Radial or Bias Ag Tires?

It begins with answering these questions:

  1. What is your application?
  2. What is your needed load carrying capacity?
  3. Is compaction a concern?
  4. What is your timeline?

More Traction, Less Compaction

If the application requires high traction, you should target radials (like the CEAT FARMAX R85 pictured to the right) . . . same for reducing compaction.

What type of radial depends on the application, load carrying capacity needed and speed required. If high speed (above 25 mph) is required, you need a “D” rated or 40 mph rated tire. If the standard radial does not have an adequate load carrying capacity required for the most demanding application, which is quite often when you are roading equipment at the highest speeds, you should look to the “IF” and “VF” options.

The “IF,” or increased flexion radials, carry about 20% more load than standard radials at the same inflation pressures. The “VF,” or very high flexion radials, carry about 40% more load than standard radials at the same inflation pressures.

Conversely, these high-tech tires can carry the same loads as standard radials with reduced inflation pressures. If you want to run the lowest inflation pressures you can to help minimize compaction, the “IF” and “VF” options will provide the best opportunities to achieve your objective.

Placing an Ag tire into service when it does not have the load carrying capacity or the speed rating required will lead to tire damage and ultimately tire failure.

The Bias Option

Bias tires might be an alternative but they do not provide the benefits of radial technology. If you want the best traction possible, improved efficiency, larger footprints, reduced compaction, a better ride, or any of the above, you need to stick with radials. Bias Ag tires do not deliver these improved features due to the carcass design.  

In most cases, the bias tire will be less expensive than the radial but not always. Pricing differentials have narrowed in the last few years. It is always good to check both if you are considering bias tires. Another very important factor is the service life of a comparable radial . . . about 30% longer than the bias.

If you just need a tire that holds air, the bias design might be the right choice.

Keep in mind that the pricing of the bias tires should be around 30% less than the radials to provide a comparable value or cost per hour of service regardless of additional benefits.

A pricing gap of that size, however, is becoming more and more rare these days.

Above all, ask your tire dealer the right questions and request options along with the costs involved as well as the advantages and disadvantages of each option. The “best” option should not depend on what your tire dealer has in the warehouse. 

If you have any questions about this topic, please leave a comment below. And if you want to learn more about CEAT Ag tires, click on the banner below. Thanks for reading!

Related Posts

  • Friday March 11, 2022
  • Products

Key Features of CEAT Ag Tires

Before doing an online search for “tractor tires near me,” it’s important to know some of the key attributes of farm tractor tires and implement tires. Do the tires, for instance, have the right construction and tread design to minimize soil compaction? This is becoming a bigger and bigger issue for North American farmers as […]

  • Comments: 0
  • Sunday February 20, 2022
  • Products

Quality and Availability . . . CEAT Farm Tires!

CEAT Ag tires have been in North America only four years (company is 93 years old) now, but are rapidly gaining popularity with farmers and ranchers due to product quality and availability. According to Ryan Loethen, president of CEAT Specialty Tires Inc., the company has gained market share by focusing on logistics amid recent industrywide […]

  • Comments: 0
  • Wednesday May 26, 2021
  • Products

Inflating Farm Implement Tires

In a sense, inflation pressure for Ag tires is very simple — inflate to the most demanding application.  Different tactics, however, may be necessary depending on the type of equipment and tires.  Implement Tires Implement tires were mostly bias not so many years ago. As the implement designs continued to grow larger and larger, the gross […]

  • Comments: 0