One of the top repairs we get at Coach Specialists of Texas is damage to wheel-wells caused by RV tire blowouts or other damage. Our drivers in Plano find themselves in a situation where they are constantly dealing with tire blowout and the ensuing damage to their RV. One of the reasons this is a constant issue is because RV tires are truck tires, which are not the same as passenger car tires. Since the passenger car tires are more common, not everyone knows how to work with the tires RVs need. For example, RV tires need proper storage and inspection while not in use and before use. So this week, we wanted to focus on tips relating to protecting your wheel wells from tire blowout for our Plano and DFW customers.
RV Tires While in Storage
- When storing your R, protect your tires from ultraviolet light by using some type of tire cover. These can be off the shelf covers, homemade covers, or even some cardboard cut to fit the wheel wells.
- Place the vehicle on blocks or jackstands supporting the suspension in order to remove the weight from the tires. If the vehicle can’t be supported on blocks, make sure the storage surface is firm, clean, reasonably level, and that water can drain properly from the site.
- Unload the vehicle as much as possible so that minimum weight is on the tires.
- Inflate tires to the recommended pressure plus 25%, but don’t exceed the rim manufacturer’s inflation capacity.
- This is a tip many RVers do not know to do: thoroughly clean the tires with soap and water before storing them. More on that below.
- Move the vehicle at least every three months to help prevent ozone cracking and flat-spotting, but avoid moving it during extremely cold weather.
To keep from having a costly RV tire blow out, perform a routine RV tire inspection. Here is what to look for:
Option 1- Have it done for you!
If you want, and are in the area you can always take your RV to Coach Specialists of Texas in Dallas Fort Worth to have a tire inspection performed for you at least once a year. It is also a good idea to have RV tires inspected after you drive on rugged, rocky terrain or when you take your RV in for service.
Option 2- Check both sidewalls, the tread area, valves, caps and any valve extensions and look for cracks, bubbling in the sidewall and delamination for the tread from the sidewalls.
Option 3- Inspect carefully for nails, cuts, bulges, aging, cracks and weathering, as well as objects lodged between the duals.
Cleaning Your RV Tires
The reason it is important to clean your RV tires before storage is to keep road oils off the tires which can react with the rubber, soften it, and even speed up the degradation of the rubber. That’s why you should clean your tires whenever you wash your RV. You can wash your RV tires with the same products you use to wash your RV – a soft brush and mild soap.
RV tire contains additives, and as the tire rolls, they rise to the surface of the rubber to help protect the tires from cracking. Therefore RV tires do not need any other dressings, appearance products or covers to help protect them. In fact, using products that contain alcohol, petroleum or silicone products may cause your RV tires to deteriorate, crack and age more quickly.
RV Tire Service Life
The amount of service life you get from your RV’s tires are directly related to how your tires are used and stored. Factors such as how evenly you pack your RV, the weight of all your supplies, tire inflation pressure, how fast or slow you drive, whether you’re driving in the mountains or not and the types of terrain you drive on all have an effect on your tires.
Because these variables, it is impossible to predict how long your RV tires will last. However, if you take care of your tires and control the service conditions the best you can, you can help extend the life of your RV tires.
Keeping your RV’s tires properly inflated is the single-most important thing you can do to enhance performance and help extend the life of your tires. Improper inflation can cause issues and stress for the tire. Underinflation can cause poor handling, fast and/or irregular wear, decreased fuel economy or even disablement. Overinflation can reduce traction, braking ability and handling, as well as result in uneven wear and a harsh ride.