Trailer tires - oh boy, don’t read any online reviews

Discussion in 'Trailering' started by paulswagelock, Nov 11, 2022.

  1. paulswagelock

    paulswagelock Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2010
    pa
    2018 SDX 270 OB 300 Verado
    Verado 300
    So my 2018 Venture dual axle trailer needed a tire from some road shrapnel last summer. The local dealer only had Power King Tow Max tires in stock, in load range E radials. The rest of my tires are Arisun bias ply load range D from the OEM. I only tow 70 miles per season so I just replaced that one and it is mismatched from the others.

    I stopped at my storage building and I have another flat now, road shrapnel again. So I need to replace another tire. I have time on my side now, so I started researching trailer tires. Oh boy, there are horror stories of blow outs and tread separation on every brand except maybe the updated Goodyear trailer tires. My OEM Arisun tires are still in great condition after 5 years but I am debating replacing them just due to their age. So the debate is do I just replace the flat and if so with a matching Power King and put them on the same axle so I have a pair of bias D rating and a pair of radial E rated? Or do I buy 3 more Power King so they match (many positive reviews some separation reviews)? Or do I buy just 1 Arisun radial E (or other good brand) to replace the flat and put it on the same axle as the Power King? Or just buy 4 new tires and keep researching for decent brands?

    I have had no issues with the OEM Arisun tires, and the reviews are ok on them. The consensus is that the good year endurance tire is the best based on rv forums with long distance hauling. Seems like only a few actual manufacturers for trailer tires, most being Chinese companies, and they label them with all the different brand names.

    So, recommendations on which path forward you would choose, and any specific recommendations on trailer tires? I would get load range E just to add safety margin to the weight capacity.
     
  2. Nater Potater

    Nater Potater Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Oct 19, 2020
    Southwest Idaho
    1992 300DA Sundancer
    Twin Merc Alpha I Gen II I/O's with 5.7 V8's
    Boy, that's a tough call. On researching brands by internet reviews, one thing I try to do is check the dates on when the comments are made. A lot of times, I'll find they tend to trend by the date, as in if the bad reviews are older or newer, denoting a trend in the product. I wish I could help you with brand choice, but I'm in the same "boat" you are, but with my travel trailer. As for your existing tires being good after 5 years, that's getting on the ragged edge of tire life expectancy. Others may argue that that's not the case, but rolling stock is not something to gamble with. Check the sidewalls for any weather-checking, telling that the rubber compound has been compromised.
     
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  3. Bill Curtis

    Bill Curtis Well-Known Member

    534
    Mar 24, 2022
    Ahoskie, NC
    '95 220 Overnighter
    454 Mag Bravo3
    In all my years hauling trailers, have only had one blowout and that was on a trailer I had just picked up.

    I would venture to say 99% of the tire failures, aside from road debris, is from being too old, compromised / dried out and cracked from sun damage, curb damage, overloading or underinflated (with underinflated as #1). Keep on top of the tire inspections and maintenance and change them when needed due to being non-servicable (even with good tread on them) and your problems should be minimal.

    Sure, there are many ChiCom brands / labels out there (some good, some bad), but Goodyear, Firestone, Michilin and Carlisle are 99.9% of the time good to go. Mostly don't hear of the millions of miles that have been run free of problems, just the horror stories.
     
  4. ttmott

    ttmott PhD in OCD TECHNICAL Contributor GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 3, 2012
    Space Coast Florida
    2006 52 Sedan Bridge
    Cummins QSM11
    My caretaker just had new tires put on her horse trailer; it's a big heavy goose-neck. Replaced with the same which have been on the trailer for more than twelve years and performed very well. Goodyear Endurance LHD Load Range G, 14 ply. They still looked brand new and serviceable but precious cargo. Pricey but probably the last tire you will need on that trailer and, for the most part, you can kiss punctures goodby. These may be overkill for your trailering style but the heavier the load the better the tire is needed.
     
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  5. my3sons

    my3sons Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Feb 24, 2009
    Western NY (Lake Erie)
    2004 400DB, Onan 9 kw Generator, Highfield RIB,
    Cummins 6CTA M-3
    At 70 miles per year, you are going to age out before you wear out, or as you experienced, suffer from road hazard. I would buy new tires and start fresh because you are aging out and I honestly don’t think it matters much which brand with that little use.
    As mentioned above, don’t rely too much on reviews because most trailer tire failures are caused by road hazard or age/under inflation. In the heavy towable RV world (load range G or higher) the two gold standards are the Sailun S-637 (China, not Vietnam) and the Goodyear G-614 in that order. We always had good luck with the Goodyear brand on our 7.5 ton tag trailers. I have the Sailuns on my 5th wheel. For lighter trailers like yours I would go with an Endurance ST in load range D if you wanted to go with a better than average tire in case you would pull more miles in the future.
     
  6. my3sons

    my3sons Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Feb 24, 2009
    Western NY (Lake Erie)
    2004 400DB, Onan 9 kw Generator, Highfield RIB,
    Cummins 6CTA M-3
    I also should have added that if you go up in load range the tires are going to be rated for higher pressure. Be careful because the wheels may not be rated for that. Trailer wheels are usually stamped with a max psi on the inside of the wheel.
     
