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Old 07-30-2013, 09:26 AM   #1
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Travel trailer tire inflation question

Greetings,

I am a newbie at this. Purchased a 35 foot TT a few weeks ago. Just left it at a storage lot and thought all the way home what happens when I return in a few weeks and the tires are under inflated? Not sure if they are nitrogen filled. There is no electric at the lot. Also, if I need to change a tire, Do I need to purchase a special trailer jack system? Lastly, when traveling, if the need arises Do I fill up at the local air pumps at gas stations? Your comments are all appreciated. Many thanks
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Old 07-30-2013, 12:10 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwcourr1 View Post
Greetings,

I am a newbie at this. Purchased a 35 foot TT a few weeks ago. Just left it at a storage lot and thought all the way home what happens when I return in a few weeks and the tires are under inflated? Not sure if they are nitrogen filled. There is no electric at the lot. Also, if I need to change a tire, Do I need to purchase a special trailer jack system? Lastly, when traveling, if the need arises Do I fill up at the local air pumps at gas stations? Your comments are all appreciated. Many thanks
I have this: VIAIR 440P Portable Compressor VIAIR 440P Portable Compressor : Amazon.com : Home Improvement

I don't have to worry about finding air!
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Old 07-30-2013, 02:51 PM   #3
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If they were filled with nitrogen they should have a green (I think) cap. Keep them at the cold pressure marked on the tire. The pressure will go up when hot. That's normal. If they have air in them you can fill them with any compressor. Invest in a good gauge.
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Old 07-30-2013, 07:49 PM   #4
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If new you should have 1year roadside protection if used get some. Green caps is nitrogen filled and if necessary can be topped off with air. Nitrogen will not expand or contract like air when temps change so works better but like others invest in good gauge
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Old 07-30-2013, 08:48 PM   #5
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Just use air. Nitrogen is still not readily available I think it's dumb, so just use air.
If you need to change it, just chock the tires good, and get a regular jack of your choosing with the proper weight rating to lift it and get the right tools to change the tire.
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Old 08-02-2013, 05:16 PM   #6
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"Invest in a good gauge."

X2...uh, 3.

I've never changed my TT tire, but you should be able to put blocks under the adjoining tire as if you were leveling and pick the bad tire up enough to change it. At least that's what I would do if the need arose. Maybe others would have other ideas. My manual says do not put a jack under the springs.
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Old 08-03-2013, 01:28 PM   #7
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You need a bottle jack, preferably a big one. Keep the jack and jack handle in the "basement" storage area of the trailer. You also need a jack base, in case you have to change a trailer tire in a muddy ditch. I prefer a piece of 5/8th or 3/4th inch thick plywood about 2'x3', stored flat on the floor in the bottom of the basement.

You should rarely need it, but when you need it, you need it.

On a normal tandem axle trailer with leaf spring suspension, place the jack on the spring perch under the axle with the flat. For other suspension, put the jack as close to the flat tire as practical and still have the jack pushing up on the frame of the trailer.

Before you leave home, practice changing a trailer tire on your driveway. Remove one tire, remove the spare tire/wheel, and mount the spare on the trailer. Button it all up, using a torque wrench to tighten the lug nuts on the trailer.Then rearrange the trailer tires to your satisfaction. Be sure all the jacks and tools you used to do your practice are stored in the trailer - including the torque wrench. Use your tire gauge to pump the cold trailer tires up to the max cold PSI on the tire sidewall.

Nitrogen is fine, but not necessary. My car came with nitrogen in the tires, but if I need air I use my home air compressor and add plain ole air. It's silly to drive 30 miles to my Toy dealer to have them add nitrogen to my tires.
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Old 08-03-2013, 02:58 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by SmokeyWren View Post

You should rarely need it, but when you need it, you need it.
I always said: I'd rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it!

I've run the good tire up on a ramp (I used the orange leveling blocks) to take some of the weight off of the bad tire (thus axle). Makes jacking it up much easier.
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Old 08-03-2013, 04:40 PM   #9
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I pull with a pick-up and always carry a compressor fully charged. I am very anal about tire pressures so I ALWAYS check pressures before the rig and tow vehicle are moved. I usually do this in the evening or first thing in the morning before the daytime sunlight or temps effect them.

