Getting time to replace the Duratracs

Discussion in 'Tires / Wheels' started by lfhoward, Dec 7, 2019.

  1. lfhoward

    lfhoward Full Access Member

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    Hi everyone, and especially Tom...

    Tom, I figure you’re the guy to ask! But I also would love advice from anyone who has experience towing trailers with their lifted Liberty.

    My Duratracs from back in 2014 are getting really close to 100K miles now. They have worn really well and still have some tread left, but they’re loud and starting to get some dry rot. Also they don’t seem to have the grip they once did in the rain. I think the rubber compound has hardened with age. You’re the only guy I know who has run Duratracs as long!

    I actually think I’m going to get Duratracs again, but I have a couple of variables I’d like to get your opinion on.

    I currently run 245/75R16 load range C Duratracs. They do reduce the mileage and power a bit, but they’re lighter than the E’s. They probably also are a more comfortable ride than the E’s. I had to replace a spare last year so I already have one new matching C. If I went to anything else I’d need to sell it and buy 5. I’m now towing my camper trailer regularly (a converted military trailer with surge brakes and a 3000 lb axle). Also have not regeared yet (I know...) because I never seem to have that much spare change available at once!

    So... my question... stay with the C’s or go to E’s On the Jeep? Is it important to have E’s for towing?

    As luck would have it my trailer also needs tires at the same time. Right now I have some old 265/75R16 Nittos on it that are load range E. I could bring the size down to 245’s to match the Jeep and only lose 1/2” of clearance. My question is here, how important is it to keep E’s on the 3000 GVWR trailer? Or would the trailer be fine with C’s also? I don’t want it to be susceptible to rollover due to squishy sidewalls, but don’t know if this is a realistic concern. It does carry heavy loads as it is for cargo as well as camping.

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    Thanks for your help!
    Lauren
     
  2. tommudd

    tommudd Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    The Duratracs are one overall great tire for sure
    I'm running the Falken Wildpeak A/T 3 Ws now and they will never make the miles that the Duratracs did.
    Of course roads I drive on now with 10 turns per mile eat up tires faster LOL

    With the weight of your complete rig when going camping/overlanding/ I would highly suggest 6 ply for sure
    Daily you do not need them but longer trips yes
    depends on how far you are pulling the camper, if from home to Michigan I would say yes, 6 ply, but if only an hour or two from home could get by with C range like you have
    If you do not rotate the spare in the mix I would not worry about it not being a 6 ply
    Its going to be a different ride and handling than what you are used to somewhat but better with the trailer attached if you go 6 ply

    Not much help am I ?

    so how far do you think you will be pulling the trailer ?
     
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  3. lfhoward

    lfhoward Full Access Member

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    I think actually you are a lot of help. I just need to clarify something. I think Load range C = 6 ply and Load range E = 10 ply. Does that change anything you mentioned above?

    So far in terms of towing the trailer, the most we’ve gone is about 8 hours from home, like western MD or far northern PA. Usually when we’ve gone camping it’s only 4 hours or less. However, Joy and I have been talking about doing a western trip, if not next summer then the summer after. We would probably visit the Grand Canyon and some other very cool national parks. In those cases we will be driving 400-600 miles a day and endurance will be key. I think that rules out P-rated tires for sure. The question now is whether C’s (6 ply) are tough enough. They certainly would ride better than E’s.
     
  4. tommudd

    tommudd Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    6 ply
     
  5. lfhoward

    lfhoward Full Access Member

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    :) Thanks Tom.
     
  6. Shane Giggie

    Shane Giggie Full Access Member

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    I got Kumho Road Ventures on my 06 and im more then happy with them, there 10 ply. I dont know how they would hold up towing but for everyday use they was worth there $$.
     
  7. tommudd

    tommudd Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Good luck with those
    I ran them for a short time back years ago on the 04 , once they got to about half tread I got rid of them fast as I could
     
  8. Shane Giggie

    Shane Giggie Full Access Member

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    Well I don't put on a lot of miles but I've had them for 2 years and they seem to be holding up good. I spend 75% of my time off road and they do good. Living in Canada we have more then our fair share of snow and I've never had a problem.
     
  9. tommudd

    tommudd Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Yes, ran them off road, mud, silt, and we have snow in Northwest Ohio as well ( where I lived when I ran them. )
    I had high hopes for them
     
  10. lfhoward

    lfhoward Full Access Member

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    I've been impressed with the performance of the Duratracs, but the thing that really blows me away is that I got 100,000 miles out of them. That's like 2 lifetimes for other tires. So, as expensive as the Duratracs are at about $200 each, it actually saves me money in the long run.

    Here's a reasonably recent photo of my Jeep taken maybe a month ago. You can see how much tread is still there.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2019
  11. Shane Giggie

    Shane Giggie Full Access Member

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    I have probably 15,000km on my Kumho's. 100,000 miles is crazy for a set of tires. I think mine cost about 800$ too.
     
  12. lfhoward

    lfhoward Full Access Member

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    I should wrap this thread up, since I bought some tires!

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    I got a deal I couldn’t refuse on BFG KO2’s. LT245/75R16.

    I got some for my camping trailer too while I was at it.

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    Really nice treads on these! So far whisper quiet on the highway, and a HUGE improvement in traction over the old expired Duratracs.
     
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  13. kejobe

    kejobe Full Access Member

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    Now get some Wesley's Bleach White, a scrub brush, and some soapy water in a bucket and get those letters white!! :D
     
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  14. HoosierJeeper

    HoosierJeeper Gold Supporter/Admin Staff Member Administrator

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    Keep us posted with their noise levels and performance!!!
     
  15. lfhoward

    lfhoward Full Access Member

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    I’ve put about 1000 miles on the new KO2’s and I really like them. They’re much quieter than the worn out Duratracs (although Duratracs can also be pretty quiet when new). They also have great traction. The Jeep is more sure footed going around corners in the rain, which is the reason I wanted to change tires. After 95,000 miles the rubber compound on the old tires became hard and slippery, so much so that I was routinely losing traction on some corners in the rain on my normal commute. The Jeep feels like an entirely different vehicle now with new tires. The ride is smoother too since the rubber compound on the new tires has more give to it.

    I have noticed that the KO2’s are a heavier tire. They’re 10 ply (load range E) whereas the Duratracs were 6 ply (load range C). The extra weight has taken another mpg or so out, after fuel economy wasn’t great to begin with because of running 31’s. It’s just more reason for me to regear to 4.10’s as soon as I can. The sidewalls of these tires are thicker than the Duratracs which should also mean more insurance against blowouts on the trail. I never had any issues with that before, but some folks online have pointed out weak sidewalls as a potential problem with Duratracs.

    I’m not trying to talk Duratracs down at all. They were a great tire and they lasted a long time for me. (I probably should have replaced them sooner.) I just wanted to try something new, the BFG’ s had great reviews, and I found a killer deal on them. I’m happy with the BFG’s so far. I’ll keep them rotated and let you know how they’re doing as I put more miles on them.

    On a side note I have one brand new Duratrac left over which was my spare tire for the last 2 years. It’s for sale in case anyone needs it for a spare, or in case anyone wants to get 3 more new ones to make a set. Here’s the link: https://www.jeepkj.com/threads/goodyear-duratrac-lt245-75r16-c-philadelphia.73651/
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2020
  16. tommudd

    tommudd Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Shane, I had close to 100,000 miles on my 265-75-16 Duratracs, I think it was 97-98,000 miles when I sold the tires and a set of Moabs they were mounted on. They were on the 04 the whole time , rotated every 3-4000 miles