All Terrain Tires for Highway Driving: Are They Safe?

Are you worried that the all terrain tires you just picked up might be unsafe for highway driving? You’re not alone.

This article provides a complete guide on the safety of these tires and their advantages for highway driving so you can make an informed decision.

The objective of this guide is to provide an in-depth look at the safety of all terrain tires when used for highway driving. We will analyze the effects of using such tires on various types of roads, provide an overview of regulations and laws governing such use, and explore potential safety-related issues associated with these types of tires. Finally, we will share some essential tips for driving safely on the highway with all-terrain tires.

This guide is geared towards drivers who are considering using these types of tires for highway driving conditions or those who have just begun using them but have yet to gain a full understanding of their suitability for such use. By providing essential information about the best practices for driving with these tires on highways and other roads, we hope to help drivers make informed decisions about their choice of tire and enhance overall road safety.

Explanation of All Terrain Tires

All-terrain tires are a versatile set of tires that can be used for driving on many different types of surfaces, including pavement. A typical all-terrain tire is designed with increased contact area and improved tread pattern, providing enhanced performance on wet or dry pavement, dirt roads, gravel, mud, and sand. It is important to note that unlike some specialized off-road tires designed for extreme terrain such as mud or rock crawling where the primary focus is deep traction control and suspension control, all-terrain tires are primarily designed to provide safe handing at moderate speeds while navigating terrain with varied traction properties.

When purchasing all-terrain tires for highway driving, one should be aware of the type of construction used in the tire. All-season tires feature multiple tread grooves specifically designed to disperse water from under the rubber in order to increase hydroplaning resistance. This type of construction can provide a safe driving experience while still providing good traction when traversing inclement surfaces. However all terrain tires generally have larger open voids between tread blocks due primarily because these wide open spaces improve traction on softer surfaces; but this design can reduce hydroplaning resistance when compared with their all season counterparts making them less than ideal when driving near standing water or along an aquaplaning prone surface.

Furthermore special attention should be taken when selecting tread depth as deeper grooves can increase cornering stability while shorter grooves may reduce noise levels generated by tire rotation. Motorists should also take note of any available speed ratings offered by the manufacturer as exceeding rated speed parameters can reduce the life expectancy of certain all terrain tires which may lead to abruptly deteriorated handling stability and result in unsafe vehicle operation.

Why all-terrain tires are gaining popularity for highway driving

All-terrain tires have gained in popularity as drivers become attracted to the idea of having a tire that can perform safely and reliably on multiple surfaces. All-terrain tires are designed to provide superior traction, stability, and durability compared to other types of tires. They utilize specialized tread patterns and robust construction that allows them to grip the road surface more effectively than traditional tires.

This aggressive tread pattern also allows for better performance on off-road surfaces, making all-terrain tires an ideal choice for those who want a tire capable of navigating both wet and dry roads, as well as occasional gravel paths or dirt trails.

Furthermore, the increased durability of all-terrain tires makes them more resistant to wear and tear from high performance driving or regular use on rougher terrains. By using specially designed lugs and compounds, these tires are able to stay intact longer than other types of rubber which can make them the ideal choice for highway drivers whose vehicles are subject to greater wear and tear around town or on weekends away camping or exploring new roads.

Differences between All Terrain Tires and Highway Tires

When it comes to choosing the right type of tires for highway driving, the two most important choices are all-terrain tires and highway tires. All-terrain tires are designed for vehicles that need to traverse rough terrain, while highway tires are designed for vehicles that will primarily remain on paved roads. But, even if you only drive on highways, there are still some important differences in the design and performance of these two tire types.

All-terrain tires have tread patterns that add strength and rigidity, which help provide superior traction on off-road surfaces. They also have thicker sidewalls that absorb shocks and vibrations as well as protect against punctures better than regular road tires. On the downside, their larger tread blocks can create more road noise compared to regular highway tires. Additionally, since these tread patterns don’t provide a lot of grip in wet or icy conditions due to their ability to disperse water away from the tire contact patch quickly, they aren’t suitable for areas with extreme weather conditions.

Highway tires come with more narrow low profile designs suitable for higher speed handling needs. Their tread patterns focus more on adding grip in various weather conditions such as rain, snow or ice due to their ability to channel water away from the contact patch quickly and efficiently creating better traction. On the downside these types of briefs tend to wear out faster due to their low profile design making them unsuitable for rougher off road environments as they can experience greater strain in such situations leading then sustained damage quicker than all terrain alternatives due their narrower build design and lack of shock absorption technology found within off road tire products available today.

Tread Pattern

The tread pattern of your tires is one of the most important factors when it comes to choosing tires that are safe and suitable for highway driving. All terrain tires typically have thicker, deeper treads than conventional tires and are designed to provide better traction on dirt roads. However, these deeper treads can often make the tire quite noisy when driven at highway speeds (over 60 mph).

