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Saturday, September 27, 2014

Consumer Report on tires made in China

Found this link on a new report from CR.
The tires tested were not ST type tires but the observations still apply.
The author thinks "Chinese manufacturing will follow the historical trend of Japanese and Korean brand tires, which were disrespected at first but eventually became good values in the eyes of the consumer".

I agree. I believe the current problems many are having with China made tires comes from the selection process done by the Trailer assemblers. To me it appears that for many, their #1 criteria is their initial cost. Since they don't have to worry about warranty costs some may be thinking that as long as it is round black and has the correct load capacity to meet DOT requirements it's not their problem if the RV owner has tire problems.

The challenge with tire failures is separating the "Root Cause" for a failure and learning if it is service related (overload, under-inflation and or over-speed)  or if the failure is a design or manufacturing quality problem. Too often RV owners forget that running a tire under-inflated a few months before the actual failure is the primary cause of the failure.

While on vacation I met a 5th wheel owner and of course the talk eventually turned to tires. He admited having tire problems in the past so claimed to be paying more attention to his new RV and its tires. The problem was he also admitted to having towed the trailer with only 35 psi in the tires but since he has now inflated the tires to their more proper 80 psi he was certain all was OK.

After a little more discussion it was obvious he was not receptive to the possibility that he might suffer a failure in the future because of his past actions.

I think the BOTTOM LINE on the CR report is that "some" China made tires do not perform as well as tires made in other countries. HOWEVER there are also "some" China made tires that are competitive with the rest of the market.


  1. Do not like these short, say not much articles. To say there are "some" OK and "some" not so good without firm brand names given does no good. To me all this says is just don't buy the China products, which is fine by me.

    1. Sorry but I can't simply publish the CR report here. One big issue I have is that CR chose to compare tires that carry the name of the manufacturer i.e. Michelin, Bridgestone etc against other tires where the manufacturer doesn't put their name on the tire. I have never been too impressed with CR tire evaluation but thought some would be interested in knowing that CR had some tire info.

      I am trying to contact the author of the CR article to ask some questions and hope to publish a longer article on the topic and what I learn from CR.

  2. Every Tire failure I have had with either China made or USA made tires has been my fault. #1 cause for me, has been under inflated tires. #2 Overloaded, #3 to fast over 65 MPH on ST Tires. #4 Age of tires 8 years old and not protected from sun or weather. and last a combination of any of the above. In 40 plus years of RVing, I only had one failure from Running over something in the road.

  3. The November 2014 issue (pg. 60) tested the following Chinese tire brands: Geostar, Pefasus and Sunny.. They had poor treat life, hash rides, high rolling resistance (which results in lower fuel mileage) and overall rated at the bottom of the list.

    1. I do wish CR had provided tha name of the tire company that made these tires. I cannot find a Geostar tire company or similar for the others. These all appear to be sub-divisions for the actual tire manufacturing companies such as Nankang, South China or Qingdao tire companies.


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