New tire advise sought, experienced RVtrailer pullers please

Help Support Ruger Forum:

Tallbald

Buckeye
Joined
Jan 29, 2009
Messages
1,750
Location
Southern KY
Miss Penny and I have an almost 10 year old Forrest River R-Pod single axle camper. A wonderful fiberglass and aluminum rolling cubby hole of a camper, we bought it used last year, and hope to take Ladybug (as Penny named her) on some some interstate road trips before my spine rots any further. Our camper is light weight at about 2000 pounds, but those two tires do have a lot of responsibility. We've been advised from many quarters that at the 10 year mark, because of dry rot and age, (even on very low mileage tires) safety dictates new tires. Our little R-Pod has handsome factory alloy rims we will be using again.
We are members of a national membership-based chain store. With a free moment while there this week I asked a random tire technician at Sa.... uh, what tire they sold for camper trailers he would recommend we buy from them. He shrugged his shoulders and said..."get the cheapest ones we sell. Order them online for delivery here, we'll call when they arrive and you bring your camper over. We put them on for $15 flat rate per tire.". That's it. "The cheapest tire" he said. An attractive idea but not really reassuring to Penny and me the way he gave it no apparent thought before answering.
Either he did or did not know the scoop, or maybe there's really no difference in tires which I find hard to believe.
Trailer camper tires are not as expensive as I expected. maybe $50 or so for 14 inch ones. Many are sold mounted and balanced on steel rims at that price too. Again not reassuring.
So friends what say the voices of experience on camper tires for highway use please?
As always I thank everyone for sharing advise with me.
Don.
 

hittman

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jan 16, 2008
Messages
10,807
Location
Illinois
Quality tires are a MUST for your situation. This is not the time for discount store or otherwise "best deal".

Luckily we have a couple of locally owned and trusted dealers that provide advice on things like this. Look for one of them in your area.
 

Bear Paw Jack

Hawkeye
Joined
Dec 19, 2001
Messages
9,593
Location
Alaska, Idaho USA
I agree with Hittman. You want a good tire with a good heavy sidewall. You have a blow out and that trailer could get away from you. I've pulled many a trailer and that is my worst nightmare is having a trailer swinging back and forth. It's scary for the driver and everyone around you. Doesn't hurt to have a spare as well. I haven't towed a trailer like you are talking about but a trailer carrying ATV's and such that was over 20' long. Those can get pretty exciting as well.
 

kmoore

Buckeye
Joined
Mar 29, 2017
Messages
1,249
Location
Idaho
Good news is you have a smaller, lighter TT than most being pulled up/down the highways. The tires for trailers are ST type and wear out/rot out long before the tread in most cases. They really should be replaced at about the 5 year mark or built date on the side wall. Replace the spare also even if never used, it is just as rotten as the others.
Nearly all are made in China even when they have a US name stamped on the side.
Carlisle tires are made in the US and China it depends on the size etc where made. They are a better China tire because they own and run the company according to their web site. They keep better quality control.
China ST tires are known as China Bombs as many will not last more than a year or 2 before blowing up as they fail.
Carlisle tires are not the most expensive and can be purchased at Walmart.
ST tires are not like your passenger tires or LT tires on a pickup. They are designed to be inflated at max. listed psi to carry the listed max. weight. That is also on the side wall. Inflation to psi below the max. listed also shortens the life of the tire.
Sorry, long post sounded like you could use some of my information.
On my 5th TT and 3rd boat trailer. Also did maintenance of 3 PD boats and trailers for 10 years. The RV/ trailer tire is about the most misused or has lack of proper maintenance item on a trailer, but is damn important.
 

pete44ru

Hunter
Joined
Dec 6, 2004
Messages
2,176
Location
Rhode Island
.

I've been dealing with RV's for almost 50 years now, and worked at a busy RV dealership for 6 of those years.

Whatever quality RV tire you eventually obtain, as noted above, be sure to observe the P.S.I. recommendation on the tire sidewall.

Don't presume that they should be inflated to typical 30psi automotive tires, like I did once upon a time. :oops:

I had a lightweight tent trailer - and the tires were marked for 65psi, not the 32psi I had inflated them to.

A tire ran at too low a pressure will build up enough heat to destroy itself. (don't ask me how I know)

.
 

Mobuck

Hawkeye
Joined
Dec 25, 2007
Messages
7,562
Location
missouri
I've had decent results with Carlisle but don't take that as a recommendation. What size tire are on the trailer now? If you want an indication of the sidewall condition, let the air out and manually flex the sidewalls. That will show those tiny cracks the rubber develops with age.
If looking for new tires, take a good look at the actual construction specs of the tires. Even though rated as C or D, many of the smaller tires are only one ply sidewall and don't have much resistance to road damage. Be very careful to maintain proper pressure as they don't like being run low(generates more heat). Tom just bought some cheap 14" load range C tires for a utility trailer. Those things were so "raggy" that they couldn't be inflated. We finally put a tube in one that was too "soft" take air by any means.
 

Busterswoodshop

Buckeye
Joined
Jun 20, 2009
Messages
1,169
Location
Sonoran Desert Az.
I have seen more than one travel trailer and RV get tore up because a tire blew out and went through the floor and walls.
Buying good quality tires is very important if you value your trailer or RV.
 
