Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 10-26-2018, 10:44 AM   #1
Member
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 40
Wheel Bearings and Brakes Maintenance

I just put my 2018 Salem away in covered storage for the Winter. Starting to think about maintenance work that needs to be done in the Spring. I hauled it about 6500 miles this past Summer, how often do you need to repack the bearings and change the brake pads? Is this something you can do yourself if you are a DIY'er? What about suspension maintenance?
__________________

Keith3679 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 10:48 AM   #2
Who Dares, Wins
 
doc73's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Chester County, PA
Posts: 6,625
They say the bearings need repacking every year. I used to do it every other but the trailer place I use does it for like $12 a wheel... SO I just let them do it. Never had to replace the pad / drums on my brakes. Last camper had 40k miles on it.
__________________

__________________

Pat, Jen, Heather & Sapphire, the head mouser.
2015 ChevyHD D-Max
2018 Artic Wolf 315tbh8
doc73 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 12:01 PM   #3
Head Rambler
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Southwest Alabama
Posts: 7,072
The first question I would ask is have you ever had the hubs pulled and the parts (pads, bearings & seals) checked? If not, then I'd do it just for peace of mind.

Once you've pulled and inspected/repacked them then I'd say you're good for a couple of years.
__________________
Salem 29RKSS Pushing a GMC Sierra 2500HD!
Gotta go campin!
Bama Rambler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 12:03 PM   #4
Who Dares, Wins
 
doc73's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Chester County, PA
Posts: 6,625
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bama Rambler View Post
The first question I would ask is have you ever had the hubs pulled and the parts (pads, bearings & seals) checked? If not, then I'd do it just for peace of mind.

Once you've pulled and inspected/repacked them then I'd say you're good for a couple of years.
Good points, DO NOT assume FR actually packed them right from the start!
__________________

Pat, Jen, Heather & Sapphire, the head mouser.
2015 ChevyHD D-Max
2018 Artic Wolf 315tbh8
doc73 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 01:13 PM   #5
Member
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 66
More damage is done overgreasing than any other way. It is not necessary to repack bearings every year. Easy to pack too full too and ruin a seal, then real problems occur. When you decide to do it, take it to someone reputable. Nothing but boat trailers should be checked often.

One of the most important checks that can be made is to check for overheating early in each trip, say after 50 to 100 miles, and if overheating is not detected, relax and enjoy your trip.
ishwashgus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 03:49 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 672
I do mine at 12000 miles. The chances are greater, IMHO, that brakes will lose parts before a bearing goes bad.
__________________
--2005 F350 Superduty Crewcab, 6.0, 4wd, short bed, 3.73 gears;
--2016 Montana 3711FL, 40'
--2014 Wildcat 327CK, 38' SOLD
phillyg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 03:55 PM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 40
So what is typical interval on bearings? 10-12k miles? What is typical life expectancy on brake pads?
Keith3679 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 04:10 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: North of Seattle, WA
Posts: 5,948
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith3679 View Post
So what is typical interval on bearings? 10-12k miles? What is typical life expectancy on brake pads?
Many fleet managers don't schedule bearing packing on those vehicles that require packing until the brakes need "relining". That mileage varies by the number of times the brakes are used and how heavy the load is. Can be anywhere from 15k to over 50k. Unless the hubs are submersed in water as would be the case with a boat trailer they require a lot less grease than one might think. Wheel bearings are rollers and there isn't the same sliding action of metal against metal as is the case with journal bearings like inside your engine.

If your axles have the EZ Lube system just follow the instructions that came with the trailer. As for looking to see how much brake lining you have left, my backing plates have inspection "holes" that allow me to shine a flashlight in and see what remains. When the lining appears to be the same thickness as the brake shoe where it's glued on, time to replace.
__________________
Sami. my Shih-Tsu "Co-Pilot" R.I.P
Politically Incorrect since 1943
"Sometimes you're the dog, sometimes you're the tree"

2018 Flagstaff Micro Lite 25BDS
2004 Nissan Titan
TitanMike is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 04:37 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Chuck_S's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: Richmond VA
Posts: 982
Trailer manufacturers buy complete axles "off the shelf" and bolt them onto the trailers. They don't grease anything. You may be surprised to find your bearings are devoid of grease and the brakes needed adjustment after your first couple of trips and certainly now.