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  7. Nater Potater

    Nater Potater Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Oct 19, 2020
    Southwest Idaho
    1992 300DA Sundancer
    Twin Merc Alpha I Gen II I/O's with 5.7 V8's
    To add to that (not trying to hijack the thread), when I had 4 new tires installed on mine earlier this year, they put rubber valve stems back in the rims, then only aired the tires to 65 psi, since that's what that style of stem is rated for. Both the tires and rims were rated for 80, which I always run. Guess what buddy; you're pulling the wheels back off and replacing the stems! Somehow, I wouldn't have guessed that 12,000 pounds of boat and trailer wouldn't have triggered something in his brain to up the hardware requirement just a little bit. 'Something to keep in mind when you get new tires installed.
     
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  8. paulswagelock

    paulswagelock Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2010
    pa
    2018 SDX 270 OB 300 Verado
    Verado 300
    Good information, thanks.
    So if I buy load range E but find out my rims are only rated for 65Psi, I believe I can run a load E tire at 65 and just limit the weight load capacity to the D rated tire based on all the information I find. I am about 8000 lbs loaded, so a D is sufficient with 15-18% reserve, but the E tires in most cases are only a dollar or 2 more so why not.
     
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  9. my3sons

    my3sons Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Feb 24, 2009
    Western NY (Lake Erie)
    2004 400DB, Onan 9 kw Generator, Highfield RIB,
    Cummins 6CTA M-3
    You can do that. Your low use should not affect wear drastically.
    Go to tirepressure.com to see the load carry capacity at reduced pressures.
     
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  10. keokie

    keokie Well-Known Member

    Dec 27, 2006
    Arizona
    2002 310 Sundancer, Westerbeke 4.5 Genset
    496's, Bravo III's, 2.2:1 Gears
    I have been actively towing heavy trailers since the 80's. Trailer tires are a problem. The vast majority of them are junk.

    I tow in the hot desert southwest, where you travel long distances at high speed on very hot pavement.

    Here is what I have learned. Do not use steel belted radials unless they are steel bead to bead like Goodyear G614's or Saliun S637's. Those are phenomenal tires. Do not run them under inflated, as this can lead to a zipper failure in the sidewall when they are re-inflated, which can lead to a deadly explosion of the tire while being filled. I always use a lock on chuck with a very long lead, so I can stand clear when inflating steel side-walled tires.

    If you don't go with the above, then stick with bias ply. Steel-belted tires without steel sidewalls cannot withstand the flexing and torquing caused by trailers. The belts will eventually begin to separate, then the tire will fail. And, when a steel belted tire fails, it very often flings a great big portion of the tire doing tremendous damage to the trailer.

    Bias ply tires can take far more abuse than a steel belted tire (excepting bead to bead models like G614's and S-637's). And if the bias ply tire fails, it will throw only small chunks of tread, not a great big alligator. Not all bias ply tires are created equal. It is very preferable to go with an RIB style. You can sometimes tell this by looking at where the sidewall meets the tread. An RIB will often dish outward significantly as it reaches the tread where a standard bias ply will be more rounded similar to a radial. If the tire looks like an old bias ply tire from a sedan in the early 70's... that is not it. It will be a heavy, stiff side-walled hunk of rubber.

    I learned all the above after a ton of research and tons of failed tires. One day I decided to see what Uhaul uses. I figured if anybody would know what a long lasting trailer tire would be, it would be them. Go look. They use almost exclusively bias ply and some radial steel bead to bead. You won't see any Marathons, Maxxis, Carlisle, etc. In fact, they are often models named specifically and exclusively for them and other commercial purchasers. I found this out when trying to buy a set. I got to the manufacturer, after a long discussion, he explained what makes a good trailer tire. That is what I relayed above. He towed a lot himself, and noted he never uses radial trailer tires unless they are steel from bead to bead.

    I run six Goodyear G614's on a big fiver that weighs close to 20K. I tow my boat on Duro 16.5 by 9.5 HF506 12 plys. That can weigh north of 20K all loaded up.

    After having said all of that, your rim size will greatly affect your options. Very hopefully, they are 16's. If so, my recommendation would be the Sailuns because right now they are way less expensive than the goodyears. Put those on, and reasonably protect them from the sun and be done with it for ten years.
     
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  11. paulswagelock

    paulswagelock Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2010
    pa
    2018 SDX 270 OB 300 Verado
    Verado 300
    Good information. Unfortunately my rims are only 15” so I am more limited. Since I only tow short distances, I don’t see the need to go through a rim upgrade but I will definitely keep than in mind for the next trailer.

    It is getting harder to find bias ply tires in 15’s from a company anyone has ever heard of. That is what came on the trailer new, but I was unsuccessful trying to source a replacement from the original tire maker.
     
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  12. JHornsby3

    JHornsby3 Well-Known Member

    Nov 10, 2020
    Sheridan Oregon
    "Steele'y Tutz"
    1992 300 Sundancer
    Twin 4.3L W/Alpha One Gen II
    All of my trailers now have the Carlisle tires. All 7 on the big boat were from the factory. I replaced all of them after 15 years. I didn't like them being that old when I bought the boat. My 25k trailer has them from the factory. Same with our 10k trailer. Dad's boat trailer has LT pick up tires on it and it will get them as well when needed. Our fifth wheel, years ago had mixed tires when we got it and stopped at a Costco. All they had was some Chinese tire that they refused to cover for any amount of money.
     
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  13. WV 320 Dancer

    WV 320 Dancer Well-Known Member

    958
    Oct 28, 2018
    2003 Sea Ray Sundancer 320
    Twin 350 MAG - V Drive
    One thing to make sure of is the MFG date of the tires you are buying. All ties come with a date stamp that tells the week and year they were made. Tires are only good for about 7 years after they are made not when they are installed. You are correct that most tires now come from China. I would try to stick to a well-known brand.
     
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