Tires, Age And Speed
Too many RVers out there think that driving the posted speed limit or more is something done without worry…UNTIL they feel the pain of the cost of repairs and inconvenience.
Not long ago, we were trekking across West Texas along the Interstate. It was a beautiful day except that it was WINDY with STRONG GUSTS. Combine the wind with stretches of roadway that were rougher than a corn cob and it makes for some challenging driving. We were cruising at a conservative 63-65 mph when I was passed by a fellow RVer pulling a 5er who was doing about 75 mph. Now keep in mind the posted Speed Limit on this stretch is 80 MPH. I wasn’t surprised to see this, it happens all the time.
Eventually we caught up and passed him…Tortoise and the Hare, but he probably wasn’t any too happy to be sitting on the shoulder with two blown tires on his 5er in the middle of nowhere. Some of the causes for rv tire failure are:
- SPEED: RV tires are not designed to handle those kind of sustained speeds.
- AGE: RV tires need to be replaced if they are older than 5-7 years old regardless of miles driven.
- ROAD HAZARDS: debris and the road itself can damage a tire.
Even if you are someone who drives at a safe speed and keeps your tires properly inflated and maintained, you need to watch out for the other guy. When tires blow they typically do so without warning and it can instantly affect the handling of the vehicle…this can be the case whether a blowout happens in front of you, alongside you or while passing. BE and STAY ALERT!
These two images perfectly illustrate the point that I am making. A RV and a mobile home both had tire failures from the ruts in the grassy area between the highway and the frontage road. They suddenly veered and crossed over to the other side…well one almost made it.
Imagine if this would have happened in a congested area or if they were in the passing lane next to you. Although I used trailers to illustrate this point, it does happen to motorhomes of all sizes too! There are some pretty horrific videos out there of tires failing and the resulting carnage. Hopefully none of you will experience this type of unfortunate and costly event; whether you are the one driving the rigs illustrated or sharing the same section of roadway with someone who is. Safe travels!.