Long time Alberta Agriculture engineer Reed Turner didn’t like to use the word “inflation” when talking about tire air pressure. He
said inflation had to do with the economy, not tire pressure.
But whatever word or term you use, the message is the same according to Norm McEwan who is general manager of OK Tire in Lethbridge, AB — it is important to maintain proper air pressure in farm tractor tires to optimize performance and efficiency.
“It is always important to remind farmers to check tire pressure,” says McEwan, at a southern Alberta Fendt tractor field day. “Some of these big tractor tires are designed to operate with only 16 to 18 psi, so if you are off by one or two psi that is an appreciable difference.”
McEwan who sells a wide range of tire makes, with a wide price range, says operating tires either under or over the recommended inflation rate (there I used the word anyway) can lead to slippage and increased wear of the tire.
He also recommends selecting the proper tire for the job. “The tires are what deliver the power of your tractor to the ground, so it is important to have the right tires for the job at hand. It affects the efficiency of the whole operation.”
At this field day, McEwan featured Trelleborg tractor tires. These are Italian made tires, by a company that specializes in manufacturing tires for agricultural and industrial uses. Although very popular in Europe, the Trelleborg name isn’t as well known in North America. Although there are price ranges on all tire makes, McEwan says Trelleborg fall somewhere in the middle of the pack.
Alberta’s AgTech Centre, along with PAMI made an evaluation of Trelleborg tires a number of years ago, and the bottom line showed pluses and minuses in performance. This report was based on bias ply, also sometimes known as cross ply, tires, but the company does have a line of radial tires as well. If you just google Trelleborg tires there are several websites and reports to read.
Lee Hart is a field editor for Grainews in Calgary, Contact him at 403-592-1964 or by email at [email protected]