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Old 04-24-2020, 11:54 AM   #1
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Storage / Tire Jacks

Lately at my storage facility I have three neighbors who have started storing their rigs with their jacks down. Of course the reason they give is that they believe it extends the life of their tires. The reasoning sound practical, but I question the effects that prolonged extensions of the jacks with a load would have on the jacks. Any ideas on this subject. I know that for me if I had left my Jacks down for two, three months, they would never come back up, that's just my luck.
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Old 04-24-2020, 01:25 PM   #2
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That is a question I've been pondering since we got the Monaco with it's airbag suspension. I've been leaving the jacks down to keep it from coming all the way down on the airbags. The other side is that the jacks on it are retracted with springs that it seems to me would become weaker the longer they are in the stretched position, but I don't know. This just seems logical to me. I have left the jacks down for longer than 2 or 3 months and they came back up, but it took a while for the lights and dinger to indicate they were all the way up. I'm thinking the only other option would be to put large jack stands under it.

Our spring supported vehicles didn't have jacks, but I don't believe I would have left them down for extended periods if they had, for the same reason as mentioned above.

I don't think having the tires support the MH weight all the time has caused any problems except for possibly as flat spot that goes away after driving a short distance.

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Old 04-24-2020, 01:28 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Den View Post
Lately at my storage facility I have three neighbors who have started storing their rigs with their jacks down. Of course the reason they give is that they believe it extends the life of their tires. The reasoning sound practical, but I question the effects that prolonged extensions of the jacks with a load would have on the jacks. Any ideas on this subject. I know that for me if I had left my Jacks down for two, three months, they would never come back up, that's just my luck.
Well Dr Den,
First off, when was the last time you EVER saw or was told that, an RV're actually WORE a set of his RV tires out? That's an almost NEVER situation. So, the fact that someone says: "It EXTENDS the life of my RV tires", is pretty much useless. Second, setting your coach on it's jacks for an extended period of time, is perfectly fine. I mean, exactly WHAT would you be hurting/degrading/wearing out/ over using, WHAT? Nothing is the answer. In the earth moving equipment industry, hydraulic rams are staged in many different phases for large periods of time.

That is, they're in, they're out, their half way, they're loaded, they're unloaded and more and, THEY DON'T HAVE ANY ISSUES. The seals and hydraulic oil don't care if the jacks/rams are in/out/half way/load/no load.

Now, I've done it both ways. Our coach lives with us in an RV garage tied to the two car garage. I've stored it with the jacks down and, with them up. The tires really don't care one way or another. I get the same amount of TIME, NOT MILEAGE, either way it's stored. Your choice.
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Old 04-24-2020, 01:53 PM   #4
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Class A DPs sit in RV resorts for months and month on jacks. Some for 6 months at a time.

Springs don't wear out fast from being stretched. Ever look at a garage door spring. Streched unless the door is open.
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Old 04-24-2020, 09:59 PM   #5
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I reside in northwest Montana, our motorhome sits on its jacks from November thru April every winter. I deploy them for leveling the rig for winter storage. Never a problem in last eleven years, they retract very well each spring after being down all winter. The jacks are HWH brand.
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Old 04-25-2020, 02:13 AM   #6
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The average non commercial vehicle, cars, trucks, motorhome, etc probably sits 22 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Tires are made to support the vehicle the same when driving and not driving.
Just another old wives tale that it prolongs tire life on jacks. But if it makes you feel better, who cares. It's your RV.
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Old 04-25-2020, 02:25 AM   #7
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My coach is on the jacks 355 days of the year , for 5+ months at a stretch , I do however clean the rams ; as per HWH instructions before retracting if they're extended more that a week , particularly if it's been dusty.
LR jack was slow to the point of having to be pried up when I bought the coach , cleaning has cured that , no new springs required.

And I second awol50's take on the saving tires thing .
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Old 04-25-2020, 09:24 AM   #8
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Just another opinion, but I think when sitting for long periods tires should be at max cold PSI, you may be running less than max based on actual weight of RV, but in storage they should be at max to keep the side wall from flexing as much while sitting in one place.
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Old 04-25-2020, 09:58 AM   #9
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My manual says to use the jacks when stored....that's what they are for.
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Old 04-25-2020, 10:55 AM   #10
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yup, ALL IT WOULD TAKE IS A SMALL BIT OF RUST to blow a hydraulic seal :-(
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Old 04-25-2020, 11:23 AM   #11
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Good chrome piston shafts shouldn't rust.
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Old 04-26-2020, 06:28 AM   #12
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Here is a suggestion that I found on a previous thread. I checked with Paul Maddox (AZPETE on this forum) who works for HWH and he said it was OK.

"Put wood blocking under each jack, up to within an inch of each retracted jack. Dump the air, and the coach will settle onto the blocking.

Jacks are retracted, so their cylinders are protected from the elements. Jacks are built to support the weight.

The heavy load is taken off of the tires, just the suspension weight remains on the tires"
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Old 04-26-2020, 06:40 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by veraken View Post
Here is a suggestion that I found on a previous thread. I checked with Paul Maddox (AZPETE on this forum) who works for HWH and he said it was OK.

"Put wood blocking under each jack, up to within an inch of each retracted jack. Dump the air, and the coach will settle onto the blocking.

Jacks are retracted, so their cylinders are protected from the elements. Jacks are built to support the weight.

The heavy load is taken off of the tires, just the suspension weight remains on the tires"
That's exactly what I do.

Checked w HWH and was told OK either up or down but I figured blocking better IMO. HWH does recommend periodicly "exercising" the jacks when stored or deployed for extended times.

I also air the tires up to / close to max P.

I disagree with others that say no problem storing tires in one orientation but they are certainly entitled to believe and do as they please. It's not about "wearing them out" it's about damaging belts that result in premature failures and potential MH damage or personal injury due to premature tire failures.

Here's what Michelin says about tire storage - I tend to value their input more than other random iNet forum speak. [Highlighting Mine]

Storing your tires:
  • Store your tires indoors in a clean, cool and dark location away from direct sunlight, sources of heat and ozone such as hot pipes or electric generators.
  • If you are storing outdoors (recommended for a short time only), raise tires off the ground and use waterproof covering with holes to prevent moisture build-up.
  • Be sure the surfaces on which tires are stored are clean and free from grease, gasoline, solvents, oils or other substances that could deteriorate the rubber.
  • If tires are on a vehicle parked for a long period, the weight of the vehicle needs to be taken off the tires by jacking it up or removing the tires. Failure to do this may cause irreversible damage.
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Old 04-26-2020, 09:47 AM   #14
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Well Dr Den,
First off, when was the last time you EVER saw or was told that, an RV're actually WORE a set of his RV tires out?
I don't mean to be "picky" but we have had to replace tires on our RV due to wear. We are not full timers but we travel much further in our RV in any year than in our car, so tire wear is an issue for us.

Having said that, we do not prop our RV up so as to relieve pressure on our tires. We pretty much go on short trips every 3 weeks and so that seems pointless in any case.
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