Caravan tyre maintenance is just as important as checking your vehicles tyres. Surprisingly they are quite often overlooked, which can lead to wear and safety issues. As you know, your caravan tyres are the only part of the van in contact with the road and they play an integral part in keeping you safe.
Safely accelerating, braking and steering your RV is all reliant on your tyres, so it’s crucial to maintain and check them regularly. The biggest causes of damage to caravans is tyres delaminating, This is dangerous to yourself and others on the road, plus can cause extensive damage to your vehicle and van.
Caravan tyres are different to your cars and are designed to carry heavy loads and maximise safety when towing. The first thing is to always ensure you have the correct type on your rig for safe towing.
Before you head off on your road trip ensure you check the age and condition of your tyres.
How to check the age of your tyres?
Mostly caravan tyres need to be replaced due to age and not wear, as they don’t tend to do the same amount of km’s as your car. Their condition still deteriorates over time, even when not in use, due to factors such as UV light, being left stationary for extended periods and hot/cold weather. We recommend replacing your tyres, regardless of their tread, from 7 years to 10 at the absolute maximum. You can also take your van to your local wheel specialist for them to check.
Did you know that the age of a tyre starts from when it was made and not when it was fitted? They do have a shelf life and you can find their manufacture date on the sidewall, where a four digit DOT manufacture date code is displayed. The DOT code is shown in week and year of manufacture format. For example 3221 means it was made in the 32nd week of 2021.
Check condition and wear!
Before you head off on a trip in your van, remember to include a quick visual inspection of your tyres as part of your pre-trip checks. This should include checking their air pressure, condition and tread depth.
For the longevity of your tyres, along with safety and stability reasons it’s critical they are inflated to the correct pressure always. Lower pressure can cause you to lose control when towing and you’re more likely to experience tyre failure. You can find the correct pressure on your van’s compliance plate and we can’t stress enough that you need to follow these manufacturers specifications and not advice from elsewhere. This quick visual inspection will allow you to identify if they are flat, check for even wear, look for cracks in sidewalls or any bulges and check the rims for damage.
Also remember to keep an eye on the tread depth and if it goes lower than 1.6mm it is definitely time to replace them. However, just keep in mind, unlike a car, the depth of the tread is not always a true indication of the life left in the tyre.
Lastly, check the wheel nuts are correctly tightened to manufacturers specifications. After all of your vigilance around keeping your tyres in order, you don’t want the wheels to fall off. It’s a good idea to perform all of these simple checks throughout your trip too,
Your safety on the roads is paramount and following these quick and easy checks will ensure you arrive safely to your destination. For any further information on RV maintenance be sure to call our service and parts team on 08 8266 5779 for their expert advice.