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Drive tires


rdickinson

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I will get flamed, but I I have Nomex undies..........

 

We bought our truck in '10, with good virgin tires. But they weren't new. They're still on it, and I have no intention of changing them soon.

 

But, we're still tandem. Big difference, as we're so lightly loaded that the tire charts don't give a proper inflation for us. By keeping the pressures above 80 psi, my tires can never generate heat, the destroyer of tires.

 

Don't get me wrong, we will change them when they start to check, but until then, I'm not concerned. I'm also running 16 year old tires on a commercial trailer that hauls full legal loads, but over a short trip at relatively low speeds. So far, so good.

 

If you're singled and/or running over half your tire's rated load, I'd do as Rod suggested.

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I replaced my 8 drives with a Chinese brand at the advise of my tire guy 3 years ago. 7 of them are still on the road today and the one that was replaced was due to a 1/2" bolt thru the treads. It would have taken out any tire.

 

I also replaced the tires on the other Volvo, the wife's daily driver, with a Chinese brand around the same time period. Also at the advise of my tire guy. Have not had a lick of trouble from them either with good even wear based on the age and mileage.

 

In both cases my tire guy told me he stands behind the tires. I have yet to have to test him on it. We did replace the steers on the 780 with Dunlaps. While my guy did have a Chinese steer tire that he was ok with, he still preferred to place a better known tire on the steers.

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This whole business of replacing tires at a certain time interval is the result of our over driven legal system. It started with the Ford Explorer/Firestone fiasco and has grown to epic proportions since. Of course the tire manufacturers are all on board with replacing perfectly good tires with brand new ones based on this criteria. The only down side for them is making sure their supply chain keeps the inventory moving, since it is a "perishable" commodity, not hard to do in this day and age. Although in the TMC manuals(Maintenance council) recommend replacement, it is widely ignored in the industry. Recappers no longer use out of date tires, but they are dealing with a special set of circumstances,

 

I cannot begin to tell you how many fully loaded trailers I handle that as far as tires are concerned are in the worst service possible. Sitting for months, moved a relatively short distance and then sitting for months again. I don't routinely check the date codes, but it is clear I am dealing with tires that are frequently 20+ years old. And some of these trailers are expensive specialized units. If I were to call the owner, or our operations people and tell them I think the tires need to be replaced simply because they are old, I would be told unless there are specific visual degradations, run them. The DOT regulations are vague in this area, and the interpretation of individual inspectors all over the place. Hands down the biggest offenders in the tire arena are the "Maypops" that are put on container chassis. 10:00x20 tube type bias ply are useless brand new and worse after any service. Half of what you see lying on the highway are these obsolete bloobs, over loaded and under inflated, routinely run at higher speeds than rated.

 

As far as our HDT typical service goes a few criteria will allow you to make an informed decision. The load, inflation history(if known) and quality of the tires are factors.While It is possible to have a catastrophic failure( tread peals and destroys everything around it), loss of control is unlikely, even in a singled out axle. If this kind of a failure would result in expensive damage, replace them.

 

To Chinese or not to Chinese. Given the fact that Cooper Tire is now owned by the Chinese,that and other factors do not automatically eliminate them as a valid choice. Major tire retailers such as Travel Centers of America sell lots of Chinese tires. If they had significant customer problems with them, they simply would not do so. This is where your tire dealer's experience is invaluable. Even in heavy truck service, I buy drive tires every 3-4 years, my dealer sells thousands of tires in that time frame and knows very quickly which tire brands are good and which are not. I would rather have a new set of quality Chinese tires(an oxymoron?) on my tractor than a set of 15 year old somethings of totally unknown history.

 

JMHO

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I put Sailun tires on my motorhome last year. I called a good friend of mine that runs a tire shop in New Jersey, handles a lot of tires for fleets of delivery vehicles. He sells Sailun and says they are a good tire, he said to go with them and I did. They are 19.5 inch tires and I have had them to SW Texas and back so far. They work for me. YMWV ;) FLAME ON!!!!

 

John in Joplin

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In 2012 we were coming North out of Austin after the F1 race and a stray bolt took out a drive tire. Long story short there was a truck tire distributor at the end to the next exit ramp! We put on four new Chinese drives - Double Star as I recall.

 

Good price and so far so good. The dealer said he had a bunch of regional guys running them up and down I-35 every day and they had had zero issues.

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We knowingly bought our truck with old tires on it. They were only beginning to get weather checked and the tread was good, both in depth and wear pattern. The date on the steers was 8 06. They were 9 years old when we bought the truck. The drives were older, almost 12 years old. They were all the Toyo brand. We had a belt break in one of the steers and replaced both this past summer and stayed with Toyo for them. We replaced the drives this fall and went with a cheaper brand, Hercules.

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The original post was incorrect, date code is 11 not 01. My excuse is I posted it in Orlando B4 leaving for Victoria BC via Chicago and Vancouver in the middle of the night.

Anyway, the tires had minor checks in them when I got the truck 2.5 yrs ago. Steers were replaced by RDO with Michelin's before taking possession of the truck..

 

With exchange taking a big bite out of my wallet, 40 %, I'll check with local dealer for a mid range price and see how that compares with the firm dealing with the rear end and pinion seal as well as the steering box developing a leak as well. Trailer bearings are getting a repack in Indian River along with some other minor issues.

 

I don't know how many people asked me how to get the car off the deck or can they take a picture. If in a location for several days, I set the ramps up to make it obvious. That worked worked at the Tampa RV show.

 

Anyway maybe if I can post some pics of the checks it may be helpful??? yes/no??

 

Thanks again.

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Roger,

The time to replace tires is up to you, I replaced my drive Sailun lug tires with 99% tread on them after I built my bed because of the noise they made, and the truck did not handle correctly, in my opinion.

I traded them off to a farm tire guy for some Hercules 902 steer tires, what a difference they made in noise and in handling.

I believe that safety is more important than money when it comes to steering, breaks and tires!

Just my opinion, but a rule I live by.

 

Roger

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