To reduce noise levels while maintaining adequate traction, look for “all terrain” tires with a silica compound that lessens the noise produced by the tire. Additionally, reputable manufacturers will offer a treadwear rating (TW rating) for their tire models, which helps indicate how long your tires will last under normal highway driving conditions. Be sure to assess this rating before making any purchase decisions.


Durability is one of the most important characteristics to consider when choosing all-terrain tires for highway driving. All terrain tires are designed to be tougher and more resilient than regular mud terrain tires, but they may also wear quicker depending on the way you drive. It’s important to choose a tire that will last through multiple seasons of use, especially if you live in an area with severe weather conditions.

All-Terrain Tires vs Mud-Terrain Tires |

Unlike regular highway tires, most all terrain tires have an increased sidewall strength and are constructed with a high load index rating, which means they can handle heavier vehicles such as SUVs and pickup trucks without compromising performance. On the other hand, all terrain tires tend to have a shorter treadwear life than mud or highway-specific tires due to their stiffer rubber compounds that provide better traction but wear down faster.

If you’re concerned about longevity, look for all-terrain tires with some kind of treadwear warranty from the manufacturer. Most reputable brands offer up to 60,000 miles (96,561 km) of coverage before you start noticing any major deterioration in performance or handling capabilities. A good rule of thumb is to replace your all-terrain tire no later than every 7 years regardless of mileage – excessive use on shifting surfaces can cause premature aging and cracks due to repeated UV exposure and fluctuating temperatures.

Noise Level

When shopping for highway tires, it’s important to consider the noise level that they’ll create, as road noise can be particularly irritating and tiring. Tires with softer treads tend to be quieter and also cause less vibration, but note that they may not provide as much traction in wet conditions as all terrain tires.

Generally, all terrain tires may be noisier than their highway counterparts due to the very nature of their design. However, there are various technologies available which help reduce this noise. Some manufacturers offer specialized rubber compounds which are tuned to better absorb sound energy, while other brands have developed a variety of tread patterns that improve the contact area between the tire and the ground surface for smoother driving and less road noise.

Ride Comfort

The ride quality of all-terrain tires is often sacrificed for better off-road performance. All terrain tires are designed with firmer, thicker tread blocks and stiff sidewalls, leaving them more susceptible to road noise and a rougher ride when compared to highway tires. The tradeoff for the extra grip and puncture resistance of an all terrain tire is the impact it will have on your comfort level in certain driving scenarios.

When driving on highways or other paved roads you can expect the all terrain tire to be much louder than a highway tire, further reducing the ride comfort. This is due to the fact that highway tires are designed with softer compounds that deploy sound cancelling tread patterns which reduce road noise as you drive. Although all terrain tires offer an improved grip and control when traveling over unpaved surfaces, they don’t quite match up with dedicated highway tires in terms of overall smoothness and comfort when driving on pavement.

III. Maintenance and Care for All Terrain Tires

While all terrain tires are specifically designed for off-road conditions, proper maintenance and care is still important if you plan to use them on a highway. This type of tire tends to be more susceptible to wear and tear than other types, so taking the right steps will ensure your all terrain tires last longer and deliver good performance on any terrain. The following are some basic maintenance tips that can help extend the life of your all terrain tires.

  1. Check Your Tire Pressure Regularly – Maintaining the ideal tire pressure is essential to avoid overworking your tires. Too much pressure can cause excessive tire wear, while too low can cause slipping and drifting, especially on wet roads or in tight corners. Be sure to check air pressure monthly with a quality tire gauge for optimum performance and safety.
  2. Keep Tires Clean – Clean dirt from the sidewalls and tread area of your tires with cleaning tools designed for this purpose. Not allowing dirt or road debris accumulate on the surface of the tread is essential to preserving its grip and grip strength out in various terrains such as sand, mud, gravel or snow blends.
  3. Balance & Alignment – All-terrain tires need balancing and aligning every 10 thousand miles or when visible wear starts showing up in one side of the tread only – this usually indicates an alignment issue. Balancing helps keep vibrations from ruining ride comfort while ensuring good grip force when cornering at high speeds; a must when participating in off-road activities such as racing or hill climbing competitions.
  4. Rotate Tires & Change When Necessary – Regular rotation of your all terrain tires will ensure even wear throughout the life of each tire -recommended interval is every 10 thousand miles depending on how often you drive in off-road situations followed by an inspection for any signs of damage like punctures, balding spots, etc you should consider getting a new set even if they’re still fairly new but show signs of weakening as it will help keep you safe out there. Changing our ATV tires may also be necessary during sportier activities like rock climbing because its particular requirements call for their own specific setup.

Proper Inflation and Rotation

A major concern with all-terrain tires is that they may be subject to rapid wear and tear due to their increased surface contact with the road. For this reason, it’s important to properly inflate and rotate your all-terrain tires according to manufacturer’s guidelines. Improper inflation can cause uneven tire wear and potential damage from excessive heat generated as the tire travels on the highway.

