Rotating mud tires for your truck is generally the same process as rotating a set of tires for your on-road family wagon. The idea is the same; Change the location and rotation of the tires to promote even wear. It is a wise and age-old practice that seasoned off-roaders are familiar with.
Also to keep in mind, mud tires are usually not the same tires you will drive your truck home with. You may do the whole commute on your daily driver tires and then when you are ready to get in the soup you will change to your mud tires.
These are a completely different set of four tires (or six if your a baller like that) that are used only for a specific purpose. They are hauled in a trailer or in your pickup bed if you have room.
Since they are put on and taken off regularly, we rotate mud terrain tires randomly. Some, though, mark their tires with spray paint. This is a makeshift system they can refer to so they can keep the tires rotating each weekend or when they use the tires.
This can be a number system with a single sheet of the paper log where each tire was set up. And then you can change them each time and not the location.
If you’re not that responsible, I know I am not, you can just do your best to make sure the tires are moved around randomly so they get the best and most even wear. Inspect each tire and rotate them how you see fit. Usually, you won’t get great tread wear, since use is so intermittent and sometimes infrequent. But do your best and adjust if necessary.
Are Mud Terrains Directional?
Mud terrains are not directional. They are bidirectional because they are designed specifically to move forward and backward across extreme terrain equally. This is common driving practice when driving in mud terrain.
Mud terrain tires have to be bi-directional. It is very common to get stuck and have to back up and charge forward through demanding terrain. Mud terrain tires are bidirectional and they provide equal traction while moving forward and moving backward.
A truck traveling through mud-terrain will almost always be 4×4. So power transferred to the tires will be about equal moving forward and backward. The tires will be the same. The entire drivetrain is designed to provide as much power as possible to the tires. The same goes for moving forward and backward.
How Often Should You Rotate Mud Terrain Tires?
You should rotate mud tires every time you install and take them off. Mud tires will most likely not have enough use until an extended period of time has passed to require tire rotation. But since the terrain is most likely including logs, rocks, dirt, and other treacherous terrains, you may have extreme wear on certain parts of your tires.
So you will want to monitor your tires and rotate them if you notice any unusual wear developing. Normal tire wear on a sedan that travels 100% on asphalt can be minimized if you rotate all four tires every 6 months or 5,000-7,000 miles.
Unless you are an extreme or professional Baja 1,000 racer, you won’t need to rotate your tires at all. The wear will be very minimal in comparison. It is a good idea to monitor your tires and take into consideration tread wear if there is an extreme case.
Can You Rotate Tires Too Often?
Rotating tires too often is a bad move if you value your time. You can rotate your tires every day if it makes you happy. Though, there is little reason to do it unless you have very specific circumstances that warrant such a dramatic and time-consuming task.
There is also damage to the lug nuts, wheel mounting bolts on the rotor, and other suspension parts that may be damaged from excessive wheel changes. This is most likely minimal, but if you have a heavy hand and are not careful, you may find premature wear around these parts. Rotating tires is done to minimize uneven tread wear.
Doing this too much will do little to combat this as the uneven wear is minimal on a weekly or monthly basis. Every 1,000-2,500 miles is plenty of time to let a tire ride in one position. You will notice very little to no wear to a side of the tread within a week or month of consistent driving.
Tires are designed to last 35,000 to 70,000 miles. They have less than half an inch of tread thickness. If you can notice 5% tread loss you have an amazing eye and probably way too much time on your hands.
But if you want to change your tires on a weekly basis, it is your choice and you will not be doing much if any damage to your car. If you choose to do this as long as you are careful with your car’s suspension components around the wheel.
Can Rotating Tires Mess Up Alignment?
Rotating tires almost never messes up alignment. Simply removing and moving the tires will not affect alignment unless the tire is severely damaged or deflated and reinflated with heavy handling. This almost never happens, and usually on accident from experienced mechanics taking on more than they can handle.
Rotating tires is a common practice for non-directional or bi-directional tires. Some high-performance vehicles have specific tires designed to rotate one way. They are not able to be rotated. Other than these very specific tires, you will not have a problem with the alignment of your truck unless you have other damage to your suspension.
That is a whole other issue I will not discuss. Consult a trusted mechanic for advice on fixing any suspension issues that are causing this headache.
If your alignment was done correctly when you had your tires mounted to their wheels and the alignment has not suffered any dramatic shifts, your alignment should stay consistent when you rotate your tires.
If you want to rotate mud terrain tires often, do it. Is not you will not be creating much if any premature tire wear if you do not rotate mud terrain tires. It is a common practice on daily drivers, but not with extreme mus terrain tires. You will not be minimizing tread wear or damaging your truck if you want to rotate them weekly or never.
Just keep in mind crazy and extreme off-roading can create some unusual circumstances. So monitor your tires. I have written this post without the intention of racing, jumping, or extreme off-roading that may endanger your lives. That is not the point as you madmen are some of the few and proud. I salute you and hope to see more insane footage on the interwebs.