Tire Rack Consumer Review of the Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac

Note: The following post was created from content submitted via Tire Rack's consumer surveys. Information shown is the opinion of the consumer and meant to be used for comparison shopping purposes.
Vehicle: 1999 Toyota Tacoma 4wd Xtra Cab
Miles Driven on Tires: 28,000
Location: Belgrade, MT
Driving Condition: Combined Off Road/Highway
Driving Style: Spirited
Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac
Initial Review: 28,000 miles on tires
August 05, 2012

The number 1 priority for me is winter traction. Duratracs certainly do not disappoint in this aspect. From powdery snow to wet, deep snow these tires handle it all. They can be a little fickle when it comes to ice.
I am offroad a lot on anything from flat, packed dirt roads to steep, rocky trails & these tires never missed a beat. The sidewalls seem a little weak considering that these are 'offroad' tires & offroading often involves airing down & driving on rocks. I ended up with a slashed sidewall after one moderately challenging trail & was a little paranoid about sidewall damage from that point on.
The tires wore reasonably well. I kept the tires at about 28-30 psi, rotated every 5k, & they seemed to wear evenly. After 28K miles there was still a decent amount of tread left (about half) & the traction didn't seem to be affected a great deal.
And that ends the pros for this tire. On to the cons.
From day one these tires were difficult to balance - in the first month alone I was back at the tire shop 4 times. This continued throughout the entire time that I had the tires on my truck. I was at the tire shop at least once a month due to balancing issues. A few potholes, some washboarded road, airing down...just about everything seemed to knock these tires out of balance. And it only got worse as the tread wore down.
Another problem arose as the tires wore down. Noise. At first they were a little loud but not terribly so considering the large, aggressive pattern of the tread. After about 15K miles the noise started to get worse & seemed to amplify exponentially. By the time I hit 25K the noise was unbearable & could drowned out a normal volume conversation.
While the tires had plenty of tread life left the balancing & noise issues were too much trouble.
If you're looking for a tire with outstanding traction & don't mind a compromise on comfort then this would be the tire to buy. Just be sure your tire shop has comfy chairs, you'll be spending a lot of time there

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