UTV Beadlock Wheels vs. Standard Wheels: What’s the Difference? Complete Guide

Are you considering purchasing UTV beadlock wheels for your side-by-side? You might be wondering what the benefits of these wheels are over standard UTV wheels. In this article, we will cover the differences between UTV beadlock and standard wheels and explain why one option may be better for you than the other.

Dive in to find out which type of wheel is best suited for your off-roading needs!

When you’re looking to upgrade your UTV wheels, you’ve got plenty of options to choose from. In this complete guide we will cover the two main types of UTV wheels, Beadlock and Standard Wheels, and discuss the differences between them.

We’ll go over how each type of wheel works and the benefits of each type so that you can make an informed decision that is best for you and your vehicle. We’ll also touch on what the best types of tires are for either type of wheel.

So whether you’re looking for a better ride quality, or just want to enhance the look of your UTV, this guide will help you make a decision about which type of wheel is right for your needs and style.

UTV Beadlock Wheels

UTV beadlock wheels are becoming increasingly popular among off-road enthusiasts as they offer several advantages over traditional wheels. By locking the bead of the tire to the wheel, these specialized wheels provide a more secure connection that can help keep tires on under extreme conditions. This is important on the trail, when a tire may otherwise break free from its wheel due to the harsh environment and terrain. These functional and strong wheels also add a unique look to your UTV.

Generally speaking, UTV beadlock wheels are constructed out of aluminum or steel and feature two to three pieces that are welded together. The inside diameter of each wheel varies from model to model, which can affect how tight your tires fit onto your vehicle’s axles. On some high-end models, a larger outside diameter is preferred for enhanced stability and improved performance in tougher terrain.

When comparing UTV beadlock vs standard wheels, consider adding a set of enhancements for extra durability and protection on the trails. Rubber guards installed onto the external beads of your tires will allow you to reduce air pressure without risking tire separation from their wheel assembly due to impact or normal wear-and tear while riding off road. Additionally, rock rings placed in between each wheel’s inner and outer beads will give you added defense against loose rocks and debris commonly found on trails.

Definition and description of beadlock wheels

Beadlock wheels are constructed differently than their traditional counterparts by adding extra components to the design. This additional feature allows for a higher level of performance, both on the trails and in race settings.

Beadlock wheels can be identified by their characteristic bead area where the outermost lip of a wheel is clamped to the inner edge of a tire. The bead area lies inside an aluminum section that wraps around the outside of the wheel, typically in an open-bottomed shape. Through either 5-8 evenly spaced bolts or clips, this external section locks around the outside edge of your tire “bead,” essentially sandwiching it to keep from slipping away from its intended path—which is why they’re called beadlocks.

In addition to preventing slippage, beadlock wheels are designed for an optimal amount of compliance and flexibility when it comes to extra shock absorption afforded by a soft rubber tire mounted on what is otherwise a stiff-as-well metal rim. By giving your tires better control over traction while cornering or climbing ledges, passengers can enjoy smoother rides with greater stability on rockier surfaces where standard wheels tend not to hold up as well.

Advantages of beadlock wheels

Using beadlock wheels on your UTV has many advantages over traditional wheel and tire setups. The most obvious benefit of beadlock wheels is improved traction, as the tight seal created by the beadlock ring ensures that the tires remain securely fastened to the wheel. This tight seal also helps prevent wheel failure due to debris or extreme terrain conditions, making them a popular choice for UTVs used in racing or off-road exploration.

Beadlock wheels also offer superior handling in low-grip off-roading conditions compared to standard setup wheels, allowing for smoother navigation through even the wildest terrain. Another unique advantage of beadlock wheels are their ability to accept extremely large tire sizes. By mounting a larger tire on a standard wheel, users must be wary of tread separation due to its widening gap between rim and tire. With a beadlock wheel set up, the risk of tread separation is drastically diminished; allowing users to fit large tires without compromising safety or performance.

Additionally, some models provide better fuel economy with their lightweight construction when compared to traditional wheels and even allow for cost reductions due to extended tire life from being well secured onto the rim.

Disadvantages of beadlock wheels

Although beadlock wheels offer many advantages, it is important to be aware of some of the potential drawbacks.

Most notably, beadlock wheels can be expensive. Because the technology is relatively new, this type of wheel has typically been seen on off-road vehicles and military vehicles. As a result, until recently, these kinds of wheels have not been widely available to the general public. This has led to a high price tag for consumers looking to purchase them.

In addition, some UTVs may require an equally expensive conversion in order for beadlock wheels to fit properly on them. Depending on the make and model of your UTV, you may need additional parts such as spacers or other items in order for them to work correctly. Aside from that initial cost associated with purchasing the wheels themselves, there could also be a hefty cost whether you do the job yourself or hire someone else to do it for you.