Re-greasing the bearings is dirt simple. Emphasis on dirt. Normal schedule is 12,000 miles or 12 months whichever comes first regardless of EasyLube or Bearing Buddies or whatever.

You need to pry out the inner bearing seals which are one time use so have those on hand. A couple sets of bearings is good practice although mine have been on the axles for 15 years with just annual service. Clean and repack the bearings with something as simple as a hand re-packer, then reassemble. Best practice is new cotter pins. Plenty of Youtube videos. They need to be re-greased in a clean environment.

Complete kit is less than $50. But if you can get it done for $5/wheel go for it.

-- Chuck
Chuck_S is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 06:01 PM   #10
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Posts: 5
I repacked mine at 9000 miles the red grease had already began to darken. Brakes were still good
vic1954 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 06:23 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
NMWildcat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Southern NM
Posts: 4,875
I repack mine myself every year. I replace the seals and use Lucas Red-N-Tacky. It is also a good time to inspect the entire suspension and adjust/align the brakes.

My fifth wheel is over six years old and I just replaced the brakes this year. No idea how many miles but since we retired we have put a lot on it. Brake wear is dependant on many things including type of driving and how you apply the brakes. It's a good thing to adjust and inspect annually for wear.

Trailer bearings are not sealed, so they need repacking, unlike vehicle sealed bearings. Your trailer bearings will run dry long before your brakes need replacing. I have no idea how you could over grease your bearings (as mentioned earlier in the thread) unless you don't have a clue what you are doing.

Grease is cheap and my time is free. Annual repacking of bearings gives me peace of mind.
__________________
Scott and Liz - Southern NM
2012 Wildcat Sterling 32RL - w/level up (best option ever)
2007 Chevy 2500HD 4dr short bed Duramax w/allison
Reese Fifth Airborne air ride king pin coupler with Sidewinder
NMWildcat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 10:13 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 280
I don't know how many miles I have on my trailer which is now about five years old.


I've opened and checked the bearings and brakes three times now and have just put them back in.


As others have said, too much grease to probably worse than not enough. I don't use the zerk fittings on my hubs as by the time you think it has enough, it's actually too much. Although hand packing is a dirty job, it's what most pros do.
tosh99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2018, 10:30 PM   #13
Site Team - Lou
 
Herk7769's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: South Eastern PA
Posts: 22,481
Quote:
Originally Posted by doc73 View Post
Good points, DO NOT assume FR actually packed them right from the start!
FR does NOT pack them! The axles come to FR with the drums already mounted on the axles from the manufacturer.

FR just mounts them to the frame and hangs the wheels.

The axle manufacturers DO make mistakes too. Don't ask how I know.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	DSCN1333.jpg
Views:	161
Size:	386.3 KB
ID:	190081  
__________________
Lou, Laura, & Freya the wonder dog
2008 GMC Sierra 3000HD Crewcab SB Allison Duramax
2019 Flagstaff 8529FLS - Pullrite 3300
HAM CALLSIGN - KC3FFW
Herk7769 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2018, 08:26 AM   #14
Who Dares, Wins
 
doc73's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Chester County, PA
Posts: 6,625
Quote:
Originally Posted by Herk7769 View Post
FR does NOT pack them! The axles come to FR with the drums already mounted on the axles from the manufacturer.

FR just mounts them to the frame and hangs the wheels.

The axle manufacturers DO make mistakes too. Don't ask how I know.
Yes you would definitely know that!
__________________

Pat, Jen, Heather & Sapphire, the head mouser.
2015 ChevyHD D-Max
2018 Artic Wolf 315tbh8
doc73 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2018, 08:37 AM   #15
Site Team
 
KyDan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 8,432
Quote:
Originally Posted by NMWildcat View Post
I repack mine myself every year. I replace the seals and use Lucas Red-N-Tacky..

