How often do you all pack your wheel bearings? My husband is doing it every trip. This to me seems really excessive for a 120 mile drive.
Every trip?! Boy, "excessive" is an understatement! :W
Manufacturers usually suggest every year, every 12,000 miles but every two years has always worked for me.
Every trip? Really? :h
How often do you all pack your wheel bearings? My husband is doing it every trip. This to me seems really excessive for a 120 mile drive. I could understanding if the trailer were a boat trailer and being immersed multiple times in a week.
My TT is going on six years old. I do not know about the previous owner but I have put over 20,000 miles on it in the three years I have owned it. Until I decided to replace the brakes it was lubed though the EZ lube zerks once a year.
When I did pulled the drums the bearings were well lubed. I cleaned, hand packed, then EZ lubed them. I like the idea of having the axles shaft filled with grease.
I have been told you can over pack them but the manual said to spin when wheel and watch for grease at the front bearing while pumping. It worked for me.
The easy-lube axels were intended for boat trailers that have the bearings submerged in water when launching a boat. The RV industry use them as a marketing ploy to make people think there is an easy way to lube bearings. The sad reality is that RV owners should forget the easy lube **** and pack the bearing the old fashion way at recommended intervals. Also if one has the spring like nut retainers they should be discarded and replaced with the tang type nut retainers. The springy ones do not hold the nut well and could cause the bearing to loosen and thus cause pre-mature failure.
So if I understand what you are trying to make us believe is,, My EZ Lube axles,,, On my Travel Trailer,,, were designed for boats?
So,, if I submerge my axle launching my boat,, and I use the EZ Lube to flush out OLD Contaminated grease because of Submersion,,
That won't work for my travel trailer????
Why? Because I don't launch my trailer??
If it pushes new grease in and replaces old how is that bad??
Maybe I have a weird view of how the system works,, but for the last four years it has worked for me just as the system was designed!
Given the amount of traveling I do with my travel trailer, I am of the thought that I should only have to remove my bearings when i replace my brakes! If I checked my bearings and brakes at time of purchase, then hand pack and adjust my bearings,, why wouldn't i just be able to add new grease, remove old as its pushed out, and let that work for five years (given my overall travel distance) before checking bearings and brakes?? If it works fine why keep messing with it??
What is really telling you is that they should be repack them just like they do your auto at the car repair place. With the ezlube ones there is no way of telling how much grease is in there so there is no way of telling how much to pump in. When you brake the rear seal then you have grease in places it doesn't belong. My RV repair place repacks them by hand(bearing packing machine) for that same reason
I'm a low-mile tower and I've hand-greased my EZ Lube axles several times over the years. Jack up the wheel, spin it while pumping, listen for the popping noise of air being forced out the rear seal, stop pumping. When I did have my bearings done after 10 years, there was =zero= grease outside the seals and the bearings and seals looked to be in excellent condition; none of the seals were backed out of position, either. I replaced them all anyway. YMMV...
You'll get a million different recommendations here. I bought my rig new in March 2011 and have about 12k miles on it. I just had mine in the axle shop for the first time last month. The mechanic told me the bearings were in perfect shape with plenty of grease. All he did was re-pack them and put everything back together. I greased mine periodically using the easy lube feature by jacking the wheel off the ground and added 3-4 squirt of grease while I rotated the tires.
Having said all that your rig could be different, more miles, different bearing manufacturer, more strenuous use etc. so it's really hard to tell. One thing I always did was to keep an eye on hub temps when I made fuel stops. High hub temps can be an early warning to failure.
It's all about how much faith you have in your rig and how much risk you are willing to take.
Like a toilet dumping into a capped 4" sewer.
On the large side of the inner bearing a full lip seal rests. It seals against the spindle. Force grease THROUGH the bearing? Shirley You Jest...the process can replace grease in the space between bearings. While hoping the pressure build-up isn't great enough to compromise the rear seal. Whomever claims such a mechanism can rid even the outer bearing of all contaminants is either a dreamer or a con artist.
Ever do a wheel pack? I washed the bearings in clean solvent then air dried them without spinning them. Then I flushed the bearing with brake clean and felt GRIT on my hands from the flushed brake clean. Invariably.
When no more grit emerged, I would then pack the bearing in a cone wheel bearing packer.
Filling the center of the hub is about the stupidest idea I have ever heard of. grease does not move and if it does it will be by centrifugal force to the outside of the hub. If grease moves it is defective junk
The idea of filling the center of the hub came from hectorite clay based grease which bled (wicked) base oil through a trail of clay to the bearing. Thick don't mean squat...its the oil that does the work just as it does in oil filled Stemco diesel truck front axle and trailer bearings.
