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Old 12-01-2023, 04:01 PM   #1
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Michelin Defender or Agilis in 15" Size?

We just picked up our pre-owned 2017 Flying Cloud 27fb a week ago. Gingerly towed it home on alternate roads at low speeds due to the shape of the tires. Mismatched brands with a couple clearly showing they are at the end of their road.


My issue is this: I really want to go with either Michelin Defender LTX or Agilis Crossclimate for the replacement - but local tire stores are ALL telling me that neither one is available in the P225 75R 15 size we need. I can find Defender LTX in 235 75R15 and can get the Agilis Crossclimate in 225 75R16, but that's all showing at 4 different tire shops.


I really don't want to go to the expense of new rims right now - and don't even know if 16" rims will fit our trailer. Have read that folks have switched to P235s over the P225s without any hassle. Anyone done that? Or anyone have suggestions? (One tire dealer told me that Michelin was discontinuing all truck tires in 15" size, which boggles my mind.)


Any suggestions welcome.


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Davidson, NC
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Old 12-01-2023, 04:34 PM   #2
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I run the Michelin P235 75/R XL tires on my trailer. Max inflation pressure 50 psi. They work well. I started running the LTX back when trailer tires were Marathons. At that time the Michelin in that size were actual LT tires. Now the LTX is a P rated tire in the 15" size. You have to derate the maximum load listed on the tire by 10% for use on a trailer. Comes out to about 2000 lbs max. My total axle weight is about 5700 with a gross rating of 6400 lbs so I have a fair amount of margin with these tires.

Your trailer is larger and heavier than mine. From what I can tell from the forums and people I know there is no reason not to run the new Goodyear Endurance tires on a trailer now. I have a couple more years on my tires and then I will have to decide again.

My old trailer came from the factory with load range C tires inflated to 45ps. The newer ones come with load range E tires inflated to 80 psi. I wonder if air is less supporting now than it was in 1988?

The 235-15 will fit. No, you can not get those tires in the 225 size. And...most people put the 235 size on with the Goodyear Endurance load range E tires.

I do not have a recommendation but for my trailer and use I have been happy with the 4 sets of Michelins over the last 15 years.
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Old 12-01-2023, 04:43 PM   #3
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So I also have a 27FBQ and you will get plenty of feedback on Airstream tires. I went to 16” Sendel rims with Michelin XPS Ribs tires. The XPS Ribs has a heavy tread on it and usually is standard equipment tires on steering axles of HD trucks. I have had then on a year and have about 8,000 miles on them and they are working out just fine. I believe it raised my Airstream about 1/2” of overall height and the distance between the tires is closer but the 16” wheel and tire combo will install and work well on your Airstream.

That is what I did…..
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Old 12-01-2023, 05:03 PM   #4
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Rodger, the other solution is to install a new set of Goodyear Endurance tires. We'll be due to replace our original set at the end of next year and they've served us well. If it ain't broke...

BTW, there's a discount program through the WBCCI membership on Goodyear (and Michelin) tires.
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Old 12-01-2023, 05:12 PM   #5
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I have the Goodyear endurance on my 2015 FC 27 FBQ. They have been great tires. Over the Rockies a couple of times, and the Sierras. When the time comes I’ll replace them with the same.

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Old 12-01-2023, 11:08 PM   #6
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If you buy the 15” Michelin tires, be sure they have the 109 load index rating. 2271 lbs before derating by 10%. There are 104s on that size.

They used to be sold as LTs and rated for about 1985 lbs - equal to 2271 less 10%.

They are not Pmetric. The size is 235/75/15 - no P, no LT. Maybe someone with more knowledge can explain this.
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Old 12-02-2023, 03:01 AM   #7
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Roger,

You are missing an important piece of the puzzle. The tires that are supposed to go on your trailer are ST tires. Both Michelins mentioned are not ST tires.

Michelin doesn't make ST tires. The 15" is a P type and the 16" is an LT. If you use those types of tires, you have to be aware of how to make the conversion.

So let's start with the vehicle tire placard. It's located on the driver's side lower front corner. It's yellow and it should tell you what Airstream specified - size and inflation pressure. Best guess is that it says ST225/75R15 Load Range D - perhaps 65 psi?

As mentioned, the Goodyear Endurance ST225/75R15 Loaf Range E is an appropriate tire. It has a good history.

In the past, ST tires didn't perform very well - which is why many folks made the switch you mentioned. That is no longer true. There's no reason not to go with the Goodyear.
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Old 12-02-2023, 07:37 AM   #8
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"They are not Pmetric. The size is 235/75/15 - no P, no LT."


The 2 year old ones on my trailer do have the P....P235/75/15 XL.

Be very sure they have the XL.
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Old 12-02-2023, 08:23 AM   #9
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16” wheels, go with Michelins. 15” wheels, go with Goodyear Endurance.
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Old 12-02-2023, 10:08 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RP Sellers View Post
We just picked up our pre-owned 2017 Flying Cloud 27fb a week ago. Gingerly towed it home on alternate roads at low speeds due to the shape of the tires. Mismatched brands with a couple clearly showing they are at the end of their road.