I know some recommend a bottle jack or similar to use for changing a tire. These can be unstable in certain terrains or conditions. I recommend the Trailer-Aide (Trailer-Aid - Camco TRAILER AID - Towing Accessories - Camping World). Personally, I built my own out of 5/4 x 6 but either way, it's a safe way to change your tire.
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Old 08-07-2013, 09:22 PM   #10
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If new you should have 1year roadside protection if used get some. Green caps is nitrogen filled and if necessary can be topped off with air. Nitrogen will not expand or contract like air when temps change so works better but like others invest in good gauge
"Nitrogen will not expand or contract like air " Search irv2.com for your phrase and you will find it is not true. Search the internet for the "ideal gas law" which proves all gas's expand at the same rate. What does make a difference is the amount of moisture/water in the tire. What makes that sound true is that compressed Nitrogen has all moisture removed during compression.
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Old 08-07-2013, 09:30 PM   #11
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Here's what Continental says about Nitrogen:
Quote:
Introduction & Purpose

Nitrogen is being offered as an alternative to air for tire inflation. The purpose of this bulletin is to provide general information about inflating tires with nitrogen.

Tires are designed and built to provide many miles of excellent service but must be maintained properly. The key element of proper tire maintenance is maintaining the recommended tire inflation pressure. The proper tire inflation pressure is recommended by the vehicle manufacturer and can be found on the vehicle’s tire placard or in the vehicle owner’s manual. Continental Tire recommends that the consumer check his/her tire inflation pressure at regular intervals of at least once per month and before every long trip or twice per month depending on local regulations, customs, or conditions.

Using Nitrogen in Tires

Nitrogen is an inert (non-flammable) gas – basically, nothing more than dry air with oxygen removed. For example, ambient air contains about 78% nitrogen. Because of nitrogen’s inert properties, it is often used in highly specialized tire service applications and/or demanding environments. These tire service applications usually include aircraft, mining, and commercial/heavy use. Also, nitrogen is used in professional motor racing involving extreme vehicle speeds. We understand that dry nitrogen is used in this regard to help reduce tire pressure variations where even small differences in pressure can affect vehicle handling at the extreme limits of performance.

For normal everyday consumer tire service applications, nitrogen tire inflation is not required. However, nitrogen tire inflation does not harm tires and may marginally contribute to reductions in tire inflation loss by permeation. Nevertheless, nitrogen will not prevent any tire inflation loss caused by punctures, tire/rim interface (bead) leaks, valve leaks, valve/rim interface leaks, wheel leaks, and other mechanical leaks. Again, the use of nitrogen alone does not substitute for the importance of regularly checking tire inflation pressure. If the tire inflation pressure is below the pressure specified on the vehicle placard, the tire must be re-inflated – whether with air or nitrogen – to the proper inflation pressure. Do not operate tires underinflated and/or overloaded (see “Warning”). Whether inflated with air or nitrogen, regular tire inflation pressure maintenance remains critical and necessary. Use of nitrogen alone is not a replacement for regular tire inflation pressure maintenance.

WARNING [!] Underinflation and/or overloading tires will create excessive stresses and heat build up that can lead to tire disablement, such as by a tread-belt separation and/or detachment, causing serious injury or death.
Basically that only reason it might be better is because it's dry so all you need is regular old air run through an air dryer. Dry air and Nitrogen (which is dry already) have the same expansion characteristics.
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Old 08-11-2013, 12:04 PM   #12
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You can buy small 12VDC air compressors. We just bought one at HF because it was on sale and cheap. Have not tested it yet and could be junk but will have to try it soon before we really need it. Maybe it was on sale for a reason... You may need to get a 12V extension cord depending on where your outlet is and if you have opening windows above the wheels.

http://http://www.walmart.com/ip/Mas...lator/12321235

http://http://www.amazon.com/Industries-MV50-SuperFlow-High-Volume-Compressor/dp/B000BM8RT8

The one on Amazon says it's "perfect" for RVs so there you go.

It seems to me after reading a lot of threads on ST trailer tires that there is a lot more important stuff to worry about like correct pressure, not driving over the 65mph rating all the time, hitting curbs and potholes, etc. than worrying about the amount of nitrogen in them. Sounds more like a sales gimmick.
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