When clay based grease was finished wicking, it left modeling clay stiff residue which had to be knocked out of the hub cavity. Early Delco ball bearing grease was clay based, When packed correctly the bearings lasted much longer than prelubed sealed bearings.
That's history. Clay base greases are of the era of tar-top batteries.
Today's greases have to be inserted within the bearing AND STAY THERE. When the hub cover protected (sealed) the outer hub the rawhide seals the inner bearing.
A suitable grease REPELS water. It rejects it utterly and cannot meld with water ever. If water manages to penetrate the hub cap, it wont stay there for long and even if it does, it cannot get anywhere near metal. A good grease can have a half-pint of water in the hub, and it laughs it off. There's no foaming, no mixing, the water stays as a bubble forever kept away from metal. Usually it leaks out of the bearing hub through ten micron size metal irregularities.
Using suitable grease foreign matter cannot pass the hub cap. Never. Water finds it's way out but grit and dust is infinitely larger. So foreign contamination is what, 90,000 times less than it would be with a compromised hub seal?
New wave metal complex greases do not migrate. They do not wick base oil. If the grease is not present on and within the rollers and cage it never will be. You can place 10,000 tons of grease next to a bearings and it will contribute absolutely nothing.
So externally lubed bearings rely on grease displacement to attempt to purge contaminants out of the outer bearing? Contaminants that would not be there in the first place if the hub itself had a proper seal?
The only philosophy that makes sense here would be the engineers are convinced garbage grade grease will (inevitably) be used. Total snot that DOES homogenize with water, does form a muck and does lose a majority of its lubricity.
1940's and 50's thinking and technology that is now utterly and totally made obsolete when super greases are used.
Excellent grease and excellent sealing is light-years more secure than external lubing to purge grease. When not if water enters the hub and homogenizes with garbage grease how does the inner bearing fare..............hmmmmmmm?
When I was going to college, Shell Oil Co. bragged about their 4-Ball-wear-test which is an excellent test as is still being used. We went to school and learning how grease worked.
In 1978 when Lubrication Engineers revolutionized grease with it's Almagard and gear oil with Amasol, I stood amazed. Old conventions had to be tossed aside. Boat trailer manufacturers dare not seal their assemblies with closed hubs because sure as hell a knucklehead will use 39 cent grease. Externally greaseable RV hubs are exactly the same way. Sealing meant failure because too many owners are too cheap or too lazy to do-things-right and stick with garbage lubricants. Actually shops are to blame "Me? Spend five hundred dollars for a quarter-drum of grease when Snot-O-Rama has quarter drums for $79.95 ???"
Keep contaminants OUT OF bearings and use grease that stays put and reduces friction. Lest you think I am a shill for Lubrication Engineers, CHEVRON has a grease called RED GREASE which is a clone to Almagard.
There is JP-7, there is a blue goo, available from home dealer garages that is pure garbage even worse than parts-store grease. There are only two consumer available greases on the face of the earth that actually do what grease should do.
It's a free world. Do what you gotta do, but don't complain about it. The answer is in my response, but I wonder about the percentage of people who read this then sneer at it.
Meanwhile I'm done responding to grease issues. I did my job and said what I needed to say.
Hardly anything on a yearly basis. Less than my vehicles. I may buy a tube of caulk to touch up some caulking. But other than that there's really not much money spent on maintenance on a yearly basis. Some will wash their roofs with a cleaning product, but that's relatively cheap.
The biggest expenses are going to be all the stuff you think you need for the trailer that you'll buy. I'm always fiddling around with something so I'm spending money on some project. Most aren't do or die projects. More like upgrades to make things easier or better.
You'll need tires every 4-5 years. Re-pack the bearings every two years for me. If you have someone do it then that would be $100-200.00. I do mine so it's just the cost of seals and grease. $20.00 or so.
On the other hand if you're the type of owner that takes their RV into the dealer every year for a checkup and winterizing then I'm not sure what the yearly costs would be since I've never done that. I know winterizing runs around $50-75.00 depending on dealer. It's good to adjust the brakes yearly too. ($$?) Not sure about the inspection costs. A call to any dealer would give you an estimate.
Best thing to do to save money is to learn how to maintain it on your own. Most of the maintenance besides re-packing wheel bearings is fairly simple and easy.
Usually all the instructions you need can be found by Googling it and finding a YouTube video. There are some really good instructional videos done by dealerships or RV suppliers that will help you.
from what your seeing,and telling ,it was cleaned up, and fitted with the best bearings out there, and it was good to go when you took it off, ME,I,d pack it and watch the temp on it at each stop. I,d go on the trip. from your words it sounds safe.
