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Old 08-06-2014, 01:05 PM   #1
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Solera Tire Rotations - or not?

Looking for some experience here. I have 5,000 miles on my Solera and love it overall. I've read much on the tire pressure and blow-out and valve stem issues so I am rather blurry on the whole mess. I am new to dually rear wheels and had no idea they could be so troublesome.
Mine has rubber valve stems in the wheels and metal extensions. I plan to tie them to the wheels to avoid the blowout problem and will probably install the metal stems and TPMS upon rotation.
But then I am confused on rotations. I read that some rotate according to MB pattern and some do not. Some don't even rotate tires on the dually rears.
If I put metal valve stems so the inner tires can be maintained and monitored, then have them rotated - won't the stems have to be changed to the new inner wheels? Seems a bit excessive?
I'll stop and see what you guys with thousands of miles under your belts have to say on this issue.
I just want to be safe and trouble free as possible.

Thanks in advance for your comments.
Rich
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Old 08-06-2014, 01:32 PM   #2
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There's a small hooked extension on the outer duel tire and the inside tire is straight out, so all that should be needed is to change the extension on the tires. I had almost 15000 on my before I had them rotated I had new valve stems put on at that time also. If you go to have metal valve stems put on make sure the tire company knows it's for a Mercedes sprinter as it takes a special valve stem to fit in the rim.
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Old 08-06-2014, 02:28 PM   #3
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Thanks hkreck. I guess that means you cannot rotate inner to outer and front back due to metal stems in the wheels? (I am assuming that metal stems do not have extensions?) Or do they too have extensions that make it possible to move the wheels around without reinstalling the stems into the wheels?
So I guess my confusion is in the periodic rotation (assuming that is warranted) of the tires according to MB recommendations. At that time the metal stems (if one piece) would not fit the inner rear or the front. Am I missing something?
Adding to this confusion is the post I read that said he didn't rotate the duals at all. Another stated that he had the crossfire pressure equalizing system and left it alone long term.
Any value to those?
Thanks for bearing with my ignorance on this issue.
Rich
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Old 08-06-2014, 03:31 PM   #4
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OK I think I confused you on this, see if I can explain it better. The metal stems for the MB sprinter is a regular metal stem which fits in the grove of the MB wheel. Other than that it's just like any other tire stem. You can put extensions on them and then just move the extensions around when or if you rotate the tires. I have heard of people just going without rotating because the tires are on an RV which doesn't always get driven around like other vehicles.
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Old 08-07-2014, 11:37 PM   #5
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Source for valve stems?

Just got back today from Discount Tire. Tried to buy their metal valve stems, but they do not fit my Solera wheels. Searched Google and cannot find a source to buy valve stems that will fit. Does anyone have any leads on where to buy? I sure would like to replace my valve stems before I head out on our big trip to Michigan next week! And also to replace my braided extensions with the air-flexx, if I only knew what size to buy. I have gotten conflicting sizes on a separate thread as to what lengths are needed for front, inner and outer rear.

Thanks...
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Old 08-08-2014, 08:02 AM   #6
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Try this place. They have rigid valve stems that do not require extensions. If you have wheels with round holes, this set should work for you. It includes stems for the front wheels.
DL1SP13FR Chrome Duallyvalve Kit W/ Front Stems. You can also call them and they will provide info.
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Old 08-08-2014, 08:07 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikegjax View Post
Try this place. They have rigid valve stems that do not require extensions. If you have wheels with round holes, this set should work for you. It includes stems for the front wheels.
DL1SP13FR Chrome Duallyvalve Kit W/ Front Stems. You can also call them and they will provide info.
Definitely call first, took me three times but I finally got the correct extensions.

Evidently there are a variety of wheels that were installed on Sprinters!
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Old 08-08-2014, 08:30 AM   #8
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I started this thread in hopes of answering a couple questions that I hope we will get to.

1. With the metal valve stems - with no extensions - do you not rotate the tires? Is anyone doing it this way and to what benefit?

2. With metal valve stems - short ones with adequate extensions for the inner wheels - you can then rotate the tires as advised. But then, do you not open yourself to the flaws of the extensions addressed in the double blowout thread??

It is tough to sort out the pros and cons of each practice. I am sure I will have to choose and hope to be able to choose from the best experiences of all who reply.

Thanks to you for your replies.

Rich
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Old 08-08-2014, 10:17 AM   #9
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Really I think the issue comes down to what you are trying to accomplish.

The simplest approach is to just have the standard wheel stems with no extensions. You can rotate your tires easily but it is a little more difficult to check pressure and add air.

Once you have decided that access to the standard stems on a dually is a royal pain, you can go with extensions. With the metal extensions that attach to the standard stems and wheel covers you have the issue of possibly ripping the valve out of the wheel. That is why Forest River switched to the airflex type of extension although they too are not without their problems (internal stem actuation and inability to add a tire pressure monitoring system, TPMS).

In my case I was trying to the find the easiest way to add air and check pressure as well as incorporate a TPMS. I originally had the standard valves with metal extensions. To reduce the risk of losing the wheel covers, I zip tied my wheel covers to the wheels. What I didn’t like was the way the added weight of the TPMS sensors bent the support brackets out towards the perimeter of the wheels. Because of this I decided to go with the solid metal stems. These work perfectly with the only drawbacks being their cost and the tire rotation issue. Not to mention it took me 3 trips to the tire shop before I finally received the correct extensions (that’s why I recommend you call first before placing your order, it is best if you can send them photos of your wheels).

Unfortunately I don’t get the opportunity to put a lot of miles on my motorhome since I’m still working. When it comes time to rotate my tires I’ll have them move the stems to new locations and replace the rubber gaskets on the stems at the same time.

There isn’t a “best” solution. It’s really what capabilities you want to have with your motorhome.
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Old 08-08-2014, 10:31 AM   #10
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FYI,

one piece metal tire valve stems"
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taylorgso
Got them here (here's a link) - Your Tire Shop Supply | Supplies for Tire Shops
You might want to go ahead and give them a call. Speak to Bill Falkenborg
Phone is 800-300-2674
Bill has apparently sold Metal stem sets for several Sprinter Motorhomes. He knew exactly what I was talking about when I called. I got this referral from another post on the forum.
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