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Old 05-02-2016, 05:52 PM   #1
sourdough
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I'm a believer!!

I read the tires thread all the time and have always wondered how so many folks had so much trouble with trailer tires. When I owned trailers in the past (many years ago) I just didn't have trouble with the tires. I will say that I only made shorter trips and didn't keep a trailer more than a couple of years. I just figured "keep them aired, balanced, no abuse" and I would be fine for a reasonable time period; well.............

I bought my trailer on March 1 2014. The tires are dated 0913 (looked at today) and I had about 7500 miles on them. I had had my local tire dealership go to my storage facility, pull the tires/wheels to inspect and re-pack all the bearings a couple of weeks ago. They said the tires looked really good (and they did). I had the tires inspected due to the concerns raised by this forum and others. They looked OK to me but wanted a second set of eyes on them. The tires are Trailer King ST225 75 15.


Today we left for FL with high hopes, excited about the trip and the fun about to be had. Fifty (50) miles from our house I heard a buzzing sound and looked in the mirror to see cream colored "something" coming out from behind the trailer. I shut it down and walked around. I thought I must be imagining things until I looked closer at the right rear tire.....there was no tread and little black strings were hanging down into the wheel well. Closer inspection revealed that the tread had simply detached from the entire tire. I looked up into the top of the wheel well and saw a hole about 18" long eaten through the bottom wood layer, the insulation and it had started eating on the underside of the flooring. I was pretty shocked that what appeared to be a good tire just disintegrated. Good Sam roadside assistance was not helpful so changed the tire and drove back home. We now have repairs scheduled for the RV.

I stole the line from a Monkeys song "I'm a believer" because now I am. The China bombs DO just self destruct for no rhyme or reason. I had told my wife about all that I had read about the Chinese tires and we had decided to replace them when we returned from this trip. I was just going to "make one more trip" because they looked so good and I hated to waste money. BAD CHOICE!

For those thinking/pondering about this and wondering if you should replace them.....do it before something bad happens. Our experience, and damage, could have been much worse if the entire tread had not wrapped around the axle and kept it from doing further damage. I have asked the dealership to get me 5 Maxxis M8008 ST Radial tires to replace everything on it. Should have done so sooner - just hard headed I guess. I know many, many have had these issues....guess it was my time to learn. On the bright side; my wife pointed out that I still had 6 weeks of therapy left from a total knee revision they did a few weeks ago so I could get back to that

Below is a pic of what to expect from these things. Just be proactive like I wasn't (I was fanatical about 65psi on the dot, not in direct sunlight in our storage unit, always balanced etc. but it didn't help).
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Old 05-02-2016, 06:04 PM   #2
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Thanks for the post so that others don't have the experience that you had.

The good side of the story is that no one was hurt and damage was minimal compared to "what it could have been".
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Old 05-02-2016, 06:24 PM   #3
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Danny,

Sorry about your negative experience !!! So far this year, we haven't got the Cougar out of the pole barn yet (Still freezing at night here and snow last week). Hopefully this weekend we will get the snowmobiles and the boat/trailer swapped out and start getting ready for summer.

My plan is to get new tires installed before even de-winterizing. Ours is a 2014, bought in July, 2013 with tires dated March 2013. Even though they are "not yet 5 years old", they are the same age (give or take a month or so) as yours. I've been "tempted" to make our ritual fishing trip to the UP on the current tires and then "fudge" for a big part of the summer. Based on your unfortunate experience, I'm back to my original plan to replace the tires "late this week or first part of next week"...

Again, sorry for your problems, but also, thanks for sharing. Your experience is a reminder to all of us to stay ahead of the damage that we know is "right around the corner" with these Chinese ST tires...............

Hopefully your repairs will be finished and new tires installed by the time you finish your next round of PT...........

Thanks for the reminder not to push luck past its limits !!!
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Old 05-02-2016, 06:44 PM   #4
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Thanks John.

What happened was totally unexpected after going to the extent I had to make sure they were going to be serviceable. No indication whatsoever of what was to come. The temp was 53 degrees and I was driving 65mph on a flat, rural West Texas road. It looks like the tread on these things are just not attached to the sidewalls or body of the tire...or ?

I think if I was in your shoes I would replace them as well. This is a well known and documented issue. I just thought "It won't get me"; I've taken extra steps to be sure they're OK.... Didn't work. Like others have observed, they are just ticking time bombs waiting to get you.

I don't know what you plan to buy but I spent the afternoon looking for replacements. Seemed Carlisle has a new radial (made in China) that has mixed reviews, and they have a tire made in the US but still has mixed reviews. I looked at the Goodyear Marathons but apparently they have moved them back to China and their reviews are mixed. The only trailer tire I found with reviews head and shoulders above the others was the Maxxis. I'm going with the E rated tires and I found them on Amazon for $130 each with free shipping. I'm sure the dealer will be more with installation etc. Of course, I saw some Trailer King tires for about $75......... In this case I don't think I'm at all interested in a "cheaper" deal.

