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Old 08-03-2009, 03:29 PM   #1
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Danville , Virginia
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Tires- How old is too old??

Hi all=
We are looking at a one owner 1990 model 29' unit that had new Carlyle tires put on in 1998, was then parked outdoors and has not moved since.
Reportedly they look "a little discolored" ie. faded, but no visible checking/cracking. I plan to repack the bearings and probably replace the brakes before pulling it home if I buy, but should I replace the tires too?
It will be about a 5-hour haul down the interstate in a pretty rural area.
Thanks, Bruce

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Old 08-03-2009, 03:52 PM   #2
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Tough call.
Typically six years is the limit.
The sidewalls tend to rot from the inside out.


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Old 08-03-2009, 04:00 PM   #3
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I'm sure you'd rather not hear this, but I would replace them.

Just last year - on a non Airstream trailer we then owned - I had three tires come apart on the road many many miles from home. I was very lucky that none lost air, but one tire did lose a huge chunk of tread - full tread width by over a foot long.

Previously I had the idea that as long as there were no sidewall cracks and I had tread left, I was good to go.

Now, it will be my intent to scrap my tires when they are about six years old. The tires on my AS are now about 3 years old.

Ad you probably know there should be a four digit date code on your tire that will give the week and year of manufacture.

Better safe than sorry, and you'll enjoy your travels more with the peace of mind in knowing you have done what you can!

Brian & Connie Mitchell

2005 Classic 30'
Hensley Arrow / Centramatics
2008 GMC Sierra SLT 2500HD,4x4,Crew Cab, Diesel, Leer cap.
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Old 08-03-2009, 04:01 PM   #4
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Replace them and have peace of mind. I headed cross country from FL on my 5 year old Goodyears figuring I would buy new tires when I got to CO. I only got 200 miles before one of the tires went flat.

The tire looked fine and the tire dealer couldn't find any leaks. But the sidewalls were flexing too much, popped the bead and lost air. So I had to buy new tires on the spot and lost 3 hours of travel time mounting new tires.
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Old 08-03-2009, 04:03 PM   #5
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Replacement time without a doubt in my book. Especially since these tires haven't been rolling.

Jack Canavera
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Old 08-03-2009, 04:30 PM   #6
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The ravages of tires are Time and UV exposure. Most TT tires age out before they wear out. Anything over the 5 to 6 years age is considered risky in most circles. If it were me I would replace them for my own peace of mind. I hate to spend the money on tires that do not appear to be worn out, or cracked/checked, but if one blows out at speed the damage to my rig may far exceed the price of a set of tires. My experience is that a tire failure will occurr at the absolute most inconvenient time possible.

Best of Luck,


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Old 08-03-2009, 05:00 PM   #7
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Greetings from the Florida Panhandle

I would also definitely replace the tires. I would not run with tires over 6 years old regardless of their appearance.

SuEllyn & Brian McCabe
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Old 08-03-2009, 09:41 PM   #8
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I concur! When my Dad passed away we wound up with his 5th wheel... (before our Airstream days...) and the tires looked fine, nearly newish as far as tread wear. On our first "shake down" camping trip, we blew 2 of the 4 tires, and when we got to a tire shop (on a Sunday...) we replaced them all. Learn from the mistakes of those of us who have gone before....
Mrs. NorCal Bambi traveling in S Tardis ~ from the Great State of Jefferson!

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Old 08-05-2009, 02:02 AM   #9
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Replace them. It's cheaper to buy new tires before the trip than to try and buy some on the road after a tire failure, especially since these are so old. And, don't forget to figure in the cost of the tow truck.

Our Marathon failure cost around $175 for one tire in Cortez, Colorado (the only trailer tire of the correct size in town) and $450 for a tow truck to come and change it 90 miles away where we were stuck in the sand in Mexican Hat, Arizona. Two new tires purchased in Phoenix, after we returned home, cost a little over $300.

It's worth the peace of mind...
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Old 08-05-2009, 05:09 AM   #10
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Generally speaking trailer tires have a reputation of being below average in quality and durability when compared to other types of tires.

Considering the fact yours are 10 years old and have been sitting idle I would replace before moving.

Note... When we bought out 23' it came with P rated Michelin tires. They looked fine and we towed the trailer home ( 2 hour hwy drive which include a run through Toronto). I then took one tire to the dealer. They ran the model type and serial number and reported the tires were over 12 years old.

I replaced those tires that day with XL*, P rated tires.

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Old 08-05-2009, 07:05 AM   #11
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I would do as the others have said..
"Replace the tires, repack the bearings and, clean the brakes.
In your case, the brakes will be okay after cleaning.
The Carlisle tires that you have on now are a excellent brand and, among others, are highly recommended.
I found out last year that my tires were starting to show "hairline cracks" and, upon reflections..remembered it was in 1999, when I had the (then) new TOYO tires installed. The TOYO looked perfect and, I kept them cleaned, etc but, still the age factored in ...
The new Carlisle tires were approx 104$ each.
Later, I saw them listed for much less..So, shop around for a good deal~!
Just be sure to specifiy that the dates on all tires be the same and, if possible, less than 6 months old. Mine were minted in Dec, 2K8 and, only 5 months old when installed.
Carlisle Tires
WBCCI 5292 AIR 807
NEU #64
New England Unit
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Old 08-05-2009, 08:56 AM   #12
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Do not try to use those tires, I would bet any amount of money they will fail. It just isn't a good idea.
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Old 08-05-2009, 12:02 PM   #13
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Yakima , Washington
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change them tires!

I'm eating humble pie now after I experienced a blowout in MT 500 miles after talking with HookedonClassics up in Glacier NP about my old Marathon tires...what was that about PressurePro?

I contemplated changing them before I left TX based solely on age (30th week of 2002) but after looking at them closely and assuring myself that during their ~12k miles, nothing but 65mph or less and religious air pressure and temperature checks or even a bumped curb...they'd be fine for one more trip.

Motoring along at 65 and about 75 degrees...pop on the forward curbside. Didn't seem to be debris caused...just let go after chunking a good sized piece of tread. Didn't do any damage, hardly knew it happened aside from some smoke...put the spare on, called Tire-Rama and high-tailed it into Billings for 4 new was 5:05pm, they closed at 6 and my GPS said I was 68 miles away...we made it and within 15 minutes of pulling in, I was pulling out with four new shoes (OK, so I was going faster than 65 THEN but I figured what are the chances???).

My opinion; 4 years maximum, 5 years if you feel lucky, 6 years, plan on some excitement!
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Old 08-05-2009, 02:49 PM   #14
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Well rbr there you have it.... Hope you got the dosh to replace those tires with. Because it seems unanimous...


May you have at least one sunny day, and a soft chair to sit in..

2008 5.7 L V8 Sequoia
AIR # 31243
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