Important: Always check the vehicle manufacturer's recommendation before replacing a tire with a different size and/or construction.

When buying new tires, be sure your name, address and tire identification number (DOT code) are recorded and returned to the tire manufacturer or its record-keeping designee. Tire registration will ensure that you will be notified promptly in the event the tire manufacturer needs to contact you.

When tires need to be replaced, don't guess what tire is right for your vehicle. For the answer, first look at the tire placard. As you will see, that placard tells you the size of the tires which were on the vehicle as original equipment.

Tires should always be replaced with the same size designation, or approved options, as recommended by the automobile or tire manufacturer. Never choose a smaller size, with less load-carrying capacity than the size on the tire placard. Always have tires mounted with the same size and construction designations on the same axle.

Tire Mixing

Speed Ratings

Types of Tire Construction

It is recommended that all four tires be of the same size, speed rating and construction (radial or non-radial). However, in some cases, the vehicle manufacturer may require different-sized tires for the front and rear axles. When two radial tires are used with two non-radials, put the radials on the rear axle. Three types of tire constructions are shown at the bottom of this page.

Some tires are now marked with letters to indicate their speed rating, based on laboratory tests which relate to performance on the road. Tires may be marked with one of eight speed symbols, M, S, T, U, H, V, Z or W, to identify the particular tire's speed rating.

When replacement of tires is required, consult the vehicle manual for proper size and speed rating (if required). If the vehicle manual specifies speed-rated tires, the replacement tires must have the same or higher speed rating to maintain vehicle speed capability. If tires with different speed ratings are mounted on the same vehicle, the tire or tires with the lowest rating will limit the tire-related vehicle speed.


*For tires having a maximum speed capability above 149 mph (240 km/h), a "ZR" may appear in the size designation. For tires having a maximum speed capability above 186 mph (300 km/h), a "ZR" must appear in the size designation. Consult tire manufacturer for maximum speed when there is no Service Description. Example: P275/40R17 93W at 168 mph (270 km/h) or P275/40ZR17 at above 149 mph (240 km/h). Consult tire manufacturer.

**A "ZR" may appear in the tire size designation.

NOTE: For "V", "W", or "y", and tires with a "ZR" rating, a vehicle load adjustment (for speed) is required; consult tire manufacturer.

Tire speed ratings do not imply that vehicles can be safely driven at the maximum speed for which the tire is rated, particularly under adverse road and weather conditions, or if the vehicle has unusual characteristics. Never operate a vehicle in an unsafe or unlawful manner.

Tires should be of the same size, construction (radial, non-radial) and speed rating, unless specified otherwise by the vehicle manufacturer. Tires influence vehicle handling and stability.

Match tire size designations in pairs on an axle (or four tires in dual application), except for use of a temporary spare tire.

If radial and non-radial tires are used on a vehicle, put radials on the rear. If radial and non-radial tires are used on a vehicle equipped with dual rear tires, the radials may be used on either axle. Never mix radial and non-radial on the same axle e xcept for use of a temporary spare tire.

Snow tires should be applied in pairs (or as duals) to the drive axle (whether front or rear) or to all positions. Never put non-radial snow tires on the rear if radials are on the front, except when the vehicle has duals on the rear. If studded tires a re used on the front axle, they must also be used on the rear axle.

Match all tire sizes and constructions on four-wheel-drive vehicles.


Belted Bias

Diagonal Bias

| Motorists Tire Care & Safety Guide |

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