light truck tires to fit your forty-year-old Jeep.

 

To conclude, regardless of the terrain you are driving on, it’s essential to practice proper trail preservation to guarantee an enjoyable characteristic Jeep cruising experience. Before driving off-road, it may be important to undertake an off-highway driver’s course to sharpen your negotiating skills usually encountered on off-road terrains. Additionally, it’s important to air down when driving on off-road terrains as it provides better traction on slippery surfaces. However, be sure not to lower your tire pressure too much as you may damage the tire or pop the bead out. Additionally, low tire pressure when driving on paved roads will cause the tires to wear out faster, therefore, it’s crucial to air tires back up before returning to the pavement.  Nevertheless, if you are planning to often drive on low tire pressure, beadlocks are vital in preventing it from popping the bead out. You should also drive with a minimum speed when on aired down tires.