Equal celebrates 20th anniversary
In 1990, International Marketing Inc. (IMI) released Equal into the aftermarket. The balancing compound was designed to be used inside the tire, without wheel weights.
Twenty years later, the compound is more popular than ever, with organizations such as the American Trucking Associations and Tire Industry Association openly recognizing the viability of balancing compounds in truck tires.
The makers of Equal say the specially formulated plastic beads deliver "balance and vibration dampening through the entire tread life of the tire, which can lose 20 pounds or more of tread rubber while in service."
According to Brian Hodge, IMI's marketing director, Equal is self-adjusting, which keeps the truck tire balanced. It also is an environmentally friendly alternative to lead wheel weights, which are being phased out by government regulations.
The only change in the product since its introduction is the way it can be installed in the tire.
Originally, Equal only could be installed through the valve stem after mounting. In 1998, IMI developed a drop-in bag that could be put in steer and drive tires before mounting.
An Equal compound also is available for motorcycle tires, adds Hodge.