When ATV enthusiasts are investing in their new ride, it is helpful to know what type of tires will be coming on the vehicle. If someone were to invest in a new ATV, or if they need to replace the tires, what does it mean if they have or need to buy directional tires? Here are the best ways to figure out if ATV tires are directional and what this means!

Directional ATV tires are used for mud or snow terrain, while multi-directional tires are for racing or rocky terrain. Some ATVs come with either directional or multi-directional tires. ATV owners can figure out if tires are directional by inspecting them to see if there are V shapes on the treads.

What makes directional ATV tires different from multi-directional ATV tires? What ATV models automatically come with directional tires? Let’s go over what to know and keep in mind when it comes to all things ATV tires!

1. Directional ATV Tires

ATV tires are made differently based on what type of terrain they are going to be used on. The tires also vary in being manufactured to be directional versus non-directional. Directional tires are ideally used for terrains made of snow and mud. Meanwhile, rough trails and sand terrains can be driven over with directional or multi-directional ATV tires. Directional ATV tires also have V-shaped patterns on the rubber treads. Simply look at the shapes and tread patterns of the vehicle to figure out if the tires are directional, or ask the ATV seller or previous owner for possible clarification.

2. Multi-Directional ATV Tires

ATV multi-directional tires are best used over racing and rocky terrains. They can be identified by uniform patterning in the rubber treads. These tires can also be used over rough trails and sand terrains. Additionally, multi-directional tires have a uniform pattern in their rubber treads to allow for a similar level of high performance in both directions, while driving both forwards and backward. These tires do not function as well as directional may over wet surfaces, but they are perfect for rocky and unpredictable areas!

3. How to Tell if ATV Tires are Directional

The way to tell if ATV tires are directional or not is mentioned above, but there are important nuances to familiarize oneself more with (and when) it comes to directional tires. A crucial thing to note when inspecting tires is what direction they are intended to go. Accurate and proper tires are important since they allow the ATV owner to optimize their driving experience and enhance the level of riding experience. Check the sidewall of the tires and note if there is an arrow, which should be pointed to the front of the vehicle when it is installed.

4. How to Tell if ATV Tires are Multi-Directional

Novices in the ATV world can tell if the tires on their vehicle are multi-directional if they check the tread area. Multi-directional tires do not have an arrow on the side of the tire. People can test if a tire is directional or multi-directional by looking at the tire from both the front and the back. After looking at it this way, see if the tread is the same pattern in both directions as it is in a multi-directional tire.

Another name for multi-directional tires is non-directional tires! If an ATV owner is using non-directional tires, they should consider rotating their tires for more even wear on the treads as they rack up miles. Keep in mind, most ATVs will come with directional tires, as well as different sizes for both the front and rear tires! Through the combination of these two key factors, a set of tires would not be able to be rotated side-to-side or front-to-back.

5. Positives and Negatives of Directional ATV Tires

There are many benefits of directional ATV tires when it comes to ATV operation, driving, and riding. These types of tires offer a safe and efficient ride since they are made to push water out from the center of the tire and thus lowering the likelihood of dangerous hydroplaning. Drivers who anticipate that they will be riding over slick, muddy, snowy, or flooded areas are advised to use directional tires for a safer time. With directional tires equipped, most ATVs will be far better prepared to tackle muddy trails, snowy banks, and water levels that could be a commonality in the lives of some ATV riders!

Directional ATV tires also offer better traction on looser surfaces and trails. This means that mud, snow, sand, and water will be rendered far safer when driven over with directional-style tires. Even looser, less impacted trails are made safer when directional tires are used. If trails have especially sharp turns, directional tires will also be able to aid drivers in taking on extreme turns while avoiding overturning and crashing!

Finally, one of the other huge benefits of directional ATV tires is the ease of self-cleaning that is built into their design. Since these treads are all facing the same direction, there are no treads that are counteracting the direction that the materials, such as snow, dirt, and mud, want to travel. Thus, everything that gets into the tire treads will be more easily pushed out and flow in the same direction, causing much less buildup of materials! Sure, the directional tires may need to be hosed down and washed now and then, but they likely will not need to be scrubbed as hard as multi-directional, also known as non-directional tires.

Some of the negatives of directional tires include the general cost. Directional tires often cost more than other average tires since the rubber compounds used to build them result in a premium price point compared to standard passenger car tires. Most directional ATV tires are high-performance tires and thus will cost more than some other options for ATV owners.

In addition to higher costs, directional tires also usually have a shorter tread life, not because the treads are less durable, but because the tire rotations involve extra labor and cost. Lots of ATV drivers choose to swap front and rear tires on the same side to avoid unnecessary hassle.

