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Old 02-19-2005, 09:00 PM   #1
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2 Catastrophic Tire Failures in 1 Day !!!!!!!

We had our first trip today from home into Las Cruces, NM. Prior to leaving home, we checked all the tires, and the pressures were all 65 psi. Tires have about 28000 miles, and trailer is 19 months old.

We took our trailer into North Dallas RV on Sep 28 for the recall. We had them accomplish that and several other items.

Today, we had the scare of our life. About 250 miles from home, we felt a vibration. I noticed rubber coming from the street side. Turns out the entire front street tire came apart. The outer tread came completely off, separating from the side walls. It caused only minimal damage to the molding. Tire was original equipment.

We replaced the tire and continued. We filled up the truck in Van Horn, TX, and stopped at a rest stop about 50 miles east of El Paso. All seemed ok there.

We drove into Las Cruces, NM. Mary said there was a funny clicking sound on the right side. When we pulled into our spot, Mary saw that the entire rear curb side tire disentrigated somewhere in the last 90 miles. We felt no vibrations or any other indication that the tire went bad. There's little but wheel and sidewall left.

Appears to be some trim damage, but can;t see other damage in the dark.

Why - How ? We had the tires check, recall performed, and alignment done. All tires have plenty of tread. Brakes work fine.

We're having it towed to the Airstream dealer in El Paso on Monday.

This evening we're grateful we made it safely today. Never again!

Will post pictures later.

73/gus
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Old 02-19-2005, 09:27 PM   #2
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Is 65 psi the pressure stated on the trailer or max rating of the tire?

Sounds like over or underinflation to me. My tires are rated at 65 psi max but the tag on the trailer and my manual state 50 psi. I use 50 psi since this is a high enough pressure to give the proper footprint on the asphalt for the weight of the loaded trailer. Also gives the trailer a somewhat softer ride.
Al
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Old 02-19-2005, 09:31 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gklott
Why - How ? We had the tires check, recall performed, and alignment done. All tires have plenty of tread. Brakes work fine.73/gus
When the service center removed the tires for the bearing pack, do you know if they rotated the tires?
The "official" practice is to cross-rotate tires, that is, to change tires from one side to the other, to equalize wear. The problem is, sometimes the steel belts will separate from suddenly rotating in a direction opposite from the way they used to.
Ford/Firestone recommended this for the tires on the Explorer, with extremely undesirable results.
Most owner's manuals through the mid 1990's recommend front to rear rotation only, to minimize this problem.
If the tires were in fact cross-rotated, I would very strongly advise replacing the other two tires as soon as possible.
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Old 02-19-2005, 09:46 PM   #4
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We checked the tires this morning before leaving - cold. 65 psi in all 4.

Manual page I-2 says 65 psi.

Two were ok when we checked, two slightly below pressure and we added air to bring them to 65 PSI.

73/gus
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Old 02-19-2005, 09:47 PM   #5
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The October check had them align and rotate the tires. We are not sure how they did it.

Alignment was slightly off, which they fixed.

73/gus
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Old 02-19-2005, 09:54 PM   #6
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Pressure was 65 psi using both the gauge on the compressor and using a separate slide type tire gauge.

Will go to Walmart in the morning, get a third gauge, and check remaining tires, including spare we put on.

73/gus
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Old 02-19-2005, 10:14 PM   #7
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Just my opinion ,I would go ahead and replace the other 2 tires,and take no chances on further damage to the AS or worse anything else, Scott
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Old 02-19-2005, 10:33 PM   #8
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Will replace all tires on Monday, including the spare. They are all Goodyear Marathon. Is this the best replacement? is there an alternative?

Luckily, there was very minor damage, only to the molding around the wheel opening.

Agree - take no chances.

73/gus
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Old 02-19-2005, 10:46 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gklott
They are all Goodyear Marathon. Is this the best replacement? is there an alternative? 73/gus
Goodyear had a terrible problem with these tires a few years ago, to the point where there was a recall. This is history. There are other brands of trailer tires. This is fact. Everything that follows is gossip.

I have heard way too may stories like yours to trust Marathons. Locally, I had two different Goodyear dealers tell me they do not, nor will use them personally because of their high rate of failure. The failures appear to be sidewall failure or tread seperation.

Certainly the Marathon is the choice of many, probably nearly all of the premium trailer makers. There are a great many of those tires out there. In any universe of products a certain number will fail, and the large number of Marathons made may well cause some dealers to think there is something wrong when they see so many come into the shop, even though it may be just a small percentage of those made.

Be that as it may, I don't use them. I'd rather not get into my brand/your brand arguements, but I went with the recommendation of a shop that has been very trustworthy.