Sort of. I like the timken usa bearings for sure. especially since I just bought a set of nationals from advance and were chinas. Look at the pics though since I just got them to post. If this "clean up" is normal on trailer axles, I will just put the bearings back in and rock-n-roll. I was just not sure if this type of wear was normal for wheel bearing spindles. This is my first trailer.
In general the thought is to have the bearings greased once a year or 5000 miles.
Some like to disassemble the wheel and axel so they can inspect and hand pack the bearings. Others are content to use the EZ lube grease fitting and lube the assembled on the TT.
If you go to an RV dealer they will use the EZ lube feature. Quite frankly, if you do not know how to hand lube a bearing or what to look for in a worn bearing, there does not seem to be much reason to take it apart.
I just finished hand packing the bearings on my lawn tractor, not hard once it is jacked up but it is messy.
It is similar with the brakes, most TTs are the older style drum and shoe with an electrical actuator. Unless you are familiar with inspecting and adjusting them it is easiest to let the local shop do it.
I did the brakes on my pop-up but left the TT brakes for the folks with the heavy tools for jacking up the TT.
None of this is rocket sience and some feel more comfortable if they do it themselves. Others would rather leave it to the pros.
Labor rates in our area are $125.00 and hour or more so I tend to do the little guys myself.
Growing up around an auto service shop in an era when front wheel bearings were not "permanently lubricated" I learned to pack bearings before I was nine years old, so I would probably do that job myself. It can be messy, but I still have a tub of bearing grease in my garage, and can't remember not having the grease any time in the past forty years. Packing grease is not the problem. The problem is learning to get the hub adjusted right when you reassemble it.
Every place I've bought tires included installation and "lifetime" balancing in the tire price, or at worst showed it as an added charge of $10-15. When tires still had tubes in them, and we never much bothered about wheel balancing, I changed many car-sized tires with a mallet and 2-3 tire irons, up to an hour's labor per tire. I quit doing that when the world switched to tubeless tires, because the physical effort became huge if you didn't have the power equipment for the job. There are guys out there doing road service for truck tires that still change out tires the hard way, but at my age I won't be doing it, I'll pay the tire shop.
FWIW, when I took six light truck tires in to have valve stems replaced with metal, involving unmounting the tire on one side of the wheel, my tire shop did the job for $10 a wheel, including cost of the new stems, and removing/installing on my motorhome sitting out in the driveway. The work is hard enough it is worth paying to have it done. Don't make your husband try to do it.
Buy the tires online? My local dealer buys the tires online, sells them to me at the price the online supplier would charge me retail.
Since you really should inspect the bearings you may as well hand pack and install new seals. Easy lube misses that important step of inspection. I only see an advantage to a boat trailer where the hub filled with grease will better keep water out during launch.
First inspection and repack is most important. After you know it was done right the pack should last a long time. Manufacturer though mostly says to repack annually.
Carry an extra set of bearings, seal, nut, washer, pin & cap and you will never have a failure ;) This is my thinking also. I used the EZ lube on my salt water boat trailer for years with no problems just pumped grease in every year for about 10 years and watch the old grease and moisture come out until they failed completely and left me stranded on the side of the road. With my MH I tightened the wheel bearings several times then finally cleaned them inspected and repacked them. You really don't know if the bearings are galled until you look at them. The inspection is the important thing not the way you put grease in.
IF you pump to much grease in it will push past the seal and ruin your brakes, this is what a lot of people do, in this case more is not better. dexters work great if used right. if you pack the cavite full it,ll expand and ruin your brakesThis is misinformation about the EZ Lube axles. You cannot pump too much grease into the axle, excess grease will be pushed out the front of the wheel/hub assembly. That is how they are designed to work. You can force grease past the rear seal, as has been noted a grease gun can create enough pressure to defeat most passive grease seals. Using an air operated grease gun on these axles will, IMO, guarantee that grease will find its way past the seals and into the brakes.
I have to admit that I don't understand why trailer bearings supposedly need to be removed, cleaned, and inspected frequently while my car/truck wheel bearings haven't been touched in hundreds of thousands of miles and still work. They both use Timkin-style bearings and should be good for a very, very long time.
I also don't know why the EZ Lube axle is necessary for a trailer that doesn't see regular immersion in water.
I have worked with large equipment that use Timkin-style bearings on large diameter shafts and flywheels. These often run 24/7 for a year between servicings, and do very well.
Is it the side loads on trailer wheel bearings, poor quality bearings, or some other issue?
