Dual wheels and Super Singles.

I am thinking about doing a series of posts about the trucks we drive. I have been toying with the idea of making videos to show the inspection process I go through on the trucks. Short videos which will highlight one item at a time. Explain the function of the truck part and what has to have a close look.

Of course, Joe will get roped in on this as well. The challenge will be to keep “Chatty Kathy” on a leash so he doesn’t do to you what he does to me. Start explaining something then get sidetracked off on a tangent that is not even related to what we are talking about.

Have you ever wondered why he has no hair? It is because I have thumped him atop his head often enough to get back on track. Not really, folks.

I’ll start this one off with a discourse on tires. Truck tires.

There are three types of tires that are mounted on trucks.

Steer tires are for the front wheels. I’ll show you Steer tires in a later post.

Drive tires are for the two rear axles. There is a total if 8 Drive tires on each “Tandem Axle” truck.

Tandem Axle just means two (2) axles working in conjunction with each other. Your car or pickup will only have a front and back axle.

Super Single tires are a recent addition to the semi truck tire line. Super Singles have been around about 7 years. They are supposed to weigh less than a set of Duals which allows for more cargo weight. Many trucking companies are using the Super Singles on their fleets.

Dual tires on tandem axles.


Super Singles on tandem axles.


There are advantages to both types of tires. The cost of one dual tire is about $600. To outfit a truck with new tires on the tandem axles has a cost of over $4800. Super Singles cost about $900 each and only four (4) are needed for a cost of $3600.

If one tire on a dual blows out the driver can have that one tire removed by road service and limp to the nearest truck stop – less than 20 miles – to have a new tire replaced. Or just have the tire replaced by road service while they are there.

When a Super Single blows out there is no limping anywhere. Another problem with Super Singles is keeping the tires pressurized to the proper air pressure all the time. Costly devices have been developed and installed on the trucks to have a constant air supply leading from each axle hub to keep the tires properly aired up.

It is up to the driver to check his/her tire pressures daily. This has to be done to keep the tires from blowing out due to low or uneven air pressure. Low air pressure causes the sidewalls of the tire to get hot and blow out. To much air pressure causes the tire to ride on the center of the tread and give uneven wear. These tires require constant and even air pressure at all times. Special steel or aluminum wheels have to be purchased for Super Singles as well.

Guess you can say Super Singles are “high maintenance” :-). The work horse tires are the Duals.

This ends the lesson on tires in the trucking industry :-). Now you can go take a nap 😜



About Message In A Fold

I am an over the road truck driver in Drive-Away Transport part of the year, and the sole bookkeeper of this operation the other part of the year. I do a lot of whining until I can get in my craft room and play with paper and glue. View all posts by Message In A Fold

One response to “Dual wheels and Super Singles.

  • aspot2stamp

    No nap here 🙂 I find this really interesting, broadens my mind especially since most of my daily conversation is with wee ones, not that I’m complaining. Be safe as you travel You and Joe are in my thoughts and prayers.
    Love you 🙂

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