Understanding IF/VF Tires
IF/VF tires are an increasingly common sight on today’s farms as more and more users discover the numerous advantages they offer. For example, IF/VF tires—like Yokohama Off-Highway Tire’s Alliance AgriFlex/AgriFlex+—can help increase productivity, improve efficiency, lower fuel consumption, reduce soil compaction, and ultimately deliver a lower total cost of ownership. You’ll routinely hear about the many benefits of IF/VF tires, however, highlighted less frequently are how these innovative tires produce such remarkable results.
The IF/VF designations given to tires are straightforward. IF stands for “increased flexion” and VF stands for “very high flexion.”
IF tires are capable of:
- carrying 20% more load at the same inflation pressure as a conventional radial tire
- carrying the same load as a conventional radial tire at 20% less inflation pressure
VF tires offer even greater advantages. VF tires are capable of:
- carrying 40% more load at the same inflation pressure as a conventional radial tire
- carrying the same load as a conventional radial tire at 40% less inflation pressure
IF/VF tires are able to operate at comparatively low inflation pressures and carry considerably large loads thanks to their sidewall’s ability to operate while flexing dramatically (hence the “flexion” in their nomenclature).
IF/VF tires are able to offer exceptional performance thanks to a variety of advancements that touch nearly every part of the tire. For instance, IF/VF tires feature everything from structural advancements like stronger bead bundles to high-tech rubber compounds that can stand up to super-sharp stalks, withstand road wear, and resist heat buildup—the greatest enemy to tires.
Steel belts are another component found in many IF/VF tires and all Alliance AgriFlex/AgriFlex+ IF/VF tires. Steel belts help to ensure the tire places a more even footprint on the ground which allows it to produce better traction, reduce slippage, burn less fuel, and reduce the impact on the soil. Steel belts also provide protection against punctures and stubble damage.
Large Loads at Low Inflation Pressures
IF/VF tires are engineered to meet the challenges presented by farm equipment that is continually growing larger, heavier, and more powerful. The ability of IF/VF tires to operate at lower inflation pressures enables them to produce a larger footprint and distribute the weight of farm equipment over a greater area. Flotation and inflation are tied together; in general, the inflation pressure of a tire is roughly the same as the amount of force a piece of equipment exerts on the ground.
A great way to understand the power of IF/VF tires is to consider that a tire inflated to 30 psi exerts 30 lbs of force on the soil. Using an IF tire can reduce the force exerted by 6 lbs of force. Using a VF tire can reduce the force exerted by 12 lbs. All this adds up to the reduced potential for soil compaction, which research has shown can have a detrimental effect on yield that can last for years.
Carry Heavier Loads
IF/VF tires can also carry more load at the same inflation pressure as conventional radial tires—20% more in the case of IF tires and 40% more in the case of VF tires. This means less going back and forth to the grain elevator or manure stockpile, greater time in the field, and more productive use of your valuable time. It also means lower fuel consumption and ultimately more money in your pocket at the end of the day.
Alliance Whole Farm Concept
Alliance’s Whole Farm Concept is a commitment to producing a low-pressure IF/VF tire for every job and piece of equipment on the farm—from tractors and sprayers to combines and towed implements. After all, why would you want to reduce the benefits provided by the compaction-minimizing IF/VF tires on your tractor by pulling a grain cart on standard tires behind it?
Alliance’s AgriFlex/AgriFlex+ line of IF/VF tires offers more than just a multitude of fitments. Our AgriFlex/AgriFlex+ range of tires includes a wide variety—featuring everything from different sizes to tread patterns to speed ratings—engineered to optimize farm operations and help farmers meet the real-world challenges they face.
Yokohama Off-Highway Tires
Yokohama Off-Highway Tires America’s (YOHTA) Alliance brand has been at the forefront of tire technology for decades—it was one of the first manufacturers of flotation tires, the first to introduce an all-steel radial flotation tire, one of the first to make flotation tires capable of highway speeds, and the first to release a VF flotation tire—and continues to lead today. Contact your local YOHTA dealer or rep today to learn more about our Alliance AgriFlex/AgriFlex+ tires and how they can benefit your operation.