6. Positives and Negatives of Multi-Directional ATV Tires

Next, it is time to review the many benefits of using multi-directional ATV tires. These tires carry the upside of transferring more grip through their treads to cover a different type of terrain than what directional tires can take on. This means that multi-directional tires allow ATV drivers to better climb on rocky terrains, have easier driving up steep slopes, and have more sensitive stopping capabilities. This enhanced grip makes the multi-directional tires cling better to driving surfaces. The only issue is that this gripping capability does not work as well on wet surfaces, which can lead to hydroplaning and overturning.

Another positive when it comes to multi-directional tires is the symmetry. On flatter driving surfaces, symmetrical tires are the ideal types to use since they offer a much smoother ride. This means that well-maintained surfaces like paved roads are great for multi-directional tires. ATV drivers who often ride over roads will benefit from using multi-directional tires, just remember to follow safety precautions and avoid high-traffic areas while doing so!

Finally, another big plus side to multi-directional tires is that there is less tread wear involved in their operation. These tires have less tread wear than directional tires due to the way they ride, but also since they can be rotated to get more even and fair wear. Just as how vehicle drivers would rotate the tires on their cars, ATV drivers can do the very same for their unique vehicles.

7. What ATV Tires are Directional

Most ATVs will be sold with directional tires as their default, although it can vary and depend on the specific ATV brand, make, and model at times. Some online sources report that tire brands such as BF Goodrichg-Force, Nitto, and Toyo Proxes sell directional tires. Use all resources to figure out if tires are directional if it is hard to tell from inspecting their tread alone! Physical mechanics and employees can be consulted on if tires at an ATV shop are directional or not, and even online ATV tire websites can be called or emailed to double-check that tires are the right type before final purchase.

While there are tires that are made to be strictly directional and multi-directional, there are also tire brands that sell both directional and multi-directional tires! This means that customers can search through online or in-person catalogs and dealerships with the versatility of being able to choose what type of tires fit their needs best. Wanda ATV tires are an example of one tire brand that is made in multiple types of directionality.

Some ATV owners prefer buying a set of directional and one set of multi-dimensional tires to make switching between modes of riding that much easier. Use the corresponding type of ATV tires that match the type of riding that will be most often undertaken on the ATV to enhance both riding and safety!

8. What ATV Tires are Multi-Directional

Some high-grade and popular tires on the ATV equipment market are multi-directional, and thus better equipped for racing and rocky tracks and areas. For instance, the SunF ATV Tires are non-directional, another word used to describe multi-directional, which means these tire treads stay the same regardless of which direction the owner places the tire, so they can be installed either way. These models can handle rocky and flat surfaces very well, just make sure to check the ATV brand’s make and model to make sure that these types of tires will fit and align correctly!

Some ATV users hold specific brands of tires in higher regard than others. For instance, Carlisle All Trail II ATV Tires are renowned for their perfect road grip, durable tire compound, mud handling, and light off-roading capabilities, so they may be worthwhile to some despite the higher prices. Kenda Bearclaw K229 is the brand name for tires that are popular for their premiere snow traction, easy trail driving, high sustainability, and their stability over uneven surfaces. The only downside of Kenda Bearclaw K229 tires is that they are often a bit uncomfortable and noisier on paved streets, but some ATV drivers may use them for their handling on rough terrains.

Next, MASSFX tires are a reasonably reliable brand of tiers that carry a wide range of very high-quality tires. ATV shoppers should buy these types of tires if they are looking for something with a long lifespan, high traction, and smooth, comfortable riding experiences over the pavement! Whether on dry roads or over wet surfaces, these tires are great for pavement driving, but shouldn’t be bought and used a lot of drivers intend to traverse mostly sandy or muddy, or rocky areas.

9. Useful ATV Tire Resources

When in doubt, it never hurts to reference online and physical ATV Tire Buyer’s Guides that can save a lot of time and effort when it comes to finding the best set of new or replacement tires. Use popular websites like Rocky Mountain ATV MC to shop through hundreds of tire options! This useful site offers radial, 8-ply, 10-ply, terraform, holeshot, lite, ambush, commander, bear claw, and mud tires for sale to anyone interested! Online magazines and catalogues are such valuable assets since they offer such a wide variety of both directional and on-directional tires for sale to all.

In addition to outright catalogues, there are also fantastic ATV tire guides and review resources online that will be terrific in helping the uninitiated decide between directional and multi-directional tires. Different guides from 2021, from the Moto Sport company, and from Pure Offroad can offer knowledgeable direction on what types of tires to buy, price differences between tires, and what types work with what types of ATVs. Don’t dismiss these guides, and hundreds of others like them, since they are fantastic tools that can both inform on which tires are directional and multi-directional, and they can inform on so much more!

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