Not all four-wheel drive (4WD) passenger trucks are driven in the same climate or on the same terrain. For this reason, the right tires for your truck are not necessarily the right tires for someone else's truck — and neither are their regular maintenance requirements!
For example, if you live in the mountains where it snows all winter, then you need tires with an aggressive tread for good traction. However, if you live in a sunny climate like Florida or Southern California, then all-season passenger truck tires are the better choice.
More aggressive "mud and snow" tires are not designed for highway commutes because their aggressive tread blocks make for a bumpy ride with excessive road noise.
Alternatively, all-season truck tires are designed for a quiet highway ride but don't have the required tread to handle well in deep snow or mud.
To ensure you get the best out of your tires for the type of driving you do, here are some tips you can use:
Tip: Always Replace All Four Tires at the Same Time
In contrast to smaller, two-wheel-drive vehicles, 4WD trucks require you to replace all four tires at the same time. And, sadly, this is not optional!
Four-wheel drive passenger trucks can suffer serious drivetrain damage if all four tires aren't the exact same size, with the same tread pattern, and the same tread depth. Even small incremental differences in tread pattern or depth force the differentials to work too hard. This causes excessive heat and wears out the internal parts prematurely. As the parts fail, they require expensive drivetrain work to repair.
To avoid drivetrain problems, make sure you replace all four tires at the same time and with identical tires on both axles.
Tip: Rotate Tires and Check Alignment Frequently
The standard everyone has heard of "rotate your tires every five thousand miles" does not necessarily apply to 4WD trucks — especially those frequently driven offroad or in inclement weather.
Driving offroad often means subjecting your truck to washboard roads, rock hazards, and a handful of other things that will wreak havoc on your truck's tires and alignment.
For this reason, it's important you rotate tires and check their alignment much more frequently if you often drive offroad or on gravel roads.
Finally, if you only drive on pavement and rarely offroad, then it is safe to stick to the traditional alignment and rotation schedule. Contact a tire shop in your area to learn more.