I'm not trying to start a debate on grease brands but this happened to me.
After reading several (many) discussions on this very subject I bought 3 tubes of Lucas Red-n-tacky grease.
I disassembled and inspected and lubed my axles when my trailer was about a year old and had several thousand miles on it.
Skip to this summer. I grabbed my grease gun off the shelf where I had stored it wrapped in a paper towel inside a shopping bag. When I pulled it out the shopping bag and paper towel were soaked with red oil. I laid the grease gun on the bench and it proceeded to leak out at least another 2 oz of red oil. I was shocked and disappointed that the Lucas grease had separated that much! It dripped over the edge of my bench and made a puddle on the floor!!
YMMV but I am probably going to switch brands when I re-lube next time.
__________________
Peace!
Dan & Rita D
2017 Nissan Titan 5.6L King cab 4wd
1999 Suzuki Intruder Motorcycle
Blue Ox WD hitch

Camping days 2010-53, 2011-47, 2012-41, 2013-41, 2014-31, 2015-40, 2016-44, 2017-63, 2018-75, 2019-32
KyDan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2018, 09:20 AM   #16
Senior Member
 
NMWildcat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Southern NM
Posts: 4,875
Quote:
Originally Posted by KyDan View Post
I'm not trying to start a debate on grease brands but this happened to me.
After reading several (many) discussions on this very subject I bought 3 tubes of Lucas Red-n-tacky grease.
I disassembled and inspected and lubed my axles when my trailer was about a year old and had several thousand miles on it.
Skip to this summer. I grabbed my grease gun off the shelf where I had stored it wrapped in a paper towel inside a shopping bag. When I pulled it out the shopping bag and paper towel were soaked with red oil. I laid the grease gun on the bench and it proceeded to leak out at least another 2 oz of red oil. I was shocked and disappointed that the Lucas grease had separated that much! It dripped over the edge of my bench and made a puddle on the floor!!
YMMV but I am probably going to switch brands when I re-lube next time.
Sounds normal to me. I've never had any brand of grease cartridge that didn't leak oil out of the grease gun after sitting for a long period in less than an ideal storage environment.

We use Lucas grease on just about everything on the farm. Never had any problems. We do try to keep all our lubrication products in an air conditioned barn.

Here's a pretty good article on why it does that. Storage is discussed toward the bottom.

https://www.machinerylubrication.com...ed-separation-
__________________
Scott and Liz - Southern NM
2012 Wildcat Sterling 32RL - w/level up (best option ever)
2007 Chevy 2500HD 4dr short bed Duramax w/allison
Reese Fifth Airborne air ride king pin coupler with Sidewinder
NMWildcat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2018, 09:47 AM   #17
Denver To Yuma In 90 Days
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Yuma, Arizona
Posts: 3,882
Quote:
Originally Posted by NMWildcat View Post

Sounds normal to me. I've never had any brand of grease cartridge that didn't leak oil out of the grease gun after sitting for a long period in less than an ideal storage environment.

We do try to keep all our lubrication products in an air conditioned barn.
Yup!

I had to take just about every kind of stored fluid out of my 5'ver while in summer storage now that I live in Yuma, Arizona...the hot spot of the US of A.

Down here, summer is what I call the off-season for camping...too hot!

I even had to remove the battery and put it in my shed because it kept boiling over in the battery box as the internal temperature inside the 5'ver often reached 160+ degrees on a daily basis during the summer months.

Luckily I had all of my cleaning supplies under the kitchen sink in a dish tub as several of the bottles popped open and whatever was inside spewed out of the bottles.

