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Old 10-04-2009, 09:35 PM   #1
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A Tire Problem - out of nowhere

We just returned from a two week RV trip. Before we left, our Ford van was fine. Here is what I saw when I went to use it today.
[IMG]file:///C:/DOCUME%7E1/CHARLE%7E1/LOCALS%7E1/Temp/moz-screenshot.png[/IMG]


[IMG]file:///C:/DOCUME%7E1/CHARLE%7E1/LOCALS%7E1/Temp/moz-screenshot-1.png[/IMG]I think this is the worst tire that I've ever seen that is still holding air (though I have no idea how it is still doing that.) The tire is about 5 years old, has never been run under-inflated or banged against curbs. It doesn't have 20k miles on it. To me, it is an example of how lack of use and age can do damage.

Needless to say, it and its partner on the same axle will be replaced tomorrow.
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Old 10-07-2009, 12:31 PM   #2
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Well, think of the bright side. You'll already have good tires for the trip to our 2010 rally! I once experienced the same thing. Lost the complete tread from a rear tire, which completely destroyed the LR truck fender, but it was holding air. I limped along the interstate until reaching an off-ramp, where I put on the spare. That bald tire was still inflated to 80psi when my tire shop removed it a day later.
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Old 10-07-2009, 12:55 PM   #3
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Strange how many issues there are with Tires... Something is wrong when soooooo many ppl are having severe issues with tires. I'll run my 1 ton truck tires for years and not have near the concerns but air and rotate.

RV tires are soft as marshmellows. Their sidewalls are thin... Their load range margin is small... Their heat range is small. Little to no indication of a fault.... Dry rot? Tread separation? Weigh station at every fill-up? re-weigh and re-pressure if the dog sleeps in a different spot or moves across the room?

Somthing is wrong when tires are chief among RV issues. I wonder if there are more forum tire threads than any other?
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Old 10-07-2009, 07:52 PM   #4
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Are the Tires Firestone Steeltex????

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Old 10-08-2009, 02:04 AM   #5
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It looks like a Dominator built by Cooper. IIRC once sold by America's Tire.

Was the tire ever repaired, there is rust in the steel belts. Then too, rust could have developed after exposure to the elements.
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Old 10-08-2009, 01:33 PM   #6
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Batman777, my tire failure was a 4yr old 235/75-16, LR E, Goodyear truck tire.
Tom, you bring up a good point. Any puncture of the outside rubber allows water to enter the steel belting, where rust quickly ruins the belting. This is exactly why every tire manufacturers warranty contains a disclaimer voiding the road-worthiness claims of a repaired tire.
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Old 10-09-2009, 07:11 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom and Patty View Post
It looks like a Dominator built by Cooper. IIRC once sold by America's Tire.

Was the tire ever repaired, there is rust in the steel belts. Then too, rust could have developed after exposure to the elements.
You're right, Tom. It was a Dominator and no, it was never repaired. I bought it a Discount Tire.

I looked carefully at its "brother" (originally installed the same day) but there were no signs of any problems. Two weeks ago, there were no signs of problems with the failed tire either, though I didn't do as thorough of an inspection on it since there was no reason to do that.

I wasn't clear in my OP. This was NOT an RV tire. It came off of a 1989 Ford Econoline van, on the passenger side rear axle. The vehicle has 161K miles on it and has only had two flat tires, both from road hazards while driving in the 20 years that we've owned it. Today, however, it gets driven a lot more like an RV. I keep it because it makes a nice covered truck to haul things home from Home Depot and I can put a fully rigged Star 45 (model sailboat) on the back seat. There have been weeks when it never moves. When we were driving it more constantly, we wore out the tread on tires before 5 years. I replaced all 4 tires. I suspect that those will be the last tires that the vehicle gets while I own it.

Back to the point of my post. To me, this is an example of how tire problems develop on RVs. I believe that the rust on the steel belts probably played a big factor in the failure of this tire and that the rust developed because the tire wasn't run often enough to get rid of the moisture. Unfortunately, our RV is much the same. In 2008, we drove our RV further than all of our passenger cars combined. But there were still periods of weeks at a time when it just sat there. If tire separation like this example can occur on a light duty truck tire like this one, think of how much easier it can happen on a much heavier tire with significantly greater loads. I made the personal decision to replace our RV tires every 5 years regardless of apparent condition. I do the same with coolant hoses and radiator belts on all our vehicles. Call me foolish but I'd rather think of myself as very conservative ... and willing to pay for it. I believe that tire, like batteries here in Texas have a shorter life. I'm not sure exactly why but I rarely get past 4 years on a battery of any kind here and regardless of the brands that I buy. I suspect that it is a combination of rapid temperature changes (although I understand that the desert areas are worse for this) and humidity. I'm not trying to explain why, I'm simply reacting to it.
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