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Old 09-03-2010, 01:10 AM   #1
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Thought I would share my experience with the CR family. I installed a TST system a week before our trip last week, then checked psi each day to make sure there were no static leaks. Air temp of 75 F at the start and over 100 F, 10 hrs and 500 miles later. Since this was first trip with the TST, I watched psi and temp carefully. One of the fiver tires was always running about 4 psi higher than the other three. Worst case tire temp was 20 degrees above air temp and as that apporached 100 F, I dropped speed and was towing at 55 mph. Level 4 lane road, just outside Artesia, NM the TST alarm went off. Slow down and check the monitor to see which tire, it was the suspect tire. I was stopped within 1/4 mile, and pressure was already around 50 psi. Checked the tire and could hear the air leaking. Took about 10 min. to put the spare on and then headed for the nearest RV park. The TST system helped me tow with greater care and saved me many dollars in repairs. It has paid for itself already.



Off to the nearest tire store with the bad Maxxis tire. Leak check showed multiple leaks and visual inspection showed cracks inside the tread grooves exposing the casing belts. This tire was ready to completely throw the tread with major damage. Without a tpms it would have been a blow-out. None of the tire stores in town had a load range E tire, so I got a D instead (which is what originally came with the Cruiser). Over night the three other tires dropped about 7 psi over original settings, but air temp was also 20 degrees lower, but this still concerned me. These tires were just over 3 yrs old, great tread left and no wear pattern. My choices, replace the tires when I returned home in 10 days, drive 40 miles out of the way to replace the tires immediately, or get to our destination (90 miles, two lane road and 5600 ft elevation change) park the trailer and then take two tires at a time to a tire dealer 20 miles away. We decided on immediate replacement. I added a few psi to each tire and as we were leaving the RV park, I noticed the fender skirt would pop out each time one tire reacted to small bumps in the park roads. Inspection showed almost no clearance between the tire and fender skirt. This was a new issue on a 6 yr old Cruiser. Arrived at the Discount Tire store in Roswell, NM and they were super quick replacing the tires. I found a little evidence of tire contact with the underside of the trailer and when I inspected the other three Maxxis tires, they had the same cracks as the failed tire. When the trailer was ready to roll, the new tires had over 1 inch of clearance to the fender skirt that had been a problem. I discussed all this evidence with the staff at Discount Tire and it was their judgement that all the tires had failed internally with air leaking between the body of the tire and the tread, balloning the outer tread and causing the contact with the fender skirt and the trailer floor. So, all 4 tires were in the early stage of tread separation. If I had been traveling with all 4 tires at the same psi, then the first failure probably would have caused the second to fail immediately as well.



My real message, besides the value of a tpms system, is we should all inspect our tires more carefully. My usual procedure is tire pressure, tread depth, wear pattern and sidewall cracks or bruises. I even knew what the failure looked like and didn't check the other 3 tires before heading to the tire store. So, in the future, I will also look for cracks within the tread pattern. Also, many people recommend replacing tires at 5-7 yrs, but since this event, I've found manuf. recommendations to replace as early as 3 yrs.
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Old 09-03-2010, 01:14 AM   #2
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Larry how fast were you driving just before the alarm went off?
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Old 09-03-2010, 01:27 AM   #3
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After talking to Larry a couple of times last week about his tire issue I decided to go ahead and order a TPMS for our trailer tires. I had been looking at them for a while even though I have already replaced the cheap Mission tires that came on our trailer with a good set of BFG Commercial LT tires. I ended up ordering a HawksHead system but any of the TPMS would be better than nothing if you travel much. Even though I have new tires on the trailer and my truck I never travel over 65 mph towing and always have the trailer tires at max psi. Thanks to Old Farmer for information on the HawksHead unit.
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Old 09-03-2010, 03:32 AM   #4
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OK here goes George on his soap box ... I was happy to hear Larry's story and how the out come was so positive. The TPMS was one of the first things I bought and got monitors for the truck and 5er. Yes it did cost but had read many post on other boards the need for this system. There are a number of systems and with technology moving as fast as it does there will better systems every year. Then in the past year or so Tires have been falling apart and owners have paid more than the system in insurance deductibles. I believe in the TPMS, Keeping the tires filled to max rating. Replacing tires either due to ware or age, and I go no faster than 70. (it is a treat once I leave Calif because here I am stuck at 55)




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Old 09-03-2010, 03:36 AM   #5
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Great write up on your experience Larry. I think I will give serious consideration to a TPMS before we head south for the winter.
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Old 09-03-2010, 12:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artgpo
Larry how fast were you drivingĀ* just before the alarm went off?


During the entire day, I was never over 65 mph. In the two + hours prior to the failure never over 60 mph, basically as soon as the air temp hit 95 F, I dropped to about 60 mph to keep tire temps and pressures from climbing. Again, when air temps hit 100 F, I again dropped to about 55 mph for the same reason. For probably 30 min prior to the failure I was at 55 mph and on nice, level 4 lane road.
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Old 09-04-2010, 05:06 AM   #7
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Larry, thanks for the write up on your experience. We are planning on tire replacement in the spring and I'll be adding a TPMS to the budget.

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Old 09-04-2010, 05:16 AM   #8
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I have been thinking about this as well. After doing some reading, it appears the Hawkshead system is the same (or very similar) to the Jette 400 system. At least they look identical. Anyone have experience with the Jette?

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Old 09-06-2010, 03:33 AM   #9
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One of the first things we got when we got our new 5er was a Hawkshead TPMS and put sensors on all eight tires. While I've not had any alarms of concern it sure is good to know that they are there looking our for me, great investment!

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Old 09-06-2010, 03:51 AM   #10
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We just finished a 4000 mile trip out west and this was the first trip with TST pressure monitors. All worked fine and provided piece of mind while traveling.
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Old 09-06-2010, 09:59 AM   #11
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Interesting...you changed the tire in 10minutes?...wow...lol
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Old 09-06-2010, 01:32 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cowboy_71
Interesting...you changed the tire in 10minutes?...wow...lol


Absolutely, it was 102 F outside. Nice, level paved shoulder but the surface temp was probably 130 F. I keep a 20 ton bottle jack, breakover bar and correct socket in the same truck bed compartment. Biggest problem was lowering the spare tire.
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