Tire Concerns: Is it allright to use a passenger car tire on a 4WD truck?

Tire Concerns: Is it allright to use a passenger car tire on a 4WD truck?

by Tim
(Dedham, Maine)

My next door neighbor recently traded in his car but had 4 almost brand new tires that are the same 16" as my 95 Chevy Silverado 4WD. He said I could have them. The tires now on the truck are so badly weather cracked to the point I do not feel safe driving it any distance.

Where I don't use the truck a lot and money is tight now, will these tires work ok? The truck is 16 years old and has 53,000 miles on it.

Editorial Comment:

I've seen people using truck tires on cars so why not the other way round?

As long as the tire size is exactly the same, the only difference you may find in using car tires on a light truck is that you may have a different speed rating and load rating.

Since the car was a heavy car and if you don't plan on carrying any cargo with the truck, you may find that there will be little problem for your circumstances.


Comments for Tire Concerns: Is it allright to use a passenger car tire on a 4WD truck?

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Thanks for the info TG
by: Tim

I did not realize the speedometer would be off that much. I knew I would loose some ground clearance but you almost need steps to get into the truck now and it has the original suspension. But the big kicker is loosing 10% gas mileage. The truck is and always has been since new HORRIBLE on gas. If I get 10 with it, thats good. Normally I only use the truck for occasional trips to the transfer station or building supply store. But I know in the winter I can count on it to start every time and climb over or plow through any snowbank it encounters. In 16 years it has never got stuck and stranded me. And we have some pretty bad snowstorms here in Maine. Guess I am going to visit a used tire guy a couple towns away that has been highly recommended and see if he can make a swap with me for the right size.

Tires on my truck
by: Tim

The truck has 225/75R16 Cooper Discoverer LT on it now and even though the tread is fine (they have a little over 10,000 miles) they are so severely weather cracked, I feel they are not safe. My neighbors car that was just traded was a 99 Cadillac Deville with tire size 225/60R16. The tires are almost new Firestones. I realize the profile is different, but where the truck maybe goes 2-3000 miles a year max, I dont want to shell out big money for tires that I just cant afford right now and I know they will not pass our rigid state inspection with the weather cracking.

Editorial Comment:

The big consideration is that the Cadillac's tires are considerably smaller than the truck's tires.

This means 1) you'll lose about 1 and 1/3 inches in ground clearance; 2) your speedometer will read considerably differently -- if it read 60 before, it will now read around 54; and 3) your fuel consumption will increase by about 10% because it will take that many more revolutions of the new tire to cover the same distance.

On top of these, consider that the load carrying capacity of the two tires may be different along with their speed rating. Both these could be a detriment or OK depending on the actual tire ratings AND your usage of the vehicle.


Your tire size
by: Wheels Etc

I don't find any evidence of a tire size that came on a 1995 Chevy K1500 4WD that would coincide with a passenger car. There is a chance the P245/75 R 16 could have been on the truck when it came from the factory however there are no cars that would have that tire. Some SUV's may have used that size and would certainly be acceptable on the Pickup providing you did not need the load carrying capacity of the LT tire that should have been on your truck. If the numbers are different than these I suggest you take the truck to branded tire dealer for more specific advice. You could be taking unreasonable risk with only some numbers being the same.

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