Mark
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Old 02-19-2005, 11:02 PM   #10
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Scary story, Gus. I have the same year and model AS and am planning a cross country trip this summer so your story has me a little nervous. Glad you are safe.
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Old 02-20-2005, 12:04 AM   #11
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When my family and I went to Vermont to the International Rally we had just picked up a 2001 30' Classic. We met a couple in from Colorado that had two blow outs on there way. We had problems with a door that would keep jamming from time to time and a sick daughter. We decided to travel together and if we could get the door open we would camp next to them. We got to the campground in NY and the door would not open and we had a flate tire. We lucked into a Goodyear store just before closing and headed on to a motel since the door was jammed. Seems my 2001 is does not have a dead bolt stlye lock and many others do. Going down the road about 30 mph the door opens. Why they open so the wind will catch them im not sure. Since the door is open we go to the campground to meet up with the others. Called the dealer " You know the door I told that keeps jamming, it just opened at about thirty mph leaving the Goodyear dealer because of a blow out." They know we were having fun, said not to worry and stay it touch. The next day turn pike in Albany NY blow out two. Decide at this rate we need another tire before we feel prepared. Not to mention it 95 degrees heatwave traveling with sick child that Dr. in Columbus said should be fine. Three hours looking for a tire in Albany finally back on the road in time for rush hour Ny style. Fun fun. We get up to Glen Falls my wife wants motel kids bowles are locked. Hospital trip in the am kid doing better but worried about going to rally in heatwave with out a/c. Luck into private campground with hook ups several doors down from couple from Colorado. He had spoke to some people about his tire problems and they inform him that at the Airstream plant some of the wrong rated tires were put on the wrong model trailers. We look at mine sure enough the orignals were c rated and not d rated as I recall, I would have to check on my camper to be sure. Also Airstream does not balance the tires at the factory. When we asked a factory rep. he said that no trailer companies balanced tires so it was the industry standard. I replied we sure don't buy these cause there average. And the price is above average. They just gave us a dumb look. We found many trailers with loose screws holding lock mech as well. we did get home to St. Louis safe. Our local dealer Bill Thomas offered to but back, fix it put new tires on it and balance them, pay any extra bills we had, and was just sorry we were not closer to help on the road. Check those tire rating. And yes we still are happy campers.
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Old 02-20-2005, 05:42 AM   #12
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Gus -

Very sorry to hear about your unfortunate episodes.

I'm getting more concerned every day with my 2004 30' Classic Ltd - first it was our problem with the running gear being severely out of balance, then it was my wheel bearings not having sufficient grease (both of which Airstream mgmt didn't accept responsibility for --ugh!), and now hearing about your tire failures -- what's next???

Gus, do you know how much weight you were carrying with your loaded trailer on your trip??

Since we purchased our trailer last May, I haven't had ours weighed yet, but I'm concerned that we may be pushing the allowable weight limits when we're loaded for a trip. I wonder what weight these Goodyears are designed for??

John
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Old 02-20-2005, 06:37 AM   #13
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Is hitch a potential source?

Haven't weighed it in about 1 year. We were easily under the weight that time. We don;t carry much stuff.

We took everything out when we had the service Sep 28. We're minimally loaded now. Only one propane tank full, black and gray empty, and potable 1/2.

We loaded it for a quick one week trip to Santa Fe. All our A/V, books, etc. are at home. We only have the kitchen stuff and clothes. Even the kitchen stuff is minimal with the frig only 1/2 full. Three of the six overhead kitched cabinets are empty.

Not sure what the deal is. The failing tires are original equipment - 27k miles. We picked up our 2004 trailer in July 2003.

We have a Hensley. We checked it before we left. Strut alignment seems fine, we greased the fittings, and the jacks are between the top and middle mark, as we have always used.

Is there something that could be wrong in the hitch that could make the tires wear like this?

73/gus
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Old 02-20-2005, 06:46 AM   #14
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Gus, there have been several variables mentioned in this thread so far that have a direct bearing... first, get the DOT number off the remaining tires and find out from Goodyear whether or not that batch has been recalled, or has more reported failures than average. Marathons are some of the best trailer tires out there, and I use them on my tri-axle, but as Mark said, every manufacturer has problems at one time or another with their product.

Second, make sure that they're "D" rated, not "C" rated tires.

Third, take your trailer to a scale and make sure you're within your rated load limits, both for the axles AND tires. This will be a significant piece of data. If you're running overloaded, you need to re-think your cargo.

And last... contact your service dealer and find out how they were rotated. With 28,000 miles and a few years on them, the belts may have very likely taken a 'set' which could be problematic on rotation if they're cross-rotated.

ON EDIT: Gus, you also mention tire wear in your last post. Are they wearing in a fashion other than regular and even? If you're seeing odd wear patterns, it could be an axle alignment problem. It could be a combination of these factors as well. And no, i doubt that your Hensley would have any effect at all on tire wear.

And, IMHO, all trailer tires need to be balanced... i don't know why manufacturers/dealers don't have that done prior to delivery... it's a no-brainer to me!

So, figuring out why they failed will be a process of elimination, and you'll have to do each step to eliminate it as a potential cause. You still may not figure it out completely, but you will have ruled out a number of potential problems, and that will put your mind at ease for future trips.

Best of luck, and keep us advised of your progress!

Roger
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