All about mud tires

Off-roading is a great hobby for those who love a little adventure and outdoor time. Whether you are careening on dirt roads, rumbling over gravel, or spinning through some awesome mud bogs, you are going to need a set of tires that can handle slippery surfaces and debris. You want tires that will let you go fast enough to keep from sinking, but slow enough to not get stuck on obstacles.

A mud tire is a special type of tire that gives extra traction in off-road situations. Mud tires are large tires that have chunky treads with deep grooves. These chunky treads, called lugs, stick out more so that it is harder for mud and other objects to get stuck in the tire grooves. These groves are often placed in zig-zag patterns that help expel objects and liquid, similar to the way all-weather tires expel rain.

While they are aptly named for activities such as mudding, tires with extra traction are also good for outdoor activities such as hunting and farming. The tires are great for movement on soft surfaces such as dirt and gravel. Drivers of all-terrain vehicles and 4 x 4 Jeeps or sport utility vehicles will get the most out of a set of mud tires when traveling on soft surfaces.

How should I care for my mud tires?

The most important maintenance tip for mud tires is to keep them inflated at a lower PSI than your regular tires. The lower pressure helps give your tires the flexibility they will need to maintain traction. While this will help the life of your tire, it is also important to remember to take care of your whole tire and brake assembly. Make sure to carefully wash your car well after mudding trips to make sure that your bearings and brake assemblies are free of debris.

While mud tires won't do any damage to the road, they are not meant for hard surfaces. Not only are mud tires loud on pavement, but they are also terrible for gas mileage. The tires, with their enlarged size and chunky tread, are meant to give extra traction, and the increased friction on the road requires more gas for forward motion. If you have to do a lot of highway driving to get to an off-road location, you may want to either switch your tires when you get there, or tow your mudding vehicle on a trailer.

Where can I find cheap mud tires?

In this economy, it is understandable that you want to do your off-roading as cheaply as possible. However, you will still pay nearly $1,000 for a full set of mud tires. Your best bet is to get to know a local mechanic or tire specialist really well; while he may not be able to pass along savings on tires, you might get some discounts for routine maintenance that will make up for the added cost. You may also be able to get mud tires cheap through internet retailers, but be sure to check reviews and buyer testimonials to make sure you are getting the real deal.

Mud tires are a fantastic way to get some creative use out of your car, especially if you have an all-wheel drive vehicle. Whether you are looking to get around the farm or play around after a good rain, Sears can get you on the road (or dirt) with a great set of mud tires.

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