Saturday, July 15, 2017

Day 71 - Fruitland, ID

Today, the TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitoring System) paid for itself. Shorly after leaving the campground in North Salt Lake City, the system sounded the alarm that there was a rapid pressure loss from the passenger side rear trailer tire. It went from 70psi to 24psi by the time I had pulled off an off ramp. I thought that the TPMS sensor was loose as the hissing stopped when I tightened the sensor. I unhitched the truck and pulled it next to the trailer to power the pump and got it back to 70 psi. It then became evident that there was a problem with the valve stem.

We headed towards a Les Schwab tire place. They bumped me up in line and removed the tire to replace the valve stem. The tech said that it broke off in his hand. Total time was about an hour and the total cost was $0! How is that for great service.

It would be nice if that were the end of the story. About 50 miles from Boise, the TPMS alarm sounded again. Rapid air loss on the same tire. Before I pulled onto the shoulder we heard the tire blow. Tread seperation. I think that the time it was running at low pressure this morning damaged the tire internally. This time when the tread came off, it damaged the lower panel between the tire and the steps. Purely sheet metal. I pulled out the spare which looks old but was never used. The pressure was only 45psi so it had to be aired up before it could be mounted. Bridget’s photo. 



We cancelled our reservation at Crater Lake and will head for a friends home in Sunriver, OR. I’m hoping that I can find four new tires in Bend, OR. The one next to the one that blew had to carry the full load of that side of the trailer which is more weight than the tire is rated for. And if we had tread seperation on one, the rest are the same age. I’m thinking that the combination of higher speeds and higher temperatures contributed to the tire failure. All through Oregon, California, Nevada and Utah I rarely exceeded 60mph. But Wyoming, Idaho and Montana had speed limits up to 85mph so I sped up to 65-70mph. I’m now back to <60mph and I noticed that the tires are running considerably cooler. We are planning to get an early start tomorrow to travel during the morning hours. Today, it was 106°F and Bridget measured the road temperature of almost 140°F. Pretty hot…

6 comments:

  1. Yowza! Good thing you had the TPMS.

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    1. The TPMS was one of those essential purchases for the road trip.

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  2. Wow!! how old were those tires. I moved from Chicago to Wyoming with a 17' travel trailer I was always afraid to take it over 60. But I overloaded the back end of it with books, I didn't know any better. Safe travels my friend

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    1. Not very old. The receipt shows that they were only about 4 years old. But they were manufactured in China. I've been told to avoid trailer tires made in China.

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  3. Damn, glad you had the TPS on there and they served their purpose.

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    Replies
    1. Great thing to have if you tow a trailer.

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