Firestone is one of the most recognizable tractor tire brands in the field. And no wonder: Company founder Harvey S. Firestone, a fourth-generation farmer himself, was a major proponent of outfitting tractors with pneumatic tires in the 1930s. Founded in Akron, Ohio, in 1900, Firestone remains one of the largest manufacturers of farm tires today. Firestone’s manufacturing facility in Des Moines, Iowa, churns out an average of 550,000 ag tires every year.
Pulling Ahead with the 23 Degree Tread
The backbone of Firestone’s tractor tire design is its 23° tread, which the company developed in 1950 after extensive testing. This tread angle design excels at traction in moderate to dry soil conditions. Add steep hillsides or extreme mud, and the 45° tread design (found on Michelin tires among others) will perform better. The 23° tread cleans out poorly in muddy conditions and the tread angle can lead to side slippage on hillsides. Plus, 23° tread tires have a poor reputation for road travel due to quick, uneven wear from traveling long distances from field to field. Firestone’s new Maxi Traction radial (featured in the comparison below) is designed to address some of these shortcomings.
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Firestone’s 23° tractor tires have rolled across countless thousands of acres for 70-plus years. Their thick casing has proven especially durable and offers excellent stability for both heavy applications, such as combining, and utility jobs such as ditch mowing. At NTS Tire Supply, we consider Firestone among the best. We see very few warranty claims with Firestone’s tractor tires. Should you have an issue with one of the company’s tires, you’ll be glad to know that Firestone offers an extensive 9-year warranty.
Rear Tractor Tires
Firestone Radial All Traction 23° & Radial Deep Tread 23° Tractor Tires
This is Firestone’s most popular tractor tire. Built with dual rubber compounds, Firestone designed the Radial All Traction 23° tire with tough rubber for long lug wear while incorporating a more flexible compound on the sidewalls to resist cracking and weathering. Individually reinforced lugs are designed to lessen vibration for a smoother ride. Firestone stresses that these tires are designed to perform well in “diverse North American soils.”
The Deep Tread line is designed for high-horsepower tractors and features tread that is 25 percent deeper in the center of the lug pattern. According to Firestone, you’ll experience better traction in wet conditions with the Deep Tread versions of its tractor tires. But if you’re really looking to improve your wet traction performance, we recommend Firestone’s new Maxi Traction™ tires. (More on this later.)
IF/VF/CFO Spells the Latest Ag Tire Technology
The Radial All Traction and Radial Deep Tread 23° line features several IF and VF models for growers who want to invest in cutting-edge technology to combat soil compaction. Firestone calls its IF/VF technology Advanced Deflection Design (AD2™). These tires carry up to either 20 percent (IF) or 40 percent (VF) more load at the same tire pressure as a standard radial. Or, you can drop the pressure up to 20 or 40 percent, respectively, and carry the same load as a standard radial to achieve a larger footprint for greater traction and flotation in the field.
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You’ll also find cyclic field operation (CFO) tires in Firestone’s Radial All Traction and Deep Tread lines. These tires are specifically designed for combines, grain carts, and other applications that experience extreme load cycles in the field.
A long history of excellent field performance, durability, and a wide range of sizes and styles have made Firestone’s Radial All Traction and Radial Deep Tread 23° a popular choice at NTS Tire Supply and across the nation.
Firestone Maxi Traction™ Tractor Tires
Firestone’s Maxi Traction™ line incorporates what the company calls “dual-angle technology”—a unique R-1W bar taper that starts at 45° at the center of the tire and curves to 23° at the edge. Testing of the Maxi Traction™ tire has shown improved wear life and a larger contact area. Available as a standard radial and in IF/VF designations, Firestone’s Maxi Traction™ line may pay off for you in the long run if you run on the road often and anticipate wetter field conditions. The downside to the Maxi Traction™ line is its limited availability in common row crop sizes.
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Firestone Performer EVO & Performer EVO 23°
Firestone introduced its Performer EVO series to compete with less expensive “value” tire brands. If the word “value” conjures up images of a roadside blowout or premature wear, we believe that Firestone’s EVO line will change your mind. True, these tires aren’t designed to run across 5,000 acres of corn stubble or in high-load, ultra-low-inflation applications. But they are designed to meet your needs for chores such as hauling manure, picking rocks, cutting hay, and working around livestock yards.
Performer EVOs offer all the benefits of radial tires at lower prices than Firestone’s premium lines. In fact, they’re ideal for replacing a pair of worn-out bias-ply tires on your secondary tractor. The increased sidewall flex will offer a better ride on the road and a larger, more stable footprint in the field. The EVOs’ deeper R-1W tread promises longer wear and improved performance in wet or borderline wet conditions. Both 23° and 45° tread patterns are available. According to Firestone, the 23° bar tread will offer you time savings with better fuel economy and traction in the field.
Firestone stands behind the Performer EVO with a 6-year limited warranty, which includes stubble and field hazard policies. If you need a lower-cost tire for your secondary tractor(s), the EVOs are worth a serious look.
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Front Tractor Tires
Firestone Radial All Traction™ FWD
Firestone’s Radial All Traction™ FWD is the company’s most popular tractor tire for mechanical front wheel drive (MFWD) tractors. It was the first American radial exclusively designed for the purpose and features a multi-angle bar design to offer a smooth ride with less vibration while providing sure-footed traction in the field.
Firestone Champion Guide Grip™ 4-Rib Stubble Stomper
This is one of Firestone’s most popular front 2WD tractor tires, and for a few good reasons. Fortified with stout rubber compounds, the Stubble Stomper is built to resist standing stubble and other field hazards and offer long-lasting multi-season performance.
The self-cleaning four-rib tread helps your tractor maintain a stable track in the field with less sideslipping and easier turning. The extra rib also helps the tires wear more evenly, which ultimately stretches your dollar farther.
R-1 vs. R-1W Tractor Tires
What is R-1W and what does it mean for your operation? Tires with a standard tread depth are marked R-1. R-1W tires are required to have at least a 20 percent taller bar height. The other tire specifications remain the same (load/inflation capacity, diameter, etc.).
Will investing in an R-1W tire pay off for your operation? It depends. In dry soil conditions, you may not see any additional benefit over an R-1 tire. However, if you travel a lot of road miles between your fields and farm, the R-1W depth will help your tractor tires last longer and avoid irregular wear. R-1W tires will also help maintain traction in wet or borderline wet field conditions thanks to their deeper lug.
Which Firestone tractor tire is best for my machine, operation, and budget?
We have a long, successful history with Firestone tractor tires at NTS Tire Supply. Our farm tire experts are available via our contact page or by phone to help you choose the best tire for your utility tractor or high-power workhorse. We’ll answer your questions and review your needs and budget to find the perfect tire for you. Not sure if Firestone tractor tires are the best brand for you? View our review of every major tractor tire brand on the market.