A tire's load index is a number that indicates its load-carrying capacity. And so, it's a very important concept when replacing tires on your vehicle. Several tons are resting on your tires!

The Index Chart
The tire load index chart shows how many pounds a single tire can support. For example, a tire rated 85 can support 1,135 pounds. A set of four tires with this rating—inflated to their maximum air pressure—can support up to 4,540 pounds.To compare tire products, remember that a higher number indicates a higher load capacity. Most passenger cars and light trucks have tire load indexes from 70 to 110. Below you can see how much weight your tires hold.

Load Index

Pounds

Load Index

Pounds

Load Index

Pounds

Load Index

Pounds

71

761

81

1019

91

1356

101

1819

72

783

82

1047

92

1389

102

1874

73

805

83

1074

93

1433

103

1929

74

827

84

1102

94

1477

104

1984

75

853

85

1135

95

1521

105

2039

76

882

86

1168

96

1565

106

2094

77

908

87

1201

97

1609

107

2149

78

937

88

1235

98

1653

108

2205

79

963

89

1279

99

1709

109

2271

80

992

90

1323

100

1764

110

2337

What to look for when shopping for tires
When you are replacing tires, the new tire's load index should meet or exceed the rating of the vehicle's original tires. This recommended rating is determined by the vehicle's maximum cargo capacity with passengers. The sticker on the inside of the driver's door will indicate this rating.

It is particularly important to consider load index when you are driving a minivan and similar vehicles, which have a high capacity and use relatively small tires. Installing wheels that are larger than the originals—sometimes called "plus-sizing"—affects load carrying ability and requires careful consideration.

The XL Label
Other designations that affect load capacity are XL—which stands for extra load, not extra-large. XL tires should only be replaced with new XL tires.

P-Metric or Euro-Metric?
There are two systems for sizing tires, the American P-metric system and the Euro-metric system. The American system uses sizes beginning with the letter P(for example, P215/60R16) and the European system does not begin with a letter. While tires with corresponding numbers are nominally the same size, the load ratings are not the same. P-metric tires have a lower load index and should not be used to replace Euro-metric tires. However, Euro-metric tires can replace P-metric tires.

For more information about tire sizing and load ratings, visit Levin Tire & Service Center. Our experts are happy to explain tire sizing and ratings and can provide you with a variety of tire choices that are appropriate for your vehicle.