10 Questions to Ask About Rubber Tracks for Compact Equipment

10 Questions to Ask About Skid Steer & Excavator Rubber Tracks

Rubber tracks are a crucial component of compact equipment. They can help enhance the overall performance, provide a smooth ride, and ensure the operator’s safety. When buying them for your machine, it is best to learn about the basics and essentials involved. As a leading distributor of rubber tracks in Canada, we have compiled a list of questions to help you understand what to expect when purchasing skid steer or excavator rubber tracks.

10 Questions about Rubber Tracks

What Types of Track Technologies are Available?

  • Rubber Tracks
    They are the most common choice for compact equipment, powered by the undercarriage of the machine.
  • Over-The-Tire Tracks (OTT)
    OTT tracks are typically used on wheeled skid steer loaders. They are placed over the machine’s tires. The tracks are ideal for applications where more flotation and traction are required.
  • Rubber Pads
    This exceptional technology is available in three types, clip-on, bolt-on and chain-on.

Which Machines Use Rubber Tracks?

Compact construction equipment such as compact track loaders (CTL), multi-terrain loaders (MTL), and mini excavators typically use rubber tracks. They are suitable for a wide variety of applications. You can also use them on drilling machines, utility equipment, pavers, dumpers, and military equipment.

What are the Advantages of Rubber Tracks vs. Steel Tracks?

Both rubber tracks and steel tracks offer traction. However, rubber tracks are a better alternative if you need more floatation, low ground disturbance, and a smoother ride. They are also more cost-effective in the long run and quite durable with proper usage and regular maintenance.

What Details Are Available on the Side of a Track?

The side of a track offers crucial details that you can use when purchasing replacement tracks. You will typically find the brand name, country of origin, part number, and serial number on it. It may also have the year of production, factory number, and more.

What Can You Find Inside a Rubber Track?

You will notice the following in the carcass:

  • Rubber – It is the most prominent component of a track. When buying skid steer or excavator rubber tracks, it is best to choose a heavy-duty option. Doing so will help you avoid punctures and ensure high performance and durability.
  • Metal Pieces – In addition to rubber, the tracks also consist of metal pieces to engage with the sprocket and help reinforce the carcass. You will find them embedded between the underlayer to enhance the structural integrity.
  • Steel Cord – Placed between the tread lugs and metal pieces, it ensures rigidity. It also keeps the track strong and provides resistance to tension.
  • Textile – This type of wrapping separates the metal pieces and the steel cord and ensures proper track alignment.

What Are the Common Issues Associated with Rubber Tracks?

When choosing a rubber track, it helps to know about the common issues that equipment owners face so that you can avoid unnecessary downtime.

  • Inadequate Traction
    Tread pattern or design of the track is a critical aspect to think of when you are buying skid steer, excavator, or compact track loader rubber tracks. You can choose it according to your requirements and application to ensure better traction.
  • Low Durability
    Be sure to select tracks made using premium quality rubber compound and strong carcass. Doing so will ensure more service life and reliability.
  • Detracking
    This happens when the tracks of your machine fall off the undercarriage. Advanced technologies, proper tensioning, and regular maintenance can help avoid this problem.
  • Poor Ride Quality
    Some tracks tend to cause increased vibrations and offer a rougher ride compared to others because of the components. It is beneficial to ask your distributor about operator safety and comfort when buying tracks.

In addition to this, selecting a reputable dealer, such as Tag Equipment, is a fool-proof way to find high-quality rubber tracks for your machine.

How is Long Pitch Different from Short Pitch?

Long pitch indicates that the tracks use fewer metal pieces and engage with every other tooth. However, rubber tracks that use short pitch are in contact with every sprocket lug, causing lower vibrations and reduced wear and tear on the undercarriage. Thus, it is widely preferred for enhanced durability and better safety.

What Causes Wear & Tear on the Rubber Tracks?

Factors that cause rubber tracks to wear out are of the following types:

Controllable Factors

As the name indicates, operators can control these aspects to avoid downtime and enhance the overall performance of the equipment. They include the following:

  • Track Tension – is an essential aspect that you need to consider when buying tracks.
  • Weight of the Load – includes the weight of the load and machine and depends on the driving speed and the machine usage, like sharp turns, working on harsh ground conditions and slopes.
Uncontrollable Factors

They are typically associated with the working environment, such as temperature and ground conditions. Although the operator cannot control these factors, you can work around them by choosing the right tracks for your application.

How to Maximize the Tracks’ Life?

Be sure to consider the following factors for improving track life:

Machine Operation
  • It is beneficial to use good operating techniques, such as avoiding spinning, spot turns, and constant operation on slopes.
  • Additionally, you should avoid exposing the tracks to abrasive materials like sharp stones, rocks, and scrap iron as they result in premature wear of the rubber.
Preventive Maintenance
  • It is crucial to maintain track tension as per the machine manufacturer.
  • Regular maintenance is critical to ensuring long track life. Inspect your tracks and undercarriage every day and replace worn parts if necessary.

How to Replace Rubber Tracks?

Here are the step-by-step instructions to replace tracks on compact equipment:

  • Lift the machine and unscrew the bolts from the side cover to slacken the track. Release the nut of the idle adjuster from behind the cover.
  • Push the idler back using a metal or wooden bar. Check the positions before and after the grease leak.
  • Then, place a metal bar on the idler and replace the track.
  • As soon as the undercarriage is clear, clean it thoroughly, look for missing or loose lugs, check the slack of the idler and sprocket, and ensure the upper and lower roller rotation is clear.
  • Place the new rubber track on the side of the equipment and make sure the pattern direction is towards the blade.
  • Position it using a jack or metal bar, starting from the sprocket and idler. Ensure proper fitting by moving it slowly.
  • Once you place the track, add grease, adjust the tension to the correct specifications. Utilize the user guide of the excavator.
  • Check the tolerance by running it slowly when you lift the machine. Once you figure out the desired adjustment, block the nut of the adjuster and shut the side door.

Get Durable & Cost-Effective Rubber Tracks with Us

Skid Steer & Excavator Rubber Tracks

Tag Equipment is a prominent distributor of skid steer and excavator rubber tracks. We feature high-quality and durable products to ensure 100% satisfaction to our customers.

Tracks for All Types of Construction Equipment

We aim to cater to the varied needs of our customers on time, which is why we feature a wide range of products. Our lineup includes rubber tracks for compact track loaders, multi-terrain track loaders, mini excavators or dumpers, over-the-tire tracks, and paver tracks.

Brands We Carry


These rubber tracks are known for superior design and performance. They are cost-effective and backed by exceptional warranties.


Traxter tracks consist of advanced lug side rubber compounds for durability and strength. They are made of unique roller side compounds to provide crack resistance and offer excellent performance and value for the money.

If you are looking for skid steer, excavator, or compact track loader tracks, we can help you find the right product. Our team has the expertise and knowledge to help you find the perfect accessory for your machine. You may give us a call at 416-716-5850 for more information. We will be happy to assist you!