Finally, although beadlock wheels are free from air leakages due their seating design, they still operate with a tire inside and must be monitored when it comes to air pressure levels. Tire monitoring can become more costly if tires require frequent replacement as they experience increased wear-and-tear when used with beadlocks due to more frequent deflation and inflation cycles required by the metal ring that holds them in place.

Standard Wheels

Standard wheels, also known as non-beadlock wheels, are the most commonly used type of wheel for off-roading and recreational driving. These wheels look like a typical pie-plate wheel, with a thin lip edge along the outside of the wheel. The standard wheel has some benefits for recreational drivers, such as generally easier installation and lower cost.

However, standard wheels have some shortcomings which can make them less than ideal for off-road enthusiasts. For example, they require air to be added and removed from the tires every time they are installed or replaced. This makes it easy to lose air pressure in situations where there is no access to an air compressor – something that is almost guaranteed on more remote trails. Additionally, it can be difficult to seat the tire beads properly which can lead to tire slippage and potential damage to your UTV’s rims.

Another commonly overlooked disadvantage of standard wheels is that because they are designed according to OEM specs (in an attempt at making them as light as possible), they may not hold up well in more extreme conditions where heavier duty equipment is necessary (for instance when rock crawling). As such, they may not provide enough support or protection against impact in those situations, particularly if you are off roading on incredibly rocky terrain.

Beadlock Wheels – Method Race Wheels

Definition and description of standard wheels

Standard wheels, also known as non-beadlock wheels, are a popular choice for UTVs, or Utility Task Vehicles. These wheels are typically made from aluminum or steel and their most recognizable feature is that they use traditional tuning techniques and a center-hole design to secure the tire to the wheel. They have been around for years and remain a sturdy and reliable choice.

The traditional method used in standard wheels involves “tuning” the tire bead so that it will sit in the groove of the wheel rim. Tuning is done by adding air pressure and increasing temperature around the moisture sealant to cause expansion of the tire bead into place in order to take hold of its groove in the wheel rim; when properly done, it creates an adequate hold on the bead itself. Standard wheels require carefully maintained air pressure levels (typically between 6-20 psi) because if too much air pressure is used the tire may break through its tucked position and separate from its rim.

Some people also choose to add an additional adhesive for extra security when using standard wheels on UTVs; however, this practice remains largely up to individual preference.

Advantages of standard wheels

Standard wheels have several advantages. Firstly, they are more affordable compared to beadlock wheels. Since there is no need for additional components, such as rings and screws, the overall price of the wheel is cheaper.

In addition, standard wheels are easy to install and remove. With just a few bolts, you’re all set; there’s no need to worry about aligning the mesh or making sure that all of the pins are in place before they can be used.

Lastly, when it comes to durability and longevity, standard wheels usually win out since they don’t require any extra parts or pieces which can be damaged when off-roading or driving over rough terrain. Standard wheels are a great option for those who just want something reliable and resilient without having to spend extra time on maintenance or repairs.

Disadvantages of standard wheels

Although standard UTV wheels have great features, they also have their drawbacks. Standard wheels can be susceptible to deformation and warping. This is because they aren’t designed with a specific load rating, and therefore may not be able to handle the type or amount of load you put on your UTV. This can cause the wheel to become warped, which will affect its performance and handling.

They are also more prone to damage from off-road terrain like rocks, mud, and other hazards. Lastly, standard wheels may require more frequent replacement due to the wear that naturally occurs over time from regular use.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Between Beadlock and Standard Wheels

When it comes to deciding between UTV beadlock wheels and standard wheels for your vehicle, there are several factors you should consider. Each type of wheel offers different benefits that can be advantageous for certain types of terrain or applications.

The first factor to consider is cost. Beadlock wheels do cost more because of their complicated design and extra components, but they are also necessary for achieving a “true” beadlock effect that allows you to take your UTV off-road into more demanding terrain with confidence. Additionally, the improved traction and better overall control that you can get with a beadlock wheel may make them worth their higher cost.

Another factor to consider is installation. Installing a set of UTV beadlocks is a more involved process than installing traditional wheels because they require an additional mounting ring around the outside of the tire to secure it in place. This can add complexity, time, and even expense if you’re having them installed professionally. On the other hand, it also means that when you need to remove or replace your tires in the future, you don’t need any special tools or equipment – just unbolt the ring and then slide your tire off the rim without any fuss or mess!

Finally, think about what type of terrain or activities you’ll be using your UTV for most often. If most of your driving will be on less demanding terrain like sand or farm roads then standard wheels may suffice – but if you plan on taking your vehicle into rougher country like mud pits or rocky mountain trails then beadlocks offer superior strength and stability that cannot be matched by standard wheels alone.

Terrain and riding conditions

The terrain and riding conditions are important to consider when selecting between UTV beadlock wheels and standard wheels. UTV beadlock wheels are designed for stability at lower speeds and on surfaces such as mud, sand, or gravel, whereas standard wheels are intended for high speeds on paved surfaces.

