Changing speed rating of replacement tires

Changing speed rating of replacement tires

by Janet

2012 Grand Caravan came with H rated Kumhos. Thinking of replacing with Cooper CS4s. Tire dealers said T-rated is OK. Is it?

Editorial Comment:

The short answer to your question of whether a speed rating of "T" is OK is: Maybe.

The reason I say the speed rating might be OK is that it depends on you and your driving habits, not on what a dealer tells you nor on what tire the vehicle had installed when you bought it.

The T rating is saying that the tire is designed to withstand speeds up to 118 mph or 190 km/h while an H rating is designed to be driven up to 130 mph or 210 km/h.

Now, no one knows your driving habits better than you. If you believe that you're unlikely to ever drive for a sustained speed of over 118 mph, then the dealer is absolutely correct.

Please note that the tire manufacturers do not recommend that people drive at these maximum speeds, nor that the tires are capable of supporting these speeds if they have been previously damaged and possibly repaired. These are simply the speeds at which they have been tested in a laboratory when new and have proven to be capable of sustaining at least 10 minutes at that speed without suffering any damage.

The tires which were initially installed in the vehicle may have been chosen to meet or exceed the original capacity of the vehicle by the manufacturer of the vehicle, but it is also possible that the dealer that sold the vehicle may have chosen this. You do not have to match the original equipment if your needs are different.


Comments for Changing speed rating of replacement tires

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Your Caravan
by: Wheels Etc

You neglected to actually mention the size of the tires you are using and planning to use. The fact that the Kumho tires were not originally on the vehicle when new could expose you to other issues. I have to guess the H and T ratings you found on the tires is part of the alpha numeric code that rates compatibility along with load carrying characteristics. An 89H could be replaced by an 89T but it is not advised to replace a 104H with an 89T. In addition tread designs are important and should be matched with driving style and your environment. Please ask your dealer to give you all the important details about the change in tires.

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