5 July 2016, 12:00AM
As you likely know, deep wheel tracks are a headache in the field. They lead to low crop clearance and can cause your pivot or linear to get stuck mid-rotation.

A common misconception is that a longer or heavier span automatically means deeper wheel tracks. This is simply not true. Pivot weight has little to do with deep wheel tracks.

The key to minimising ruts is ensuring that tyres are properly inflated. Tyre inflation directly affects ground pressure, which is the leading cause of deep wheel tracks. There is actually an equation you can use to determine the best tyre pressure. And, proper inflation also maximises tyre life.

One way to reduce wheel tracking is by equipping your pivots or linears with tyres that keep more soil in the wheel’s path. Unilateral tyres use horizontal treads rather than the conventional angled treads. While angled treads increase traction by digging into the soil, they push soil out to the edge of the wheel track causing deeper ruts. Unilateral tyres keep more soil in the wheel path resulting in shallower ruts.

If you want to find out more about how to keep your pivot from getting stuck mid-rotation or how to calculate the best tyre pressure, hop on irrigation.education and take a short Floatation Options course.