How Long Do 33 Inch Tires Last? [7 Factors To Consider]

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The tires that you mount onto your vehicle can significantly impact its performance. 33-inch tires are a common choice among offroading enthusiasts.

If you are into rock climbing and deep mud pit adventures, 33-inch tires can make a lot of difference in terms of performance.

How Long Do 33 Inch Tires Last 1 How Long Do 33 Inch Tires Last? [7 Factors To Consider]

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How Long Do 33 Inch Tires Last?

The longevity of 33-inch tires depends on several factors. The most important is the terrain they are used on. If you push your tires to the limit frequently, you will get less tread life. Other factors that influence treadlife are maintenance and the tire compound.

Increasing tire size on your vehicle has several benefits, but it also comes with drawbacks. You will be surprised at the changes in terms of performance and efficiency.

Remember that you may need to make additional modifications to your vehicle to accommodate 33s. 

For example, you need to lift a Tacoma to fit 33-inch tires by about 3 inches. However, you do not need to make any modifications to fit 33-inch tires on a stock Sierra.

Our tire experts believe that 33-inch tires are well suited for mud-trekking, rock climbing, and other offroad adventures. They provide additional traction due to a larger contact patch and ensure more stability. However, they are not suited for all vehicles and may require suspension modifications before they are installed.

How Long Do 33 Inch Tires Last 1 1 How Long Do 33 Inch Tires Last? [7 Factors To Consider]

How Is Tire Size Determined?

Before we discuss the longevity of 33-inch tires, we need to understand the factors that come into play in determining tire size.

A 33-inch tire means that the tire’s overall diameter is 33 inches, which includes the rim. Most popular 33-inch tire sizes include:

  • 285/75 – 16
  • 305/70 – 16
  • 375/55 – 16
  • 285/70 – 17
  • 305/65 – 17

All the tire sizes above comprise three different numbers. To understand how these come up to 33 inches, we will take 285/70 – 17 and break it down to understand tire sizes better.

Tire Width

The tire width is defined as the distance between the two sidewalls of the tire. The width of our tire 285/70-17 is 285 mm. This comes to approximately 11.22 inches.

Sidewall Ratio

This is the ratio between the sidewall height and tire width. For our tire, the ratio is 70. This means that the sidewall height will be 285 x .70 = 199.5 mm, approximately 7.85 inches.

Rim Size

This is the size of the rim on which the tire will be mounted. For our tire, the rim size is 17 inches.

The Tire Diameter

Putting it all together, we come to the tire diameter, which is calculated by adding the height of the sidewall two times to the rim size. For our tire, it will be 17 + 7.85 + 7.85 = 32.7 inches.

Doing the same calculations for all other tires listed above will result in a diameter of around 33 inches.

Tire Compound

Radial tires account for almost all new tires manufactured today. These tires are produced with rubber compositions that are hard, soft, or somewhere between the two. It is predicted that the tougher the compound, the longer the tire life would be.

Softer compounds have a lower tire life span, but they also offer better traction.

Steel belts and other materials needed to construct radial tires radiate out in all directions from the bead to each side along the tire’s circumference. This helps to stiffen the tire while also allowing it to dissipate heat more effectively. 

It is essential to remember that long, hot summer trips, in particular, may be quite taxing on a vehicle’s tire tread, which can result in shorter treadlife.

How Long Do 33 Inch Tires Last 2 How Long Do 33 Inch Tires Last? [7 Factors To Consider]


When you purchase any tire, the tire manufacturer will let you know how long the tire should last under typical circumstances before it has to be replaced. The way you maintain and take care of your tires impacts whether or not they will last as long as the tire manufacturer claims they would.

This implies that you must maintain the air pressure in your tires and have your wheels rotated and balanced at least once a year, if not more. This small amount of maintenance helps evenly distribute wear and strain on the tires while allowing for the most extended possible service life.

Driving Conditions

Most 33-inch tires are suited for mud and offroading. Most users expect them to be able to handle sharp rocks, deep mud, and even rock climbing without much difficulty. 

However, the way these tires are used significantly determines how long they will last.

If you are into rock climbing or gravel racing, you will be lucky if your tire meets the manufacturer’s stated treadlife. 

Similarly, most mud-terrain tires are not suited for use on the road and tend to wear out faster when used on paved surfaces, especially in hot conditions and at high speeds.

Benefits of 33 Inch Tires

Mounting 33-inch tires on your vehicle will change its dynamics, especially if you are sizing up from stock tires. Let us look at some benefits these tires offer over stock tires and why people prefer to use them.


Traction is essential for people who want to get the most from their four-wheel drives. It provides your vehicle with the grip needed to navigate rugged terrains like rocks, mud, and sand. Tire size can significantly impact the efficiency of the tire’s tread.

The tread might well be designed for certain terrains; nonetheless, bigger tires will improve the tread’s function. 

On bigger tires, the ‘footprint’ of the tire will be larger. This produces space between each tread piece, which is necessary to assist your vehicle in retaining momentum on more challenging terrains

It effectively guarantees that a larger area of the design is making contact with the ground.

Ground Clearance

When you’re offroading, your vehicle’s height can help you get out of challenging situations. You may increase your car’s clearance by adding a raise kit, which may be required when you choose 33-inch tires for your vehicle.

Your vehicle will gain an inch of clearance for every two inches of increase in tire size. While this may not seem like much, it may go a long way regarding your vehicle’s off-road capability.

If you want to travel on rougher trails or utilize the car for its off-road capabilities, 33-inch tires will perform better in most off-road scenarios.


Even though comfort will not be your priority when you mount a set of 33-inch tires, the comfort level in your cabin can be a crucial indicator of the amount of stability you have. When comfortable, you will be able to retain control and handle the vehicle more quickly on some terrains, such as while negotiating steep rocks or through deep mud pits.

Drawbacks of 33 Inch Tires

33-inch tires also come with a few drawbacks. Here are two of them

Poor Fuel Economy

The fuel economy varies significantly across tire sizes. As the tire size increases, they require more torque to turn. When your vehicle transmits more torque to the wheels, the fuel consumption rises.

This excess torque can be due to a loss of traction, more weight, or challenging terrain. To create more power, your vehicle must burn more gasoline.

That means that 33 inch tires negatively affect your gas mileage.

Smaller tires are lighter because they contain less rubber than bigger tires. They are easier to turn and thus consume less fuel.

Performance Compromises

As discussed above, smaller tires require less power to turn. If you are looking for maximum speed, bigger tires can hinder your vehicle due to their weight and size.

Smaller tires ensure more powerful accelerations and allow you to reach higher speeds when running on different terrains.