Get Ready for the Dunes: Choosing The Best UTV & ATV Sand Tires

If you’ve ever tried to ride on sand with even the best all-terrain or mud tires, we bet you’ve been disappointed as other rigs fly by, throwing up huge rooster tails. So what kind of tires are best for sand? To put it simply, sand tires are the only way to get the best out of your ATV or UTV while on the dunes. Even narrowing down the choices to sand tires, there are still many sizes, features and designs to consider, so we’ve put together this guide to help you get the ideal set for your machine. 

The benefits of sand tires

Sand tires do make a huge difference in your rig’s performance on sand, providing the grip, acceleration, handling and power you need to fly over the dunes. What initially sets these tires apart are the unique paddles on the rear tires, resulting in many riders calling sand tires “paddles”. These paddles provide unbeatable traction and power transfer while allowing the front ribbed tires to control most of the handling duties. The combination of the two tire styles will provide excellent acceleration, more speed, improved handling and, of course, stylish rooster tails. 

Choosing the best sand tires for your UTV or ATV

Even within the realm of sand tires, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for your ATV or UTV. Before buying sand tires for your rig, consider the following:

  • Tire size 
  • Wheels
  • Tread pattern

Tire Size

There is no best size for sand tires, but generally they should be on the wider side. The paddles will increase your tires’ profile, so keep clearances in mind when choosing your set. 


With all the talk about tires, you might be wondering: what are the best sized wheels for sand riding? The best size will be determined by your specific machine, but in general a negative offset will increase your stability and narrower wheels will give your tires more contact points and better traction. Your ATV or UTV will also have better traction in sand if your tire pressure is lower than usual, between 3-5 PSI, so you should have beadlock wheels that will firmly hold tires at lower PSI. 

Rear paddle tires kicking up sand in the desert.

Tread Pattern

Tread patterns can vary, including the number of paddles on your rear tires and the tread type on your front tires. Some front tires are completely smooth for staying on top of the sand—also known as flotation—and are great for speed, while others have ribs and a bit of tread for better control. The number and size of paddles you need on your rear tires depends on the amount of power your ATV or UTV has. Generally, the more power output, the more paddles you want, but finding the equilibrium between power and traction will depend on your particular machine. 

High Lifter offers a range of sand tires for you to choose from, so you’re sure to find a great fit in our inventory.

AMS Sand King Tires

If you’re looking for sand tires with a little extra tread and paddle power, these lightweight sand tires are for you. The front tires have a ribbed non-directional tread, while the rear tires feature 14 paddles for unbeatable grip.

Sandblast Tires

For excellent flotation and a lightweight design, pick up a set of 2-play Sandblast tires that will let you fly over the dunes. Front and rear tires sold separately. 

Sandslinger Tires

Give your rig a balance of stability, steering and flotation that will let you take on the dunes with confidence. The Sandlinger rear tires feature 10 paddles, while the front tires contribute to excellent performance with a three-rib design.

Sand Star Tires

These tires feature the latest in sand tire advancements, with a durable, lightweight design that is made with a specialized rubber compound that provides fantastic flotation, flexibility and cornering. Front and rear tires sold separately, rear tires are left and right specific.

Profile shot of two Yamaha YXZ drag racing in the sand.

Sand Stripper Tires

From sand racing to casual weekend trips, these tires are built for every ATV or UTV dune rider. Get impressive flotation, fantastic grip and superior power with these high performance tires. Front and rear tires sold separately.

System 3 Tires

Take advantage of a high-performance combination of propulsion and traction on the dunes with the System 3 tires. With lightweight 2-ply construction, a unique lug pattern and tread depth, you’ll enjoy optimal floatation and handling performance.

Upgrade your rig with sand tires

If you’re ready to stop being left behind and start leading the pack at the dunes, now is the time to pick up a set of ATV or UTV sand tires from High Lifter. It won’t take more than one ride to make the investment completely worth it! For any other off-roading tire needs you have, High Lifter has a wide selection to choose from, so give your machine the tire upgrade it deserves today.