UTV beadlock wheels offer superior performance on slippery terrain thanks to their multi-piece construction that allows the tire to remain locked into the rim even with low air pressure. Standard wheels are not suitable for off-road use, as low traction can lead to slips or skidding.

On the other hand, standard wheels offer superior performance on hard surfaces such as pavement or concrete. Their rigid construction is designed to prevent slippage or skidding when cornering at higher speeds.


When it comes to purchasing UTV beadlock wheels, one of the most important considerations is budget. While both beadlock and standard UTV wheels can come with a variety of price tags, beadlocks tend to be more expensive. This is not always the case; however, in general, you’ll find that beadlock rims are more expensive than their standard counterparts. If you have a limited budget for your UTV upgrades, it’s important to factor in the cost difference between the two types of wheels before making your selection.

The good news is that there are options available at both price points — from basic, low-cost styles all the way up to advanced models with features such as titanium-reinforced rims and airless inflation systems. It’s always a good idea to do some research before investing in wheels and rim upgrades so that you’re sure you’ve identified the right product for your needs and budget constraints.

Personal preferences

When it comes to UTV beadlock wheels versus standard wheels, the most important factor that affects your decision is personal preference. There are pros and cons to both options that should be weighed before you make your selection.

The biggest difference between beadlock wheels and standard wheels lies in their weight carrying capacity. Beadlock wheels are designed with a special ring around the wheel’s perimeter which prevents the tire from slipping off of its rim when traversing rocky terrain or cycling through deep mud. This provides more stability and allows for greater load support compared to a non-beadlocked wheel, meaning you can safely run higher tire pressures without risking the tire coming off its rim at lower pressures.

On the other hand, standard wheels may provide just as good maximum traction and can often feel smoother over all terrains at full speeds. Standard wheels also come in a variety of aesthetic styles meaning you have more choices when it comes to personalization than if you go with beadlocks – although some manufacturers have created custom-styled beadlocks for certain models. Finally, if you ever find yourself in a pinch, tires installed on standard rims could be temporarily iumped onto another vehicle, whereas tires mounted on beadlocks would need to be taken off before being removed from the vehicle.

Ultimately, deciding between UTV beadlock wheels versus standard wheels depends on what type of terrain and level of performance you’re looking for as well as personal preference in terms of style and convenience. Consider all aspects carefully before making your final choice!


Overall, UTV beadlock wheels bring a lot of advantages to any off-roading situation. Not only do they offer increased tire performance and safety, but they also look great. They provide more capability for tackling more extreme off-road challenges and can come in a variety of sizes, colors and materials for different applications.

UTV beadlock wheels have become more popular in recent years as manufacturers have developed better quality products at affordable prices for consumers and enthusiasts alike. They are the perfect choice for anyone looking to improve the performance, aesthetics, and safety of their off-road vehicle. With so many options available from brands like Method Race Wheels, Fuel Off-Road Wheels, Wesco Turf Tires & Wheels, Interco Tire Corporation and many others you are sure to find the perfect set of beadlock wheels for your needs!

Beadlock Wheels: When You Need Them And When You Don't


Are UTV beadlock wheels worth it?

Beadlock wheels can be worth it if you frequently ride in challenging terrain that can cause the tire to unseat from the wheel, such as rock crawling or racing. They can provide additional security and prevent tire damage.

What makes beadlock wheels different?

Beadlock wheels use a ring that clamps the tire bead between the ring and the wheel, providing additional security and preventing the tire from coming off the wheel.

Are beadlock tires different than regular tires?

Beadlock tires are not different from regular tires, but beadlock wheels have a special design that adds a clamping ring to secure the tire bead.

What is the disadvantage of beadlock?

Beadlock wheels can be heavier and more expensive than regular wheels, and they can require more maintenance to keep the bolts tight and prevent leaks.

What is the advantage of beadlock wheels on UTV?

Beadlock wheels can prevent the tire from unseating from the wheel, which can be important in challenging terrain. They can also reduce the risk of tire damage and provide additional security.

What is a UTV beadlock?

A UTV beadlock is a special type of wheel that uses a clamping ring to secure the tire bead and prevent it from unseating from the wheel.

Do UTV beadlock wheels leak air?

Beadlock wheels can be more prone to leaking air than regular wheels because of the additional bolts and clamping ring. However, proper installation and maintenance can reduce the risk of leaks.

Do you really need beadlocks?

Beadlock wheels are not necessary for all UTV riders, but they can provide additional security and prevent tire damage in challenging terrain where the tire can unseat from the wheel.

What is the purpose of beadlocks?

The purpose of beadlock wheels is to prevent the tire from unseating from the wheel and provide additional security in challenging terrain.

Are ATV and UTV wheels the same?

ATV and UTV wheels can be similar in design and construction, but they can have different sizes and load ratings depending on the vehicle and application.

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