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Old 07-28-2021, 07:52 PM   #1
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What about tires? How long do they last?

I bought this 90 Southwind with 26,000 miles on it. Looking at the tires I see cracks on the sidewalls for 2 of the 6 tires, the other 4 look pretty nice. All of the tires have LOTS of tread on them still. However I'm assuming that the 2 that have cracked sidewalls are not going to survive a long term trip. The tires are all 19.5" Michelin steel belted radials if that makes a difference.

So my question is, besides replacing the 2 cracked tires how would I know the health left of the other 4?
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Old 07-28-2021, 07:58 PM   #2
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They have a DOT Date Code on them. First two digits are the week and second two digits is the year of manufacture. So 1121 would be the 11th week of 2021, or mid March. Tires on RVs age out before they wear out. Six years is about all we will stretch our tires.

Visible cracking often happens, especially to those tires with the most sun exposure. They are all dry rotting. Actively using tires redistributes chemicals in the rubber compound that slows the rot. Tires that sit will rot faster. The dangerous rot may not be visible.
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Old 07-28-2021, 07:58 PM   #3
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What is their AGE?


Last 4 digits of the full DOT number molded into one sidewall of each tire tells you the WEEK and YEAR of production.
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Old 07-28-2021, 08:02 PM   #4
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A small oval on one side of the tire ( may be on the inside) will have 4 digits 0714 translates to 7 th week of 2014.
Common thought if there is any common thought ( hot button topic) is 5- 8 years is the max life of the tire
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Old 07-28-2021, 08:56 PM   #5
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A small oval on one side of the tire ( may be on the inside) will have 4 digits 0714 translates to 7 th week of 2014.
Common thought if there is any common thought ( hot button topic) is 5- 8 years is the max life of the tire
I change out every five years. Some people go as long as seven. A blowout will cost you a lot more. Maybe even your life. So I don't consider ties a lets push the envelope to save a few dollars. You spend 120k to 2mil for a rig, why take a risk on pushing safety for a few hundred dollars.
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Old 07-28-2021, 09:03 PM   #6
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Any cracks on the sidewalls means you need to replace them. Why risk high speed failure in the middle of nowhere?

Meanwhile - with proper care and inspection tires last about five years - after that you NEED to have them completely inspected by a PRO.

Over seven years and I'd be very, very nervous.
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Old 07-28-2021, 09:11 PM   #7
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On my trailer, I run the tires 5 years and no more. Cheaper to replace the tires than the damage they can cause in a blowout. Som folks will run out to 7 years, but not for me.

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Old 07-28-2021, 10:39 PM   #8
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There's all kinds of variables involved in tire life...The manufacturer ratings, how the rig is stored, the climate, sun exposure, how many miles on them, how they are maintained ect...and comfort level of the driver. I would for sure replace the 2 cracked ones, and put the 2 new tires on the steer axle, then depending on the age have the other 4 inspected and use em on the dualls or replace em.
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Old 07-28-2021, 11:56 PM   #9
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When purchasing RV tires Ask the for the specifications on the tires you are considering purchasing. One of the spec’s you should take under consideration is the rotation. This number is the number of revolution per mile. The range you are looking for is between 489 to 491. The lower the number is best. There is a website that has all this information.
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Old 07-29-2021, 12:21 AM   #10
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When purchasing RV tires Ask the for the specifications on the tires you are considering purchasing. One of the specís you should take under consideration is the rotation. This number is the number of revolution per mile. The range you are looking for is between 489 to 491. The lower the number is best. There is a website that has all this information......
Revs/mile is all controlled by the outer diameter of the tire. Why would this be a concern? I'm sure the lower means that it is a larger tire and the engine revs will be lower accordingly. Just asking as I've never hear of this.
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Old 07-29-2021, 04:22 AM   #11
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First, have the tires with cracking inspected by a reputable tires center. Small surface cracks by themselves may not require immediate replacement. Michelin states to replace tires after 10 years, and annually inspect them after 7. Keep the tires clean, apply a uv protectant from time to time, but the best way to make them last is to roll them down the highway frequently.
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Old 07-29-2021, 04:50 AM   #12
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Revs/mile is all controlled by the outer diameter of the tire. Why would this be a concern? I'm sure the lower means that it is a larger tire and the engine revs will be lower accordingly. Just asking as I've never hear of this.
But, I saw a video on my computer which said this is important. My speedometer doesn't read correctly though.
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Old 07-29-2021, 05:25 AM   #13
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I bought this 90 Southwind with 26,000 miles on it. Looking at the tires I see cracks on the sidewalls for 2 of the 6 tires, the other 4 look pretty nice. All of the tires have LOTS of tread on them still. However I'm assuming that the 2 that have cracked sidewalls are not going to survive a long term trip. The tires are all 19.5" Michelin steel belted radials if that makes a difference.



So my question is, besides replacing the 2 cracked tires how would I know the health left of the other 4?


As others have said look at date stamp. The amount of tread means nothing, Michelin tires are known for side wall cracking. Nobody likes spending a lot of money on tires but itís like playing Russian roulette.
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Old 07-29-2021, 05:29 AM   #14
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As others have said look at date stamp. The amount of tread means nothing, Michelin tires are known for side wall cracking. Nobody likes spending a lot of money on tires but itís like playing Russian roulette.
Well, obviously the amount of tread means something, but most tires age out before they wear out. I think 5-7 years is the commonly accepted age limit around these parts.
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