Tire Protection Chains Information

Tire chainsTire protection chains are used to reduce the danger of tire puncture from sharp rocks, heat, scrap metal, or other hazards. Tire protection chains are formed of multiple rings or links of metal, creating a mesh that fits around the truck tire.


Ring-based tire protection chains consist of a series of rings interconnected to make a loose mesh. This type of truck tire chain is frequently used to give a vehicle traction in ice and snow. Ring-based tire protection chains are also used on heavy equipment machinery in mining, construction, and quarrying. A heavy equipment tire chain enables the machine to move through a variety of materials such as basalt, slate, limestone, gypsum, and ore while protecting the vehicle’s tire. A large tractor tire chain is useful in these applications because it is self-cleaning and flexible.


Link and ring combination tire protection chains consist of rings connected by forged links. Link and ring combinations are then broken down into several other configurations, including:

  • smooth forged links
  • grooved forged links
  • diamond-style forged links

A ring-locking mesh is a heavy duty weave of rings used in high temperature applications. Smooth forged links have a smooth surface and are designed for use in low-abrasion substances, such as limestone, dolomite, and marble. Grooved forged links have a grooved surface and are used to provide increased traction in environments where surfaces are rougher or consist of sharper rocks, such as granite, basalt, and porphyry.


Tire protection chains differ by the type of ring or link used and its dimensions, the mesh opening space, the tire size the mesh will fit, and the engine power of the truck the chains are installed on. Another special type of tire protection chain is used in logging and forestry on four-wheel tractors called skidders. A skidder tire chain is usually heavier than a regular truck tire chain to provide extra traction.

Related Information

CR4 Community—The Value of Snow Tires

Image credit:

K.salo.85 / CC BY-SA 3.0

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