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My travel trailer tires have been doing good. Its been so many years, why should i even change them. This is what most people think, when they haven’t had the blow out in recent years. A travel trailer tire can come a long way, but that does not mean it will remain so forever. A tire has a certain age limit. Understanding the average life of a travel trailer tire is important and it can be confusing at times. Lets understand how many years can you use the travel trailer tire and when exactly you should consider replacing it.
Average life of a travel trailer tire
On an average a travel trailer tire can last around 5-6 years. Some people may also see them last more or even see that the tires go out of use earlier.
But mostly, they should last around 5 years; if used with proper care and maintenance. A tire for your travel trailer is an important part and they are the ones that takes all the load. Thus, its important that proper care is taken and they are replaced when it is necessary, rather than waiting for them to blow out. A blow out can be dangerous and can result in deadly crash during high speeds.
The life also depends on the usage, some people use the travel trailer once in while. While some use it for living, that makes a lot of difference. A person using the travel trailer in Alaska in a very cold snow conditions will have a complete different experience, as compared to the one using it in bay area, California. Tires experience pressure and heat depending on the frequency of use and outer temperature condition. A harsh weather, obviously will mean the tire will loose the life much earlier than in normal tropical temperature conditions.
A person using the travel trailer day in and out will be loosing the tires may be a year earlier than the one who goes out with it once in month or twice in a month. A travel trailer owner, not taking much care of the tires will end up replacing them earlier. The life of a travel trailer tires depends on lots of factors, many of them are in your control.
A low on quality tires, which are cheap will also not last long enough. Life of travel trailer can also be said to be dependent on its tires. Do you know how much travel trailers in general last? Well, you can find the answer here about the trailer average life.
So when should you consider replacing the tire of your travel trailer
This is another important question that most of the travel trailer owners will have. So, when Exactly do you replace your travel trailer tires. As we already saw, on an average a travel trailer tire lasts 5-6 years and it depends on lots of factors. So, should you wait till it actually crosses the 5 or 6 years mark? The best thing to do here would be, to do check periodically.
A tire is still good or not will not be fully understandable using your naked eyes. Its better to have a check from a technical professional. You cannot judge the tire using your eyes on whether its good to take the load of 15000 lbs. A travel trailer tire is capable of taking that much load and definitely you cannot predict its capability just by looking at it. It may develop crack on edges below, which will not be visible easily, it may become thin after traveling for miles. A good thing to do is to check them regularly and take the advice from a person who check tires day in and out. Rv’s, not only travel trailers but all others like class C or class A should be taken to professionals once in while to check the tires.
You definitely don’t want blow out on a freeway. Also, when you are about to start a travel for camping (specially for long holiday) do a thorough check before starting. Number of years time can also be not accurate, one person who drives a travel trailer daily will be at risk of loosing the tires earlier than the one who hardly uses it. So it not only depends on number years but also on miles.
Waiting for your travel trailer tires to say to you, “replace me”; is insane. It will end up in an incident you don’t want to see ever. Just go ahead and replace them if you have any doubt. A thin tire is an invitation for a crash or roll off. Be sure you don’t take any chance on tires, a trailer will itself be of no use. You need to monitor for cracks and tread, if its separated or wrapped around the axle.
Life of travel trailer tires in terms of miles
A trailer tire can last for 5-6 years provided you use it with not a very high frequency. A trailer being run every day 50-80 miles will hit a miles limit given by tire manufacturing company way earlier. So, whats the catch? How many miles will it last and when should i replace the trailer tires.
A rule of thumb here is, a travel trailer tire should be used for about 8000 miles to 10,000 miles. This may happen way earlier than 5 years or may take more years. Whichever happens earlier, should be the limit for you to just go ahead and replace the tires.
A tire will not tell you that it will blow today or tomorrow. Its just going to happen if you haven’t replaced them within time. You will always find people who have been using their travel trailer tires for 10 years, or they have had a run of more than 20,000 miles or even 30,000 miles. There will always be exceptions, a tire manufacturing company (the better ones, like Michelin) always produce tires that are of great quality, but they do have a limit.
