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Can 12 Inch Trailer Tires and Wheels be Replaced with 13 Inch

Question:

In changing from a 12 to a 13” wheel, how tall is the 13? Probably have to change fenders, just double checking

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Expert Reply:

The smallest diameter 13 inch trailer wheel and tire will have a diameter of 24.1 inches (ST175/80-13). There are 3 common 12 inch trailer tire sizes: 4.80-12 has a diameter of 20.5 inches, 5.30-12 has a diameter of 21.9 inches, and 145/80-12 has a diameter of 21.3 inches.

So basically the overall difference between the two sizes, depending on the specific 12 inch size, is between 2.2 inches and 3.6 inches.

Half of the difference applies to the bottom of the tire from the center of the spindle to the bottom of the tire. The other half will apply to the top half of the tire. That means that the 13 inch tire will be 1.1 to 1.8 inches closer to the bottom of the fender.

You also have to consider the travel of the suspension. You could need as much as 4 inches of space between the tops of the tires and the undersides of the fenders. Going to a larger size will reduce that clearance.

I have included a link to all of the 175/80-13 tire and wheel combos we have. Most have the 5 on 4-1/2 bolt pattern but there are a few with a 4 on 4 pattern if that is what the trailer requires.

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