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Factors to Consider When Adding Larger Tires and Wheels to a Trailer  

Question:

I just bought a used trailer with 5.70 X 8 tires and rims on it. Can I put bigger rims and tires on the trailer? It always seems to me that these smaller tires go bad a lot more than the bigger tires do. Probably because they are not running as fast as the bigger tires do at the same speed. If I can, will it do anything to the hubs? Thanks

1

Helpful Expert Reply:

You can add larger wheels and tires to a trailer as long as you have enough room for the larger size. The main clearance issues we find when putting larger tires and wheels on a trailer is from the top of the tire to the fender and from the inside wall of the tire to the trailer wall/frame.

The next factor that you will want to consider is the bolt pattern of the wheel. If your current wheels have a 4 on 4 inch bolt pattern, then the new wheels must have a 4 on 4 inch bolt pattern as well. I have attached an FAQ article on how to determine your bolt pattern for you to check out.

Finally, you will want to keep the weight capacity in mind. Larger tires will typically have a higher weight rating. Tires with a higher weight rating will not increase the load carrying capacity of the trailer, so you will still be limited to the weight capacity of the axle. Larger wheels and tires will not have an effect on the hub as long as the bolt patterns match and you remain under the weight capacity of the axle.

If you can tell me how much clearance you have from the top of the tire to your fender, from the inside wall of the tire to the closest part of the trailer and the bolt pattern of your wheels, I would be happy to make a recommendation for you.

expert reply by:
1
John H

Travis L.

6/30/2020

I have a 2012 Keystone Passport Ultralite Grand Touring which currently has st205/75R14c tires. I would like to upgrade the tire and wheel size. Would upgrading to a st225/75R15e be ok? As long as the bolt pattern matched, do you think the 1" larger wheel and tire diameter/width would fit without rubbing?

Etrailer Expert

Chris R.

7/6/2020

This really comes down to how much space between the tire and fender you currently have on the trailer. Unfortunately this isn't something I can determine. We recommend having at least 4-5" of space between the top of the tire and fender to allow for suspension travel. An ST225/75R15 tire like # AM32680 will cut into your existing clearance by a little more than an inch. If you have enough space to maintain proper clearance with this change then you're good to go.

Barry

1/21/2021

@ChrisR I am looking at upsizing a trailer 8" wheels to new 15?", that I have on am other trailer. The prospect trailer is home built, not sure of the weight capacity. The steel seems solid, no rust but it is light. I do not like small tires due to the hub speed when going 60 plus. I have seen too many go up in smoke. (not mine) There are currently now wheel fender on it. The springs are inside the axle? This has a pivoting/ tilting frame Can I safely bump up to a 15"-16" tire or should I just loo for another? The trailer is $450, negotiable. Would love to hear back from you on this.
Etrailer Expert

Jon G.

1/21/2021

@Barry That's a pretty significant change it wheel size and I really think you're going to have a hard time finding 15" tire/wheel combos that will physically fit. We recommend having at least 4" of clearance between the tire and fender for suspension travel and then at least 2" of clearance from the tire sidewall to the trailer frame. For a 15" wheel you're looking at tires with a diameter of around 27" - 28" and a width of about 8" - 9".
See All (7) Replies to Travis L. ∨

Ty N.

7/6/2020

if the rubber of the tire is much heavier than old tires this won't compromise my hubs? Found semi trailer tires for my rims on my trailer, 17ft dual tandem axle.

Etrailer Expert

Chris R.

7/9/2020

As long as the tire properly fits the wheel, you don't have to worry about any damaging effects to the hub assembly. How big of a jump in size are you looking at?

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