At time, they just last more but that does not mean all of them will be usable till 30,000 miles. And you should not, it could be dangerous. To know exactly how many miles your tire is capable, read tire manufacturer manual; they will definitely have the miles limit on them. This should be more seriously considered by those who rv full time, the miles just keep adding. If you don’t keep an eye on them you would be crossing the limit and you would not notice.
Checking the number of miles already run is a another great factor to check when buying the used travel trailer. With miles, you get a fair idea of travel trailer tires, you obviously need to check and ask the owner about when they were replaced. When i had a talk to one of my friends who was buying a second hand travel trailer, he told me that the trailer he was supposed to buy was used around 13,000 miles and the tires weren’t replaced. This one factor led him to cancel the deal as the owner refused to replace the tires or reduce the price as per the tires.
Why do travel trailer tires fail or blow out earlier than its assumed life
Even though manufacturers mention the years or miles, the tires would’nt last long. I find many people complain about early failures. So, why do they blow out earlier? Some of the tips that we have below, are the things you could do to prevent tire failures. Before we see the tips, lets see some of the things that result in blow out or other failures in travel trailer tires.
1. The main reason why tires blow out is the heat. A heat developed inside tires results in its failure and results in blow out. Now, why and how would heat get generated in tires? A Number of things can result in high heat generation inside tires. Two most common causes that result in high heat generation is the overloading of travel trailer and the second is the under inflation of tires.
2. A trailer that is overloaded most of times will mean your tires will fail way earlier. Never ever overload the trailer beyond the capacity for which it is designed. Your travel trailer weight and other many factors associated with it determine how much weight it should carry. I have seen many people overloading travel trailer, exceeding the limits, this is not only bad for travel trailer tires but also can be dangerous.
3. A tire will have a maximum psi mentioned for it. Always make sure your tires have that much pressure and do not keep them under inflated. A constantly under inflated tire will blow out earlier then its full life. A under inflated tire starts generating extra heat on its side walls. Thick side wall handle vertical loads and this also generates heat. And, if they are not properly inflated then that will result in producing more heat and finally resulting in bow out.
4. Another reason why a travel trailer tire blow out is because of using non ST type of tires. ST means special trailer tires, these are designed specially for extra weight. You should not use passenger vehicle tires or truck tires that will not be able to handle the kind of load the trailer will put. This also applies for fifth wheels, which are almost similar to travel trailers.
5. Another reason that can result in travel tire system failures, is the misalignment of axles. A slight misalignment of axle over a long period of time will worn out the tire system. A smaller misalignment, may not be visible easily when you do a trailer check, and this can be done through a professional check up. An excessive misalignment on a highway can lead to tires coming out while traveling.
Tips to keep the travel trailer tire in good conditions
Tires life is dependent a lot on how you take care of them. And also on the usability and the quality of the tire. You can have checklist to even keep a closer look on them. Follow these things, to keep the tires well in good conditions. These tips can also be followed for other rv’s like class A rv or class C rv or any other campers.
1. First and foremost buy from a reputed dealer. A tire generally would have a manufacturing date. But, its better to buy from a dealer that is reputable and trust worthy. A dealer that has good sales, would be the one to go for. If you chose a one that hardly has any sales, then there’s good chance that he may try to sell you old tires.
2. Check manufacturing date. Tire life is not from the date you purchased it but its from the date it was manufacturer. This point is important, you should check the date without fail. A tire will generally have the date mentioned on it. If its not present then better don’t buy that one. There will be many things written on the tire, its better to understand most of them before buying it.
3. Keep the tires covered, if you haven’t put them on trailer yet. If they remain in open for too long then there is good chance they will lose some life.
4. Stored travel trailer for long can have an impact on its tires too. Make sure the whole travel trailer is protected and covered. Also, make sure the tires are properly insulated from outer. You can also use tire covers for covering them and protecting them properly.
5. Try to make sure your travel is not through bad roads all the times. If you travel through roads that are bad, then your tires will definitely answer much earlier.
