The Basics of Buying Replacement Lawn & Garden Tires
Buying lawn & garden tires for your ride-on tractor, mower, ATV/UTV, wheel barrow or hand cart, or other small equipment is likely not something you do very often. In fact, unless the equipment is used for commercial purposes or you have very large acreage, these tires are replaced less frequently than your car or truck tires. To help guide you through the many options for replacing lawn & garden tires and small specialty tires, we put together the information you need to make the decision a little easier.
Finding the Size of Your Lawn & Garden Tires
In almost all instances, lawn & garden tire buyers are looking for the exact same size tire as the tire that came on their equipment when it was new. On ATV and Golf Carts, owners will occasionally change out the original tire for a different size for aesthetic or performance reasons. With lawn mowers, wheel barrows, hand carts and other garden equipment, the tire size was very purposefully picked by the manufacturer for optimal service and performance. Rarely would a changing a tire size improve the efficiency or performance of the equipment.
The tire size is easily found on the sidewall of the tire to be replaced or in the equipment’s Owner Manual. Mowers and other lawn and garden equipment tire sizes are always in inches. The most common sizing system is a series of 3 numbers separated by an “X” or a “/”. Occasionally you will see only two numbers separated by a dash. Following are a few examples
A popular size of tire for ride-on mowers and garden tractors is 18 X 9.50-8. This means the overall diameter of the tire is 18-inches with a width of 9.50-inches, fitted on a 8-inch rim.
4.10/3.5-4 is another common size on smaller garden tractors. In this case, there is a “/” instead of an “X” in the size description. When you see the back-slash, the order of height, width and rim is a little different. The first number is the width of the tire, and the second number after the dash is the height of the sidewall (not the overall diameter). The third number is the rim diameter. To get the overall diameter you need to do some math! 4 (rim diameter) + 3.5 (sidewall height) X 2 = 11 inches total diameter.
Push carts and equipment like wheel-barrows, tillers, mowers and power washers often follow a two number system. 5.30-12 means the width is 5.30 inches wide on a rim that is 12 inches in diameter. With this sizing nomenclature there is no indication of the sidewall height or overall diameter of the tire.
Also, occasionally you will see odd ball numbers like “1111”, or “400” after the dash. Typically, the manufacturer has simply omitted the decimal point. So these numbers would equate to 11.11 inches, or 4.00 inches. If you have any doubt about the tire size, the Tires-easy Customer Service Team is a great resource and would be very happy to assist you at 1-855-978-6789 (5am-5pm PST Mon-Fri) with any tire or tire size or tire use related questions.
Once you have found and noted the numbers and any special markings that accompany the size, the rest of the lawn & garden tire replacement buying process is easy.
Picking the Tire Tread Pattern for your Lawn & Garden Equipment Based on Intended Use
There are three main classifications of tread pattern types for tractors and lawn & garden equipment: mixed-use turf tires, knobby all-terrain tires, or ribbed tires.
- Turf tread patterns are most common on ride-on tractors and carts. They usually have circumferential rows of chevron shaped tread blocks. These are designed to provide some traction on slick pavement and grass, while not digging up and damaging the turf. If you are replacing one tire, you can usually find a tread pattern that is identical, or close to identical to the pattern on the remaining tires, or what came on the tractor or cart when new.
- Knobby, all-terrain tire patterns typically have large tread blocks and deeper grooves to provide traction in loose surfaces like dirt, sand or mud. These tires sometimes have a herringbone tread pattern similar to what you see on farm tractors. They feature a high void area (space between the blocks) to evacuate debris from the tire. On ATV/UTV tires, the actual casing of the tires with these tread patterns are typically reinforced with a thicker sidewall to reduce damage from hazards such as sharp rock or impacts that could lead to tire failure. If you are satisfied with the type of grip your tires have provided you, consider replacing the tires with a similar looking tread pattern.
- Ribbed tread patterns are most common on utilitarian wheel barrows, hand carts and power washers. These consist of circumferential grooves and straight ribs that are either flat or slightly scalloped. These patterns provide some lateral stability to keep the tire from sliding sideways, but are primarily designed to roll easily and last a long time.
Where to Buy Your Lawn & Garden Tires:
Now that you have the size and the type of tread pattern, you are armed with the information you need to find the right replacement tires for your lawn and garden equipment. We carry a great selection small equipment specialty tires to suit a wide range of small equipment, ATV/UTV and lawn & garden equipment.
Simply visit tires-easy.com and enter your tire size in the red tire selector on the left of the screen. A photo and a general description of all the available tires will be listed. You can filter on a particular brand or style, or sort by price to find the tire that best fits your application, and your budget for lawn & garden tires.