Do bigger tires work without lifting? This is a question that has been debated for decades. There are many opinions, but few facts about the matter. In this article, we will explore and discuss both sides of the argument so you can make an informed decision on what to do with your truck or SUV.
Many of the experts we spoke to recommend a lift kit when you want larger tires, but there is no evidence that bigger tires without some sort of modification will actually work. The main reason for this opinion is because most factory lower control arms are designed for stock size wheels and they don’t have as much room before beginning to touch the body with taller sidewalls. This can lead to alignment issues such as camber thrust or toe-in wear. One expert told us in an interview: “If your truck has been upgraded from it’s original suspension height then adding larger tire sizes becomes less important.” What does this mean? It means if you’ve lifted your vehicle at all, why not go ahead and add a set of big meats on too?
FACT: The main reason for this opinion is because most factory lower control arms are designed for stock size wheels and they don’t have as much room before beginning to touch the body with taller sidewalls. This can lead to alignment issues such as camber thrust or toe-in wear.
This means if you’ve lifted your vehicle at all, why not go ahead and add a set of big meats on too?
The Pros Of Larger Tires Without A Lift Kit Include:
- Better gas mileage since there will be less air being compressed by tires;
- More contact patch which provides more traction in various conditions;
- Increased stability over bumps and rough roads since the tire has more surface area touching them than it does without larger tires.
The Cons Of Larger Tires Without A Lift Kit Include:
- Poor ride quality due to the taller sidewalls and less suspension travel;
- Slower acceleration on highways with lower gears;
- More expensive tires because of increased wear.
For some people, these disadvantages may be too much for them to handle so they will opt out of using larger tires without a lift kit while others choose it as an upgrade that makes their vehicle more capable off-road or in adverse driving conditions.
What should you do? We recommend considering both options before making your final decision. Another thing we’ve learned is that there are many different ways to go about getting bigger wheel sizes if this article hasn’t convinced you one way or another! If you’re willing to get a suspension kit then you can use your factory control arms and axles, or if that’s not an option for you then there are other options like buying adapters.
You could also choose to keep the stock size wheels on your truck and just go with taller tires by installing new extended wheel studs (or locking lug nuts) in order to increase tire height without modifying the suspension system. This is an inexpensive way of getting taller sidewalls which will provide better stability off-road or when driving over bumps but it may be harder on gas mileage than smaller sized tires would be because of more air being compressed inside each tire so it’ll depend on how often you do those things!
Ultimately, only YOU know what works best for YOUR vehicle.