What do the Letters and Numbers on your Tire Mean?

You may have noticed that your tires have a series of numbers and letters on the sides of them. Some of you may have dismissed these as merely a serial number or something, but these are actually important regarding the capabilities of your tires. At Haddad Hyundai in Pittsfield, MA, we do everything we can to keep you as well-informed as possible about your vehicle, which is why we are bringing this to your attention. 

As an example, we are going to say the tire reads "P215/65R15 95H."

The first letter tells you the type of tire that is on your vehicle, since ours is a "P" we know that this tire is rated for passenger vehicles. If there is no letter, your tire is considered a Euro metric tire, which may have a different load capacity. Another possibility is "LT" which is rated for light trucks which will require a higher pressure than passenger tires.

The next number (215) is the width of the tire from sidewall to sidewall in millimeters. In other words, the part that is touching the ground.

After the slash, the next two numbers indicate the ratio of the height to the width of the tire. Meaning that, on our tire, the height is 65% of the width of the tire.

Our tire has an "R" as the next figure in the series, meaning that this is a Radial tire construction, designating the direction of the layers of the tire. A few more construction types include Belted, Diagonal, and Self-Supported Run-Flat, among others.

Our next set is a "15", signifying the diameter of the wheel in inches. Our wheel is going to be a 15 inch diameter.

After the gap you find 95H. The "95" corresponds to a specific weight that the vehicle is able to hold, called its Load index. In this case, 95 corresponds to 1,521 pounds. The "H" signifies the speed rating, letting us know that the tire can withstand speeds up to 130 miles per hour.

Knowing all of this may seem excessive, but knowing what is on your vehicle can make a big difference in knowing how it can perform. Our teams want to be sure that your vehicle always gives the best performance, knowledge is just one way to ensure that.

If you have any questions, make sure you visit our dealership so that our team can provide all your answers.


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Haddad Hyundai

689 East St
Directions Pittsfield, MA 01201

  • Phone: 413-997-2277

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