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Boat trailer/tire question


Scoot

Question

At first I thought this question was just me showing a lack of common sense, but now I'm not sure. Here's the scoop...

I've got a boat that has both the kicker and the trolling motor batteries on the same side. Obviously, this adds a good amount of weight to the one side of my boat. If I fill my boat's trailer tires with the same psi of air, I get one tire that is flatter (more squished) than the other. I assume that I should add more air so they look the same, but then I've got more air in one tire than the other. How much air should I have in each tire?

Probably a stupid question, but I'm not sure of the answer.

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First off, are they the exact same tire? Two different brands might sit different. Next, look on the sidewall and it will tell you the max air pressure, I usually go 6-8 pounds under that. But keep both tires the same pressure. The reason for dropping under the max pressure is once the tire heats up while traveling, the pressure will rise. After you have traveled 10 miles or so, check them and drop the pressure if it's over the recommended max pressure.

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First off, unless you're having a sway problem, I wouldn't be overly concerned with the differential in the tire bouyancy.

Secondly, tire pressure recommendations on the sidewalls are indicators and guidlines for COLD tire pressure, and are the best means of detirmining optimum pressure.

This, obviously, is to be checked when the tire is COLD (meaning hasn't been driven on for 3 hours, not sitting in the sunshine, etc)

Running 6-8 pounds low is what CAUSES the excessive heat, and will cause premature wear, not to mention the potential of complete tire failure. confused.gif

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Jigster is right. That number on the sidewall is the Max Cold pressure rating that the manufacturer states the tire can handle. Underinflation is the primary cause of tire failure.

Now to answer your question, try to put some of the movable stuff on the other side, like takle boxes, collers etc.

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Jigsticker,

To clarify, are you saying the tire pressure should be at the max rating while it's sitting in the garage?

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Thanks guys. The reason I asked the question is because we're getting some uneven wear on the heavy-side-tire. It looks flatter than the other (more weight on it) and it wears more quickly. That's why I asked the question.

I've tried just putting anything that weighs anything on the other side of the boat, but I rarely bring enough stuff along to come even close to the weight of the kicker and two big ol' 31 series Trojans.

Given this info, still the same rec? Put the same weight in each tire and fill them up to the max rating when they are cold?

Thanks fellas!

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Scoot,

How new/old is the trailer? Reason I asked, is I had an older boat/trailer that used to wear the tires as well. I followed instructions from the tire supplier about inflation, but still had the wear. He looked everything over and told me my axle was slightly bent. Not enough to have to replace, just enough to cause slightly more wear per year than normal. I think I had to replace the tires every 3 years or so. However, I towed that boat a lot, icluding a yearly trip to Canada, northern WI, and 350 mile round trip every 3rd weekend or so to my parents place. That could have been one reason for the accelerated wear, but I didn't have the coin to redo the trailer. It was cheaper to replace the tires every 3 years instead. It might be what you have......

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Yep. Max pressure sitting in the garage.

Uneven wear to that noticeable extent could be caused by either a bent axle (like stated above) or an alignment issue.

If the one wheel is "dog tracking" it will cause excessive wear, but typically more to one side of the tire itself then the other side, same usually with a bent axle.

Is this what you are experiencing?

Never exceed max air pressure. Nor is it a good idea to run low of air pressure, or have differing pressures.

An option for you is to upgrade your tires by load rating.

Will cost a few extra bucks now as you would need to replacce both tires, but would save money in the long run.

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If you want to get technical about it, maybe you could find the manufacturer's loading vs. inflation pressure table for the tire.

IMO, it's not always best to max pressure the tire especially if you have a lighter/smaller boat vs. the trailer/tire capacity. Doesn't sound like you're in this category though.

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I would also add that more pressure than recommended max will cause tire to fail also.

Heat created from friction will expand and build up pressure inside tire.

Best way is to inflate at max prescribed pressure, no more and no less.

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