Originally Posted by Vladio
The spare was new with the rubber nipples still on it. Both tire's belts separated and came out of the center opening up a 8 inch crack. I called my local dealer and he said there was a lot of problems with these tires and believed Forest River recalled these.
All of the tires are like new with almost no wear. This was our first long-distance trip. We usually only go 20-40 miles.
Hi Vladio, sorry to hear of your tire troubles. I encounter this mindset from many customers, who only want to purchase either one or three tires to go with their "NEW" spare they want to mount on their vehicle. This happens many times on trailers and trucks. It's not so common for cars as they usually have a tempo-spare.
In reality, your spare was "unused" but not new. Vulcanized rubber like in tires, actually starts the deteriorating process from the day the tire is made. If you have a 2008 trailer, then the minimum age of your spare is 4 years old, but is most likely older than that. If you know how to read the DOT date code on the tire, it will tell you exactly how old the tire is (at least to the week and year it was produced). The complete DOT code and name/size of the tire will help us determine if there was indeed a recall on your tire....if you can post it.
Trailer tires have an expected life range of 3-5 years, irregardless of use. I know that stinks, but it is what it is.
I have posted about tire blooming in several forums and here it is again. A spare tire that is not used, never blooms........which is why people should use their spare tires in some kind of rotation pattern, or not trust an older one to hold up if they don't. Spares should be replaced, just like the ones pounding the pavement.....solely from a time factor (as you unfortunately experienced). This is also why you want to learn how to read DOT codes and not purchase tires that have been sitting on dealers racks/warehouses for a long time either. You will want your new tire to be as new as it can, and not just unused.
Here is the article again:
Vehicles which are parked for extended periods often experience tire sidewall/tread deterioration. Sometimes called tire dry-rot, these sidewalls/treads literally dry, check and eventually crack and split. Each year the loss for RVers, trailer boaters and owners of classic cars adds up to millions of dollars. This article examines this problem.
Tires today commonly contain chemical ingredients which lessen damage from ozone and ultraviolet light, the main environmental enemies of tires. Ozone is an odorless gas, which some people call the electric train smell. Although it is more concentrated in cities and manufacturing centers, ozone is a normal part of the air we breathe everywhere. When combined with ultraviolet (UV) light, ozone causes rubber to dry and become brittle and results in tire sidewall deterioration.
To protect rubber against UV damage is why tires are black. Tire makers use a common type of UV stabilizer called a competitive absorber. Competitive absorbers capture and absorb the UV light instead of the tire's rubber. Carbon black, a very cheap ingredient, is used as a competitive absorber whereas, all other UV stabilizers are extremely expensive. This is why tires are black.
UV stabilizers are called sacrificial, meaning they are gradually used up and reach a point where they can no longer protect the tire against UV damage. As carbon black loses its ability to do this job, it turns gray, which explains why tires appear gray as the get older.
Waxes are used to protect tires against ozone. When tires are being driven they flex. This flexing causes the protective waxes to move to the surface where they form a physical barrier between the air --which contains ozone and oxygen-- and the tire polymer. This is called blooming.
When tires are not regularly used, such as a parked RV, boat trailer, classic car, spares, this blooming does not happen. Ozone then starts eating away the protective wax and before long reaches the tire polymer. Often by this time, the surface carbon black has lost its ability to protect against UV. With UV light and ozone working together, deterioration starts. The tire dries, checks, and will eventually crack.
Petrochemicals and silicone oils can also remove protective waxes and increase the rate of decay. Common automotive protectants and tire dressings can contain chemicals and/or silicone oils which dissolve protective waxes and can actually attack the sidewalls. In the event of failure, one of the first things tire manufacturers look for is evidence of the use of these types of products. If it is found it may be a cause for invalidating a warrant against manufacturing defects.