Travel Trailer Tire Shopping Guide

You can choose to overlook your travel trailer tires, but know that you risk and compromise your safety and those on board. And it's such a shame that some manufacturers will use cheap materials to make their tires because they want to save on the cost of production. So it's generally up to the recreational vehicle owner to source for reliable tires that can support the weight of the vehicle in question.

These tips should suffice where choosing travel trailer tires is concerned:

(a) The letters and numbers

It is advised that you look at the sidewall of the tire for special characters in form of letters and numbers. Usually, you will find an ST, followed by a series of numbers. ST means the tire is designated for RV trailer use. LT means light track.

Tires designed for towable trailers often withstand constant pulling, cornering and backing. However, keep in mind that LT tires can still be substituted with ST tire if greater load capacity is desired.

(b) What is the weight of your travel trailer when fully loaded?

You have to weigh your recreational vehicle's weight at the nearest scale station you can find. Most RV-iers say RV manufacturer numbers are not always accurate. Once you know the actual weight capacity, you can determine the load range for each tire of the vehicle.

Again, these tires are usually indicated with letters. They range between B, C, D etc. Generally, the higher the letter, the more load capacity the tire will handle. But again, you should remember that RV tires roll in conjunction with axles and other suspension elements. If you have a high capacity tire, it's not always a sure sign that you'll exceed the axle's ratings.

(c) Total weight of your RV and load range

After you've measured the total weight of your travel trailer, you will determine the load range that can support that weight. You can also use the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (usually found on the weight specification sticker) to know how much your travel trailer weighs.

If it's a single axle trailer, you will divide the total weight by 2. However, if it's a double axle, you will divide by 4 to get the maximum load that each tire is able to support.

Let's say your RV weighs 8000lbs. If it's a single axle, divide by 2 to get 4000lbs. On the other hand, if it's a 2 axle, you divide by 4 to get 2000lbs. That's the total weight each tire will support.

(d) Tire specification

Now that you have details of the weight your tires can support, it's time to know the load range, size, as well as tire inflation which is necessary to support the weight of the travel trailer. This information is usually found in a special chat that all RV-iers must have access to.

(e) Finally, it's time to walk into the stores to look for your ideal set of tires.

The age of a tire is usually printed like a serial number on the tire itself. The date code is stamped instead of being molded into an oval shape.

For instance, if the date code is marked 1306, it means the tire was manufactured in the thirteenth week of 2006.

(f) Have the set of tires mounted professionally

It's a good idea to have a professional do it for you. Notice that most of the recreational vehicle tires are not balanced from the factory, and this can lead to tire failure if not balanced by a professional.

Here are some tire samples to consider

1) 2 New trailer tires ST 225/75R15 8PR LR D

These tires are sold as a set. The features include 6'' width of rim space, load range D, and maximum weight support of 2,540lbs. The price is $119  (http://is.gd/hwvA7W).

2) ST 225/75R15 Goodride STZC 10 PLY tires

This radial travel trailer tire is among the most affordable tires to buy since the price is only $78. Rims are not included in your purchase (http://is.gd/4jCoS8).

3) 14'' white spoke trailer wheel

Bolt pattern is in 5 lug on 4.5'', total weight is 1780lbs, and load range is C (6 ply construction). The rim diameter is 14'', and the price is only $38  (http://is.gd/ao77ai).

4) Carlisle Radial ST225/75R15 10PLY

Load index rating is 117, rim width and diameter is 225mm and 15'' respectively. The price is $111 (http://is.gd/2qdK8y).

5) Maxxis M8008 ST radial travel trailer tire

This product features advanced tread design to reduce rolling resistance, thus fuel economy is improved. It also features double-steel belt construction to ensure added strength and stability when towing the trailer. It also provides superior load handling and shock absorption capabilities to make your ride smooth. It's the most expensive in our list of tires since the price is set at $158 (http://is.gd/fMDNWU).

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