Inflating the tires should be done at a service center which have calibrated gauges for an accurate reading. Over-inflation can decrease fuel economy, increase rolling resistance, and put unnecessary stress on other components of your vehicle. Tires should also be rotated every 6,000-10,000 miles to ensure that they wear evenly over time.

It is especially critical to rotate at least once a year when you are using all-terrain tires because of their added traction in certain conditions. This will help ensure that your tires last longer by using all surfaces of the tread evenly and avoiding premature wear in certain areas of the tire caused by friction imbalance.

Regular Inspections and Repairs

To ensure a safe ride on all-terrain tires for highway driving, it’s important to complete regular inspections and repairs. Regular inspections should include inspecting for tire pressure, tread wear, and surface damage. Tire pressure should always be set according to the manufacturer’s specifications, which are usually found in the vehicle’s owner manual or on the tire itself. Checking tread wear levels is important because as the tire wears down, it increases your risk of losing control on wet roads or if you need to make sudden maneuvers at high speeds. If you notice any surface damage such as cuts or bulges in the sidewalls or abnormal wear patterns in the tread blocks—it’s time to replace your tires.

Do You Really Need All-Terrain Tires? Pros, Cons, and What They're Actually Good For - Mortons on the Move

Additionally, it’s important to periodically rotate your tires and check wheel alignment. Rotating your tires helps ensure even wear across all four tires and checking wheel alignment helps reduce excessive wear on one side of a tire or another due to steering wheel adjustments over time. With proper inspections, repairs, and maintenance—you can enjoy confident driving on all-terrain tires for highway use!

Cleaning and Storage

Cleaning and storage is just as important for ensuring the safety and longevity of all-terrain tires as any other maintenance task. It is essential to keep your tires free of debris, dust, or grime if you want to preserve their integrity. Here are some tips on how to take proper care of your all-terrain tires to ensure optimum performance and safety while driving:

  • Clean the tires every 2 weeks with a brush, soap, and water.
  • Apply tire polish after drying the tire surface.
  • Store tires in a garage or shed that is free from extreme temperatures and humidity levels.
  • Inspect the treads regularly for signs of wear.
  • Make sure you check that your tire pressure corresponds with the manufacturer’s recommended settings during storage periods for extra precautionary measures.


In conclusion, all terrain tires are safe to use on highways as long as they are well maintained, allowing for even tread wear and proper inflation. When driving in highway surfaces that are wet or slick, other performance-rated tires may be preferable as they have better handling characteristics for these conditions.

It is important to follow the user manual from your tire manufacturer – noting speed ratings, seasonal tire changes when recommended, and safety recommendations for the specific conditions in which you will be driving. All terrain tires can provide a reliable and safe alternative for highway driving.


Are all-terrain tires OK for the highway?

Yes, all-terrain tires can be used on the highway. However, they may not perform as well as highway tires in terms of ride comfort, noise level, and fuel efficiency.

How long do all-terrain tires last on highway?

The lifespan of all-terrain tires on the highway varies depending on several factors, such as the brand, driving style, and road conditions. On average, they can last between 40,000 and 60,000 miles.

What are the negatives of all-terrain vehicles?

Some negatives of all-terrain vehicles include reduced fuel efficiency, increased road noise, and a rougher ride compared to highway tires. Additionally, all-terrain tires may not perform as well in wet or icy road conditions.

What type of tire is best for highway driving?

Highway or touring tires are best for highway driving. They are designed to provide a comfortable, quiet ride, good fuel efficiency, and excellent traction on dry or wet roads.

Which tyres are better all-terrain or highway terrain?

It depends on the intended use of the vehicle. All-terrain tires are better for off-road driving, while highway terrain tires are better for on-road driving. Highway terrain tires provide a smoother ride, better fuel efficiency, and improved traction on paved roads.

Do all-terrain tires wear faster on highway?

Yes, all-terrain tires may wear faster on the highway than highway tires due to their more aggressive tread pattern. This can lead to reduced lifespan and increased replacement costs.

Do all terrain Tyres affect fuel consumption?

Yes, all-terrain tires can have a negative impact on fuel consumption. Their more aggressive tread pattern can increase rolling resistance, which requires more energy to move the vehicle and results in lower fuel efficiency.

What are the benefits of all-terrain tires?

The benefits of all-terrain tires include improved traction on off-road surfaces, better handling in mud and snow, and increased durability compared to highway tires. They also provide a more aggressive look for vehicles.

What’s the difference between an all-terrain tire and a highway tire?

The main difference between all-terrain tires and highway tires is their tread pattern. All-terrain tires have a more aggressive tread pattern with larger and deeper grooves for better off-road traction, while highway tires have a smoother tread pattern designed for on-road driving.

What is highway terrain tire?

Highway terrain tires are designed for on-road driving and provide a smooth, comfortable ride with good fuel efficiency. They have a smoother tread pattern and are optimized for traction on dry or wet roads.

See Also-

Leave a Comment