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Old 03-01-2017, 08:54 PM   #1
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Default Considering new tires for my 2003 190V

Veh has 18k miles on it Currently has Michelin LTX A/S LRE 245/75/16. They have PLENTY of meat on them. The tread looks brand new. The sidewalls...Not so much. Cracked down near the bead. All 4, all the way around inside and out. They ride rather rough, but I think that is because they are so old and dried out.

I just don't trust cracked sidewalls. Or will any of you talk me out of replacing them?

I prefer a major brand (except BFG) and am very picky about ride comfort. Road noise and vibration really annoy me. I don't think I'll worry about durability as I don't think I'll have this unit long enough to wear out a set of tires.

I am probably opening up a Pandora's can of worms here. Dare I ask for suggestions on new tires? Or whether to replace at all?

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Old 03-01-2017, 09:02 PM   #2
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Pandora is always a good exercise in futility.

All 4 tires cracked like that? Have you looked at the date code to see how old they are?

Michelins do seem to be more prone to sidewall cracks than some others, but the also are very good tires from a handling and comfort standpoint. They claim the new Defenders are better against sidewall cracking than previous models, but it is too early to know if that is true in the real world.

Personally, I would never try to talk someone out of replacing tires with sidewall cracks, unless it were a junker commuter car that was only driven short distances and 30mph or less. Our vans are heavy and near max load on the rear tires, so best to always have the tires as good as possible.

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Old 03-01-2017, 09:53 PM   #3
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Michelin Defenders which replaced the LTX MS/2s will last you forever again. No sense in buying them if you don't think you'll go another 70,000 miles in under 7 years. If you know how long you anticipate holding onto your B then buy the tire with that warranty. Stock Continental Vanco4Seasons are good for 40,000 miles and that is what is OEM on new Sprinters and I can vouch that 40,000 miles is the limit for tire wear as I have replaced them twice with two different Sprinters under 40,000 miles.

I had to make the same decision with my toy hobby car, a 2003 Subaru Baja. I average about 2,000 per year with it. It came time to buy new tires and I opted for the cheapest I could get though my tendency is to buy top dollar quality.
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Old 03-01-2017, 10:07 PM   #4
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I did something quite unusual on mine when I got new tires. I got winter snow tires. I like boondocking and my thoughts are that they just may give me a little more traction if I need it so I don't get stuck when I go off the road.
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Old 03-01-2017, 10:09 PM   #5
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costco michelins LTX m/s2 245/75/16 about $180
load range E

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Old 03-02-2017, 01:17 AM   #6
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Curious, why not BFG? I have about 24k miles on a set and like 'em. Nice ride, quiet, no surprises. Less than $700 out the door.

My brother has some sort of Coopers on is that he likes, I think from Costco. He has a 97D190P RT.

Happy hunting.
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Old 03-02-2017, 12:50 PM   #7
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I put new Michelins on my class B...I know I won't wear them out but I would sure hate to have a tire issue either! Maybe I am just paying for the name.
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Old 03-10-2017, 04:52 PM   #8
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OK I am TOTALLY befuddled in trying to buy tires for my RT. As I mentioned I currently have Michelin LTX A/S LRE 245/75/16 They are Load Range E. I have been looking at tires for two weeks now. Lots of places. Warehouses, tire dealers, everywhere. I can't seem to get a straight answer on which tires (Load range E or Load index 120) I should buy. I have always liked Michelin. I was considering these: Michelin LTX A/T2 Tire LT245/75R16/E Walmart $179 Load Index 120 (what does the E at the end mean?) Michelin DEFENDER LTX M/S Town Fair Tire $212 Load Range E

I understand PLY vs PLY Rating. I am just very confused over the two load rating systems, Range vs Index. Some say index is for passenger cars, and Range is for trucks and light trucks. Others disagree. Some say it is a sidewall difference.


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Old 03-10-2017, 09:24 PM   #9
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Load Index is a Euro rating.
Load Range is a US rating

Going deeper, 6 ply or 8 ply or 12 ply doesn't mean that's how many layers there are any longer. There may be only one or two layers but it is as thick as the old school measurement of x number of plies used in bias ply tires in the good old days.

Michelin LTX A/T2 Tire LT245/75R16/E Walmart $179 Load Index 120 (what does the E at the end mean?)
E means Load Range. Yes they use both Index and Range in that description.

LT-Metric, LT-Flotation and LT-Numeric Light Truck Tires
Load Range/Ply Rating/Abbreviated/Maximum Load Pressure
B 4 B 35 psi
C 6 C 50 psi
D 8 D 65 psi
E 10 E 80 psi
F 12 F 95 psi

So load range E has a ply rating of 10, is abbreviated with the letter E and has a maximum air pressure of 80psi.

The first letters of a tire indicate it's use. P for passenger, LT for Light Truck, ST for Special Trailer.

For comparison to the above chart

Euro-Metric Commercial Vehicle/Van Tires
Load Index Maximum Load Pounds Maximum Load Pressure
116/114 2,705/2,600 69 psi (475 kPa)
118/116 2,910/2,755 75 psi (525 kPa)
121/120 3,195/3,085 83 psi (575 kPa)

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