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Understanding Trailer Wheel Bolt Patterns and Trailer Tire Weight and Speed Ratings

Question:

Tires/wheels: I have a 26ft travel trailer5200lbs to 6200 1. what is Load Range? 2. its 5 Bolt, how do I know bolt pattern? 3. Wheel pattern?

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Helpful Expert Reply:

We can help you sort out trailer wheel bolt patterns and tire load ranges for your 26-foot travel trailer that weighs between 5200- and 6200-lbs. I linked our main page for trailer wheels and tires as well as a couple of related articles that you'll find helpful. The wheel/tire page has filters you can click on to sort the displayed products.

There are many trailer wheel bolt patterns (we offer wheels in more than 10 wheel bolt patterns!) but it is easy to confirm which you have. Just refer to the linked article that explains how to measure to confirm. The majority of recreational trailers use the 5-on-4-1/2 bolt pattern like wheel/tire # AC14R45SM.

Trailer tires are offered in both bias ply and radial types, in a range of sizes to fit all sorts of wheels, and in various weight load ranges which are designated by a letter code. You want to choose the tire load range needed to match (or better yet exceed) your trailer's maximum weight, its GVWR. This is the most the loaded trailer can safely weigh. Take your trailer's GVWR and divide by the number of wheels/tires on it to determine how much weight each wheel and each tire must be able to handle.

For instance, Taskmaster's Provider ST235/85R16 Radial Trailer Tire # TTWPRG235R16 is rated as a Load Range G tire, meaning it is good up to 4400-lbs at its rated 110-psi pressure. Let's say you had a tandem axle trailer that had a GVWR of 12,000-lbs. That is 12K divided by 4, for 3000-lbs load on each of the four tires. This tire in that application would provide a very substantial safety margin of 1400-lbs per tire.

Tires will function better when you 1) maintain the correct cold inflation pressure shown on the tire sidewall; 2) use them within their weight rating and 3) operate them within their rated speed; yes trailer tires have letter code speed ratings too! The Taskmaster tire referenced above has a speed rating of 81-mph maximum, which is classified as a Speed Rating M. A tire good for up to 75-mph is designated as speed rating L.

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Adam R

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