George & Wendy Show

Wendy Parker

Super single sing-along

| January 05, 2014

We’re moving into our new home on wheels, getting everything tweaked to our comfort zone. We lost two inches in the sleeper, but the entire frame of the new truck is actually five feet longer than the Cascadia. She’s a beast and she’s beefy and when we bought her she had almost brand-new super singles, so needless to say we’ll be running supers starting out.

Wendy Parker's wide singlesGeorge doesn’t have any experience (other than bobtailing her home from Wisconsin) with wide-single tires. I did a little research on them (gasp, I did research) and have pretty much discovered the opinions are split almost completely down the middle. Some people love them, some hate them. Some think they get better fuel mileage with them, some say that’s crap. I do know I’m not really comfortable with the idea of a retreaded single, because all I can see in my mind is humongous gators flying all over the highway, and there’s enough of the regular-sized ones out there already.

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I’m curious as to how many readers have direct experience with running supers. Let us know what your thoughts are on them – do they really pay for themselves, as some say, or are they a pain in the rear and more expense than they’re worth? Chime in …

  • mattq

    i drove a columbia with wide singles fro a year and only had 1 flat that was a nail in the edge, slow leak.

  • Raymond Carmickle

    we tried the Super singles here at Tyson. they lasted 6 months before the fleet went back to doubles. Blow outs were costing a rim and a tire. Long term they are more expensive

  • Lane

    I personally have not but I always heard my dad complaining about them. They are terrible in the snow. He was constantly getting stuck. They didnt have much problem with blowouts on the truck but all the time on their 4 axle flatbeds. They gripped the ground so hard that when you turned real sharp with a load on it would the tread right off the tire.

  • John F.

    the company I currently work for runs super singles because of the lighter weight. we do relays with day cabs hauling 50,000 lb. loads.
    I HATE super singles! you have to constantly put air in them, when one goes flat your stuck on the side of the road, and I don’t like the way they handle.
    they also tend to wear very unevenly, and you rarely get the mileage your supposed to out of them.
    that’s my experience with them.

  • Steve

    I’ve had mine on the tractor for over two years now. They paid for themselves in fuel mileage increase in only 8 months. They are Xone XDA energy tires. Rolling Resistance is everything, not that they’re singles or duels, but RR. For example, XDA energy 22.5 low pro duels would get better mileage than an Xone XDN2 single, because the XDA energy duels have a lower RR than the XDN2.

    I also put the Xone XTA energy tires on my trailer. My net decrease in weight was 800 lbs, which means I can now scale 45,500.

    In addition, I really love the handling and the ease of checking air pressure. I always hated getting to the inner duel. I tried extensions, cat eyes, etc., it was always a pain in the rump. And with any tire they will lose about 1lb per month, as well as 1lb per 10 degree drop in temp., so this winter has been really nice only needing to check & top off 10 tires instead of 18. That alone saves me time.

    They wear well, the XDA’s on the tractor have almost 150000 miles on them and still look new. If one takes care of their tires, these are the only way to go. I’ve only had one blowout of my tires in the last 10 years. So, the idea that there is a reliability problem is only for those that only “bump” their tires.

  • Canadian Redneck

    They are great for fuel mileage as long as they are low rolling resistance, That is the key. They also ride much better. I haul crude oil and never had a problem. Truck and trailer are super singles and I gained a mpg with both. Try listening to Kevin Rutherford on Siriusxm. He has lots of fuel saving tips. Hes on Road Dog 128. It all about running a smart business, The complainers are usually the ones who arent. Enjoy the new life of an owner operator in 2014. Congrats!!!!!!

  • owner / operator since 1971

    I have been running super singles since 1985, tractor & trailers.. both new & ” recaps “…much better ride & handling…highway, job-sites & woods…..lower empty weight, lower fuel usage..one truck owner / operator since 1971….from Wisconsin & Idaho

  • jack
  • Robert Sliwa

    I have run wide-base super singles as an owner operator since 1983. I love to hear people say that one is stuck when you get a flat. Although that is most often, but not always correct, they never mention to say that one is absolutely stuck when you get a flat with a steering tire. You see, a steering is the ultimate “super single” and I have never heard of anyone complaining of redundancy of steering tires.

