Tubed, tubeless, and pneumatic tires are sources of divisiveness amongst those who have tractors that run on one or the other or both. When it comes to John Deere tractors, you can have the best of all three worlds because John Deere sells tractors and mowers with all three variations.
John Deere tractors have tires that are tubeless, tubed, and pneumatic. Some tractors within the John Deere lineup have two of the three, with pneumatic and solid rubber tires almost always on the front and tubed or pneumatic tires on the rear.
For pushmowers, specifically John Deere push mowers, all four tires are typically the hardened rubber that has been around since 19th-century innovations took metal and wooden tires to a cheaper and more effective rubber format.
Pneumatic tires quickly followed before the end of the 19th century, and towards the beginning of the 20th century, tubed tires joined a market that was exploding with the level of competition.
Let’s look at the types of tires you can purchase, plus how to tell what kind your mower has.
What are the Differences Between Tubed, Pneumatic, and Solid Rubber Tires?
Most people understand that solid rubber tires are just that, solid rubber. However, there can be a degree of confusion about the difference between pneumatic and tubed tires, especially when it comes to uses in a tractor or lawnmower.
Pneumatic tires are rubber on the outside, with a large pocket of air between the exterior rubber and the tire’s rim in the middle. They are similar to the tires used on vehicles, also known as pneumatic.
You typically see tires that have tubes in them with bicycles. The difference between a pneumatic tire and a tubed tire is that the tubed tire has a tube of air beneath the rubber exterior instead of just a pocket of air.
Unfortunately, tubed tires are terrible when dealing with punctures compared to pneumatic, tubeless tires. The reason is the tubeless pneumatic seals around the penetrating nail or object, retaining the inner air.
On the other hand, the tubed tire immediately deflates if the nail makes it deep enough through the exterior wall to puncture the tube. Once there is a hole in the tube, you will have a flat tire immediately or as fast as it can let the air out through the hole.
Pneumatic tires don’t have to deal with that, so you retain the same level of cushion and shock absorption over time.
Solid Rubber Tires
Solid rubber tires are great for a few reasons. First, they are puncture-proof, making them ideal for rough terrain and yard work. They are constructed of durable rubber that can take a beating and keep on going.
The downside is they won’t feel the same as a rubber tire. You will feel all the bumps in the yard, which will have a jarring effect on your tractor or lawnmower.
Here’s a table that shows the advantages and disadvantages of the three types of tires.
|Rubber Tires||Rubber tires never go flat, and are highly resilient.||Absolutely zero shock absorption|
|Pneumatic Tires||Reduced weight, solid shock absorption, and the ability to withstand a puncture, so long as the object remains in the wall.||Possibly not as shock absorbent as the tubed tires.|
|Tubed Tires||Retains most of the properties of the standard pneumatic tire, with increased shock.||A nail in the wall of the tire is the death knell of a tube.|
Which Lawnmower Tires Does John Deere Sell?
John Deere sells all three variations of the above-mentioned tire types. If your tire type takes an inner tube, John Deere sells those alone as well, so long as you know how to replace the tube and remount the tire on your own.
If you’re interested, Johne Deere is attempting to take tires to the next level by eschewing tubed and pneumatic tires in favor of their new, Airless Radial tire.
If you are tired of dealing with tubes in your John Deere lawnmower tires, this might be worth keeping on your radar.
The Michelin Airless Radial Tire is also known as X Tweel. According to John Deere, the life on the X Tweel is three times that of pneumatic tires. It’s an undeniably bizarre-looking tire. It resembles a skinny tread with hundreds of little spokes radiating from the small rims.
The spokes are manufactured with a poly-resin and are incredibly flexible. As a result, the X Tweel has the most shock absorption capability out of the different tires that John Deere sells.
It also comes with a deep and multi-directional tread. So as far as choices are concerned, you will find the most at John Deere, whether you want a tubed tire or something entirely new and radical design.
With the addition of the Airless Radial Tire, John Deere now sells four different lawnmower tires. So, there is something here for everyone, regardless of the type of tire that you prefer on your lawnmower.
How to Know if Your John Deere Lawnmower Tires Have Tubes?
It may be that it was something you had never considered in the past. For example, when we shop John Deere tractors and lawnmowers, we don’t always stop to ask what is inside the tire. However, there is a way to check the tire and find out.
It’s a good idea to find out, even if you aren’t dealing with air loss and aren’t considering purchasing a new tire(s) anytime soon. On the other hand, if you know what you have, you can consider finding a tire that’s an upgrade.
For instance, if you’ve had several flat tires in the past and you discover that the John Deere tires that you have retained tubes, then you may want to try a pneumatic tire instead, or maybe even upgrade to the all-new Airless Radials.
- Start by checking the stamped information on the side of the tire
- Study the type of rim that you have
- Deflate the tire and watch the valve
You can check the side of the tire to see if there is any information on it that suggests you have a tube in the tire. It will often have “tubeless” stamped on the side of it if the tire doesn’t have a tube.
However, even if it says tubeless, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a tube.
The best way to tell one war or the other is to pay attention to the valve stem as you slowly deflate the tire. If it deflates, the valve stem stays right where it’s at. Then you have a tubeless tire.
If the valve stem pulls back into the rim, you have a tube in the tire. When you have a tube in the tire, the valve stem is attached directly to the tube.
When you deflate the tire, the stem drops into the rim along with the tube inside as it deflates.
Often, you can look at the rim and tell whether or not it is the type of rim that requires a tube. If it’s a two-piece rim that is clearly bolted together, then it’s not the kind of rim that requires a tube inside.
If you still can’t tell whether or not you have a tube in your tires, when you take the John Deere in for new tires, they will be able to tell you there, one way or another.
John Deere sells lawnmower tires with tubes, tubeless pneumatic tires, pure rubber tires, and an all-new and highly innovative Airless Radial Tire known as the X Tweel, designed by Michelin.
There’s little doubt that whatever tire you are looking for when it comes to your lawnmower, John Deere will have what you’re looking for.
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