Joined
Apr 2, 2014
Messages
1,848
We run Goodyear Endurance trailer tires on our smaller trailers.
Used them and Goodyear's Marathon series for years.
I will not run cheap tires on anything!
Dave
 

dad45

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 5, 2016
Messages
111
Location
MN
Dave P. said:
We run Goodyear Endurance trailer tires on our smaller trailers.
Used them and Goodyear's Marathon series for years.
I will not run cheap tires on anything!
Dave

Agreed, although I tow a boat at 5500 lbs once I went to Goodyear Marathon I've never looked back, they are radial tires by the way.
The problem I've noticed with trailer packages for recreation is that many manufacturers seem to go as cheap and light as possible so many trailers are running around with axles and tires that are nearly maxed out which doesn't help anything in my mind
 

contender

Ruger Guru
Joined
Sep 18, 2002
Messages
21,758
Location
Lake Lure NC USA
Interesting discussion.

A different angle.

I needed a new spare for my utility trailer. My local tire shop that I've trusted & used for over 30 years and have always gotten great advice & service just told me something I find a bit puzzling.
They said by law, (not sure if it was NC or Federal,) stated that they could not sell & put a car tire on a trailer rim,, nor could they sell & put a trailer tire on a car rim. They said it had to do with some sort of safety regulations passed in the last few years.
They READILY admitted that they didn't understand the reasoning & such. We discussed things a bit,, and we both came to the conclusion that a tire, rated for an automobile would be a better tire than ones built just for trailers.

Thoughts? Comments? Actual knowledge of this law?
 

Tallbald

Buckeye
Joined
Jan 29, 2009
Messages
1,750
Location
Southern KY
Thanks everyone. You all have confirmed my thoughts that " the cheapest ones we have..." was bad advice. I looked at the current tires, which I believe to be factory originals, and they are:

Goodyear Marathon Radial
Trailer
ST205/75R14

I'm glad I asked here. I believe that we will price a replacement set of the same thing. Having had a cargo trailer pop off the hitch at 60MPH when I trusted the dealer to lock it down instead of checking it myself, I sure don't want to save a buck only to lose a camper.
Thank you for the tutorial too!
Don
 

Cholo

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Dec 30, 2008
Messages
6,198
Location
Georgia
Don, I'm on Goodyear's website and I don't see the tire you posted as being rated for a trailer :? This is what I've found with several searches. Am I missing something?

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?message=noTires&tireMake=Goodyear&tireModel=Marathon+Radial&width=205%2F&ratio=75&diameter=14&cameFrom=selectSize

http://www.goodyear.com/en-US/tires/endurance?addr=Kentucky%2C+USA&zip=null&lat=37.8393332&lng=-84.27001789999997
 

protoolman

Hunter
Joined
Oct 15, 2001
Messages
2,165
Location
ND
I run Goodyear Endurance on my little Scamp fiberglass trailer. The factory set were made in the USA and the replacement set was made in Canada. I trust them and had to order through tire rack online when my local guy tried to sell me Chinese and Korean junk. Scamp recommends the Goodyear's because blowing a tire on a Scamp usually results in bad fiberglass damage. Trailer tires are built with a stiffer sidewall and handle weight and temperature for their size far better than car tires.
 

Mobuck

Hawkeye
Joined
Dec 25, 2007
Messages
7,562
Location
missouri
I have no idea about why vehicle tires aren't recommended for trailer use. Trailer tires can often be found with much higher load ranges than vehicle tires but may not "balance" as well as typical vehicle tires.
I've been running vehicle rated tires on trailers for decades. The major problem is my trailers' tires spend more time sitting than rolling and rot before wearing out. Currently running a 14000# rated trailer on 4x hand me down 245R16 and a 25000# rated trailer on 8x 9.50x16.5 with confidence.
 

kmoore

Buckeye
Joined
Mar 29, 2017
Messages
1,249
Location
Idaho
My opinion on the GY Marathons, they had problems many years ago. None of those tires should be on the road now. The dept. had 39 boats on trailers and GY was the only tire we where told to buy. My personal boat was a custom order boat and I paid extra for the GYs, all 5.
As most ST tires they showed cracks at 5 years and all were shot at year 6. I have no experience with the newer ST tires from GY the Endurance line, but RVers using them I know like them. When you take those 10 year old tires off the rims look at the insides. They will likely show signs of failure just waiting to ruin your day if you pull them at highway speeds for awhile. Do not forget to check out the wheel bearings.
 

kmoore

Buckeye
Joined
Mar 29, 2017
Messages
1,249
Location
Idaho
Mobuck, the main problem is people put passenger tires on trailers and overload them. The treads and construction is different, but that may not matter. Just make sure they can carry what you load the trailer at. Check out the web site posted on page #1 it explains a lot more than my statement. Some guys are putting on LT tires on the biggest RVs and find them that match the weight ratings. They are claiming no more blow outs like from the China bombs.
 
Joined
Mar 24, 2002
Messages
5,516
Location
Oregon City, Oregon
I have pulled trailers many years. I take my equipment seriously. I've been fortunate and have had no catastrophic failures. But I've witnessed many failures over the years. A blown tire on an RV can cause tremendous damage.

I know of the R-Pod trailer line. You are fortunate that within their tire sizes, 10-Ply rated (load range E) tires are available. Money well spent.
 

Latest posts

Top