    I have a gentlemen’s disagreement with Steve below when he says ” XDA energy 22.5 low pro duels would get better mileage than an Xone XDN2 single, because the XDA energy duels have a lower RR than the XDN2″ The X-One wide base tire would absolutely get better mileage. What burns diesel fuel are the sidewalls flexing. With wide base tires, you have 1/2 as many sidewalls flexing. And X-Ones have the strongest sidewall in the industry. I have worked with very closely with Michelin engineers on this issue.

    I personally would never run wide base super single tires without an Automatic Tire Inflation System. (ATIS) The ATIS is not to be confused with something like a tire pressure equalization system. Those cat-eye type thingys are lame and worthless. With a true ATIS, you will always have the 100% air pressure in the tire 100% of the time. You will never have a blow out, unless you run over some dynamite. You will also have a true run-flat system, or at least a leaking-tire-run-to-a-truck-stop system.

    ATIS is currently available for all trailers. An ATIS for tractor drive axles and straight trucks should be available in the 3rd. quarter of this year. We will be testing it for our Partner in the spring of this year.

    On the new trucks that we will be building we will have a 5 axle ATIS. Yes, you read correct. An ATIS on the steering tires as well.

    With ATIS and wide base tires, you will absolutely have a winner. You will absolutely burn less fuel and save unladen weight.

    Hope this helps.

    Bob Sliwa
    AirFlow Truck Company

  • Ed Godfrey

    Wendy, I highly recommend that you read the sections on the Michelin truck website. Especially the inflation charts. I just sold 4 used XDN2′s that had 300K miles on them and still had 12/32″ tread left. The guy put them on a Ford F650. My spread axle trailer has the same 300K on 4 XZUS’s and they have about 8/32″ tread life left.

    I have never had a blowout, but I run TPMS on all tires. I keep the trailer tires at 105 PSI and the drives at 90 PSI. You have to stay within 3/4 of the max air pressure for the DOT, but if you inflate the SS to max PSI, you will prematurely wear down the tires and get very good fuel mileage with reduced traction.

    I run lower PSI and get good fuel mileage with extended tire life and actual tire resale value. In fact I traded in my duals through Landstar for all of the SS I needed for the truck and trailer. Even after 300K on the tires, the resale made it a break even. I used the tires for 3 years at no cost to me.

    I save about 15K a year on average since I switched from duals to supers. Regardless of whether you go with recaps or virgin rubber, keep on top of the PSI! VERY IMPORTANT! I highly recommend TPMS on all tires. It will run you about $500 and I use PressurePro.

    You should adjust your PSI to your load weight. Super singles don’t like light weight running. They were designed to be run with a load.
    Starting on page 69 in this Michelin Manual is an excellent reference when determining the proper tire inflation for your application. Read it and it will serve you two well for the rest of your trucking career. In fact it will teach you more than you ever wanted to know about tires on any vehicle.
    http://read.dmtmag.com/issue/58068

    Be safe and good luck!

  • Laine

    L.A Parkinson Trucking Rigby Id I ran them on 1 truck and 5 trailers for 5 years.. when i got them off the duals had better fuel mileage and better tire life than the super singles. I figure the single cost me more than 15000.00 dollars a year more with maintanence and road calls. you have to rotate them alot and recap them with a lot of tread left. i could not get rid of them fast enough…… Laine Parkinson ..Pres.

  • Rich

    How will super singles do on a spread axle Flatbed ? How does it handle with the turns etc.

  • Steve

    I would think that they would still scrub in the turns. I’m not sure if I’d run them on a spread, but I’ve seen them on a spread before. I’d probably just run the lowest rolling resistance duels I could find.