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Old 08-27-2002, 03:14 PM   #1
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Angry Blowout

I experienced a blowout on an inside dual Michelin tire. Lucky, no one was hurt but my pocket book to repair the side of my Cutter Diesel.

Tires had plenty of tread. Michelin would not accept blame for "zipper" type blowout. But they were KIND enough to send me literature regarding underinflation zipper blowouts. I have learned that this type of damage can be hidden for hours or years. I had checked my tires that morning before leaving the campground.

I have since read that motorhomes should not have plain truck radial tires. I replace all my tires with a load range higher and steel sidewall tires.

Has anyone else had unusual Michelin problems? Airstream should not put these tires on their motorhomes...period.
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Old 08-27-2002, 04:07 PM   #2
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Never heard that term zipper blow out. I know I ran into some nice folks who had a 2001 diesal pusher, forgot what model A/S that is. They blew the left front on their way to Jackson Center for other work. It did cause some damage and after arriving at Jackson Center they took their pickup (which they were towing) and headed for a Michelin dealer in Dayton.

The folks told me, like you that they had checked the tires and they were running proper inflation all around. After inspecting the tire, the dealer told them that he felt it was a failure of the tire that it should be covered by warranty. He then called Michelin and they informed him that they would not cover the tire unless it was shipped to them (at the owner's expense) for analysis. If they felt it was underinflation, the owner would not be reimbursed for the tire or the shipping charges.

The tire dealer appolgized to the owners telling them that he had to follow Michelin's instructions even though he felt strongly that he should have been allowed to replace the tire based on his inspection.

The owners felt let down since they felt that Michelin should have allowed the local dealer to make the replacement determination. Especially considering the expense in shipping the tire to some national center.

Bottom line, I get my weight hat back on, have you ever weighed your Cutter on a per wheel basis? There always is the possibility that you could be in an overload situation even though your air pressure was within normal specs and potentially your axle was within weight limits.

I also remember at a seminar about tires that there are warnings regarding tire capacities. Some of the info we were given stated that a tire mounted in a dual situation has less capacity that if it used in a single mode. Most tire rating charts note the differnce in single vs dual load capacities for their tires. This normally should not be a problem since you do have two tires carrying weight, unless you get into a situation where in leveling, one tire of the dual wheel ends up carrying the weight. If this happens you can damage the tire belts. They noted that any leveling blocks or other materials placed under the rear wheels should equally support both tires on a dual wheel. Another issue they brought up was that the inside tire normally runs hotter in a dual tire situation. Any problems with under inflation are magnified since heat becomes that much worse.

Here is an article regarding tire loading. You might find it interesting.

Jack Canavera
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'04 Classic 30' S.O.,'03 GMC Savana 2500,'14 Honda CTX 700
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Old 08-27-2002, 05:09 PM   #3
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Tire issues

I had tire problems with General Tire about a year ago, and with Goodyear's Kelly tire division 6 month ago. Both times they allowed the local dealer to adjust the tires and accept their warranty. The General tire blowout damaged my vehicle, and they paid to have the damages repaired. In both instances the tires were not overloaded and properly inflated. I know that this is not Michelin, but maybe a little push would make them more pliable. I do agree with Jack, in that you must first make sure that the tire was not overloaded, or that there is no outside damage, like running over an obstacle etc. I've done this and not even noticed it right away.
In case Airstream installed tires with the wrong load rating, then perhaps a call to them would be in order. Just my $ 0.0002 worth.
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Old 08-27-2002, 05:15 PM   #4
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I got the same run around from Michelin as your example. I left the tire with the dealer for Michelin to inspect. They did and said that I either ran the tire low on pressure or ran over something. I asked for their determination in writing but was told that the only thing in writing that was on Michelin letterhead would be the warranty. Big deal.

I am through with Michelin, period.

I have several friends with American coaches, two of which had blowouts on their in side duals. Goodyear paid for the repairs in both instances! Both repairs were over $2,500. My repairs cost $1,800 only because the tread did not separate.

Michelin dealers must be good at appologizing for their factory because I received the same story. The steel belts on my tire were rusted. I have pictures. I voted with my wallet.

I hope Airstream takes a hard look at what tire is being put on their new coaches.
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