View Poll Results: Marathon failures on your Airstream
No problems. 81 60.00%
Tire failure was not caused by defect. [nail Etc.] 7 5.19%
Only one Marathon failed. 15 11.11%
Two or more Marathons failed. 21 15.56%
I switched to another brand tire. 19 14.07%
My Airstream never had Marathon tires. 9 6.67%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 135. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-11-2008, 12:59 AM   #1
Rivet Master

2005 25' Safari
Salem , Oregon
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Bad Marathon, Bad Marathon

Hi, let's get some numbers on the infamous Marathons. Did you have problems or not. And were your tires, in your opinion, defective, overloaded, driven too fast, underinflated, or just happen to have a road hazard. [nails, sharp rocks, or no way of telling what you run over?]

For me, so far [knock on wood] four years and many thousands of miles with no problems.


2005 Safari 25-B
"Le Petit Chateau Argent"
[ Small Silver Castle ]
2000 Navigator / 2014 F-150 Eco-Boost / Equal-i-zer / P-3
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Old 07-11-2008, 01:50 AM   #2
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2005 30' Classic
Springdale , Arkansas
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I've had three Marathons with approx 12m miles on them go bad from tread separation. I usually check temp and pressure each time I stop. One failure occurred 15 miles after I had. checked the tire. All three were from tread separation


Sid and Becky
2005 Classic 30 "Twinkie II"
Hensley Arrow
2008 Bighorn 4X4 Dodge 2500 Cummins
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Old 07-11-2008, 06:25 AM   #3
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1982 31' Limited
1953 25' Cruiser
Hamilton , Texas
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I went through one set and replaced them with a new set of Marathons last year before putting on approximately 15,000 miles on a five month excursion up through Canada and back through all the western states. I had one tire on the previous set that would loose air. I had that tire repaired and esperienced no other problems. I believe others have indeed experienced many problems with their Marathons, but I have not.
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Old 07-11-2008, 06:30 AM   #4
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2000 34' Limited
Somewhere in Western , North Carolina
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No problems here so far, put new tires on last year after buying our trailer used. Also installed Centramtics and have the axles aligned and tires/wheels balanced. Have over 8k on them.
Duane Pandorf
Blog | Google+

Air# 16888 | 2000 34' Limited | 2008 Ford F250
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Old 07-11-2008, 06:50 AM   #5
Just an old timer...
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2004 22' Interstate
Tipton , Iowa
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I've had Marathons on eight trailers in twenty years and never experienced a failure. I change them after five years regardless of tread wear and run them fully inflated. I check my valve stems for cracks every time I inflate the tires. When I have the tires changed, I change to metal valve stems. I firmly believe that valve stems cause more tire failures than the tires themselves.

AIR 2053 Current: 2004 Airstream Interstate "B-Van" T1N Sprinter & 2006 Born Free 32 RQ Kodiak Chassis
Former Airstreams: 1953 Flying Cloud, 1957 Overlander, 1961 Bambi, 1970 Safari Special, 1978 Argosy Minuet, 1985 325 Moho, 1994 Limited 34' Two-door, 1994 B190 "B-Van"
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Old 07-11-2008, 08:35 AM   #6
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2005 30' Safari
Pfafftown , North Carolina
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Posts: 85
Hi All,

Four out of five original Marathons failed on our trailer (thread here). Our problem appeared to be heat related as 3 tires failed on one hot day. All tires separated but none failed catastrophically. Replaced with 16" inch rim and tire combo (Michelin XPS rib).

Happy trails,

Paul and Miriam
2005 30' Bunkhouse "Nedapedalua"
2002 Ford Excursion 7.3L Diesel 2WD
2007 Interstate
WBCCI #5182
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Old 07-13-2008, 12:24 AM   #7
Rivet Master

2005 25' Safari
Salem , Oregon
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Goodyear Marathons

Hi, 7 Posts, 24 Votes, and 158 Viewers. I'm sure that there are a few more [1000's of] Marathon owners on this forum than this; Especially with so many people saying how bad they are. Let's hear from you and check the numbers.

2005 Safari 25-B
"Le Petit Chateau Argent"
[ Small Silver Castle ]
2000 Navigator / 2014 F-150 Eco-Boost / Equal-i-zer / P-3
YAMAHA 2400 / AIR #12144
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Old 07-13-2008, 08:01 AM   #8
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1993 21' Sovereign
Colfax , North Carolina
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We've had Marathons on every Airstream product but one, and that's because I scrapped it in place, and never moved it. The only problem I have had with a tire on one of our trailers, was with another brand of tire (Cooper).
I've had plenty of problems with other brands of tires on other trailers, but never Marathons.
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Old 07-13-2008, 09:03 AM   #9
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1963 26' Overlander
Austin , Texas
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I've used Marathons on my boat trailers for years, no problems.
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Old 07-13-2008, 01:27 PM   #10
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1968 17' Caravel
Battle Ground , Washington
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I had Marathons on my trailer which the previous owner put on. They had already survived on trip to Alaska, and we used them for five more years before replacing them. Not for any particular reason, just because they were old. The tire shop couldn't get Marathons so they put a different brand on. I hope they last as well as the Marathons did. If they give us any trouble, I'll get Marathons again.