My issue is this: I really want to go with either Michelin Defender LTX or Agilis Crossclimate for the replacement - but local tire stores are ALL telling me that neither one is available in the P225 75R 15 size we need. I can find Defender LTX in 235 75R15 and can get the Agilis Crossclimate in 225 75R16, but that's all showing at 4 different tire shops.


I really don't want to go to the expense of new rims right now - and don't even know if 16" rims will fit our trailer. Have read that folks have switched to P235s over the P225s without any hassle. Anyone done that? Or anyone have suggestions? (One tire dealer told me that Michelin was discontinuing all truck tires in 15" size, which boggles my mind.)


Any suggestions welcome.


Rodger Sellers
Davidson, NC
I have Michelin Agilis on both my F250 and the 30' Classic. The best tires I ever owned.
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Old 12-02-2023, 10:52 AM   #11
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I agree with the above comments on the Goodyear Endurance. I am on my 4th set now with my last 25' AS, and now my 28' AS. I have also run the 15" Michelin LT rated tires years ago before they stopped offering in a 15" tire. The 16" Michelin LTs are great tires but I did not want to purchase new wheels. The Goodyears have been very good tires. Make sure you get a good TPMS also!
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Old 12-02-2023, 11:21 AM   #12
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Smile 15" Goodyear Endurance is appropriate

So you don't want change rims. I don't blame you.
My experience with GY Endurance tires has been excellent.
Wasn't so fortunate with the old GY Marathon's. You won't be sorry.
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Old 12-02-2023, 11:37 AM   #13
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Tire ply

What ever tire you choose, recommend you get a minimum of a 10 ply tire. And buy road hazard tire insurance.
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Old 12-02-2023, 05:06 PM   #14
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I have been very happy with the Nokian Rotiiva Plus AT tires, in 15" load range E, but do not think they are making them in that size any longer.

When I go to replace them, if I cannot find a suitable Nokian I will consider the HANKOOK VANTRA TRAILER ST01, in load range E.

The Goodyear Endurance is probably a good tire, but I am avoiding Goodyear products due to the Marathon debacle.
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Old 12-02-2023, 05:28 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill M. View Post
"They are not Pmetric. The size is 235/75/15 - no P, no LT."


The 2 year old ones on my trailer do have the P....P235/75/15 XL.

Be very sure they have the XL.
The tires I have do not have the P. They are XL, with a load index of 109T.

When I bought them, the tire store first identified tires with a load index of 104. I made sure they ordered the 109s.

97s seem to exist as well - maybe those along with the 104s are the P-metric versions. Your point about being very sure they are XL (extra load) rated is important. I'd be interested in knowing what markings are on your tires - whether they are 104 (1984 lbs like an LT) or 109 (2271 lbs) - which happens to be a difference of 10%.

So are the 104s really LT tires that can handle 1985 lbs, while the 109s need to be downrated by 10% as per US guidance? That's the way it looks to me right now. (It is my understanding that this rule for passenger car tires on trucks and trailers is based on the expectation (not unreasonable) that these vehicles are more likely to be overloaded than passenger cars.)

Michelin also has a 215/75/15 out there with a load index of 100T - equivalent to Load Range C LT tires in that size. These would be quite sufficient for a 23 foot Airstream. I had Yokohamas in that size/spec on our 1975 27', and they performed very well.

This is confusing at first, but when you look at the numbers closely, it is clear that these tires that Michelin formerly called LTs still have the specifications of Load Range C LT tires. I'm puzzled by their approach, but I know they ride well and run cool and I expect to buy them as long as they are available - and switch to 16 inch wheels and tires after that.
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Old 12-02-2023, 08:17 PM   #16
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Michelin Defender or Agilis in 15" Size?

Highly recommend you choose Goodyear Endurance instead. Will be excellent for your 27' trailer (if you need something with more tread depth for boondocking), go with Maxxis. But otherwise choose the G.E. We did recently and they've been superior to the prior tires on our trailer.
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Old 12-03-2023, 05:38 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CapriRacer View Post
Roger,

You are missing an important piece of the puzzle. The tires that are supposed to go on your trailer are ST tires. Both Michelins mentioned are not ST tires.

Michelin doesn't make ST tires. The 15" is a P type and the 16" is an LT. If you use those types of tires, you have to be aware of how to make the conversion.

So let's start with the vehicle tire placard. It's located on the driver's side lower front corner. It's yellow and it should tell you what Airstream specified - size and inflation pressure. Best guess is that it says ST225/75R15 Load Range D - perhaps 65 psi?

As mentioned, the Goodyear Endurance ST225/75R15 Loaf Range E is an appropriate tire. It has a good history.

