If you are in the market for a skid steer, you may be wondering whether to choose tires or tracks for your machine. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages, depending on your needs and preferences. In this blog post, we will compare skid steer tracks vs tires and help you decide which one is right for you.
Skid steer tracks are ideal for working on rough, uneven, or soft terrain, such as mud, sand, snow, or gravel. They provide better traction, stability, and flotation than tires, allowing you to navigate challenging conditions with ease. They also distribute the weight of the machine more evenly over a larger surface area, reducing the risk of sinking or tipping over. Tracks can also pivot on the spot, making them more maneuverable in tight spaces.
However, skid steer tracks also have some drawbacks. They are more expensive to purchase and maintain than tires, and they tend to wear out faster on hard surfaces. They also consume more fuel and move slower than tires, especially on level ground. Tracks can also damage sensitive surfaces such as grass or pavement, leaving marks or ruts behind.
Skid steer tires are more suitable for working on flat, hard, or even surfaces, such as asphalt, concrete, or compacted soil. They offer higher speed, lower fuel consumption, and easier maintenance than tracks. They are also cheaper to buy and replace than tracks, and they do not damage the surface they are working on as much as tracks do.
However, skid steer tires also have some limitations. They have less traction, stability, and flotation than tracks, making them prone to slipping or getting stuck on soft or uneven terrain. They also distribute the weight of the machine less evenly over four contact points, increasing the risk of sinking or tipping over. Tires can also lose air pressure or get punctured by sharp objects, causing downtime and repair costs.
So, how do you choose between skid steer tracks vs tires? The answer depends on several factors, such as:
- Type of terrain you are working on
- Speed and efficiency you need
- Budget and maintenance costs you can afford
- Impact you want to have on the environment
If you are working on rough, uneven, or soft terrain most of the time, and you need better traction, stability, and flotation, then skid steer tracks may be a better option for you. However, if you are working on flat, hard, or even surfaces most of the time, and you need higher speed, lower fuel consumption, and easier maintenance, then skid steer tires may be a better option for you.
Of course, there is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to skid steer tracks vs tires. You may need to switch between them depending on the job or the season. Fortunately, there are some options that allow you to do that easily. For example, you can use over-the-tire tracks (OTTs) that slip over your tires to increase traction and flotation when needed. You can also use different types of tires that suit different conditions, such as solid tires or pneumatic tires.
Ultimately, the choice between skid steer tracks vs tires comes down to knowing your needs and preferences and finding the best balance between performance and cost. We hope this blog post has helped you understand the pros and cons of each option and make an informed decision.