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Old 07-13-2008, 10:30 PM   #11
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1998 31' Excella 1000
South Berwick , Maine
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When I purchased our latest AS ('98) we had a blowout on the first trip. They were the original tires ~ 10 yrs old and load range C. Age and wrong carrying capicity is what I summize cause of failure. Replaced with 5 Marathon D's. Punctured tire last weekend going over granite curb, my fault - bought new one. made in China. My last trailer had been towed probably over 50,000 miles with no issues. I now use the SmarTire system and temp/pressure are always within a degree/pound of all tires.
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Old 08-02-2008, 10:51 AM   #12
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2005 25' Safari
Trabuco Canyon , California
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No problems yet (original equip '05). I'm running at 50 PSI, and have generally towed quite slowly-60 MPH top. Frequently at 55 MPH.
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Old 08-02-2008, 11:15 AM   #13
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2002 19' Bambi
Northwestern Ontario , - on the backside of the map and just above the big green spot
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Have 50,000 KM on the Bambi - changed out the original Marathons with new Marathons following the 5 year rule-of-thumb (tread was still good on the old tires) - no troubles with either set - tires inflated to 65 psi, driving speed never exceeds 100 KPH (60 MPH) - check the tire pressures every day before travelling and periodically check for heating during the day at fuel stops/rest stops - they have never run more than warm to the touch - always run cooler than the tires on the tow vehicle.

Bambi - 2002 (The Toaster)
Pathfinder - 2009 (The Buggy)

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Old 08-02-2008, 11:23 AM   #14
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1999 27' Safari
Kent , Ohio
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I made mention about the goodyear labor issues and I received "Karma" Ya I am a union man I also go to the Akron facility I here all the problems with manufactureing.
I posted it about 1 year ago and got hammered by someone for it. I wouldnt buy one.Ya you might get a good 1 There was a tire mfg out of the south I was told by a buddy of mine who is a service manager at a camper store. or Carlisle tire. I have owned GDYR I had no problems but that was many moons before Goodyear went on strike. This is just my opinion its what I know first hand so I hope someone doesnt feel obligated to give me "Karma" again
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Old 08-02-2008, 11:27 AM   #15
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Los Alamos , New Mexico
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I lost one to a nail and one to a screw. I wore out the rest of them with 35,000-40,000 miles. I am on my second set with about 10,000 miles so far.
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Old 08-02-2008, 11:50 AM   #16
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2008 34' Classic S/O
1967 22' Safari
2005 30' Classic
Santa Fe , New Mexico
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Still have the original Marathons on our '05. They were made about 8 mos. prior to install. Will be replacing them before our next long trip because they've been sitting... chances are, we'll go again with Marathons and continue to check pressure/maintain.

Won't say what we haven't experienced with 'em... power of the spoken word...
Bill & Kim
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The trouble with trouble is it always starts out as fun...
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Old 08-02-2008, 09:46 PM   #17
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1964 26' Overlander
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
Anna , Illinois
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Bad Marathon, Bad Marathon

Since Marathons changed over to the radial design, I haven't had a failure or specific problem with my tires. I had one catastrophic failure of a bias-ply belted Marathon in 1982 -- the coach was a Skyline product, and the empty axle weight was found to exceed the weight carrying capacity of 13" load range C tires following the failure. The coach that experienced the tire failure was less than two years old the tires were OEM from the factory.

My Minuet came from the factory with Marathon bias-ply belted tires, and has been equipped continuously with Marathons according to the records provided by the original owner -- in fact, I still have an original spare that has never been on the ground. The current set of Marathons have been on the Minuet since 2004. My regular maintenance schedule calls for replacing these tires next season or prior to the next long trip -- I just returned from a 3,000 mile + trip with no tire problems -- maintained pressure at 50 psi for the load range C Marathons on the Minuet.

My Overlander was equipped with its first set of Marathons shortly after I purchased it in 1995. If my plans don't change, I will be purchasing new tires for the Overlander in the Spring as it is the coach that I am tentatively planning to tow to the International Rally in Madison. The tires currently on the Overlander are seven years old and haven't given me any trouble, but my only towing has been within 30 miles of home the past three seasons -- I don't want to chance the 530 mile trip to Madison with tires the age of the Overlander's current set particularly since I will be towing with my '75 Cadillac.

With all of my coaches, 60 MPH is my absolute maximum continuous towing speed with between 50 and 55 MPH my preferred rate of travel.

Kevin D. Allen
WBCCI (Lifetime Member)/VAC/Free Wheelers #6359
AIR #827
1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 08-02-2008, 10:02 PM   #18
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2000 19' Bambi
mt. Prospect , Illinois
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The Bambi we have we bought used this spring. It's 8 years old, and had the original Goodyear tires on it. They had plenty of tread, and no weatherchecking. The previous owner had no problems with them, but the age made me nervous, so they were replaced with new Marathons. The originals were C load rated, which seemed to be marginal at best, and so I went with D rated. The original tires had no weights on them - the factory did not balance them. I ordered my new tires from Tire Rack, and had them balanced and installed by an independent tire shop (KO Tire in Elk Grove Village IL - highly recommended). I run them at 60-65 psi, and tow at 60-65 mph. They track well and seem to ride nicely - nothing out of place when I stop and check inside!
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Old 08-03-2008, 01:02 AM   #19
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1987 29' Sovereign
Sparta , Tennessee
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Previous owner had LRC LT's Goodyears on the trailer. Replaced them in 2006 with LRD Marathons. No problems except one tire loses 1 lb per month when I am towing.

Have put 45,000 miles on the truck and I figure 35,000 on the trailer tires.
29' trailer loads out at 7300/7500lbs -600 hitch = 68% of load capacity.

Caravans to BC, Newfoundland, & Southwest. Next is the Cajun & Southeast Coast and then Alaska.
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Old 08-03-2008, 07:08 AM   #20
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1972 31' Sovereign
High Springs , Florida
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I've got 4 on my flatbed equipment trailer. I think they are 5 years old. Starting to show some sidewall cracking. No failures yet. Hauls my big JD tractor and hay. 9000 on the tandems with the tractor loaded. Probably 6-7000 miles on tires. Been Florida to Ohio a few times.

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