JMarco, I have stock rims and went with a tire upgrade at time of purchase to a 26" Maxxis Bighorn 2.0. Really went to the wild side on that one eh?
This tire stands about 1.5 inches higher than the OEM. The 2.0 is a 6 ply tire, but I have never been able to find a load rating for it. I have checked with various tire suppliers and even the Maxxis site - zippo. I have over 1000 miles on the tires and have not had a problem so far - only one rim hit and that was my fault.
I would be curious to see if there is in fact a credible information source for UTV tire load ratings. I'm thinking an 8 ply tire would handle more than the Mule can.
Tire load rating can be a bit overwhelming for some. It's really not that bad though. 8 ply tires normally have a much higher load rating than 6 ply does. The mules dry weight is around 1850. Combine that with a 1000 pound load rating in the bed and fuel and a driver you will be over 3000 pounds total weight. For the guy that doesn't use the bed capacity for much other then a cooler or tools then you'll be just over the 2000 pound mark. I own 1200 acres high fence in south Texas. I've got 8 protein feeders and 10 regular feeders. The smallest feeder I have holds 600 pounds of corn. So I'm constantly using the 1000 pound bed capacity. So I'm normally over that 3000 pound mark
I know long read stick with me though haha
If you have a tire that's rated at 500 pounds that's 2000 pounds combined carrying load for that paticular tire. For me that is way under what I need to safely operate around my property. If you have a tire that's rated for 1000 pounds per corner your at 4000 pounds total carrying capacity. So at 1000 pound load rating I will have about 600-800 pounds to spare after you combine the weight of the mule myself and 1000 pounds of corn or protein. That's a comfortable number I can live with.
So that's my reasoning for needing to know load rating. I absolutely will not buy a tire if I don't know the load rating of it. It takes about 45 minutes driving to get from the front of my property all the way to the back. Last thing I want is to get stuck in the back with a blown tire and 1000 pounds in the bed and have to walk to the house.
Going off my math the lowest tire load rating I will get is 750 pounds per tire. That will put me at 3000 pounds total carrying capacity. Which is okay but I have zero room to spare.
For your everyday guy that just cruzes around load capacity really doesn't matter to much simply because they aren't using the mule to its full potential. Then you have guys like me who are really pushing the capabilities of it.
The best place I have been able to find that displays load ratings is mud throwers, link below. They have a ton of different tires and sizes for each. They display load rating tread depth 8 or 6 ply and much more. Their pricing is just okay but not way high like most are. They don't have any load rating on the bighorn 2.0 though. A phone call to maxxis could probably get you those numbers
And again sorry for the long read. I hope it made sense and now everyone knows why tire load rating are pretty important
Link to mudthrowers website Mud-Throwers