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I have a utility trailer (a typical homeowner/DIY single axle, approx 8ft X 5ft) that has aging tires and which I'd like to replace soon. It currently has size 4.80-12" tires and I am considering changing (upgrading?) to a 5.30-12" rim & tire size. Is there any reason I should not do this? Especially safety? Note: there is about 3 inches of clearance, certainly at least 2.5 inches, from outer diameter/surface of current tire and any part of the trailer itself, e.g. the wheel well, so I am not too worried about a bit of increase in tire radius making contact with the trailer frame or wheel well...unless should be? That's kinda the whole point of my question, I guess.

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It really shouldn't matter much at all. The section width will be a little bit wider for the new tire. It will have just a little bit larger diameter, somewhere around .75", depending on the make/model you choose. That gives you about 3/8" overall on each side of the tire. That's not a lot. The only thing you need to be wary of when you say there is 2.5" of clearance is how much travel does the suspension have and will this come down and hit the tire. If this trailer is like most small trailers, it will rely on the tire itself for the suspension and the axle will be hard mounted to the body of the trailer itself. If this is how it is, then there's absolutely no issue there. The width is going to be something you'll need to check, but I doubt the amount of space you'll need will be an issue, either. Other than the width increase, there really isn't an issue as far as I can see. Just look again at how far the side of the tire is to the side of the trailer. I'll bet you have plenty of room there, as well.

If you really want to upgrade your tires (or at least get the larger ones), go ahead and get them. Then test fit them on the trailer. If they don't fit, then most places will take them back for either exchange or refund. As long as you've not used them, there shouldn't be an issue ... but ask them first before purchase.

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    "it will rely on the tire itself for the suspension, and the axle will be hard mounted to the body of the trailer itself." That's my situation, so what you responded with pretty much confirms my thoughts on the subject. Thanks...
    – AA040371
    Dec 29, 2023 at 2:19
  • @AA040371 - Yah, if it's hard mounted and there's plenty of room, there should be no issues. Just ensure you double check the width fitment. Dec 29, 2023 at 2:23
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    Probably a more important (or just as) is that the replacements need to have at least the same load capacity as the old ones. Trailers are designed to carry particular weights, and if the tyres are rated at under the gross weight, there could be problems - actual and legal.
    – Tim
    Dec 29, 2023 at 11:58
  • @Tim: yep...covered! Current and new tires both have a C load rating...~1000lbs per tire, which is about what the trailer is rated for and well within my 4Runner tow capacity. Hooray!
    – AA040371
    Jan 3 at 23:55

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