My toad is a 03 Ranger 4x4 5sp. Its been great a tow rig and very dependable. I recenty replaced both front hub assemblys and wondered if the dragging the rig around by its nose effects front wheel bearing wear? It would seem that the steering wheel input would easier than the tow bar. Thoughts appreciated thanks in advance
I doubt that towing would affect this. The bearing design might be too light since the front end of the Ranger may weigh close to that of an F-150. Or have been inadequately lubed at the factory.
I had a 1994 Mazda B-4000 4x4 that lost a front bearing at about 18k miles (At that time they were manufactured on the same assembly line as the Ford Ranger). The clue was it occasionally squalled quite loudly when parking. The hubs hadn't ever been submerged in water, btw.
Since it was under warranty to 30k, my local Mazda dealer at the time took a look, but wanted to charge me megabucks for service, four bearings and two hubs. The service manager wouldn't accept my claim that it should be under warranty since the first wheel-pack service interval wasn't even required until 25k and I knew much older cars sometimes ran for 100k on factory grease. They get loose before they run dry and burn.
I was busy at work, so I had the work done at a local tire shop for half price by a mechanic I trusted. He noted that none of the bearings had ever been grease-packed at all, so the nearly dry bearings apparently made it 18k on the minimal petroleum based corrosion coating shipping film. All four bearings were now blue. One spindle was marred (race spun a bit), but serviceable. I should say that Mazda factory reps treated me ok in other instances, but the dealer was terrible and since gone out of business... thankfully.
MOHO chassis uses same brakes as any DRW (Dual Rear Wheel) E350/450. You might be able to get just the Rotor and not the Rotor/Hub assembly. If you do that, it'd be a good idea to have somebody put it on a brake lathe and make sure it doesn't need to be cut a little to run true. It will likely run true if you clean the mounting surfaces thoroughly and torque the screws carefully.
Just make sure the Wheel Studs are long enough to let you mount your wheel simulator retaining nuts, if that's the setup you have. If your best deal on that part includes short studs, you'd only have to have a shop replace two of them with longer ones to accommodate the retaining nuts.
Just looked at Autozone and they have only the complete Hub/Rotor assembly. They show one for 2-wheel ABS and one for 4-wheel ABS. We know your chassis has sensors on the front, so I'd take that as 4-wheel. Might be wrong but I believe any 2-wheel ABS was Rear Wheel ABS, called Rear ABS or RABS. When you get the rotor assembly off, you'll see a toothed "wheel" surface inside the hub. That interfaces with the tips of the sensors you're seeing the wires for. And that's the hub you want. Wish they'd say "4-wheel" or "Rear Wheel" or "Front Wheel" instead of "2-wheel."
You'll be packing bearings, so be sure to get High Temperature Wheel Bearing Grease. The old-fashioned stuff that worked with drum brakes will melt and run out of the bearings in a disk brake vehicle. They actually sell a "Ford Approved" flavor. Not sure that's essential, but Hi-Temp indeed is.
My guess is you'll need pads and probably calipers. Ideally hoses too, but don't forget the lube for the caliper slides, again Hi-Temp.
You'll need a 21mm or 7/8" wrench, ideally a socket with breaker bar, to get those caliper mounts off to remove your rotors.
Might want to check with Quad Van and see what they have that they'd sell you less than the full Axle-and-Brake "kits" that Bryan and I bought. Just the Brake parts. Just remember you need the pre-2008 parts if you don't want to replace and upgrade both sides, and there might not be any of those laying around. Gotta tell you, if you're gonna pull the whole rotors off, need at least one rotor, and your calipers/pads are suspect, I'd get a "Brake Kit" (without axles and radius arms, upgrade to 2008+, and improve brake performance while you do the repairs.
If you don't know how to adjust the wheel bearings, look it up or ask us. BTW, with a "Kit" I didn't even have to buy seals or pack the bearings. Those chassis are delivered on carriers, so essentially zero miles on the parts.
Being that the RV is 18 years old, but new to you, it would be wise to have the tires, brakes, and wheel bearings checked. Also the suspension. An inspection should provide an indication of the problem or potential problems. JMHO.
Yep........time to pull the drums, inspect brake assemblies & repack wheel bearings for a start.
Check spring pack bushings and install wet bolt kit
The hub is designed for the old grease to be pushed out the front of the hub as the new grease goes in the rear of the hub. That is how it purges the old grease. There will be a lot of old grease come out the front before you start seeing new grease. Look at a cut away view of the hub. Or watch the utube video.
Well, designed to work that way, but how do you know grease is not getting past the seal????
