How long do the RV tires last? It’s a common question among RVers looking to get the most out of their initial tires. After all, buying a high-quality set can put quite a strain on your savings as it’s expensive.
You’ll need to plan and stash away the right amount of money to afford them. It makes knowing their average lifespan a vital piece of information. You’ll also need to understand how to maintain them properly to avoid replacing your tires as long as possible.
Let’s dive into both topics below to ensure you’re a high-quality RV tire owner. I promise this article will ensure you get the most out of your RV tires.
How Long Do the RV Tires Last
Most RV tires manage to last between five and seven years. Of course, some tires will last longer with proper care, maintenance, and avoiding dangerous situations. But there’s also the other side of this coin where they weaken faster than expected.
If you’re looking for a lifespan based on mileage, rotating your tires every 8,000 or 10,000 miles is a good guideline. Some RVers will get 30,000 miles on a single set of tires, but these results are an outlier and shouldn’t be expected.
It’s also essential to know that you can quickly check a tire’s age. Each one has a date code or manufacturing date indicated by a set of numbers, beginning with the phrase “DOT.” This code’s last four digits will tell you in what year and week your tire’s made.
You shouldn’t have much trouble locating this code as it’s found on every tire’s sidewall. Some models might have it inside their sidewalls, which could require a bit more effort. You’ll have to crawl under your motorhome to access the coveted code.
RVers must realize that a motorhome’s tires uphold the vehicle’s entire load, as well. They’re responsible for holding all the cargo, passengers, and the whole rig itself. As a result, these tires will need the proper care or timely replacements to ensure they don’t blow out during travel.
Some factors can reduce a tire’s lifespan, though, which every RVer should recognize. Here’s a few of them to provide some idea of what to anticipate:
Frequency of Usage
Some RVers use their motorhome for occasional trips or vacations. Meanwhile, others utilize these vehicles as their full-time home. Both situations will have a different impact on how long your trailer’s tires last.
For instance, an occasional RVer won’t have to change their tires as often as a regular user. It’s common sense because there’s a lot less wear and tear. Full-time RVers often report having to change their tires a whole year before a person who only uses their rig occasionally.
Certain weather conditions will always have more effect on tires than others. If you’re always traveling on icy or snow-covered roads, it’s reasonable to assume your tires won’t last as long. These harsh situations can increase wear and tear by a significant margin.
But cold weather conditions aren’t the only ones with a known reputation for causing issues. Extreme heat or extended exposure to UV rays can deteriorate tires quickly. It’ll wear off their sidewalls and exterior rubber parts much faster than you might assume.
An overloaded trailer can have a significant impact on your tire’s lifespan. It’s one of the most common reasons for failure among these products. You must stick to your trailer’s recommended capacity when traveling from place to place.
More importantly, an overloaded trailer doesn’t only affect your tires. It can affect your vehicle’s engine and cause unneeded strain on it. As a result, the entire traveling experience becomes a lot more burdensome.
Type of Tires
You should always use ST (special trailer tires) when traveling on your rig. These products are specifically designed to carry the extra weight of these vehicles. Passenger vehicle and truck tires cannot handle the load placed on them by motorhomes or RVs.
Your tire’s quality will be a significant factor in how long it lasts, as well. Settling for cheaper, low-quality tires isn’t a wise move as you’ll end up changing them more frequently. It’ll only cost you more money in the long run.
I’d recommend buying tires made from the highest quality material possible. After all, these tires can be the difference in preventing dangerous situations from becoming tragic. These aren’t an investment that’s ideal for a bargain buy.
You never want to buy RV tires from a non-trusted brand. It’s crucial to purchase them from a manufacturer with a strong reputation for providing excellent quality and customer service. A few examples of top-tier tire manufacturers include:
If you stick with these brands, the tires should more than meet your expectations. I’d still suggest reading through each product’s customer reviews to get the perspective of other buyers. These reviews are the most vital resource a potential buyer can utilize.
How to Keep Your RV Tires in Good Shape
Since you now have an idea about a tire’s lifespan, let’s dive into how to help them reach their maximum longevity. These six actions will help ensure your RV’s tires remain effective for a long, long time.
Knowing When to Change an RV Tire
The first thing to know is when an RV or motorhome tire needs a change. In most cases, this action consists of watching the tires for cracking, wear, and bulging. I’d also recommend keeping an eye on the tread depth and ensuring there’s over 4/32″ of it.
If your tread depth becomes too shallow or other issues appear, it’s time to get them changed. You’ll also need to keep an eye on the tire’s expiration date. I’m always going to suggest staying away from using tires made more than six years prior.
As I noted earlier, you can find the manufacture date on each tire’s sidewall. The final four digits of the “DOT” code will highlight when the brand produced each one. Its first two digits represent the manufacturing week, while the last two indicate its year.
For instance, a “DOT” code featuring the last four numbers of 0220 would indicate the brand made it in the second week of 2020. It would be best to replace any tire with a manufacturer date of six years old or older immediately before taking other precautions.
Cleaning Your RV Tires
In most cases, RV tires don’t need unique cleaning products. Some models can even get damaged by certain cleaning solutions when applied to them. These issues are why sticking with a soap/water method is always the safest route for motorhome or RV tires.
Storing Them Correctly
Most RVers store their motorhomes for several months during the year. Due to this, their tires sit unused and need proper storage to ensure top-tier protection. Here’s a short list of tips to stick with when storing your tires and motorhome:
- Please keep them in a cool, dry place.
- Clean the tires before placing them in storage.
- Move your rig every three months to prevent stagnation.
- Unload your RV to reduce the burden placed on the tires.
- If you can, store the RV on blocks rather than your tires.
Each tire will have a maximum weight capacity that it can handle. You must ensure the motorhome isn’t loaded with cargo which exceeds its predetermined capacity. Moreover, disturbing the weight onboard your RV is another essential step.
If you don’t, a single tire could end up bearing most of your RV’s weight. This situation would likely lead to a blowout or diminish its longevity by a significant margin. You can evaluate a load of each tire by weighing them separately via a vehicle scale.
Proper Tire Pressure
Keeping a close eye on each tire’s pressure level is another crucial task. I’d advise checking their levels before and after each RVing adventure. This check should be done when the tires are cold, or the reading might be inaccurate. You can use the RV tire pressure monitor system (TPMS) for easy checking!
You’ll want to have your tires checked and rotated by a professional on a semi-regular basis. These checks can go a long way in long-term tire usage. More importantly, an expert can provide additional tips to make sure they reach their maximum lifespan.
After reading our article on how long do the rv tires last, figuring out your RV tires’ expected lifespan should be easy:
- Locate the “DOT” code on your tire’s sidewall.
- Read the final four digits to unveil the manufacturer’s date.
- Compare the information to the five to seven year average lifespan of RV tires.
Please remember to stick with our maintenance tips, as well. These actions will help make sure your tires reach that seven-year mark rather than the five-year one.
Hi, I am Dane Heldt, a full-time RVer since 2016. I am always passionate about building and joining an RV community where people share their love for RV lives. This blog is a dream of mine, as I can finally share my experiences to help people who want to start living differently. So, feel free to reach out to me!