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Old 06-18-2015, 12:54 PM   #1
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2014 20' Flying Cloud
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My biggest fear. . . .

We are pretty new campers, having purchased our AS just about a year ago. It's a single axle 20' trailer and we love it!

But my biggest fear is having a flat tire while traveling at 60 on the highway. My theory is that having two axles and having a flat is a lot less "eventful."

So, how bad is it when you have a flat with a single axle trailer on the highway? Is it horrible and you might tip over, etc., or is it just a bad pain in the back sort of thing that takes time to get fixed.

I'm hoping you can help me get over this fear!
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Old 06-18-2015, 01:28 PM   #2
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I have had both, single axle and dual axle Airstreams. I have absolutely no fear of a flat, and have had them on both. When a tire goes on a single you know it immediately and all that happens is that the trailer sags to one side and you know more power is needed, and something is wrong. You stop immediately and repair/replace the tire. Since you stop immediately, there seldom is additional damage caused to the trailer from the bad tire.

When a tire goes on a dual axle Airstream you may not even know it until someone signals you that there is a problem. Unfortunately, by the time you know it, the tire may have come apart and torn out the side of your trailer, with thousands of dollars of damage to the side and wheel well.

My worst single axle flat was near LA, in CA, and I was in a left lane, huge amount of traffic. The fine residents of LA would not let me across to the right lane and shoulder to get out of traffic, even though they could see the tire on my trailer had gone flat. They just kept charging by me on the right and no one would let me change lanes. Such nice people. But when I did get to the shoulder, and changed it, no damage was done to the Airstream.

I changed the 15" tires on both of my 20 foot trailers to 16" with LT tires. No more ST tires for me. I would recommend you think of that possibility for your rig, especially if you have a real fear of a flat or blowout.

But honestly a flat on a single axle Airstream is no big deal. Always have a jack of course, and a lug wrench.
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Old 06-18-2015, 03:18 PM   #3
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One of the Tire Pressure Management Systems unit would probably ease your mind a little.

>>ron<<
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Old 06-18-2015, 03:25 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carver 1 View Post
One of the Tire Pressure Management Systems unit would probably ease your mind a little.

>>ron<<
And maybe use a can of Slime on it, too, for re-sealing magic.
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Old 06-18-2015, 03:36 PM   #5
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Tire sealants will destroy the usefulness of tire monitors. Clogs them up.
Tire monitor systems will do nothing to prevent flats. They do give a sense of piece of mind. I just hope my TST system will give me enough heads up of impending failure to prevent major damage to my trailer.
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Old 06-18-2015, 03:40 PM   #6
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I've changed a flat tire on a single-axle SOB pop-up in 112 degree temperatures. Not fun by any means, but not a catastrophe.

Just make sure you have a serviceable spare, a jack that works with the trailer, and a lug wrench that fits. It's no worse than a flat on your car, eh?
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Old 06-18-2015, 03:55 PM   #7
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Sallye-

1. My sister lives on Spruce in Watertown!

2. We had a 20' for 7 years and loved it. We changed to 16" Michelins after a couple of tread separations on the Marathons. I checked the Marathons every day, so I noticed the issue before it became a problem. I still checked the Michelins, but there was never an issue.

On our 25' I put in a Dill TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitoring System) that give me assurance that everything is ok with the tires. On a dual axle one tire may go out and you wouldn't know it- you'd know it on a single axel.

So if you want to feel come comfortable get a TPMS. The 16' wheels wouldn't hurt either.
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Old 06-18-2015, 06:17 PM   #8
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Thanks!

Thanks for the great replies! I had no idea you could get an after market tire pressure monitor system.

LT vs. ST: Since the STs are made for trailers and the LTs for trucks, why are the LTs better?

I just looked, and we have Goodyear ST 225/75R15 tires on our AS.

Another question - if you switch to 16" tires do you have to buy a new spare as well, or could you get by using the 15" spare on one side with the 16" tire on the other until you can get to a repair shop?

Sally
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Old 06-18-2015, 07:45 PM   #9
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A 15 inch spare is fine until you get the regular tire repaired.

The ST vs. LT tire information is all here in the various threads. They will put you to sleep for weeks. I personally made the decision that LT tires were what I want to haul my trailer on. Now in my opinion, ST tires are built down to a price point for competitive trailer manufactures. LT tires have a higher range of quality, and the best are built up to a quality specification. The good ones seldom fail.
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Old 06-18-2015, 07:49 PM   #10
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My husband found this link, explaining the difference between ST and LT tires:

Trailer Towing – ST Tires vs. LT Tires | RV 101 your education source for RV information

So.... hm.....
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Old 06-19-2015, 01:46 PM   #11
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Great Article sallye

Bottom line keep 'em inflated to max
JCW
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Old 06-19-2015, 05:26 PM   #12
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You will have more and greater problems with people that text, or eat a cheeseburger while holding a drink in the other. Then there are the Formula 1 drivers, and of course the ladies applying mascara and lip gloss in the rearview mirror while driving with the knees. Make sure you have good tires, keep them aired up, check them at time of refueling and if you run over something, etc...
No Worries. Have fun!
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Old 06-19-2015, 05:32 PM   #13
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I have had a flat with a single axle trailer at interstate speeds twice. I had no swaying or control issues. The first time I saw smoke in my Sideview mirror from the tire. The second time I noticed the trailer leaning. The tire was completely off the rim and gone.
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Old 06-19-2015, 09:01 PM   #14
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Yikes! Running on the rim!

We do check the pressure before every drive, and I just ordered a tire pressure monitor, so that will help.

Re the postings about doing damage under to the trailer itself - I've never heard of that due to a car blowing a tire. Or maybe, given the other problems blowing a car tire can cause, maybe people just don't mention it?

And yes, I would be more comfortable if I were the only one on the road!
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