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Trailer Tire Recommendation For 2008 Forest River Surveyor 160-T Travel Trailer


We have a 2008 Surveyor, by Forest River, 160-T travel trailer with GoodYear Marathon 205 75R 14 tires on white painted wheels. original equipment After three seasons of very light use one of the tires has developed a large bulge in the sidewall. Obviously I am looking for new tires, but want something heavy duty that wont poop out so soon. The trailer is 3750 lbs GVW, axle is 3500 lbs, 250 or so on the hitch. Original wheels are 14 inch, 5 bolts on a 4.5 inch pattern. I am thinking of going to 15 inch wheels with Kenda 205 75R 15 Load range C tires to get a little more reserve capacity in the tires, or 205 75R 15 Load range D to get a lot more reserve. Give me your recommendations, please.

Expert Reply:

The ST205/75R14 Goodyear Marathon tires are a load range C tire, which means it has a maximum load capacity of 1,760 lbs. at 50 psi. If you have two tires on a single axle travel trailer that would give you a maximum load capacity of 3520 lbs. at 50 psi. That would not be enough for your 3,750 lbs. trailer and could be why your tires are showing signs of damage. If you have dual axles (four tires) on your travel trailer that would give you maximum load capacity of 7,040 lbs at 50 psi. That would be sufficient for your travel trailer.

When a tire has a bulge on the sidewall that would indicate that the sidewall was damaged at that point on the sidewall. What happens is the sidewall is impacted from hitting like a curb or large pothole over time and it will eventually cause the sidewall to weaken at that impact point on the sidewall. The air pressure inside the tire will then go to the weak spot on the sidewall and cause a bulge to form. It is not a defect with the tire, it is just from being damaged. If the tire does not have enough load capacity for the trailer that would also add to it being more susceptible to damage.

Using a tire with a higher maximum load capacity will help reduce the impact problem, because the higher rated trailer tire will have a stronger sidewall. Also, you will always want to make sure you use the maximum air pressure that is listed on the sidewall of the trailer tire.

You will need to check for clearance on your trailer if you can use a ST205/75R15 tire. The ST205/75R15 tire is one inch taller, so you will need to make sure you will have an extra 1/2 inch of clearance between the top of the tire and any part of the trailer.

The Karrier ST205/75R15 Radial Trailer Tire with 15 Inch White Wheel - 5 on 4-1/2 - Load Range C, part # AM32395, has a maximum load capacity of 1,820 lbs. at 50 psi.

I have a lot of work experience in the tire and wheel business so if there are any other questions I can help you with feel free to contact me.

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