Can You Use Truck Tires on Travel Trailers?


Can-You-Use-Truck-Tires-on-Travel-Trailers

When deciding on tires for your travel trailer, the pros and cons should seriously be considered. The tires on a trailer are not like those that you buy for your daily vehicle. A blowout in the middle of the turnpike can be seriously catastrophic. So, when looking for the right tires to use on your travel trailer, it is important to consider the trailer recommendations and the tire’s capabilities before you decide.

Can you use truck tires on travel trailers? Using light truck tires on a travel trailer is possible and has its benefits but can oftentimes lead to tire blowouts or trailer sway. Even so, if you decide to use truck tires, as long as the tires match the travel trailer’s load capacity and other requirements, they should do the job.

It is a highly debated topic that light truck tires are not a good option for travel trailers. This is because the softer and more flexible sidewall and the smaller steel wire inside the tires are more prone to blowouts if the wrong grade is put on a travel trailer that needs more. It is important to consider where the tires will be driving and the general speed they will be going, as well as the weight of the travel trailer and the pressure within the tires.

Do Truck Tires Work on Travel Trailers?

The short answer is that yes, light truck tires will work on a travel trailer. Where many consumers go wrong, though, is they will buy the tires that they often see recommended on forums without checking their travel trailer’s recommendations and capacities. Once you have found those in the user manual, you will be able to decide on the correct tires for your travel trailer. And once you find them, you will appreciate the additional benefits that come with them.

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Benefits of Light Truck Tires

Using light truck tires on a travel trailer can have many benefits that special trailer tires do not offer. Some of these benefits include increased speed and raised rolling resistance. It is absolutely imperative that the tires chosen for the travel trailer have the correct load capacity, are inflated to the correct pressure, and are the correct size. If all of the guidelines are followed, it lowers your risk of a blowout and the repairs that come with it.

Increased Speed

If you choose the correct tires for your travel trailer, an added benefit to choosing light truck tires is the additional speed capabilities. The special trailer tires that are usually recommended for travel trailers generally have a maximum speed of about 65 mph. Driving no higher than the maximum speed will lessen your chances of a tire blowout. So, that is why many people decide to switch to light truck tires. They can keep up with traffic and get to where they are going faster.

Light truck tires usually have a higher maximum speed rating because they are made to be able to handle more friction without overheating. When tires overheat, they blow, so getting tires that have a higher maximum speed rating can be especially helpful on those long road trips on long stretches of a turnpike. The friction caused by the speed of the tires on the cement can cause some serious heat in your tires, which in turn can cause some tire failure.

Raised Rolling Resistance

Most special trailer tires have a limited rolling resistance partially due to the weight that is placed on them and partially because of the tread and stiffness of the tires. This means that your vehicle will need to work harder to keep the tires moving at a consistent speed. With more resistance from the tires, your vehicle will have to send more energy to the tires to keep them rolling.

If the rolling rate of your tires is improved, then your fuel efficiency will be improved. Drivers can save as much as 10% on gas if they get low rolling resistance tires. And fortunately, light truck tires tend to have a better rolling rate.

Less Chance of a Blowout If You Follow Recommended Guidelines

If the tires that are put on the travel trailer match the capabilities of the trailer absolutely perfectly, then the likelihood of a tire blowout lessens. This means the cold tire pressure is spot on, the sizes of the tires are correct, the tire capabilities exceed the weight of the travel trailer you are pulling, and you go under the tire’s maximum speed limit at all times. If the guidelines are followed, then light truck tires can work perfectly for you.

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Main Reasons for Tire Failure

The main reasons for tire failure on your travel trailer are easily avoidable once you learn about them. Of course, there are exceptions to this in any case, and sometimes there is more you need to look out for. But in most cases, tire failure is due to overloading the tire’s capacities, speeding, or putting the incorrect amount of pressure in them. If you follow the tire and travel trailer guidelines, then you will be able to get a decent lifespan out of your tires.

The tire pressure is oftentimes the easiest thing to mess up when putting your tires on your travel trailer. Your best bet is to get them put on professionally, but if that is out of your current price range, then be sure to fill up the tire pressure to your travel trailer’s recommended pressure. Too much or even too little pressure in your tires can cause them to overheat while you are driving and will eventually lead to a blowout.

Every tire has a speed rating and its weight capability shown on the wall of the tire. Once you find these recommended capacities, you will be able to better understand what your tires will be able to handle and about how long they may last you. Following the guidelines given to you and matching the correct tires to your travel trailer will extend the lifespan and lessen the chance of blowouts or accidents.

When choosing some tires for your travel trailer, it is recommended that you choose a higher letter grade than your trailer can handle. The higher the letter, the more the tires will be able to handle. If you have tires that just reach that rating, it will always be in the back of your mind the dangers of a tire blowout while driving down the road at 65 mph. So, for peace of mind, spending the extra money on a higher-grade tire won’t hurt anything. If anything, it will help.

Think About the Tires on the Towing Vehicle

What many travel trailer owners tend to forget about is the tires on the vehicle that will actually be doing the towing. These tires are just as important, if not more. The tires on your vehicle will be doing a lot of work. Not only are they supporting your vehicle, but they will be pulling the thousands of pounds that you will be dragging behind you.

Getting tires that can withstand such a task is so significant because if a blowout happens on your vehicle while you are driving and towing a travel trailer, it can cause an accident, or you can even lose control of your trailer. A lot of travel trailer owners put all of the money into their travel trailer tires and skimp on their vehicle tires. So, be sure to do some research to find the tires that will work best for the job you need them to do.

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Mike Gilmour

Hi, I'm Mike, co-founder, and editor of RV and Playa. My passion is traveling (with my RV) and enjoying the day at the beach (Playa)! Well, I originally created this blog as a way to share what I've learned by experimenting with the RV lifestyle, and I want to help others develop in life through new skills and opportunities.

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