Skid steers were once only used on dairy farms, but they’ve made their entry into many different industries. A skid steer is a versatile machine that has many uses in landscaping, demolition, and construction. Technology is innovating how skid steers are used. Developments in tires have given operators more options, which lets these machines be used in more applications. Traditionally, skid tires are outfitted with pneumatic, or air-filled tires. Solid skid tires are becoming more commonplace. The big question is which tire works for your needs? Here’s what you should know about skid tires in order to make an informed decision.
Solid tires often work better in extreme conditions, like demolition sites or rock quarries. Solid tires won’t get punctured from rebar or sharp rocks. Pneumatic tires work better in milder operating conditions such as landscaping. When you’re working on a surface that you want to be extra careful not to damage, you should choose pneumatic skid tires.
Pneumatic skid tires offer more comfort to the operator. These tires can absorb the shocks and make the ride more comfortable. Solid tires have a harder ride, which is often increased by the ground conditions. If you are considering solid tires, look for ones made with rubber compounding that give the operator a smoother ride.
A pneumatic tire is not designed to carry heavy loads like concrete. Solid tires can definitely handle bigger loads.
Solid skid tires resist punctures, which reduces the downtime of the machine. You’ll have less maintenance requirements because there’s no air pressure to check. You won’t need to constantly repair solid skid steer tires. Pneumatic tires do present more maintenance issues because they are more prone to damage.
Pneumatic tires may have a few things against them, but they are the most common type of skid steer tires because they are affordable. The up-front cost is less than solid skid tires. Solid skid tires have a higher initial cost. They do require a significant investment. However, they are more durable and will last three to five times longer than pneumatic tires.
Before choosing tires for your skid steer, consider where and how it will be used. Skid steer tires come in different tread depths and patterns for better performance on different surface conditions. All-terrain tires work best on dirt or in slightly muddy conditions, but they’ll also handle concrete surfaces or off-road conditions. They do wear out faster on harsher surfaces. You’ll also find skid tires that are smooth or with deep treads, depending on what you’re handling. Tire technology is constantly evolving to provide more options for safety, better fuel economy, and better performance.
Buying the right tire for your needs minimizes your operating costs. We know tires. Let the tire experts with STTC help you find skid tires for your needs and budget.
Call us now at 610-954-8473 or contact us online for skid tires and all commercial tire-related services.