For any dairy and crop farmer, the performance of equipment in the field can have a huge impact on how successful a year – or even a season – is.
Here at Goodyear Farm Tires, our mission is to improve productivity and crop yield by providing farmers with a range of agricultural tyres that deliver class-leading performance, durability and value.
Regular inspection of, and minor adjustments to, the tyres are vital to ensure maximum performance. Scott Sloan, agricultural product manager at Goodyear Farm Tires, talks through his ABCs.
Analyse your tyre performance
The first step to making sure your tyres are adjusted correctly is to conduct regular inspections. Signs of premature wear can often help pinpoint a problem that can be easily remedied.
Signs of uneven wear are often related to incorrect inflation pressures. An overinflated tyre tends to bulge at the centre, which can wear out the tread in the middle of the tyre, whereas an underinflated tyre creates more deflection on the sidewall, which can wear out the shoulder of the tyre and make the sidewall more susceptible to puncture damage.
In addition to inspecting for damage to the tyres, it’s important to take a look at your overall performance in the field during the spring planting season. Key areas of performance linked to tyres include traction and ride quality.
Having adequate traction can improve fuel efficiency and productivity, while ride quality keeps the operator comfortable and productive throughout the season.
Without the proper inflation pressures and weight distribution, growers can experience road lope, power hop and tyre slippage in the field — all of which can be remedied through a few minor adjustments.
Ballast, inflate and operate
To improve ride quality, ballast and weight distribution are crucial.
One of the major causes of power hop is insufficient overall tractor weight for the horsepower.
As a general rule, follow the recommendations of your tractor manufacturer for weight-to-horsepower ratio. This usually falls somewhere between 100 to 140 pounds per horsepower.
Weight distribution is also very important to both ride quality and traction. Generally, front-wheel-drive tractors without suspension should have about 30 to 35 percent of the overall weight on the front axle, while four-wheel-drive tractors should have about 51 to 55 percent of overall weight on the front axle.
It’s best to consult with the tractor manufacturer to determine the optimum weights for the type of tyre you’re running and add cast ballast to achieve the proper distribution and ratios.
Inflation pressure also plays a key role — not only in ride quality and performance, but in tyre longevity.
Maintaining proper inflation pressures based on load is the best way to make sure your tyres last longer and give you the best performance in the field.
Limiting any stubble damage can be as simple as setting your tractor tyres to run between the rows rather than over them.
Call your local dealer
We have a strong distribution network across the UK and Europe and it’s vital to utilise their expertise.
A lot of times, performance simply comes down to having the right tyre for the job.
New tyre technologies are introduced all the time to help combat the challenges faced by today’s growers. So, in many cases, there may be a new tyre available that can help you address your specific field challenges, and your dealer can help you select exactly what you need to ensure maximum performance. This includes our exclusive Low Sidewall Technology (LSW).
No matter what challenges you’re facing with your tyres, more often than not it can easily be rectified through minor adjustments or by consulting with your distributor to ensure your equipment has the right tyres for the job.