Back in the day of repacking cars front wheel bearings, never packed the entire cavity full of grease, just packed the bearing full, gooped up the race and put back together, a new seal of course.
What does Dexter suggest about checking your brakes? Since the hub must be removed to do it, a front bearing pack/inspection is worth the little extra effort. Since you did the front bearings, why not the rear along with new seals?
See, no need for EZ-Lube :) BTW, I also have them on my trailer and found them to be useless.
X2, Old school for me, how do you "Inspect" the bearings without taking apart???:h
We are picking up the truck on the morning of the 18th. Then, straight over to get the trailer.
I then have 4 days to get all the techy stuff completed:
* new double din head unit touchscreen
* new speakers all around (I have to; I'm an acoustical engineer)
* slim sub
* inverter with custom cab USB & 110v outlets
* set up solar w/ battery backup tire pressure and temperature monitor
* install and hardwire dash cam
* install wireless charging puck under center console
* set up the back seat area for the Basset Hound and Mini Dacschund
* add blackout curtains over their windows
* home built security system that I can't tell you about or I would have to kill you
* other stuff I can't recall right now
* install back up cam and wireless radio connecting to the screen in the cab
* install a WiFi Ranger on the roof
* install removable outdoor speakers
* upgrade inside speakers (the stock units are atrocious)
* toss out the Sony receiver, tube TV, VCR, and DVD changer
* add Chromecast
* add new receiver
* install a HD projector inside ceiling cabinet above recliners
* install microperf pull down screen in front of TV/electronics cabinet
* install x-series encore ninja master speakers in TV/electronics cabinet
* all new wiring for that stuff
* install kegerator (2x sixtel or 1x 1/2 barrel)
* install Kegbot flowmeter and tablet
* add LED lighting to basement
* add pair of 6v batteries
* install solar panels on roof (non-permanent; can take down for ground positioning)
* swap out commode for a composting type
* new locks outside to replace the 751's
* install new fireplace
* check wheel bearings and repack as needed
* set up my desk area
* set up media server allowing access by any computer/phone anywhere to all music, movies, TV shows, books, games, & dailies of the stuff we will shoot on the trip, etc.
* install retractable lines on the outside for the dogs
* fabricate and install some basement organization stuff
* more geeky custom security (I'm also an electrical and mechanical engineer - I'm all the engineers)
* wrap some EL wire around our cruiser bicycles (she has a 2012 Schwinn and I ride a 1950 Colson Commander)
* install a small cargo carrier on the 32tk3's hitch for the bikes and a gas can for the generator (+ more unobtrusive security)
* fab a generator noise abatement box with some proprietary material from my audio company
* weld up a muffler if I still think it is too loud (no, I'm not using a loud construction gen)
* and the customary other **** I can't remember right now
- Hit the scale to check weights (truck, pin, trailer). Alter pack out as needed.
- Head out to a local spot - Horsetooth Reservoir for a shakedown. One day and night minimum.
- After a week or so on the the trip, we will be stopping by some friends and I can change/add/delete anything that isn't working for us.
- During the trip my wife will be updating all the fabrics inside the trailer, painting, and re-wallpapering.
If any of that sounds too heavy or power intensive, it's cool; I've accounted for each pound and watt.
edit: change formatting for reliability
The outlet on the left side is labeled with a sticker as a GFCI outlet but has no test or reset button and looks exactly like the outlet on the other side. :?
It's probably GFI protected upstream in the circuit (likely the bathroom). FWIW, somebody should have at least suggested to the OP that a call to an electrician may be warranted. I'm all for DIY when it makes sense, but I get the feel from what I'm reading here that the OP should stay hands-off on this one. As a past Sparky in a previous lifetime, I can say with all honesty that I have not seen a recommendation to do what I would have done in this instance. Nor would I feel comfortable trying to explain it step by step in a forum. Be certain of what you are doing and do it safely when it comes to electricity. These things already go up like a matchstick without our help.
I joined this forum to learn. Because of this forum I was able to hard wire a Progressive Industries EMS into the camper...learned how to pack wheel bearings...installed two Fantastic Vents...removed the oven and replaced with a new cooktop...installed shocks for the under bed storage...just to name a few. I learned by reading and asking questions and have saved a ton of money by not staying "hands off" and calling someone else to do the work and I plan to keep doing it that way. There are several intelligent people in this forum and I have not been steered wrong yet.
Great on boat trailers that get submerged under water. Terrible idea for rv type trailers. You will destroy your brakes using this method if not done properly and sparingly. RV Trailer bearings don't need constant attention like boat trailers anyway! How often do you pack the wheel bearings on your tow vehicle? What's the difference??