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Old 05-29-2013, 04:38 PM   #1
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Bottle jack for tire changes?

I am preparing our Winnebago 27RBDS for our first trip to Yellowstone. I tried to remove the tire today. It's harder than it sounds. I bought a "Trailer-Aid" device from Camping World but my axles are too far apart. One tire sitting on top of the Trailer-Aid and the other firmly planted on the asphalt. So I tried to jack it up but my jack would not reach the frame.

I am thinking that a bottle jack is the answer but I decided to check with you folks who have this figured out already. As a newbie, I appreciate all your replies with my past questions.

Thanks,

Winston & Kit

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Old 05-29-2013, 04:43 PM   #2
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27RBDS
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Old 05-29-2013, 04:58 PM   #3
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Used a bottle jack on my 5er for years.
ALWAYS, put the jack under the axle " U " bolt plate, never on the axle tube. Wheel chocks, loosen lug nuts before you raise the wheel and torque lug nuts to spec , re-torque in 50 miles and again in 150 miles after that.
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Old 05-29-2013, 05:16 PM   #4
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Return the trailer aid. It will do you no good because of the equalizer between the axles. Bottle is the answer, just get one with enough stroke and carry some boards.
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Old 05-29-2013, 10:03 PM   #5
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What Coaster and Skip said- X2!
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Old 05-30-2013, 08:52 AM   #6
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I've been dragging RV trailers since 1968. I always haul a huge, heavy hydraulic bottle jack in the trailer, along with several 16" long pieces of 2x6 or 2x8 lumber to use as a jack base and elevator, and two sets of plastic Lynx levelers in case I need even more elevation for the jack. That works in an emergency for most tire-changing conditions.

But the real answer is to haul a good floor jack along with a 2'x4' piece of 3/4" plywood to use as a jack base when you have to change a trailer tire in a muddy ditch. I don't usually haul the floor jack on short trips around west Texas (it rarely rains around here), but loading the floor jack and base is on my to-do list for longer trips to see kids in Denver or Knoxville or grand-daughter in Idaho or friends in Phoenix or Detroit.

Too soon old, to late smart. I used to have frequent need to change a trailer tire because of blow-outs or flats. Especially on my fold-down tent camper with itty bitty tires. But I learned that stock size trailer tires usually don't have enough weight capacity to live with high-speed highway travel for thousands of miles on a road trip. So now I replace the stock trailer tires with tires that have a lot more weight capacity. I prefer tires with at least 25% more weight capacity than the GVWR of the trailer. That often means I must also replace the stock wheels with the size wheels required for the bigger trailer tires. For example, my 5er came with ST205/75R15C tires on 5.5" rims. After blowing out three tires in a short time, I replaced them with Cooper ST225/75R15D on 6" wide rims. No more trailer tire problems for the next 10 years. My 16' utility trailer and my 14' cargo trailer also came with ST205/75R15C tires on 5.5" rims. I replaced them with Maxxis ST225/75R15E on 6" wide rims. No more trailer tire problems on those trailers for several years, either.

Unlike most new RV trailers, my TT came with tires that have more than 25% extra weight capacity over what's needed to handle the GVWR of that trailer. So I haven't bothered to change them yet. Over 5,000 miles on those tires in the last year with no problems . Thank you Skyline.
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Old 05-30-2013, 01:45 PM   #7
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Quote:
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What Coaster and Skip said- X2!
Ditto
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Old 06-11-2013, 09:51 PM   #8
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Well I got a chance to try out my new bottle jack in front of a gas station in Blackwell, Oklahoma.

With the help of a good samaritan named Rick, who could tell right away that I was going to need help, I got the trailer jacked up enough to remove the tire. Right away the axle drops about a foot. So we had to use my truck jack to lift the axle.

Thank you all for the replies and THANK YOU RICK for helping us get back in the road.
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Old 06-13-2013, 05:19 PM   #9
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Why would the axle drop if you had the bottle Jack under it? Just make sure you place the Jack under the spring plate.
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Old 06-13-2013, 05:30 PM   #10
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Why would the axle drop if you had the bottle Jack under it? Just make sure you place the Jack under the spring plate.

Trouble with bottle jacks is they usually don't fit under an axle end or spring plate when a tire is down. I always carried a lightweight floor jack for my trailers. Roll it under the spring and pump away.
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Old 06-13-2013, 05:52 PM   #11
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A bottle jack seems more useful because you can also use a pair of them to stabilize the frame and reduce bounce when you are set for camping. I can't get excited to carry around more weight. We would have to carry the jack(s) in the bed of the truck as we are already getting too close to our TT GVWR.

Many people caution about damaging the thin axle tubing. I've seen pics of people putting a jack under one U-bolt. Wouldn't it be better to use a small block of wood and lift right under the pair of U-bolts?

I would assume that you'd also want to have your e-brake on. Maybe a chock on the other side too??
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Old 06-13-2013, 09:21 PM   #12
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I used a stack of 2X6's (screwed together) that I had prepared in advance to give my jack the reach to pick up my trailer on the frame as recommended in the owners manual. After picking it up and removing the tire the axle dropped (suspension?). Don't really understand it but I figured out how to deal with it.
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Old 06-13-2013, 09:36 PM   #13
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All the trailer mfgs advise to jack on the frame--guess the lawyers are speaking. It is way simpler to place a jack under the spring pad and raise it there, and the axle won't drop. If no spring pad--just u-bolts, then the above advice about a 2x4 block between the u-bolts and the jack would work.
This is such a logical approach...don't see why anyone would jack on the frame, raising the trailer to such an angle it would be way more dangerous then using the spring pad.
Who out there thinks it is best to raise the trailer about 12-18" when about 4-6" would normally work using the spring pads?
Joe
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Old 06-14-2013, 06:35 AM   #14
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All the trailer mfgs advise to jack on the frame--guess the lawyers are speaking. It is way simpler to place a jack under the spring pad and raise it there, and the axle won't drop. If no spring pad--just u-bolts, then the above advice about a 2x4 block between the u-bolts and the jack would work.
This is such a logical approach...don't see why anyone would jack on the frame, raising the trailer to such an angle it would be way more dangerous then using the spring pad.
Who out there thinks it is best to raise the trailer about 12-18" when about 4-6" would normally work using the spring pads?
Joe
I carry a few 4x4 pieces of wood in my toolbox for jacking purposes. I've read about TT power tongue jacks with stripped gears and you need the cribbing to get up high enough to get the TT off the TV. I know it is extra weight, but my truck can handle it. I also take the skid plate base off my tongue jack and use a short piece of railroad tie as the base to raise the tongue. The rr tie provides higher lift and the powerjack shaft bites into the rr tie assuring the trailer won't move(it hasn't yet!) forward or backward. I still chock the wheels for added stability. I prefer to jack with my bottle jack using the shortest height when changing tires!
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