This has been a hard Tip of the Day to write for some reason. There is so much that you need to be aware of when purchasing a RV about tires. That I find I am in overload just trying to put it in terms everyone will understand.
Tires are one of the areas that we seem to overlook. Yet many people, both experienced and inexperienced fail to pay attention and suffer the consequences for their oversight.
Tire issues are not a problem with just used units. Many manufacturers are overlooking or worse disregarding the proper tire use on the RVs they are making. So let me start this series of articles with the basics. Please bear with me, I will probably cover things you already know, but I want to make sure we are all on the same page.
Tires for RV are not the same as tires for your car or truck. These are
considered Special Purpose tires. The tires have several things we want to look for. They include the load range, the age, the pressure, the tread and size.
For today, I am covering the size, thread and pressure. The next article will cover the Load Range and the last article will over the age.
The size is easiest to cover as it is mainly determined by the wheel size in inches. They can range from 13 inch to 24.5 inches. The pressure that the tire is pumped up to determines how much weight the tire can safely handle.
Here is an example from Goodyear. It is for a ST175/80R13 tire at 65 MPH Max Speed
15 PSI 670 lbs
20 PSI 795 lbs
25 PSI 905 lbs
30 PSI 1000 lbs
35 PSI 1100 lbs
40 PSI 1190 lbs
45 PSI 1270 lbs
50 PSI 1360 lbs
I think you can see that the change in air pressure greatly affects the weight the tires can safely handle. This is one of the reasons why it is so important to KNOW the weight of the rig and the tire pressure (when cold).
Finally, the tread. Most RV do not have a problem with the amount of thread left on the tire. But just encase you get a hold of a well traveled rig, the depth of the tread should be greater than 3/16 th of an inch and evenly worn across the tire.
You can visit Goodyears website at http://goodyearrvtires.com and follow the links to the rv_inflation.pdf.