In the past, ST tires didn't perform very well - which is why many folks made the switch you mentioned. That is no longer true. There's no reason not to go with the Goodyear.
You comment on if go to a “……P or LT tire you have to be aware of how to do the conversion….” Doesn’t Airstream now put LT tires on the new Classic lines? Some make it sound like the 16” LT tires are taboo…What else besides buying new 16” rims that will properly mount the 16” Michelin tire do you have to do to complete the conversion?
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Old 12-03-2023, 08:16 AM   #18
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Just for the record. LT tires do not have to be derated for a trailer. P tires do have to be derated 10%. And...if you check the max load of the same size tire in P or LT the LT tires will have a 10% lower weight rating. So they have "already" been derated. I think Michelin did not see enough truck market to maintain both LT and P tires in the 15" size. Most trucks have bigger than 15" rims now. So they kept the P tire for SUV's and for the higher load rating. Last time I looked you can get Goodyear Wranglers in a 15" LT tire. That was a good choice against the Marathons but those days are over now and the Endurance seem to be just fine.


Is there a relatively new European tire size that does not have the P in the size now?
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Old 12-03-2023, 09:11 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by RP Sellers View Post


I really don't want to go to the expense of new rims right now - and don't even know if 16" rims will fit our trailer. Have read that folks have switched to P235s over the P225s without any hassle. Anyone done that? Or anyone have suggestions? (One tire dealer told me that Michelin was discontinuing all truck tires in 15" size, which boggles my mind.)


Any suggestions welcome.


Rodger Sellers
Davidson, NC
Our trailer came with the Michelin tires (formerly Michelin LTX 235/75R15 MS2 - now known as Defender in the same size) installed by the dealer before purchase. We are on our third set with no problems (replaced as they aged out). We now have just over 100,000 km. on the trailer and are very pleased with that tire.
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Old 12-03-2023, 12:54 PM   #20
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Com on, guys; there is a big difference between "passenger car" tires, LT (Light Truck) tires, and ST (Special Trailer) tires. Its in the composition of the tire, specifically the sidewall construction for the intended use. Sure, AS and other SOB travel trailers have both Endurance and Michelin LT tires included on new trailers. Most common are the 15" GYE's and the 16" Michelin LT's everyone on these threads seems to always voice their loyalty to, for a host of reasons. Most important is to stay within your load ratings, no matter which one you chose to use.

But, as Capri Racer and other tire "professional's" here on the Forum have discussed many, many, many times; there is a difference between the construction, especially the side walls, and purpose of the LT and the ST tires. One can easily "google" and find many articles on purpose/construction of these tires. Like TV's, gas or diesel arguments, hitches, and "AS model preferences, this topic has many "opinions"...so here we go again!

Here are a couple examples of differences between ST vs LT tires found on Google:

"trailer tires are different than Truck tires — their duty service is different because they are pulled, not driven. No power is applied to these tires, although they do have to experience some deceleration due to braking. Fundamentally, ST tires are optimized for tall, heavy loads, which means the sidewall design has to be different than those on a passenger vehicle. During slow-speed, sharp trailer turns on pavement, for example, their sidewalls must sustain very high side-to-side twisting forces as the trailer rotates about its axels. Light Truck tires don’t have to do that. For the above reasons, it is no wonder that one respected tire chain out West strongly recommends against putting a light truck (LT) tire on a trailer — even if you could find one with the right load and speed ratings.
and...

ST vs. LT Tires: What’s the Difference?
"ST tires are designed for use on trailer axle positions only, and are not intended to be used for the load or traction requirements of a drive or steering axle. ST tires are specifically designed to handle the higher load requirements and demands of trailer towing. Since no one is riding in them while they’re being towed, travel trailers and fifth wheel camper trailers are not concerned with providing a smooth ride for passengers—the job of an ST tire is to be pulled behind a vehicle. ST tires are manufactured with strengthened sidewalls to prevent the tire from rolling under the rim when cornering and turning while carrying a heavy load. Unless otherwise indicated, ST tires have a maximum speed rating of 65 mph because lower speeds are prudent with heavy loads, but thanks to technology advances, many of today’s ST tires are rated for higher speeds."

"LT tires are designed for what you would expect from the name—SUVs, vans or light pick-ups. Manufacturers developed LT tires to hold up and dissipate heat under a load, while still providing some flex for a ride that is as comfortable as possible. LT tires are not manufactured with the thicker sidewalls that are essential for ensuring the tire can handle a heavy load, like ST tires. In theory, LT tires can be used in place of ST tires, but not the other way around—which is why the debate rages on, and why some trailer dealers sell trailers equipped with LT tires. Though LT Tires give a stiffer ride than passenger tires, they are still designed with the passengers’ comfort in mind, unlike ST Tires."

The major construction difference between ST tires and LT tires can be found in the larger polyester or steel cords used in manufacture. https://www.treadworld.com/st_vs_lt_trailer_tires/
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