Glad that mess wasn't on the wood floor inside the kitchen island...
JohnD10 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2018, 10:57 AM   #18
Site Team
 
KyDan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 8,432
Air conditioned barn???
In Kentucky we don't usually get quite that hot....
I am not satisfied with the Lucas grease.
Yes I have had other brands leak out of the gun after it sat in my garage for a year or two.
The lucas leaked noticeably more than any other.
I can't keep my bearings and hubs in an air conditioned barn either...

Back to the OPs question and a "me too" with what Lou said.
I found one wheel disturbingly dry on my previous Rockwood. When I checked bearings the 1st time I found 3 with acceptable grease and 1 that had barely any.
I advise everyone to get that first bearing check early. After that brakes and seals need to be checked every couple of years or several thousand miles.
I have ~ 15,000 miles on my trailer and brakes still look pretty good. It all depends on where you drive but we've been to the mountains.
Keep an eye on those magnets and look for any wear on the wires both in the hub and outside on the axles.
Good Luck!
__________________
Peace!
Dan & Rita D
2017 Nissan Titan 5.6L King cab 4wd
1999 Suzuki Intruder Motorcycle
Blue Ox WD hitch

Camping days 2010-53, 2011-47, 2012-41, 2013-41, 2014-31, 2015-40, 2016-44, 2017-63, 2018-75, 2019-32
KyDan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2018, 12:28 PM   #19
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: 8300 Feet - Rocky Mountains
Posts: 1,099
Ever repack the wheel bearings on your car? Maybe at 100,000 miles or when doing a full brake job? Why, you ask? Because wheel bearing grease doesn't just ooze out of the bearings. It's very thick, and it won't leave the bearings unless it overheats.

Ahhh...so how does it overheat? Simple. Drum brakes. Look at the design of your brake system on your rig and what do you see? A MASSIVE cast iron brake drum that also serves as the bearing contact for the spinning part of the wheel. Hot drums pass heat to the bearings and overheat the grease. The grease can then leave the bearing race an leave the bearings dry.

All that chassis grease you pump into the zerk fitting? More or less useless. It can and does help hold the wheel bearing grease in place...somewhat.

How often should you repack the bearings? It depends on how often you use and overheat the brake drums. I drive short distances and do very little braking, so I've packed them once in 5 seasons (earlier this year). They were perfect. Drive long distances through the mountains? Better check them often.
__________________
Jim & Renee
2014 Forest River/Rockwood HW 277
2006 Ram 1500 4WD Crew with Firestone Airbags
Typical season is about 30 nights camping, usually nearby boondocking in the National Forests or at Lake Wellington
jimmoore13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2018, 02:25 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
NMWildcat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Southern NM
Posts: 4,875
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmoore13 View Post
Ever repack the wheel bearings on your car? Maybe at 100,000 miles or when doing a full brake job? Why, you ask? Because wheel bearing grease doesn't just ooze out of the bearings. It's very thick, and it won't leave the bearings unless it overheats.

Ahhh...so how does it overheat? Simple. Drum brakes. Look at the design of your brake system on your rig and what do you see? A MASSIVE cast iron brake drum that also serves as the bearing contact for the spinning part of the wheel. Hot drums pass heat to the bearings and overheat the grease. The grease can then leave the bearing race an leave the bearings dry.

All that chassis grease you pump into the zerk fitting? More or less useless. It can and does help hold the wheel bearing grease in place...somewhat.

How often should you repack the bearings? It depends on how often you use and overheat the brake drums. I drive short distances and do very little braking, so I've packed them once in 5 seasons (earlier this year). They were perfect. Drive long distances through the mountains? Better check them often.
Auto wheel bearings are sealed. RV trailers bearings are not. HUGE difference.
__________________

__________________
Scott and Liz - Southern NM
2012 Wildcat Sterling 32RL - w/level up (best option ever)
2007 Chevy 2500HD 4dr short bed Duramax w/allison
Reese Fifth Airborne air ride king pin coupler with Sidewinder
NMWildcat is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
bearings, brakes, maintenance, wheel

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Forest River, Inc. or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:36 PM.


×