What Do The Inscriptions On The Tire Mean?

Have you ever looked at a tire and wondered what all those inscriptions meant? Well, you are not alone. Many people don’t know what they mean and have wondered the same. So today, we’ll give you a rundown on the meaning of each of those inscriptions. Are you ready? Here we go!

When you buy tires, you don’t get an owner’s manual. So, manufacturers have to include important information about each tire on the sidewalls. Each of these tiny letters and numbers have its meaning.

One of the biggest inscriptions on a tire is the manufacturer and brand of the tire. Some manufacturers proudly make their products in Ghana – Ponko, Karifi, and Okore are the best examples. All these brands produce strong, well-built tires suitable for highways and the rugged terrain of Ghana.

With that out of the way, let’s look at what the different tire inscriptions mean, shall we?

We’ll take the 205/55 R16 91W tire as an example to describe each inscription’s meaning. Keep in mind that these inscriptions differ from one tire to another, but the meanings remain the same.

205 - Tire Width

You will see the tire size engraved in big and bold letters. In this example, 205 indicates the tire’s width from one sidewall to the other in millimeters.

55 - Aspect Ratio

The next number, 55 in this instance, depicts the aspect ratio of the tire as a percentage. In other words, this is the width of the tire in correspondence to its height. Here, the height of the tire is 55% of its overall width.

R16 - Wheel Diameter

The letter ‘R’ stands for radial construction, while the 16 indicates the diameter of the wheel in inches.

91 - Load Index

The load index means the maximum load a tire can carry when properly inflated. Modern tires may sometimes indicate this value in kilograms, making it easier to understand.

W - Speed Rating

This letter is derived from what is known as the speed symbol alphabet and depicts the maximum speed of the tire. You can check the speed symbol table and identify the corresponding speed to the letter on your tire. In the case of our example, “W” indicates that the tire has a maximum speed of 270 km/h.

Apart from these inscriptions, you’ll find the tire wear indicator on the tire as well. If you plan on getting your tires changed, here are the top 5 places in Ghana to get that done.

  • VULCO 37 (West Africa Tire Services Ltd.) 
  • Ryan tires and car wash 

Now, you should have a clear idea of what the inscriptions on a tire mean. If you are interested in checking out the different types of tires, check out this article on our website.