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Old 08-31-2016, 02:45 PM   #1
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Grease Marks on trailer rim

I have noticed that are slight grease markings on the rim of the trailer that I am towing. I keep checking the hubs to see if they are hot. The hubs are warm but not hot to touch, this is after being on the road going up and down the hills. My question is this something I should be overly concerned about as long as the hubs do not get hot? Or is this something that is normal? Any input would be appreciated.
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Old 08-31-2016, 02:50 PM   #2
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Grease from the bearings area should not "normally" leak out. That said it also depends on where it is coming from; a bit of seepage around the spindle cap (dust cap) is not much of a concern, grease from the back seal is of concern as it could mean there is grease inside the brake drum as well. The latter means your braking ability could also be compromised.

Where is the grease coming from?

Hope this helps,
Brian
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Old 09-01-2016, 08:45 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by BrianGlenn View Post
Grease from the bearings area should not "normally" leak out. That said it also depends on where it is coming from; a bit of seepage around the spindle cap (dust cap) is not much of a concern, grease from the back seal is of concern as it could mean there is grease inside the brake drum as well. The latter means your braking ability could also be compromised.

Where is the grease coming from?

Hope this helps,
Brian
Brian thanks so much for your reply, the grease is coming in front around the dust cap. I checked in back and didn't see any grease back there. I will continue to check it on our way home.
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Old 09-01-2016, 09:04 AM   #4
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I would not be too concerned about grease seepage from the dust cap. If dust caps are removed good practise is to replace them with new caps to ensure a complete seal. Reuse of old caps can be problematic if the cap is deformed/scored/damaged while removing.

Your monitoring/measuring temperature of hub is good practice. Many years I went by feel of each hub once I stopped and quickly could determine if one hub was hotter than the others. In later years, I used an handheld infrared thermometer for trailer hub temperatures (and tire temperatures, etc)

Safe travels!

Brian
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Old 09-01-2016, 11:31 AM   #5
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If the trailer sits for an extended period of time the oil will separate out. This can happen even with the better brands of wheel bearing grease. The dust caps are fitted metal to metal and are often not oil tight, thus the leakage.

Clean, inspect and repack the bearings using grease that is labeled wheel bearing grease, not a general purpose grease. Allowing oil to separate, and forcing grease in with the easy-lube fittings, is another cause of brake problems.
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Old 09-02-2016, 08:32 AM   #6
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If the trailer sits for an extended period of time the oil will separate out. This can happen even with the better brands of wheel bearing grease. The dust caps are fitted metal to metal and are often not oil tight, thus the leakage.

Clean, inspect and repack the bearings using grease that is labeled wheel bearing grease, not a general purpose grease. Allowing oil to separate, and forcing grease in with the easy-lube fittings, is another cause of brake problems.
I purchased some grease that specified high heat trailer grease, just in case I need to add any before I get home. It will be time based on miles to get what you recommended.

Brian I will look for a infrared thermometer that will be better than using my hand
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Old 09-02-2016, 10:25 AM   #7
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I purchased some grease that specified high heat trailer grease, just in case I need to add any before I get home. It will be time based on miles to get what you recommended.

Brian I will look for a infrared thermometer that will be better than using my hand
I recommend NOT to add grease via quick lube zerks on hubs, if that is what you have...; using zerks to add grease to bearing hubs (as in one axle manufacturer) adds risk to blow the grease out the back seal and into the brake drum/shoe area. It is my opinion the proper way to add/check grease to axle bearings is to remove the assembly from the spindle.

The hand held infrared thermometers are really cheap now; I found a cheap one worked as well as the more expensive ones (technology is the same). Here is one on amazon now - $14! Lots of choices.

Brian
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Old 09-02-2016, 10:28 AM   #8
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Brian I will look for a infrared thermometer that will be better than using my hand
I would just keep using my hand. The infrared thermometers read an ever expanding cone and you might not know what the sensor is "seeing", where the temperature is being read. Whereas your hand will never fail you unless you lose it or you have neurological problems.

Some gadgets might only be cool to have and use and not necessarily helpful. IMO it's far better to spend any money on the trailer on TPMS if you don't already have it.
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Old 09-03-2016, 07:26 AM   #9
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I appreciate all the post, good information, thank to all that took time to post
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