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Old 05-21-2020, 03:31 PM   #1
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Question Trailer tires VS Truck tires

Searched this forum (no, didn't search travel trailer forum) for any info on using LT (truck) tires instead of "trailer" tires on a 5th wheel.
Nope, didn't find anything - So,
Any problems with using a 6 or 10 ply LT tires on my '99' National Sea Breeze instead of the replacement tires for trailers?
Advantages or disadvantages?
My concern is that several of our RV buds have used the 'stock' tires that came on their unit as the replacements (through dealer) and a few have had issues with blowouts after only a couple of years.
I have heard that the stock tires should be replaced after about 3 years regardless of mileage or condition and I feel that is a bit excessive.
But then a few guys had blowouts after 2-3 years.
We are NOT full timers but we do put on a lot of miles each summer;
Trips from NE to VA and back, NE to CA and back, etc.
Our 5th wheel dry weight is around 9K and our max is 14.5K and our average is about 10K to 11K lbs.
We have had this unit for about 3 years now with the tires that came on it (new when we purchased) and they are still in decent shape with at least 70% tread on all four. I always keep them properly aired up and covered or garaged.
But I would guess that for a few bucks more, I could not worry about them for 10 years or more if I switched to LT tires.
And then the question is 6 or 10 ply?

Oddly enough, last year we went to the Grand Canyon for a couple of weeks and the 5th wheel tires were just fine BUT we had a set of tires on our truck (07 Silverado 2500HD with 6.0 Vortec - GAS) that I was told were 10 ply and were put on new, a month before we left for the canyon. They were literally bald by the time we got back to NE And I discovered that they were 6 ply (Yes, the tire shop made good on them and replaced with 10 ply Duratracs and YES, the truck pulls the big girl just fine - even through some of the mountains we encountered). Just amazed at the rate the 6 plys were chewed up on what I consider a relatively medium distance trip! That proved the importance of having 10 ply or better on the tow vehicle!

Thanks for any insight on this!
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Old 05-21-2020, 06:12 PM   #2
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First question what size tires on the trailer?
Our Eagle came with 16 inch rims. E rated tires. I swapped on Michelin rib tires. E rated. No issues so far. They weigh likely twice as much as the original ST tires. Rib tires are rated for front rear or trailer use but you have to have 16 inch rim minimum and rim must be rated for minimum 80 psi.
No regrets with the Michelins so far. Have Michlin 18 inch AT E rated on truck when we bought it new. No issues with them either.

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Old 05-21-2020, 06:25 PM   #3
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It is my understanding that ST tires have a stiffer sidewall than LT. I'd say the experience you witnessed with improperly rated tires on your loaded truck is kind of similar to what you might expect on your trailer.
If you go back with what the factory put on, which of course is the lowest load rating (aka cheapest) then those tires are going to get beat up pretty quickly. I have a bunch of trailers and the ones that carry big loads like my heavy equipment trailer and travel trailer, I always go to the highest load rating I can get.

I once ran a set of LTs on it for awhile, and I noticed it didn't track as steady, kinda felt like it was floating instead of rolling.
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Old 05-21-2020, 06:39 PM   #4
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First of all, welcome to another Cornhusker on the forum! second a lot of folks will chime in about your tires, one of the things you need to check is the load range and size of tire/rims that you currently have. Do you have 16" rims? 15" rims? 17.5"? then check what the psi rating is that your rims can handle. some people swear by ST tires, others say you need LT. We have 4 yr old 15" maxxis ST tires load range 'E' on our 5th wheel, took it to Alaska last year, 12,000 mi trip, they were great, noticing that about down to the tread wear indicators, will probably replace with GY Endurance, same load range 'E'. Our trailer came with Chinese load range D tires and we upgraded after a year.
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Old 05-21-2020, 07:25 PM   #5
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If you have 16 inch rims by all means go with LT tires. My fifth wheel came factory equipped with LT tires and I replaced them with more LT tires. Never in 13 years did I have any tire problems. ST tires generally are made in China, the speed rating is usually 65MPH. Which is one reason ST tires can achieve higher load rating. There are people here on the forums like FastEagle who swear by ST tires. But ask him how many blow outs he has had and I think you will get your answer. As long as the tires equal or exceed axle ratings your good to go.
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Old 05-21-2020, 07:28 PM   #6
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Quote:
Our 5th wheel dry weight is around 9K and our max is 14.5K and our average is about 10K to 11K lbs.
Not much info for a good tire recommendations.

If your trailer has 5.2k or 6k axles and 16" wheels then the best upgrade we can make is a all steel ply carcass LT tire like a LT235/85-16 E Michelin XPS Ribs or the Bridgestone R250. Both are a commercial grade LT tire and are recommended by their mfg for trailer use.
We do have some fabric carcass LT same size tires in the same size that are also a good upgrade:
Goodyear Wrangler HT
Firestone Transport HT
Cooper Discoverer HT-3 HT (highway tread)
BFG Commercial A/T 2


At 15.5 lbs I would say your trailer has 7k axles and 16" wheels.
This requires a load G 14 ply rating.
Goodyear has a G614 LT235/85-16 G at 3750 lbs capacity commercial grade all steel ply carcass....very pricey but are popular with rv folks.

