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Choosing The Right Sand Tire (Detailed Guide For Beginners)

Have you ever you want to have an exciting adventure on the vast white sands but were concerned that your car would not move? You can’t pick the best tire for your vehicle because there are many different types. Don’t worry; the following article will advise on choosing the right sand tires.

About Sand Tire

Sand tires are usually the same size as ATV, UTV, or motorcycle tires as follows: 

ATV/UTV Sand Tires

All tire sizes are given in the following format: overall tire diameter x tire width x wheel size (Ex. 20×11-9 is 20″ tall x 11″ wide x 9″ wheel diameter). ATV tires are smaller but have the exact dimensions as UTV tires: 30×14-14. 

This parameter means: The height from the sand to the top of the tire is 30 inches, the tire width (side spacing) is 14 inches, and the tire diameter is 14 inches.

Motorcycle Sand Tires

The size of motor sand tires will display the size motor sand tires as 110/90-19. 

This parameter means: that 110 (mm) is the total width of the tire, and 90 (mm) is the aspect ratio (the difference between the sidewall height and the width). The parameter 90 here shows that the tire’s sidewall height is 90% of its width. The number 19 (inches) is the wheel diameter.

See more at: How To Read Tire Speed Rating (An Ultimate Guide)

About Sand Wheels

There are two options for selecting sand wheels: Bead-lock wheels or standard wheels.

Bead-Lock Wheels

The most common bead lock wheel has an outer wheel bead ring, known as a rock ring, that fastens to the inner part of the wheel on the inner side of where the tire bead sits through high-grade, high-tensile strength bolts. Compressing the tire’s bead in between the mounting surface and the outer rock ring with enough pressure that the outer bead won’t be able to move from the bead seat. With the outer tire bead being held into place, this allows much greater use of force or impact pressure against the sidewall without allowing any air to escape. 

It is handy for running a super low amount of air pressure in the tires to dramatically increase the tires’ traction by allowing the tire to fold, flex and envelope over rocks, logs, and various trail obstacles. It’s also expanding the tire’s contact patch and footprint for additional traction in the sand, snow, loose dirt, and other soft, loose terrain situations. Without a beadlock wheel, the chance of depending a tire off the rim and leaving you with a flat tire is much greater at lower air pressures. Therefore you’ll either not be able to air down that much, sacrificing traction, or risk getting a flat tire out in the trails.

Beadlock wheels come in a variety of styles. Still, the ones most commonly used by off-roaders (and the ones we’ll be talking about in this article) are beadlocks with outer-facing rings. Because a tire slips off a rim on the outside bead, the circles face outwards.

Standard Wheels

Standard wheels have a bored hub that attaches to the axles of casters or trucks, carts, dollies, and other material-handling equipment, allowing them to roll and reducing the effort required to move or reposition the equipment. They are frequently used to replace existing casters on machinery. The wheels could have a solid tread and core or a tread that has been mechanically joined to a center.

Choosing The Right Sand Tire

After you’ve determined the size of sand tires you’ll need, it’s time to choose the best sand tire for your application. Because there are numerous options, we hope these descriptions help you make an informed decision.

Paddle Tires For Sand

Paddle tires, also known as sand tires, get their name because they “paddle” away sand, the same way a boat paddles through the water. Their unique tread patterns can cut through loose and soft sand with far more traction than standard ATV/UTV tires.

Paddle tires are primarily found on off-road vehicles that are specifically designed for use in sand and mud. They are made of a soft tire core with large rubber cups (or paddles). Because the volume inside a paddle is much larger than the void of a knobby tire, it is unlikely to become clogged with sand/mud. A street legal mud tire is a standard tire with different significant gaps or “voids” between each tread block (called “lugs”) to allow centrifugal force to “self-clean” or fling the mud out of the gap.

Another way that the paddle tire is a specialized application is because it only provides forward/rearward traction. This means it is used on a vehicle’s driving wheel to propel it forward but provides little “lateral” (side-to-side) traction. As a result, the vehicle’s tires that steer it are generally more “normal,” because a paddle tire on a steering wheel will slide sideways rather than pulling the car with it. As a result, even though the front wheels are powered, many 4WD vehicles will only use paddle tires on the rear.

Big Off-Road Balloon Tires

Off-road tires are also referred to as mud tires and all-terrain tires. When compared to street tires, the structure of these tires is typically more rigid and robust. These tires are excellent for off-road terrain where no other tire can provide the necessary traction.

It is a wide pneumatic tire designed for total inflation at low pressure, particularly in early bicycles and motor vehicles—a vast, deep-walled pneumatic tire with low air pressure to reduce bump shock.

Mud Terrain Or All Terrain For Sand – Which Is Better?

In the sand, a mud-terrain tire isn’t as good as an all-terrain tire because it digs down, but we don’t find that to be the case unless you’re running the tire at full street pressure. If you’re airing down your tire to increase its potential contact patch, we’ve found that similar to mud and rocks, a mud-terrain tire provides more grip and bite in the sand than an all-terrain tire.

An all-terrain tire works well in the sand as long as you air it down to increase flotation. Nonetheless, in side-by-side testing of identically sized tires on identically sized wheels installed on the exact vehicle, we discovered that the more aggressive tires perform better—as long as pressures are kept as low as possible without causing bead retention. Only on hard-packed snow, glare ice, and other super-low adhesion conditions do the increased siping and number of grabbing angles of the all-terrain tread blocks outperform the mud terrain’s fewer, wider-spaced lugs.


Choosing the right sand tires is a complicated decision; we hope this article is useful to you. Thank you for reading, and we wish you had a wise choice for your vehicle.

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