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Old 05-03-2010, 12:46 PM   #1
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Question Tire sidewall cracking question

Okay, I got the opinions of two tire "experts," and they are totally opposite of each other . . . One says "buy new tires!" Other says "you're okay for now!" (these guys both work at tire stores).

The facts:

My Michelin LTX's, original to my 2006 Winnebago View that we purchased in August 2005, were all manufactured in February 2005. They have about 40,000 miles on them, good tread, and no uneven wear. I've religiously kept them inflated at 60 PSI. I've never done any donuts or two (three?) wheeled turns. I use 303 Protectant on the four that are showing. I'm even verbally polite to them.

All have begun to show some minor cracking, but it is all along the very outside edges of the sidewalls, in the area I'd call the "lugs." No cracking at all on the smooth portions of the sidewalls.

I've seen the Michelin Chart - my cracks not only are in the "acceptable" range
per the pictures on the chart, but they measure about 1/32" deep . . . a very few
maybe 2/32"

So I ask you fair folks, do you think I need to buy tires?

Thanks for your advice.

Warren and Debbie, Deep in The Heart of Texas, 2018 Winnebago View 24D
2014 Tiffin Breeze 32BR, 2012 Winnebago Navion 24G, 2006 Winnebago View 23H
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Old 05-03-2010, 12:58 PM   #2
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Free Advice

My advice may be worth exactly what you pay for it - nothing!

This is not based on anything scientific - it's based on rather be safe than sorry.

I was in the same quandry (sp?) last year and decided to err on the side of caution. I replaced the tires. For me... it was worth the peace of mind.


Lucius & Danielle
1992 - 29' Airstream Classic, 2010 Airstream Interstate
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Old 05-03-2010, 02:26 PM   #3
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Ask yourself this...: Could you live with your self if something went wrong and someone got hurt because you gave the cracking tires one more summer?
fkloster = Fritz, Erin, Sadie, Bo (& Lucy the Weim)
1991 Beaver Marquis 40' (1,225 ft. lbs. torque)
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Old 05-03-2010, 02:41 PM   #4
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If you are going to have the MH for a few years, you will need tires in a couple of years anyway. You're putting on enough miles. So, you buy new tires now and have peace of mind. It will be time for a new MH before those tires need replacement. Last year before a 10,000 mile trip, I thought I had about 12K of tread left. We new we were trading it in this spring, after another 3K trip. Chances are we would have had to buy new tires a month or two before we traded it in. We had peace of mind for the two trips, I didn't get $3K more on the trade, but the dealer saw a well kept MH. He gave us a fair trade-in price.
Jeanie, Ed & Slade the GSD
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Old 05-03-2010, 03:33 PM   #5
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Michelin says their tires should be good for up to 10 years, if they still look OK I'd keep running them since they're just a little over 5 years old.
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Old 05-03-2010, 03:50 PM   #6
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I know they are terrible expensive BUT, Buy new. I lost a 5 year old michelin l last summer on the right front. Came a heartbeat away from wreaking. tire wrapped around brake line ruining it.

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Old 05-03-2010, 04:54 PM   #7
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Replace them with anything other than Michlins. If a tire company puts out a chart to keep tabs on the acceptable amount of cracking, that tells me the tires are junk.
NOTE; I am not responsible for typos, poor grammer or misspelled word !
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Old 05-03-2010, 05:09 PM   #8
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IMHO. Buy new tires now.

You're not pulling them behind you, you and your loved ones are riding on them. A front tire blows on your rig, and if you're lucky, you'll have several thousand dollars damage to the body of your coach. If you're not lucky, you'll be down in the ditch, smashed into a grove of trees, or the side of a building, dead or disabled for life.

I know. It's a bit dramatic, but our RV tires are affected more by age than wear. A five year old RV tire can show almost no wear or appearance of aging, and the inner cords can be rotted to the point of imminent failure.

It doesn't surprise me to hear of confusion within the ranks of the tire professionals. When I bought new tires, the tire dealer thought I was crazy. He bought my five year old tires that looked like new back from me to resell them to a guy with a city delivery truck.
Jim & Kate
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Canada, eh?
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Old 05-03-2010, 05:29 PM   #9
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Tires are the weakest link between your coach and the pavement, personally I would replace the tires, however, it's your call.

Good luck with your decision.
Jim & SherrySeward

2000 Residency 3790 v10 w/tags 5 Star tune & Banks system Suzuki XL7 toad
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Old 05-03-2010, 06:06 PM   #10
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Replace them I had a class C years ago and I thought I took care of the tires. I had a blow out front right 34k 5 years on the coach. 100 miles later, I lost an interior dual, I never want another one. Because of the flat I also lost the rim, the runout on it was incredible.

When in doubt change em out.

Your call, but you asked.
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Old 05-03-2010, 07:20 PM   #11
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Michelins are just another tire although they do seem to crack more than others. Hot temperatures are also hard on all rubber products. A tire that is 5 years old and showing signs of cracking is to me an accident waiting to happen. Get some water into the steel belts - rust - bang, very expensive.

Take a look at Kumho, you might be very surprised.
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Old 05-04-2010, 09:12 AM   #12
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Replaced our Michelins with Toyos. Michelins had 6 years, good tread and cracking just like yours. You'll save a lot over the Michelins.
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Old 05-05-2010, 11:35 AM   #13
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I agree with Chuck ... replace them ..and if you go with any brand other than Michelin you'll save a bunch of money and have a tire that is every bit as good and as dependable. I went with Yokohama's and saved more than $900 over the Michelin and Goodyear price. Six year warentee against any cracking.
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Old 05-06-2010, 06:52 AM   #14
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A 1/16th depth, I would not worry, but you say that some of them are 2/16ths. THAT would start me worrying! And shopping.

Gary Brinck
Former owner of 2004 American Tradition
Home is in the Ocala Nat'l Forest near Ocala, FL
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