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Old 04-09-2011, 07:52 AM   #1
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Load range D will work. Is E better?

Putting on new aluminum wheels and will need new tires. You may have seen my thread regarding Marathons and Towmax. After much research I've decided to go with Maxxis.

My question now has to deal with load range. The trailer has been weighed before and fully loaded it is about 7,000 lbs. Load range D tires will work, but I am wondering if getting load range E will give me any advantage.

I know E's at full load should be inflated to 80 psi, but at my load should be run at 65 psi. Since they would then be a little more squat, seems there would be more sidewall flexing. Sure, thicker sidewalls on the E's but if I'm working them harder at a lower psi there seems to be no real advantage.

On my old steel rims I'd been running Goodyear Workhorse bias ply's with a load range of D. Gone thru several sets of those, only replaced due to age, with no problems so D certainly carries the load.


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Old 04-09-2011, 09:45 AM   #2
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It is best, in most circumstances, to run TT tires at max sidewall PSI. This reduces risk of tire failure and inflation error and overheating with minimal adverse impact.

Going overboard on tire ratings is much related to the discussions of going overboard on spring bar ratings - super heavy duty sounds nice but tends to be hard on the trailer.

Use equipment properly rated for the task at hand.

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Old 04-09-2011, 10:17 AM   #3
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Load Range E will be stiffer and are expected to be run at higher pressures. I would stick with the Load Range D since you seems to have no problems.

My Truck is Load Range E @80 psi 10,000 GVW, my utility trailer is load range E @80 psi dual axle GVW 14,000, my Airstream is Load Range D @ 65 dual axle GVW 10,000.
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Old 04-09-2011, 10:23 AM   #4
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We have been through all this before. My 25 Safaris's gvw is 6300--6000 on the tandem axle tires and 300 on the hitch so it is a bit lighter than your trailer.
We had serial trailer tire failures when we ran d rated Marathons and d rated no names. We left numerous tire carcasses all across the landscape. We switched to Maxim e's which we run at 70 lbs and have had no tire problems for the two and one half years we have had the tires.
More importantly, there is no sign that the trailer runs any rougher than it did with D rated tires. There is no feel of greater bouncing in the tow vehicle and no more interior problems than when running on d tires. Our interior problems consist of screws pulling out of particle board cabinets and drawers--a common problem on cheaper Airstreams regardless of tires. No damage other than this. We are hard users--running on forest service roads in Colorado and rough roads in Mexico.
I believe our tire problems were due to running at freeway speeds in very hot weather. We travel from Mexico to Colorado in June. We have driven when airtemps were over 110 degrees and with the old tires we could count on a failure in these conditions. ST tires are rated to 65 mph and 100 degrees tops.
When my E rated tires wear out, I plan to switch to LT rated 15 inch tires. There are a few available. I would like to drive at 70 mph on the freeway and there is no reason other than tires that limits speed to 65 mph.
My advice to you is to go with e rated tires if you decide to stick with ST tires. There is no downside to doing so and based on my experience no downside to running them at 70 lbs of pressure rather than 80.
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Old 04-09-2011, 11:52 AM   #5
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Ours is pretty much the same story. Lucy's OEM Marathons suffered 3 catastrophic failures in the first year of camping. We replaced them in Gillette, Wyoming, with Maxxis E's. We ran these E's at 72 psi. We noticed absolutely no difference in harshness of ride with the E's. Even the interior stuff that sometimes bounces around on a rough road day was about the same.

We had no problems with these Maxxis E's for about 27,000 miles. Then, suddenly, three of the four Maxxis showed evidence of tread separation. The tread area was rounding out to the center. Being tire cautious after our Marathon experiences, we replaced the Maxxis E's with another set of the the same in Quartzsite, Arizona.

This second set of Maxxis E's lasted only 14,000 miles before they showed tread separation on two of the tires. We replaced the defective Maxis with a single Carlisle E. This was all we could get in Presque Isle, Maine, and we had to wait 5 days for it to be shipped in from New York. We put Lucy's spare on for the other tread separated Maxxis. We kept one of the defective Maxxis as the spare.

This was the point at which we decided that Lucy would no longer run on any ST tire of any brand or load rating. Lucy is out camping way too much to run on junk tires. We decided to bite the bullet and make the switch to 16" wheels and LT tires.

We made Lucy an appointment at the Airstream Factory in Jackson Center on November 8, 2010. We brought Lucy to JC and had all her wheels and tires replaced. We went with the Michelin E's which cost a total of $1,645.00 for the five. The Service Center at the Airstream Factory offered to sell Lucy's old tires and wheels on Ebay and split the proceeds with us. About a month later we got a check for $102.00.

We are very satisfied with our decision. We have put right at 5,000 miles on Lucy since the conversion. We are running the Michelin E's at 72 psi. We have not experienced any problems. The new wheels are great. For the first time we can actually access the valve stems without a problem. Lucy's OEM 15" wheels were a really poor design. The valve stem was not easily accessible.

We are hopeful that this change will solve Lucy's tire problems. We are hoping to get a solid 40,000 miles out of these new Michelins. If we can meet this goal, the conversion will pay for itself over the next four years.

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Old 04-10-2011, 06:53 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by bryanl View Post
it is best, in most circumstances, to run tt tires at max sidewall psi. This reduces risk of tire failure and inflation error and overheating with minimal adverse impact.

Going overboard on tire ratings is much related to the discussions of going overboard on spring bar ratings - super heavy duty sounds nice but tends to be hard on the trailer.

Use equipment properly rated for the task at hand.
x2! on the question of pressure. There are reasons for load ranges, and the closer the better.

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