I'm working with the service manager at the dealer to try to expedite the repairs and get me out in time to get to FL for my granddaughter's high school graduation on May 28. If he can get me out in a couple of weeks maybe I can "skip" more PT
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Old 05-03-2016, 07:39 AM   #5
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I had Trailer Kings but I don't now.

Read about my experience with those tires here: http://www.bobbystuff.com/rv/192/ano...loding-st-tire

Keep the old tire pieces and file a claim. China paid me enough so I could repair the damage myself and still have enough money to buy 4 new Michelin Load Range E LT tires.

Apparently it is cheaper to occasionally pay a $2-3k claim than build quality tires.

Bobby
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Old 05-03-2016, 04:09 PM   #6
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I just had my Fuzion inspected. Service tech also said tires look very good. I ask him if he could get Carslise tires. He said yes but would have to order them. My Trailer Kings are 3 1/2 years old approx 3500-4000 miles on them. I liked the Carlisle Trail RH tires because of the heat shield they claim to have in there tires. I have 2 long trips this summer and was starting to get scared of the Trailer Kings so I pulled the trigger and replaced them. After reading a lot of posts on trailer King tire failures I felt it was better to spend $ 700.00 than having to wait all summer to get damaged fixed on my rv because of a tire failure. Money well spent.
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Old 05-03-2016, 06:27 PM   #7
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I think you did the right thing. I was sort of thinking about the tire you bought but there were quite a few reviews that put me off. On the other hand, trying to find a good trailer tire is like looking for a needle in a haystack; and, I'm afraid that no matter what you choose it's just the luck of the draw.
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Old 05-04-2016, 06:11 AM   #8
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Sorry to hear that this happened - hopefully there is no serious damage.
Do everyone a favor and file an NHTSA complaint - TireKing seems to be a recent re-brand of a well know tire. I know that the NHTSA site is where I go to check the reliability of tires.
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Old 05-04-2016, 09:14 AM   #9
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We read so many reports from trailer owners that have experienced catastrophic loss of air in their trailer tires, blowouts! Discussions have gone on and on as to why tires on our trailers are failing and the reason most give is because they are made in China and are cheap tires.

The tire being brought in our DOT approved, they are rated according to standards they must pass so if these tires are meeting US standards then why are they not holding up? Lets take a look at what we expect and receive in our car and or truck tires, which we put on and seem for the most part to forget. Car and truck tries have PSI maximums above what we normally run in them, say your pick up has tires rated at 44 PSI at max and the manufacture of the vehicle has them running at 30 PSI front 33 PSI rear. Each tire on the pickup is said to have a max carrying capacity of 2,469Lb and the truck normally weights in at 5,560 pounds or less so the average weight on each tire is 1,390Lb or 56% of rated load. The speed maximum for this truck tire is listed as 118MPH.

Now think about what the trailer tire is being asked to do by the trailer manufacture. That trailer tire is being run at its max PSI to carry as much weight as possible. The speed stipulated on the trailer tire is max of 65MPH and that it what the tire is being run at, max speed and max PSI. The trailer tire has a limit to what it can carry and when you weigh your trailer and find that each tire is supporting as much as 70% of its max weight rating while your truck tire is carrying 56% of its weight, truck is running at 55% of its speed and the trailer tires are turning at 100% of their rated speed. The truck in this case is running 20% lower PSI then its max rating. The conclusion that I reach is that it is not the tires that are failing the trailer it is the trailer manufacture putting on tires that are being run at or close to their max specifications to keep the price down or make larger profits.

What I have also read is that the tires we have on our trailer when put on light duty trailers last for years and have few problems, why, because their specifications match up much closer to the tires on our trucks and cars for margins of safety far greater then what we get with our trailers. Think of taking your car or truck, loading it to its max weight and then some, running it at its top rated speed, how long would those tires hold up?

The facts and numbers were taken off my Tundra Bridgestone Dueler H/T P255/70R18 112T and Towmax Power King tires on my trailers.
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Old 05-04-2016, 09:36 AM   #10
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The bottom line is that it's about money. China is capable of manufacturing a high quality tire. Trailer Kings run what, $75/each while Sailun is going to run a solid $140 or more. People buy trailers for floorplan/features, not (typically) considering tire quality - at least not until they've owned a few.
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Old 05-04-2016, 10:10 AM   #11
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Are the Carlisle tires made in USA? I had a Carlisle blow on my boat trailer 2 years ago. It wasn't a heat or speed issue. I was driving at 55 mph and less than 10 miles from my house.
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Old 05-04-2016, 12:11 PM   #12
sourdough
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mfifield01 View Post
Are the Carlisle tires made in USA? I had a Carlisle blow on my boat trailer 2 years ago. It wasn't a heat or speed issue. I was driving at 55 mph and less than 10 miles from my house.
From what I was researching yesterday all of their tires are made in China with the exception of one; it has USA in the tire name and is pretty new from what I gathered.

