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Tire Load Rating

You’ve probably heard the phrase “tire load rating” and wondered what exactly it meant. Tire load ratings are a pretty important part of safety and proper tire maintenance, so let’s break it down: 

  • Your tires will have a service description embossed on the sidewall. The service description includes proper inflation levels, tire size, speed rating, and other information. You’ll also find tire load rating on the service description.

  • The higher the load rating number, the more weight your car’s tires are able to handle. However, that doesn’t mean an actual weight limit. Tire load ratings are coded according to federal standards. A rating code of 60 means actual weight rating of 250 kg/550 lb. Rating code of 80: 450 kg/550 lb, rating code of 125 means 1650 kg/3600 lbs.

  • Load ranges are also classified by letters, such as Load Range B tires or P-Metric standards.

  • Your tires’ service description will also include load ratings for hot temperatures. The standards are determined by the European Tyre and Rim Technical Organisation (ETRTO) and the Tire and Rim Association (TRA).

Confused yet?

Load ratings are important for safety and should be kept in mind when it’s time to buy tires. Obviously, they are going to be more of a concern for trucks, vans, SUVs and heavier vehicles than they are for passenger cars. Load ratings are of special importance when vehicles are going to be used for towing or heavy hauling.

While the tire load rating charts can seem arcane and confusing, your tire dealer should be able to clarify them for you when it’s time to replace your tires. That’s why it’s a good idea to come to Big O Tires; our trained, experienced consultants will give you straight answers on your tire questions and help you find the right tires for your needs, at a price that will make you happy!