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Old 03-11-2004, 08:32 AM   #1
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1999 25' Safari
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Wheel Bearing Repack?

I have now had my Safari for 4 years and have never had the bearings repacked or the barke shoes checked. Everything works fine, but we are taking a 3K mile trip this summer. I have had very poor experience with my local A/S dealer and don't want them working on the trailer unless absolutely necessary. I have no place to do the work myself.

What is the consensus for getting the bearings repacked and the brake shoes changed out? The rig has about 10-12K miles on it.

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Old 03-11-2004, 09:00 AM   #2
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I get my beardings and brakes checked every 6-7,000 miles which is every other year in my case. Any Rv shop or trailer shop can do the work. I am about 150 miles from the Airstream Dealer so I take mine to a local SOB dealer. He always does a good job and it costs about $100.00. Best wishes. Jeff

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Old 03-11-2004, 09:20 AM   #3
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If you are going to do the job yourself. Send some dollars on this thing . Snapon,Sears and anypalce thast sells good tools can or will have it for you. The job is easy good luck.
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Old 03-11-2004, 11:20 AM   #4
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for a picture story on repacking bearings, tips, and links to browse to learn more.

Repacking bearings is a maintenance procedure. You can always skimp on preventive maintenance but should be aware that doing so increases risk of failures.

Recommendations are to repack bearings once a year, especially if your trailer sits for several months. Repacking not only assures proper bearing lubrication but also serves as a means to inspect the running gear and brakes for wear or leaks or other potential problems that can be caught earlier rather than later, like on the road.
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Old 03-11-2004, 03:12 PM   #5
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My A/S dealer tech said repack every 10,000 miles. I've also heard every year. So I repack every year. to be on the safe side.
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Old 03-11-2004, 03:33 PM   #6
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My A/S dealer tech said repack every 10,000 miles. I've also heard every year.
If you look at any automotive type maintenance schedule, you will usually find a time or miles criteria.

for instance:

3,000 miles or 3 months for lube and oil.

10,000 miles or 1 year for trailer wheel bearings.

30,000 miles or two years for auto bearings

are typical.

Tires are the same way. Miles by tread or 5-7 years.
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Old 03-11-2004, 04:36 PM   #7
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The 2004 Bambi owners manual says to clean and repack wheel bearings every 10,000 miles or 6 months.

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Old 03-11-2004, 06:01 PM   #8
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Jace --I know what you mean by the "dealer". I think we are talking about the same location. I called there just to see if I could order the bearings, seals, etc & they said " gee we just go down to the local NAPA store & get some". I'm not a mechanic so I can't say if there are any differences on where you get the parts. I called A/S & of course they said the bearing ,etc was made for that make of hub. Whether or not that's true I can't say, so just to be on the safe side,I ordered the suggested parts from Ace-Fognal in Iowa, as I plan on doing the repack myself.
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Old 03-11-2004, 07:20 PM   #9
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The 2004 Bambi owners manual says to clean and repack wheel bearings every 10,000 miles or 6 months.
Every six months you're supposed to repack the bearings? Come on, can that be for real?

Does anyone do that? I sure as heck don't.
Former full-timer | AIRSTREAM LIFE magazine | Tour of America (old blog) | Man In The Maze (current blog)

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Old 03-11-2004, 08:35 PM   #10
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I am getting ready to pack the wheel barings on our AS. Yesterday I went to the AS dealer in Tacoma WA to get new seals. They did not know the size. Last night I pulled a wheel and have the seal and bearings. Tomorrow on the way from work I will stop at an industrial bearing supply place and they should be able to measure and sell me seals. Although the bearings look good I plan to have one set on hand in case of bearing failure. We will probasbly use our AS for a max of 5000 mile a year for the next few years so I feel packing the wheel bearings once a year is plenty, maybe over kill. I suspect just sitting for long periods is not good for the bearings.
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Old 03-11-2004, 10:48 PM   #11
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Great link, Thanks

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Old 03-13-2004, 07:14 PM   #12
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I recently purchased a 31' sovereign in very good condition. The last thing I did was pull the wheels and hubs to inspect what was underneath, as I had a 500 mile trip home. Two sets of bearings were bad and two brake magnets were inop due to broken wires. On Sunday afternoon, the former owner drove to the local auto parts store with the bad bearings in hand. He returned an hour later with two new bearings and a tub of grease. I cleaned and repacked all eight bearings. The former owner was a bit upset as he had them repacked within the last two years, less than 10k miles on the trailer since that time.

Moral is to check the brakes and repack bearing yearly.

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Old 03-13-2004, 07:31 PM   #13
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I agree with Bryan, I repack bearings annually. I have never found a problem with the bearings but I have found broken brake springs and out of adjustment brakes. Its just a good way to look over the tires, while you have them off and check for broken wires on the brakes. Last fall I did this and still had a broken brake spring 3 hours away from home. It can happen no matter what precautions you take.
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Old 03-13-2004, 08:16 PM   #14
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Great Post, just in time to remind me how inportant this is. Going to move our 75 Argosy next month, we just bought it and the owner is letting us leave it there for a month till the weather gets better, I want to repack the bearings and check the brakes before I move it. That is probably the most neglected thing on a trailer of any kind. Thanks Marvin

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