6. Take special care during harsh temperatures like extreme cold or high temperatures.
7. Do an inspection from professional every year or six months to make sure tires are in good condition. You can also check the tires before starting the journey.
8. Maintain tire pressure properly. Keep them inflated not with too much pressure and not too less. They are supposed to take the whole load and less pressure will lead to their failures. The more you travel, the more you need to check the tire pressure. One can also make use of tire pressure monitoring system. One similar pressure monitoring system Tymate Wireless tire pressure monitoring system present on amazon is a great value for money.
How to check tire age when buying new one
Replacing tires before they blow out is a good thing and you should do this before the expected life of tires. When buying a new tire or when a buying sued travel trailer one thing you should always do is know the exact age of the tire when you are buying it. A tires life is from the date it was manufactured and not from when you start using it. A normal tire would have lot of number printed on them.
The most important of all is the year and week of manufacturing. From all the letter and number printed you would to look for the last 4 digits. It would be the week and year of manufacturing of the tire. Like for example if its written 12 15 then it means 12th week of 2015, similarly 20 18 would mean 20th week of year 2018. The first 2 digits mean the Nth week and next 2 digits are for year. There will be exception in the way this is printed, you can always confirm the reading from the dealer who is selling it.
How much do travel tire cost and some brands
A travel trailer tire on an average costs around $60 – $140. Some of the brands that sell travel trailer tires include Good year, HWT, KENDA, Americana, Toyo tires, Deestone, TaskMaster, LoadStar. When buying a tire, make sure you choose a one that is being sold most, idea is to buy a tire of latest manufacturing date. You can also buy tires online and from big retail stores like walmart, costco etc.
Will less usage of travel trailer increase the tire life
No. Keeping the travel trailer in storage for most of the time of year will not keep the tires safe. A tire kept without usage will also be nearing its age. Having said that, if the trailer is extensively used then it will worn out earlier too. But yes, keeping the trailer in storage will definitely not increase the tires life. Also, while the trailer is being stored make sure the tires are well covered and kept distant from the water or moisture. It is also a good idea to move them slightly when kept in total storage. May be you can move the trailer slightly forward and backward.
Travel trailer tires – what is the correct pressure
Maintaining correct pressure in the camper trailer tire is as important as not overloading the camper. An under inflated tire will be the cause of extra heat generation in tires, which will result in blowing them out. I see lot of people are always confused about how much pressure their tires should have.A tire will also have the numbers in terms psi written on them, but should you blindly follow that? Well, your trailer will also have sticker that will mention the psi for tires. You need to follow the sticker and set it as per the limit.
Most trailer will have psi in the range of 70psi to 90psi. But yes, it depends on the size of your trailer and the weight carrying capacity. Whichever brand you chose they would have same rating chart. Unless you have changed the tires and chosen something different, go by the numbers mentioned on the sticker or manual that you had with the trailer. Its always better to check the tire pressure every time you head out for long travel. This should be in your checklist before taking a trip.
The chart that you get with travel trailer would normally tel you the load and the correct pressure. You would have psi number and the maximum load carrying capacity. Like for example, if the load is 2500 lbs and pressure is 70, then it means you can carry a max load of 2500 pounds with a tire pressure of 70 psi. Ideally, you should not go closer to this load and maintain a good difference just to be on safer side.If you still have confusion, better to check a professional to verify what should be the correct pressure.
A travel trailer tire can last long if you use it with proper care. A tire blow out can be very dangerous and you should not stretch the use of travel trailer tire too long. Even if the tire doesn’t show any signs of going out of use, its better to just go ahead and replace it. A technical professional is always an option if you have any doubts about the tires way earlier then its assumed age.
Lot of factors determine travel trailer tire age, but keeping tires under inflated and putting extra load on travel trailer are the primary reason why most of the people see their tires go out of use and blow out. Buying travel trailer tire should be done by checking the date of manufacturing and checking its health conditions. A tire for travel trailer is as important as its amenities and floor plans.