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My latest Problem - a bad tire


Jack Mayer

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OK, anyone have any theories on this tire issue? See picture.

 

It totally parted at the shoulder, all the way around. Circumstances:

  • within 10 miles of trip start.
  • Pre trip showed the tire to be good - no apparent damage to it.
  • Inflation was correct for load. Tire monitor was working.
  • It is not overloaded...not even close.
  • brakes are not dragging. Hub was not hot.
  • Less than 2000 miles on the tire.
  • Was on the third axle.

20150308_111849.jpg

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That looks like one of our G614's. It separated the tread completely from the casing all the way around. Never blewout though. I got an e-mail back from GoodYear saying they thought it was an issue in the vulcanization of the tread to the casing on that particular tire. They did a partial price reduction based on the age of the tire.

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The other day I was looking int ST Tire (ST =Spec Trailer) engineering specs and it was interesting to note that the specs printed on the tire sidewall is actually the "test speed" and that the tire should be operated at a lower speed.

 

A tire engineer told me last month that the vast majority of ST tires are "test rated" at 62 mph a few at 68 mph and very few at 70.

 

The engineer stated that ST tires are designed to carry a large load with a stiff sidewall and this typ of tire construction is not well suited for speeds above the high 50s to low 60s. The engineer stated that a common failure mode is sidewall separation at the tread shoulder due to overspeed.

 

I remarked that 62 mph travel on I-10 out of Phoenix will get you run over and he remarked "well get used to buying more trailer tires" I remarked that seems to fly in the face of the market needs of trailer owners. The engineer said "well maybe not since our largest trailer tire market is California and the entire state trailer speed limit is 55 mph".

 

His closing remark was rather chilling and that was that the stiff sidewall shoulder joint is progressively damaged by any amount of overspeed over time and the higher the speed the faster the damage occurs.

 

In today's towing staying in the mid-50s seems pretty low speed (except in CA).

 

Not sure if this helps but it might be some points to ponder.

 

Best regards,

 

Dollytrolley

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I am also no tire expert, but after the conversation with the tire engineer and pondering the low "test speed" of these tires I took the statement regarding get used to buying more trailer tires to heart and now I own TWO new trailer spares.

 

Am I wild about becoming a multi-spare-tire geek in my golden years......not really......but now and then on the major freeways we really need to fit into the traffic flow somewhat so to a certain extent Overspeeding these trailers is a two-edged sword......darned if we do, and darned if we don't.

 

Jack, I also did not like the feeling of driving down the road without a spare but now knowing what I've been told I wonder if this "two-spare-bandaid" is not just that......a bandaid....

 

Our real problem is that the wife's horseback trail riding has us traveling on some very remote roads out here in the western high deserts so often we my never meet another car for a hundred miles or more and cell coverage is another hundred miles away at best so travel without a spare or two is not a real option. The final thing we have to consider with our remote "outback-remote" horse RV travels is that leaving a horse stranded in a trailer while one drives a couple of hundred miles to get another trailer tire gets pretty ugly fast so that's another reason we chose to go into the two-spare mode.

I suppose the two-spare mode is somewhat like a HDT in that it is not for everyone, but for right now it is the "bandaid" that we are running with presently.

 

I am presently looking into options to make our trailer more able to fit into real-world traffic speeds, because as we know, constricting traffic has it's own dangers.

 

The tire engineer cautioned me that some folks try to change over to LT tires (Light Truck) however these tires have more sidewall flex and lower load ratings to allow the higher speed ratings.......another two-edged-sword.......

 

There are a few higher "test speed" rated trailer tires in a few sizes that we are looking into but even these tires come with a "fine print warning" to NOT exceed 60 mph in actual operations.........

 

Seems like a dice-roll at the moment.

 

Aside from the danger from sudden-tire failure we also have the problem of the failed tire damage to the trailer structure that is a real pain in time, effort and $$$.........

 

Pondering .........

 

Safe travels,

 

Dollytrolley

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Just for the record, Jack's tires are not ST types. They are commercial trailer 17.5" tires like the ones used under electronics trailers. These tires are not in any class of tires normally found on an RV trailer.

 

This is why the concern of Jack and others here because going to 17.5" H rated tires has, for many, removed the incidents of tire failures.

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As Mark mentioned, quite a few of us have moved towards the 17.5" H rated tire and I don't recall anybody having any issues with them - until now!

So - how many of you guys have had one of these tires go bad on you? Not the China bombs, but good brands like Goodyear?

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Jack.....I would check the production date and lot number on all 6 of your tires. Your unit is so new this would greatly concern me. I think this would concern NH as well. I have had the 17.5 Michelin's on mine for 30,000 miles and not an issue.

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I'm with Mark Bruss, it is a sidewall blow-out, either a big pothole, or another type of trauma, but not necessarily at the time of the failure.

That tire could have been stressed going over a protrusion on the roadway surface which caused cord separations as that tire may have taken on way too much load even for a very short time.

We're all speculating, Goodyear in Akron will know.

 

RL

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Interesting, the failure does look like a Zipper failure but the most common reason listed for a Zipper failure is running a tire way under inflated. This is something I know cannot be the cause for Jack.

 

But there were some indication that a foreign object penetration can start the sidewall cord failure that will run around the body.

 

It will be interesting to see what GoodYear says.

 

We put about 44,000 on our first set of G114 before they were rotated out for age.

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The temps for that day were in the 50's. I had only driven 10 miles. The sidewall temps on the other tires at the time of the failure were right at 100*. My ten miles was at speeds under 50 mph.

 

The only way there could have been damage like a large pothole hit on these tires was when the coach was taken to paint. That was a 1000 mile trip and not done by me. But in my service there has been zero large pothole strikes and no curb strikes. We will see what Goodyear says.

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