buzzcop63 hit the nail on the head. Although I think the tire issue I had Monday is a defective tire (I had the service manager at CW look at it and he said it was a defective tire if he had ever seen one - and he worked for Pirelli for 10 years), the rating of the tires put on the trailers should be considered dangerous if not illegal. The gvw on my trailer is 10k lbs. My tires are rated at 2540lbs each - a 160 lb. cushion if I was running at max gvw - which I'm not, I'm at 9354. Most of the other trailers have a similar margin. To run at 100% inflation at 100% load at max speed is asking for trouble. Thankfully my wheels are rated for an E tire (2830 lbs) which will give me more breathing room but still nothing like the margins you have on an unloaded vehicle.
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Old 05-04-2016, 01:58 PM   #13
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Les Schwab, new tire out the door, $139.64 mounted on rim, 9/21/2015, ST225/75R-15, locked up brake on one tire causing flat spot, so replaced. Could have sold me any tire but according to tire dealer the Towmax was a good replacement.

Dealer manager said failures of tires they see from RV's are due to speed, too much weight and not keeping watch on PSI. My trailer is light at 5,500 Lb when attached to truck, 6,100 Lb sitting by itself, scale weights. 1,375 Lb per tire when trailer is attached to our truck, 2,540 is max weight for each tire, margin of safety is 1,165 Lb or 45%. Next Cougar up in size uses same tire, lower safety margin as trailer model weights go up.
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Old 05-04-2016, 03:29 PM   #14
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pics of disintegrated tire

Thought I would see if I could post some pics of the tire that fell apart.

From looking at it it appears these things are made like the cheap retreads from the 50s. The tread itself is either "free floating" or attached to the carcass in a VERY weak manner. The tread appears to be attached to the sidewalls by some form of vulcanizing? that literally rips like a perforated paper right down the edges. Don't know but looking at the "innards" scares the pants off me to have a single one on the ground....which I won't in the future.
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Old 05-04-2016, 03:33 PM   #15
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I have a 2015 Cougar and put about 5-6000 miles on it last year. This year will be similar. My tires appeared to be perfect but I reluctantly replaced them about a month ago because of the China bomb horror stories. I felt I may be a little too cautious but reading this makes me glad I did it. I bought Maxxis tires mounted and balanced with metal valve stems. 235/80-16. Then I threw the trailer kings on craigslist and sold them in 2 days for $150.
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Old 05-04-2016, 04:41 PM   #16
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Thanks for sharing, I have the same factory tires on my 2013 23RB and have really been thinking this is the year to replace. I have 8,000 trouble free miles, but the big trip this summer is going across South Dakota so I think I want to upgrade before then.

I have 225/75R15 in a D range, with my current trailer gross at 5420#, but she is rated for 6800#. So I am really thinking about the Maxxis M8008 in D or E range. Really really thinking to spend the extra $70 for the set of four to go with the E's.

I would love to go with LT's but the 15" rim sure limits me. Through this site it sounds like Maxxis are the way to go.

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Old 05-04-2016, 08:10 PM   #17
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If I had a 5vr or 16" wheels I would probably go with an LT. I'm giving the Maxxis a try; $180 a wheel installed, Maxxis and CW warranty, 5 tires. If these can't make it I'm going with ProComp 37x13.50
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Old 05-05-2016, 09:59 AM   #18
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Update: I won't be going with the Maxxis tires. They give a 3-5 business day timeframe and I want to be back on the road by Monday or so. CW said they could get the new Carlisle HD in a few hours so that's what I'm going with and hoping for the best.

The service manager at CW, who also worked with tires at Pirelli, said his family had 5 trailers and they all ran Carlisle. They had ran other tires as well but not to have any expectations for a trailer tire. In their experience they expected to replace their trailer tires every 2 years - no matter the brand. You might get a set that will last many years but that was an exception. Guess I'll find out in a few days.
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Old 05-05-2016, 10:26 AM   #19
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Maxxis ST Radial M8008 or Carlisle Radial Trails? This is the debate I have been having in my mind:

Local sources for the Carlisle Radial Trails from a tire dealer I really like dealing with. Maxxis ST Radial M8008 have to be ordered online and then get the same tire dealer to mount and balance the Maxxis.

BUT, NHTSA lists 57 complaints for the Carlisle Radial Trails and does not even list the Maxxis tires on their website. Does that mean that none of the Maxxis tires (not just M8008s) have had no complaints?
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Old 05-05-2016, 10:46 AM   #20
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nhtsa doesn't list Maxxas as a brand, you need to know that they're made by Ching Shin. Search under that brand and see what comes up.
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