Don’t Fit The Wrong Tyre Profile This Holiday

With the school mid-year break upon us, your vehicle may take on extra duty for road trips, play dates and fun days out. 

Before heading out, take time to prepare your vehicle and fit the right tyre profile, tailored to both your vehicle and your type of driving, to significantly enhance your vehicle’s performance, handling, ride comfort, fuel efficiency, and overall safety on the road.

To help you navigate tyre profile information, follow this handy guide:

What does tyre profile mean?

It refers to the specifications of a tyre.

How is a tyre profile determined or measured?

It is based on the height of the sidewall as a % of the section width.

For example, a tyre with a size of 205/55R16 means that the sidewall height is 55% of the tyre’s 205mm width.

What is the importance of tyre profile?

This information is important for you to understand the tyre’s usage and how it may perform, as well as what its limitations could be.

Where do you find tyre profile information?

It’s contained in the markings that are moulded on the sidewall of a tyre.

What does the tyre profile information mean?

It carries important information, such as the tyre size, load index, speed index and maximum pressure for that particular tyre. Always follow the instructions and recommendations of the vehicle manufacturer, as contained in the Vehicle Owner’s Manual:

  • Standard Tyres: Select the correct tyres as per the vehicle owner’s manual and fit onto the prescribed rim (diameter and rim width).
  • Run Flat Tyres (ROF): these tyres have been developed to minimise the risks associated with a tyre puncture. A run-on flat tyre is designed to run at 80km/h for a distance of 80km in a totally flat condition. The tyre cannot be repaired thereafter, and must be replaced.  A puncture can lead to the driver losing control of the vehicle due to the deflated tyre’s loss of structure and possible dismounting from the rim during operation.

How do you read a tyre profile?

Tyre Width: Indicates the cross-section width of a tyre in mm.

Aspect Ratio: The height of the sidewall expressed as a percentage of the tyre’s width. A lower aspect ratio provides increased stability and speeds especially at higher speeds.

Type of Construction: Indicates how a tyre was built, e.g.: R = Radial ply.

Wheel Diameter: Diameter of inner tyre edge, which corresponds to rim diameter expressed in inches.

Load Index: A code associated with the maximum load a tyre can carry at its maximum allowable speed.

Speed Rating: A code associated with the maximum speed a tyre can travel at.

Brand: Displays the brand of a tyre.

Mark: This indicates an ECE marking, which represents the tyre’s conformity to European standards.

Date of Manufacture: Represents the Week and Year of manufacture of a tyre. E.g., 2119 means that the tyre was manufactured on the 21st week of year 2019.

Pattern: Displays the Pattern of a tyre

Does tyre profile matter?

Yes, the right tyre profile contributes to the vehicle’s overall handling, performance, and safety.

How do you work out the tyre profile?

A tyre profile is determined by the height of the sidewall as a % of the section width. Simply check your tyre for the details, consult the vehicle’s owner’s manual, or ask a tyre expert.

How do I know if I have the right tyre profile for my vehicle?

Refer to the vehicle owner’s manual and cross-check against the tyre markings fitted on your vehicle. You may also consult tyre experts at your nearest dealership for confirmation and details of alternate sizing where applicable.

What are the general tyre profiles?

  1. Low Profile tyres: these are often found on performance or sports vehicles, and have a lower aspect ratio, such as 225/45R18 or 245/40R20. They generally have a sportier look and are designed for responsive handling and high-speed performance.
  2. Standard Profile: A common profile on vehicles such as sedans, SUVs, and trucks. This profile provides a balance between comfort and performance, such as 215/65R16 and 265/70R17.
  3. High Profile: these are found on trucks, SUVs, and some passenger cars, and they feature a larger sidewall, providing more surface area contact which assists with a smoother ride, but may not offer as smooth cornering stability compared to a low-profile tyre. Examples include 195/75R14 or 225/75R15.

Can I use a different tyre profile?

This is not advisable. However, before changing your tyres, consult with a tyre fitment specialist at a dealership, or the service department of your vehicle manufacturer for guidance on whether the proposed tyre size is compatible with your vehicle and its intended use.

How do I know what tyres will fit my car?

When choosing a tyre profile, consider factors such as the type of driving you do, the road conditions, and your preferences for ride comfort and performance. Always use the tyre size recommended by the vehicle manufacturer to ensure proper fitment and maintain safety and performance characteristics. Again, consult with a tyre fitment specialist at a dealership, or the service department of your vehicle manufacturer for guidance.

What is a good profile for tyres?

This is determined by the information in your vehicle’s owner manual, or advice from a tyre expert.

Choosing the right tyre profile is not as simple as walking into a shop and choosing a product off the shelf. The decision takes into consideration many factors such as the type of driving you do, the road conditions, and your preferences. Always consult a dealer, such as tyre experts and technicians at any Dunlop retailer in the country, and at Dunlop dealers, request information on free tyre insurance cover on selected tyres through Dunlop Sure, for added peace of mind on the road.