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Old 07-29-2009, 03:33 PM   #1
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What are they talking about?

Hi,

We dropped off the trailer today to get it inspected for our trip. We had a pretty good idea going into it that the tires would all need to be replaced-they are 10 years old. Well, that came about-two had the belts showing through, one had the inside tread worn and the other was dry rotted. Each is 99. I guess that's OK.

Then they started talking about the grease on the bearings. Said it was black and was drying out. They did this service the last time we took the trip-back in 06. Haven't taken it anywhere since. Grand total would have been over 1100 to repack the bearings, inspection and tires. Geesh! They keep talking about a "axle" service. What is that?

Hubby told them OK for the inspection and tires. But he's done with this greasing thing. He wants to put in the Bearing Buddies. He's got them on his boat trailer and we've never had issues with it on that. Anyone got a idea why the dealer wouldn't want to put them on the camper? My neighbor has it on all his trailers-boat, utility, and snowmobile. He swears by them too. The dealer keeps telling the Hubby not to put them on, that they aren't any good for campers.

It's going to take til Friday to get the camper back. Then we've got the weekend to get it ready for our trip.

Nell
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Old 07-29-2009, 03:49 PM   #2
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Perhaps the ones they carry aren't any good, possibly some Chinese junk.

I'd recommend a Dexter Nev-R-Lube bearing if your going to the expense of replacing. I have them on my trailer and they're great. They carry a 5 year or 100,000 mile warranty and all you have to do for maintenance is inspect them periodically.
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Old 07-29-2009, 04:11 PM   #3
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+1 on the Dexter Nev-R-Lube bearings. I've got 'em on our current 5th wheel and haven't had a problem with them at all.

The bearing buddies are fine for boat trailer applications to keep water out but can cause problems with RVs if grease gets pushed around seals and winds up on brake drums and shoes, etc.

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Old 07-29-2009, 08:30 PM   #4
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With the Bearing Buddies, you have a very high probability of getting grease on the brake linings. Also, the new grease only gets to the outer bearing.

I'd go to the Nev R Lubes.

Ken
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Old 07-30-2009, 08:31 AM   #5
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These costs are way out of line. It is highly recommended by Dexter and most good techs to repack wheel bearings, check brakes and replace grease seals once a year or every 12,000 miles, whichever comes first. A typical cost from a reputable service center for doing this is about $200 - 250 - - total, not per wheel. Your rig is all ready going to be jacked up and wheels off for tire replacement - - bearing repack with seals should not run over $200 more.

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Old 07-30-2009, 12:10 PM   #6
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These costs are way out of line. It is highly recommended by Dexter and most good techs to repack wheel bearings, check brakes and replace grease seals once a year or every 12,000 miles, whichever comes first. A typical cost from a reputable service center for doing this is about $200 - 250 - - total, not per wheel. Your rig is all ready going to be jacked up and wheels off for tire replacement - - bearing repack with seals should not run over $200 more.

Bob
Put me in too. Bearing Buddy caps are NOT to be used on any axle with brakes. Your dealer gave you correct advice, but appears to be quite high in shop charges. Your husband can re-pack the bearing himself if he chooses, by following this tutorial http://www.rverscorner.com/articles/...the%20bearings , for the cost of new grease seals and a can of wheel bearing grease. I had mine re-packed last time because of time constraints; cost_ $185 total.
BTW, have the wheels balanced, in spite of the tire shops putoff. you''ll be glad you did.

While we're on the subject; Every axle manufacturer recommends visual brake inspection annually, like Bob said. Our 5er has the EZ-lube bearings, and I'll never use them. Since the axle bearings must be removed anyway for brake inspection, and all grease must be removed at that time to inspect the bearings, why not spend the extra 15 minutes to repack the bearings manually? This way I know what is happening.
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Old 07-30-2009, 02:49 PM   #7
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Thanks eveyone, we called about the Dexter Bearing to the nearest dealer and we have to wait to get the camper back to tell them what size we are needing. Not a clue on what size we've got. I called to two other dealers here to find out how much to do the bearing for and I keep getting prices well over $300. Hubby is just going to do it himself, just means less time to get things ready now for the trip. We don't get the camper back til 5 Friday night-they had to order the tires. Couldn't even get it to another place-they failed the camper's tires and hence the inspection. I won't be going back to that place, that's for sure.

Thanks for the heads up, we'll be doing the change after we get back from our trip. Just doing what's there for now.

Nell
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Old 07-30-2009, 03:29 PM   #8
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Our 5er has the EZ-lube bearings, and I'll never use them. Since the axle bearings must be removed anyway for brake inspection, and all grease must be removed at that time to inspect the bearings, why not spend the extra 15 minutes to repack the bearings manually? This way I know what is happening.
Ray: Are you saying the EZ-Lube bearings don't always take grease properly? Seems to work OK for me, but with what you've stated, now I wonder
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Old 07-30-2009, 04:05 PM   #9
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Red face ez lube hubs

i was real nervous about greasing mine the first time, all the bad stuff about blowing out the seals and getting grease on the brakes. after a lot of research and looking on the internet, i think the problem most people had was that the bearing would not take grease (or at least not push the old grease out) and people would keep adding grease. a grease gun can build a lot of pressure (air powered even more), if you keep pumping it's going to go some where, most likely the back seal and onto the brakes.

i used a hand gun and made sure to stop if it got hard to pump and had no problems. it did take about 70 shots of grease per wheel which seemed like a lot, but i stopped when i had fresh grease out the front. all four took about the same. if the bearing won't take grease, stop pumping and then pull it all off and inspect it for the problem.
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Old 07-30-2009, 05:04 PM   #10
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I called to two other dealers here to find out how much to do the bearing for and I keep getting prices well over $300.
Nell
Nell,

See if you have a trailer dealer in town with a repair department - - not an RV dealer - - deals in various types of trailers like lawn guys use or small box trailers. They could be quite a bit cheaper for a bearing packing.

Bob
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Old 07-30-2009, 06:42 PM   #11
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I was taught that filling the hub with grease greatly decreases it's ability to disipate heat from the bearings. Boat trailers have the water problem therefore worth the risk of heating. I have not lost a wheel bearing in over 50 yrs of doing my own.
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Old 07-30-2009, 07:20 PM   #12
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Nell,

See if you have a trailer dealer in town with a repair department - - not an RV dealer - - deals in various types of trailers like lawn guys use or small box trailers. They could be quite a bit cheaper for a bearing packing.

Bob
Hi Bob,

That's exactly where it is-and they are the cheapest around here! Won't go to the RV dealer here-they damaged my Hensley hitch to the tune of $800 when we went there-don't trust them as far as we can throw them. And they wanted $350 to do the bearing packing. It's our whole area-overpriced and expensive.

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Old 07-30-2009, 09:55 PM   #13
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Ray: Are you saying the EZ-Lube bearings don't always take grease properly? Seems to work OK for me, but with what you've stated, now I wonder
Not all Dick. I once use a gun with wheel bearing grease just to see if they work, they do. Any excess or dirty grease exits through a hole in the axle cap, and collects in the hubcap, just waiting for a chance to get out onto the aluminum rims. This makes me wonder just how much grease pressure is against the grease seal, waiting for a chance to get onto the brakes? I just can't see the logic in using them if I will be removing the bearings, cleaning away all grease,re-greasing, and reinstalling,(W/ new seals) each year for inspection anyway. I wish the 5er had Dexter nevr-lube bearings, but that requires a complete axle change I'm told.
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Old 07-30-2009, 10:01 PM   #14
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Thanks, Ray; your comments do make a lot of sense
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