We’ve all seen those jacked-up trucks cruising down the highway.
And we’ve all judged the people driving them, probably because we’re jealous.
But one thing that I’ve always wondered is how bad the gas mileage must be with those https://fourwheeltrends.com/does-a-%c2%be-ton-truck-need-10-ply-tires/
Will Wider Tires Affect Gas Mileage?
Wider tires will decrease your overall mileage per gallon, costing you more to go the same distance. Because of their width, contact with the road increases. This contact creates rolling resistance, decreasing the miles per gallon you can typically reach with smaller, lighter tires.
If you’re wondering why people would use wider tires when they hurt gas mileage, then you’re in luck. The wider the tire, the worse off you will be with gas mileage.
The weight of the tire can play a negative role as well.
That’s what we’re here to talk about with you.
When Do People Use Wide Tires?
Wide tires primarily benefit the off-roaders and the mudders of the world.
Wider tires operate with shorter side walls that are stiffer and don’t bend and flex as much as regular tires.
Thus, the wide tire provides better handling in certain situations.
If you plan on slipping and sliding your way through a muddy field, wider tires provide better traction.
Since off-roading usually requires lower air pressure, you want your tires to hold up well.
Wide tires do precisely that.
Because of the increased surface coverage, wider tires can help with turns.
In general, they don’t operate as well on pavement as they do off-road, but they do have some uses outside of plowing your way through the mud.
Some people use big or wider tires because their vehicles are too heavy for narrow, regular tires. Common tires won’t handle the weight of the car if it is too heavy.
Wider tires provide better support and comfort while driving in more oversized vehicles.
How Do Tires Ruin Gas Mileage?
The primary way a tire can ruin gas mileage comes from more excellent rolling resistance.
One quality we see in wide tires is an increase in rolling resistance when the vehicle has to work harder to keep the tires moving and must constantly burn fuel to replace the lost energy.
Heavier tires, wider tires, and any tire that is generally bigger than a typical tire will hurt your gas mileage.
For all their benefits, which we will discuss momentarily, there is a decrease in fuel efficiency when your tires are massive.
Some drivers think that maintenance alone will keep their tires operating highly efficiently.
And care is essential, but it won’t prevent giant tires from ruining your fuel economy.
When increased resistance hinders the tire from rolling on a surface, it creates a reaction that requires extra energy to overcome.
The surface type can play a significant role and the air quality of the day and the tire tread.
Truthfully, the physics of motion is too complex to explain in a short article.
The critical thing to remember is that increased resistance equals increased energy consumption, resulting in worse fuel economy and fewer miles per gallon.
Are There Advantages to Using Wider Tires?
Wide tires come with some advantages.
As we’ve mentioned, they handle well in off-road conditions.
Adventures through the mud are much easier when the steering isn’t a problem, and your chances of getting stuck are slim.
Because of their increased surface area contact with the roadways, wide tires can help manage turns and cornering much better than regular tires.
There’s less pressure per square inch of the tire, but there is enough tire to handle well.
In wet conditions, wider tires can often perform much better than regular, narrow tires.
Their tread design works to trap water from the surface and remove it from the scenario.
The tire quickly removes water with the greater surface area, and driving becomes much more manageable.
Some big car enthusiasts may say that wider tires look better than regular, narrow tires.
The appearance seems to be more a question of preference than objective fact, but it’s comforting to know that people tend to like the look of big wide tires.
Choosing the right tire is incredibly important.
Tires affect how your car handles, how reliable your vehicle is in less than ideal conditions, and how much money you’re going to spend at the gas pump.
What Else Affects Gas Mileage?
Tires aren’t the only thing that can negatively impact your fuel economy.
The way you drive and take care of your vehicle play just as significant a role as your tire size.
For example, idling too long can severely decrease the miles you’ll get per gallon of gas.
One of the most significant impacts on gas mileage is aggressive driving.
That’s why driving through heavy traffic always seems to eat up gas fast.
These all play an essential role in reducing your fuel economy by speeding up too fast, braking too hard, and driving too fast.
Anything that causes your engine to operate inefficiently will hurt your gas mileage — for instance, taking lots of short trips in frigid weather.
Similarly, driving in bad weather that requires four-wheel drive can also hurt your miles per gallon.
Letting your engine warm up in cold weather doesn’t help your fuel economy much. However, it does help the life of your machine.
Giving your engine time to warm before leaving is a great way to take it easy on your vehicle in harsh winter weather.
Adding extra weight like a big trailer or even carrying heavy objects can severely impact your gas mileage.
Towing heavy things will undoubtedly reduce your gas mileage.
Similarly, driving through mountains or lots of hills affects your fuel economy.
Another detriment to miles per gallon is running electrical equipment.
That means having your air conditioning at full blast in the hot summer months is going to cost you more at the gas pump.
Do Wider Tires Wear Faster?
Constantly stopping and starting on the pavement is not great for big tires and will make them wear faster. Typically, a smaller tire will wear down faster.
But if your wide tires are attached to a big car, the weight might cause wear and tear to increase.
Do Big Tires Ride Smoothly?
Not as much as you might think.
Generally, smaller, narrow tires will provide you with a better ride. If you’re looking for stability and smoothness on the road, avoid big, wide tires. However, a thicker tire may help as well.
Are Wide Tires Better on Ice and Snow?
No, smaller tires tend to perform much better on ice and snow.
They have better linear traction from the smaller surface area, giving them better stability and handling in slippery conditions.
What Is Considered a Wide Tire?
Technically, anything bigger than what the factory put on your automobile is a wide tire. We’ve all seen the ridiculously wide tires on jacked-up trucks bouncing down the highway.
But wide tires can fit on cars, too. They just look a little different.
Are Wider Tires Noisier?
Bigger tires do tend to create more noise. With more rubber meeting the road, more road noise is expected. Tiny tires make noise as well, however.
Since they have less substance to absorb sound, it comes out while driving.
Are Wider Tires Better for Off-roading?
As discussed earlier, wider tires perform much better on the loose, muddy terrain than standard, narrow tires.
The surface area gives you a more significant advantage and lets you plow through the wet field confidently.