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What's On Your Tire's Sidewall?

With a little explanation it's easy to understand what all of the letters and numbers mean on your tire's sidewall. The numbers are indicators of the size, type, and performance of the tire.

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A tire showing the tire type in the tire size on the sidewall

Tire Type

Is the proper use of the tire. For example, a "P" designation means that it is a passenger car tire. An "LT" designation is for a light truck.
A tire showing the tire width in mm within the tire size on the sidewall

Tire Width

Is the width of the tire measured in mm from sidewall to sidewall. This tire width is 215 mm.
A tire showing the aspect ratio within the tire size on the sidewall

Aspect Ratio

Is the ratio of the height of the tire's cross-section to its width. On our example, 65 means that the height is equal to 65% of the tire's width.
A tire showing the tire construction noted as an R within the tire size on the sidewall


Tells you how the layers of the tire were put together. "R" stands for radial, which means the layers run radially across the tire. "B" stands for bias construction, which means that the layers run diagonally across the tire.
A tire showing the wheel diameter within the tire size on the sidewall

Rim Diameter

Is the width in inches or cm of the wheel from one end to the other. The diameter of this wheel is 15 in. Always replace a tire on a rim with another tire of exactly the same rim diameter designation and suffix letters.

Load Index

Is an assigned number that corresponds with the load-carrying capacity of a tire. Most passenger car tire load indexes range from 75 to 100, but a few carry more. You'll also find the maximum load elsewhere on the tire sidewall, both in lbs and kg. Learn more about tire load index.

Speed Rating

Tells you the maximum service speed for a tire. A speed rating isn't, however, a recommendation to exceed speed limits, and doesn't indicate how well a tire handles or corners. Learn more about tire speed rating.

Goodyear also offers high flotation tires. You will be able to choose your tire size, tire width, and tire rim size within the tire finder tool.

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tire speed rating

Tire Speed Rating

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mechanic checking tire pressure

Tire Load Index

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tread depth poster

Spare tires

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