Trailer Tire Wear Diagnostic
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Trailer Tires

Before mounting trailer tires onto wheels make certain that the rim size and contour is approved for the tire as shown in the Tire and Rim Association Yearbook or the tire manufacturers catalog.  Also make sure the tire will carry the rated load. If the load is not equal on all tires due to trailer weight distribution, use the tire rated for
the heaviest wheel position.

Note: The capacity rating molded into the sidewall of the tire is not always the proper rating for the tire if used in a trailer application. Use the following guideline:

  1.  LT and ST tires. Use the capacity rating molded into the tire.
  2. Passenger Car Tires. Use the capacity rating molded into the tire sidewall divided by 1.10.

Use tire mounting procedures as outlined by the Rubber Manufacturers Association or the tire manufacturers.

Tire inflation pressure is the most important factor in tire life.  Inflation pressure should be as recommended by the manufacturer for the load. Pressure should be checked cold before operation. Do not bleed air from tires when they are hot. Check inflation pressure weekly during use to insure the maximum tire life and tread wear. The following tire wear diagnostic chart will help you pinpoint the causes and solutions of tire wear problems.

Note: Tire wear should be checked frequently because once a wear pattern becomes firmly established in a tire it is difficult to stop, even if the underlying cause is corrected.


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Trailer Tire Wear Diagnostic Chart

Wear Pattern

Cause Action


Center Wear Over Inflation Adjust pressure to particular load per tire catalog

trailer tire

Edge Wear Under Inflation Adjust pressure to particular load per tire catalog

trailer wheel

Side Wear Loss of camber or overloading Make sure load doesn't exceed axle rating.  Align at alignment shop
trailer info Toe Wear Incorrect toe in Align at alignment shop.
Cupping Out of balance Check bearing adjustment and balance tires.
Flat Spots Wheel lockup & tire skidding Avoid sudden stops when possible and adjust brakes.