Belted vs Non-Belted RC Tires (The Differences + Best 6)


The tires of your RC car are very important, and they play a huge part in determining how much you enjoy your RC experience. 

The type of RC tire you use affects the speed of your car, as well as how it moves when you’re bashing your RC car.
Belted and Non-Belted RC tires have several differences that make them useful in different situations, and we would be looking into the factors that set these types of tires apart.

What are the differences between belted and non-belted RC tires?

Belted tires have belts inside them, while the non-belted RC tires do not have any belts inside them.

The main purpose of putting this belt inside the tire is to prevent it from expanding and ballooning.
This is easily noticeable when you drive an RC car that has belted tires. When driving with regular non-belted tires, you would expect your tires to almost double in size and this can sometimes cause your vehicle to be impossible to drive at high speed.
However, with belted tires, there is no change or just a little change to the overall diameter of the tire. 

Belted vs Non-Belted

MaterialBoth primarily made from the same high-quality synthetic rubber with the main difference being the belt inside the belted tires.
Difference in InstallingThere is not much or even any difference in the process of installing.
PerformanceBelted tires are much more efficient especially when moving at high speeds and also off-road. Belted tires are the preferred option for racing.
PricesBelted RC tires are considerably more expensive than the non-belted RC tires.
LifespanBelted tires tend to last significantly longer than non-belted RC tires.

Why are RC tires belted?

RC tires are belted for the main purpose of preventing ballooning and tire blowout or shredding. 

Because of these belts being built into the tire, they help the tire to maintain its shape regardless of the speed the RC car is moving at or what kind of terrain the car drives through.  

Belted vs Non-Belted: What are the tires made from?

Both belted and non-belted tires are made from the same material which is a high-quality synthetic rubber. This material makes the tire lightweight while also providing it with enough strength and flexibility to navigate through different types of terrain.

The only difference in the composition of the two types of tires is the belt that is placed inside the belted RC tires.

Extra: How RC tires are made

Belted vs Non-Belted: Differences in Installing?

There is no significant difference in the installation process between belted and non-belted RC tires.

Most original RC tires come already mounted to the wheels of your model so you can install them very quickly. But if you do not get the right wheel and tire combo, then you can easily choose to glue the rubber on your own. 

You should get the same result whether you’re using belted tires or not, and with the right set of tools and instruments, you should be able to easily install your tires no matter what type they are.

Belted vs Non-Belted: Performance

The belts in belted RC tires work to significantly reduce the amount of deformation and distortion that the tire goes through and this creates a much more enjoyable and stable driving experience, especially at the high speeds that so many RC cars move at nowadays.
The belted technology also effectively boosts the performance, durability, traction, and grip of your RC tire.

Some people have remarked that non-belted RC tires might be better for stunts like backflips because you get an advantage in stretching through the last few rotations. However, if you need a lot of control on your car and if it spends most of its time on the ground, then the belted RC tires will be much more efficient.

When racing off-road or participating in drag racing, you will want to use belted RC tires because of how much control they give you over the movement of your RC car. The amount of stability and grip that the belted RC tires give is much more than what you’ll get from the non-belted RC tires. 

Extra: Best RC tires for any surface

Belted vs Non-Belted: Prices

Belted tires are significantly more expensive than their non-belted counterparts.

Some belted tires go as high as $90 to $100 whereas non-belted RC tires usually only go as high as $50 to $60.

Belted vs Non-Belted: Lifespan

Belted tires tend to have a longer lifespan than non-belted tires.

The main benefit of using belted tires is that they do not balloon when driven at high speeds, so they are more likely to last longer because there is less chance of these tires blowing out. 

Are belted RC tires “steel belted”?

Several different materials can be used for belting RC tires, with one of the most popular being fiber-reinforced tape. So no, belted RC tires are not just “steel belted”.

Are belted RC tires better?

There are several benefits to enjoy that point towards belted RC tires being significantly better and more efficient than the non-belted RC tires.

One of these benefits is gearing. Gearing constantly varies on non-belted tires, although this mainly depends on how much they stretch when correlated with your throttle input.

At a low RPM, your tire diameter will be one thing, at 1/2 throttle, it will be another value, and the diameter will change again at WFO. 

So, because of how much the non-belted tires expand, your actual gearing might be significantly different from the real-world gearing of your RC vehicle.
However, when you use belted RC tires on your vehicle, the gearing you set it to is what you will get. 

Also, when you use non-belted tires that usually expand, you will get a very narrow contact patch, and the sidewalls of the tires will get pretty big while simultaneously being quite soft. Belted tires are able to ensure that they maintain the same contact area as well as the same feel on all the sidewalls. This will help to increase the ease of handling your RC vehicle. 

Who should choose belted tires and who should choose non-belted?

There are not many arguments that work to favor non-belted RC tires. The belted tires provide more stability, especially when moving at high speeds, and they also help with grip and traction on rough surfaces. Belted tires prevent ballooning and they also tend to be more durable. 

The main downside to belted tire is the price, which is significantly more than the non-belted tires, especially if you want to get several tires for different purposes. However, if you do have the money to buy the belted tires, then there’s basically no reason why you should not opt for it. 

Do belted tires prevent ballooning?

Yes, belted tires prevent ballooning.

Using belted tires on your RC vehicle helps to prevent tire ballooning, shredding, and blowouts, and you do not need to do anything to help keep your tire in shape even as you hit high speeds with your RC car.  

6 Best Belted RC tires to consider

Proline Masher X HP All Terrain Belted RC Tires

This 1/6 Masher X HP Belted 5.7” tire from Pro-Line is lightweight, and it is a great choice for your KRATON and X-MAXX 8S trucks. These tires are manufactured to go through very high speeds and also work through extreme power easily. You should expect a smooth driving experience with no ballooning when you use this tire, and it also has a 24mm hex with a standard 1/5 scale through-hole that can be used with most 1/5 scale vehicles. This tire also features machined aluminum wheel washers that fit on the X-MAXX platform as well. 

Proline Badlands MX38 Belted Tire

This is a pair of pre-mounted belted monster truck tires. The Proline Badlands tires are well regarded for having a great tread inspired by Motocross, and these MX38 HP 3.8” tires take it to another level with the much bolder and bigger knobby tread. This is truly a tire for all terrains, and it can find its grip on basically any surface, although it is best used on mud, grass, or loamy and loose dirt. 

Proline Trencher HP 2.8 All-Terrain RC Car’s Tires

This Trencher HP 2.8” tire is not your average belted tire. It was designed with a high-performing herringbone weave pattern belt inside a very tough and relentless tread in the new Trencher HP. 

Duratrax 2.8 Mounted Front/Rear Belted Tire for Remote Controlled Cars

This is a set of two DuraTrax 2.8” 2WD Monster Truck Tires that come pre-mounted. These tires come with a 0.5 offset and they include a C2 Soft Rubber Compound. These tires are mounted on black wheels that have a 12mm hex. 

Duratrax’s Six Pack X Mounted RC Tires 

These are 7-spoke hardened plastic belted RC tires. The tire tread is a six pack and this tire comes in the color black. It has a wheel hex size of 24mm, and it comes pre-mounted. The inner tire diameter is about 4.3 inches, and these tires are produced for both front and rear positions on the RC car.

Traxxas Reaction HP SC S3 Drag Belted SC Rear (For RC Drag Racers)

This is another RC tire that is designed in the high-performance weave performance belt, and it is made particularly for no-prep drag racing. The soft S3 compound helps in providing the much-needed grip for your RC vehicle. There are also soft foam inserts in your RC tire to help provide it with even more efficiency.