Reading Your Tire
Handling & Storage
Reading Your Tire
This section is intended for operators from the agricultural, industrial or earthmoving sectors. It contains useful information about specific Off-Highway tire features as well as some recommendations for maintenance and storage.
The main information about your tire can be found right on the tire. You just need to know how to read it.
These are the main parameters for measuring a tire:
Section Width - SW
This parameter indicates the outer sidewall distance without taking into consideration the prominences due to tire code marking. The section width is measured after the tire being properly mounted on the reference rim and inflated at the pressure recommended by the manufacturer for at least 24 hours without any load.
Overall Width - OW
This parameter indicates a tire’s section width at its largest point including all prominences such as tire code marking, sidewall lettering, tire brand, etc. The overall width is measured after the tire being properly mounted on the reference rim and inflated at the pressure recommended by the manufacturer for at least 24 hours without any load.
Static Loaded Radius - SLR
This parameter indicates the vertical distance between the ground and the tire rotation axis. It is measured with the tire inflated at its nominal pressure, properly mounted on its reference rim at maximum load according to the values defined in the load index.
Section Height – SH
This parameter indicates the vertical section of the tire. It is calculated based on the overall diameter less the rim diameter divided by two.
Overall Diameter - OD
This parameter is measured after the tire being properly mounted on the reference rim and inflated at the pressure recommended by the manufacturer for at least 24 hours without any load.
Static Loaded Width - SLW
This parameter indicates the outer distance between the tire sidewalls. It is measured with the tire inflated at its nominal pressure, properly mounted on its reference rim at maximum load according to the values defined in the load index.
Load Index - LI
The load index is a numeric code that defines the tire´s maximum loading capacity in kg. For each tire type/size, the loading capacity is always related to a specific inflation pressure as defined by ETRTO standards and manufacturer specifications.
Speed Code - SC
The speed code is a symbol that indicates the maximum speed admitted at the given load index, following any other specific conditions defined by the tire manufacturer.
Before fitting the tire on the rim, make sure that the following mandatory aspects and requirements are met:
Tire size and features must be suitable for the vehicle and the application to be used.
The rim size to be used must be approved and contained in the BKT Technical Databook; it must be suitable for the tire size.
Mounting and dismounting operations shall be performed by qualified and adequately trained technical staff or professionals only.
Always refer to the instructions and procedures indicated by the rim, tire, and vehicle manufacturers.
Use appropriate tools and equipment in good condition only.
Using a wrong rim can limit the tire performance and cause its damage.
1. Inspection and Cleaning
Check the rim beforehand; use a metal brush to properly clean the entire surface and check its state.
Never use rims with weld joints nor rims that are visibly deformed or damaged.
The tire bead must be clean and without any elements that might cause an air lack.
In case of mounting a tire that has already been used, accurately check both the tire’s inside and outside for possible damages to be repaired.
Do not mount tires with clear signs of strain.
Use a compressor to clean and dry the inner part of the tire. Never use solvents.
Check the tire beads and clean their surface with a dry cloth. Never use solvents.
Only use new tubes (if applicable for the tire type) and new air valves (for tubeless tires).
Do not use damaged or broken rims.
The flange must be clean and smooth to ensure uniform adherence.
Do not mount rims with worn surfaces.Watch Overview
2. Inspection and Valve Mounting
Place the rim on the mounting device.
Before mounting the tire on the rim, check that the inflation valve functions properly.
It is recommended to always use new valves at every mounting.Watch Overview
3. Lubrication of Tire Rim and Bead
Use a soft-bristled brush to spread the lubricant over the surface.
Use specific lubricants for tire mounting only.
Do not use silicone or other solvent-based substances.Watch Overview
4. Bead Positioning
Place the tire bead on the rim channel.
Make sure that at least part of the tire bead stays within the rim profile.
The tire remains in position due to its weight and the ground contact during rim rotation.
Start rotating the tire and position the tire bead gradually on the rim.
Complete the rotation until the entire bead is positioned on the rim.
Make sure that the entire bead is correctly fitted within the rim.Watch Overview
5. Final Check
Check that both tire beads are correctly positioned on the rim.
Adjust the tire pressure according to manufacturer recommendations and the intended operating conditions.Watch Overview
In several operating conditions, especially in agriculture, Off-Highway tires need increased traction. Liquid ballasting can be useful to achieve major traction and higher adherence on the terrain as well as improved stability (lateral stiffness).
When filling the tire with liquid, it is recommended not to exceed 75% of its volume, in order to leave an air reserve of at least 25% of the tire volume. At any rate, it is important to inflate the tire at the pressure recommended by the manufacturer with reference to the loading conditions in order to maintain specific tire features such as elasticity.
In areas with a harsh climate, it is advised to add anti-freezing agents such as calcium chloride or magnesium chloride. It is highly recommended that these operations are carried out by a professional specialist only.
BKT tires are designed for the most differing applications in agriculture and manifold industrial sectors. Many Off-Highway tires are very heavy and difficult to be transported. Wrong transportation of a tire can cause serious damage. When transporting a tire, particular attention must be paid to make sure that neither the bead nor the inner part of the tire are damaged. Even the slightest damage of the bead can cause permanent damage due to air leakage resulting in tire underinflation and possible separation of the tire components.
In order to reduce the risk of damages or problems caused by wrong tire transportation or handling to a minimum, it is highly advised to observe the following recommendations:
Do not lift the tire with a crane hook by leverage on the bead.
Use large fibered straps, rubber slings or specific belts.
Do not use ropes, steel slings or chains.
Use a forklift for transport. The tire is to be lifted under the tread and not on the bead.
Whatever your field of application is – agriculture, earthmoving, industry, or else - Off-Highway tires are to be stored in a cool and dry place, away from direct sunlight, electric motors, oils, fuels, resins and other volatile substances in order to avoid any alteration of the chemical-physical features. Should this not be possible, at least protect your tires with a waterproof tarpaulin to avoid contact with ultra-violet rays and bad weather. Tires are to be placed vertically side by side. Do not stack one tire over the other horizontally. Tubes and o-rings must be stocked in their original packing or stored unwrapped on racks or shelves, but never suspended.