Commercial haulers and RV owners with heavy trailers are using a Sailun S637 load G commercial class all steel ply carcass tire made for the service trailer industry. This tire come in a ST235/80-16 G at 4080 lbs capacity @30.8" dia...or a bit more tire in a ST235/85-16 G at 4480 lbs capacity @31.7" dia.

Tires are different diameters. Axle mfg recommend 1" between the tires and trailer mfg say 2 3/4" at the top of the wheel well.

Also works best when choosing a replacement tire for a trailer is choose one that meets or exceeds the trailers axle ratings....and tire clearance in the wheel well.

There are some better ST class tires on the market the last several years vs ST tires from 15-20 years ago.
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Old 05-21-2020, 11:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brob View Post
It is my understanding that ST tires have a stiffer sidewall than LT. I'd say the experience you witnessed with improperly rated tires on your loaded truck is kind of similar to what you might expect on your trailer.
If you go back with what the factory put on, which of course is the lowest load rating (aka cheapest) then those tires are going to get beat up pretty quickly. I have a bunch of trailers and the ones that carry big loads like my heavy equipment trailer and travel trailer, I always go to the highest load rating I can get.

I once ran a set of LTs on it for awhile, and I noticed it didn't track as steady, kinda felt like it was floating instead of rolling.

Well I would say the opposite about side walls. The LTs are stiffer as they are designed not to roll under on steer axle of a truck.


I run LTs on my 5er, 12,300# GVWR, about 9,800# on the axles and 235/85-16 E 10 ply rated run at 75 psi.


Below is a comparison of an ST and LT, the ST's sure seem to have a softer sidewall.



ST tires








LT tires





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Old 05-22-2020, 08:21 AM   #8
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Sidewalls hold NO load! Air pressure is what's holding up the vehicle. More plies allows you to increase pressure.

There are so many errors and false information here it makes no sense to add to this thread.

From a 35 years of experience mechanic...
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Old 05-22-2020, 04:53 PM   #9
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Stiffer sidewalls on an ST - not hardly!!!

I've been using General Grabber 235-85x16 tires on the current and the last 5er, both of which in the 12K# weight range. Yes, their STATED capacity is 3085 while the ST garbage usually put on new RVs is about 3400# per tire. To date the only two tire problem have been valves and in over 50,000 miles. I do not anywhere exceed the combined weight capacity of 4 tires which is 12390 pounds with 15 - 20 percent of the 5ers total weight being on the truck. This means that my tires are carrying only about 10,200 pounds or well within their load capacity.

There is a person here and several other sites that only talks about tires will tell you to never use an LT - balony. Their safety on pickup trucks is a well known fact while China Bomb STs with a couple exceptions has lousy reliability with 2 to 5000 dollar repairs pretty common after an explosive blowout. Goodyear Endurance is also reported as a good ST tire
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Old 05-22-2020, 05:57 PM   #10
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I did allot of research before replacing my 5th wheel tires. 235/80R16E ST tires have 3420lb load capacity. 235/85R16E LT have 3042lb load capacity. LT tires dont have the load capacity as ST tire. I put 235/85R16 GY Endurance tires. 87 mph speed rating and 3420 lbs load capacity. You need the correct load capacity on you rv.
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Old 05-22-2020, 08:13 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dieselguy4 View Post
I did allot of research before replacing my 5th wheel tires. 235/80R16E ST tires have 3420lb load capacity. 235/85R16E LT have 3042lb load capacity. LT tires dont have the load capacity as ST tire. I put 235/85R16 GY Endurance tires. 87 mph speed rating and 3420 lbs load capacity. You need the correct load capacity on you rv.
The GY Endurance is building a good reputation they were very new when I replaced the 12 Year old LTs on our 2005 Copper Canyon they were the OEM tires. Still in great shape.
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Old 05-22-2020, 11:01 PM   #12
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Goodyear Endurance are also made in America too. It's what is on both our trailers.
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Old 05-24-2020, 04:57 PM   #13
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I have been running LT tires on my last 3 5W's. My current I bought new and it had LT's before I took delivery, 14K loaded. Everyone's hear of China bom ST tires, ever hear of an LT bowing out like that? ST's used to be rated at 65MPH and the LT faster than you want to tow. I have about 40K on the LT's on my 5W and will change them sometime this year, still legal but thinner than I want.



If they make an LT in your size go for it.
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Old 05-24-2020, 09:00 PM   #14
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The only tires I run on my 5th wheel is the Goodyear Endurance, or as I replace them due to wear or date, is the Goodyear G670 RV ULT. Thats a 12 ply Load range F tire,
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