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Old 11-27-2013, 07:29 PM   #1
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All trailer wheel bearings the same?

I have had a few trailers over the years. None of them a trailer anywhere near the weight of ANY kind of unit you would call an RV trailer.

Utility trailers, cargo trailers ONLY.

Regardless of the manufacturer, is the design of ALL trailers such that they all need bearings re-greased or replaced? Is there any way to know if it's time? Based on mileage? Weights carried?

I've never done anything with any bearings of any of my trailers. I'm starting to think I've been very lucky so far that I've had no issues.

I know nothing of this kind of work. Is this a DIY for a rookie, and if not, what kind of business should I look for in the Yellow Pages?

Help
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Old 11-27-2013, 07:55 PM   #2
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Prior to around year 2000 all rear wheel drive cars and trucks can with the same thing and used to go for years and thousands of miles before needing re greasing..........
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Old 11-27-2013, 08:06 PM   #3
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I plan on pulling off all of the wheel bearings and cleaning the grease off and then repack with a known to me grease.
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Old 11-27-2013, 08:06 PM   #4
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Just follow the axle manufactures recommendations on grease intervals and the proper type of grease and you'll be fine. Most important thing to do would be to check your wheel "end play" of each wheel, at least once a year. The max "end play" numbers would be in your manufactures manual as well. Bath bearings on driver axle(s) of a MH have a torque value of their own but should be mentioned in your owners manual as well.
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Old 11-27-2013, 08:42 PM   #5
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The last time I pack the bearings on my TT I used a high quality RTV grease.
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Old 11-27-2013, 09:55 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kenandterry View Post

I've never done anything with any bearings of any of my trailers. I'm starting to think I've been very lucky so far that I've had no issues.

I know nothing of this kind of work. Is this a DIY for a rookie, and if not, what kind of business should I look for in the Yellow Pages?

Help
I never repacked the bearings on my popup in 13 years, but... probably only put 500 miles a year on it. Manual said annually or every 5,000 miles. Seems to be a pretty wide spread when you compare miles vs. years. I doubt very many people re-pack utility trailer bearings that frequently.

Now, with a bigger travel trailer - I decided to have it done regularly. Our dealer told us in NY state the inspection requires a wheel to be pulled to look at the brakes. The state also sets the inspection fee - at $6. Given the $6 fee, I have never had a shop pull a wheel in all the times I have had trailers inspeced. Anyhow, dealer suggested if they do the inspection, they will pull one and let me know when they recommend re-packing them. They have been straight up on everything else, so I think I'll go with them on this.

But to your original question, on a small trailer(or a big one), you can do it yourself if you want. There are some good videos online to show you the steps. If you have a few basic tools its not too complicated. Basically dis-assemble, clean, inspect, grease, re-assemble. But its like anything, takes a few times to get efficient at it. Or many auto mechanics would probably do it for you - I'm sure they would give you an estimate. To me, if a job like that isn't too expensive, it just so much quicker to have somebody who does it all the time and has the tools/materials all setup. I've cost myself a lot of wasted time learning on the job or not having the right tools a few times...

Either way, re-packing once in a while is good preventive maintenance.
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Old 11-28-2013, 08:28 AM   #7
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Bearings are easy to check visually. Wipe the outside of the bearing clean. The rollers should be a shiny chrome. Any spots that are not indicate galling.
Packing them with grease is really easy and really messy! I always recommend hi-temp grease, usually lithium based.

Here's a 20-second video. This is how it's done. You don't even have to clean out the old grease. The new grease will push the old out.
Correct way to pack a wheel bearing - YouTube
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Old 11-28-2013, 09:01 AM   #8
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I HIGHLY recommend using the correct procedure, grease type, and inspection interval recommended by the manufacturer.

I attached everything I have on the subject.

Attached Images
 
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 0132-bearing-inspection-maintenance.pdf (112.1 KB, 111 views)
File Type: pdf Bearing Repack and Brake adjustment.pdf (549.5 KB, 119 views)
File Type: pdf Bearing_Lube_Axle_Maintenance.pdf (480.1 KB, 83 views)
File Type: pdf Trailer Axle Lube ADD.pdf (575.7 KB, 58 views)
File Type: pdf understanding_the_basics_of_grease.pdf (64.6 KB, 49 views)
File Type: pdf Bearing Grease Comparison.pdf (672.0 KB, 90 views)
File Type: pdf MSDS10005_RedNTacky.pdf (720.6 KB, 52 views)
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Old 11-28-2013, 11:19 AM   #9
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As usual, Herk makes everyone else look bad... :roflblack
(p.s. thanks for the links!)
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Old 11-28-2013, 11:56 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigBaron View Post
As usual, Herk makes everyone else look bad... :roflblack
(p.s. thanks for the links!)
Not my intention obviously...
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