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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm new to the forum this is my first post. Looking for advice please. I've had two trailer tire blowouts on my last two trips. Not much fun changing tires on the side of interstate in 80mph traffic. I'm pretty sure I probably know part of the answer is that the travel trailer was overweight and had some sway going on which took a toll on the tires apparently. I have a 2005 Keystone Outback 25' RSS. I will list all the specs below of my truck and trailer tow combo but the trailer is supposed to have a 6,000 Gross Vehicle Weight Rating per the sticker inside the trailer. It states it has an unloaded original dry weight of 4,895lbs and availability of 1,105lbs of cargo capacity--and very key point the cargo capacity would be reduced by any options on the trailer and by the storage tank contents. In doing some homework online I found some info and an old original sales flyer for the camper that listed options weights for various option packages. So on my camper the rooftop AC was add-on option, the awning, the microwave, etc. So the 1,105lbs of cargo capacity is already greatly diminished before one even thinks about filling the fresh water tank with 50gal of water that weighs 415lbs, and before two propane tanks, spare tire, and battery... which leaves very little for pots/pans, bedding, etc. So rather than guess my trailer weight I took it to the scales after last trip to weigh it. My camper unloaded with empty tanks (black/grey/fresh water) weighed in at 5,770 lbs. So that only leaves me with 230lbs of cargo capacity! not enough to even fill the fresh water tank. I'm not sure how they can advertise "light weight trailer with lots of capacity". My trailer basically has no cargo capacity once it is outfitted. I found an online thread that mentions that Keystone did something on the 2006 model of my Outback 25'RSS to increase the total GVWR to 7,000lbs from the 6,000lb rating for 2005 --- Does anyone know what they did??

So on my most recent trip I know I was overloaded. I had the water tank full, some starter water in the black tank, and some gear, although most all of the gear was loaded in the truck because I knew it was heavy. Probably around 6,300lbs total weight for the trailer. Going on a 100 trip camping at site with no hookups/services etc. and no where to fill fresh water tank upon arrival so had to fill before leaving home. I was only 10 miles away from home when the blowout happened! Not a great or fun way to start a trip. I put the spare tire on and continued luckily with no other problems. (stopped at next town and purchased new spare for peace of mind). The tires on the trailer are/were all in good shape so I'm just at a loss as to how a 300lb overweight trailer can cause a blowout. And basically the same think happened last summer on 700 mile trip but the water tank was empty and was traveling light because of the greater distance. Both blowouts were inside sidewall blowouts. One was passenger side rear and one was driver side front so no real apparent pattern there. On both trips I was only driving approximately 65mph so I wouldn't think speed was in issue.

Here are all my specs: (I weighed the truck and trailer connected with weight distribution hitch/bars in place as it would be towed and then unconnected to weigh truck only and do math for difference)
2013 Ford F150 Ecoboost Supercrew 4x4
15,500 GCWR
9,600 towing capacity 145" wb. 3.55axle L9
Tow Vehicle- 1401 max payload
7,200 GVWR
FRONT GAWR 3750
REAR GAWR 3850

2005 Keystone Outback 25' RSS
GVWR 6,000
Unloaded weight 4,895
Cargo capacity 1,105 -
Reduced by water 415lbs
Reduced by propane 60 lbs
Reduced by other options....

Actual Weights Unloaded From Scales:
6440 truck with trailer tongue
11760 truck and trailer
5320 trailer (with tongue on truck)
5990 truck only unconnected (with 30lb hitch)

5770 camper with 450 tongue wgt (11,760 truck and trailer minus truck only 5,990 = 5,770lbs camper only. 6,440 truck with tongue minus unconnected truck only 5,990 = 450 tongue)

So I also realize from reading on the forums that the tongue weight is supposed to be 10-15% of the total trailer weight so at 6,000lbs my tongue weight should be 600-900lbs. So at 450lbs it would appear my tongue weight is way to light and that most likely is the reason I have sway issues. I really don't know how I could move 150-450lbs around in the camper to move it forward on the tongue. The spare tire is on back so that could be moved into and forward in the storage area under front bunks. Does anyone know if the weight distribution bars have an effect on this? I have them on 5th chain loop trying to redistribute as much weight as possible to the tow vehicle knowing I have a possible weigh problem on the travel trailer, but did this perhaps exacerbate the problem by making the tongue too light, and possible the sway caused more of the problems on the tires/blowouts?

Any help is appreciated.
Thanks,
Charles
 

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Firstly, you are doing the right thing by getting to know your vehicles weights and comparing that with the load limits.

Secondly, you need to know the difference between the actual tongue weight (TW) and the TW with the weight distribution hitch (WDH) is activated. There is a simplified 4-step weighing plan for conventional trailers available at Fifth Wheel St.

Thirdly, what tire brand and size are on your trailer? What is the DOT date stamp on the tires? Tires should be replaced between 5-7 years regardless of how well they may look on the outside. Since the blowouts were on the side, that indicates an overload condition. The tires could have been under inflated too.

Lastly, for now, continue doing your homework. A little time and effort will put you on the road to safe travels.
 

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As Dave pointed out above, you will need to review the DOT stamp on the tires. After you gather that info, you should be able to google the code to find out when the tires were manufactured. Are they original to the camper? With a quick search of this website, you will find many threads about the "cheep Chinese tires" that Keystone has used in the past. Usually, when 1 blows for any unexpected reason, it's time to replace them all. I had a road side trailer tire fail on my 2004 28BHS while going around Milwaukee during rush hour traffic several years ago. Those lanes are very tight with not much of a shoulder.....you can imagine how much fun that was to chance.

Welcome to Outbackers!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Firstly, you are doing the right thing by getting to know your vehicles weights and comparing that with the load limits.

Secondly, you need to know the difference between the actual tongue weight (TW) and the TW with the weight distribution hitch (WDH) is activated. There is a simplified 4-step weighing plan for conventional trailers available at Fifth Wheel St.

Thirdly, what tire brand and size are on your trailer? What is the DOT date stamp on the tires? Tires should be replaced between 5-7 years regardless of how well they may look on the outside. Since the blowouts were on the side, that indicates an overload condition. The tires could have been under inflated too.

Lastly, for now, continue doing your homework. A little time and effort will put you on the road to safe travels.
Dave - Thanks for the feedback. I was thinking about getting a tongue weight scale and that is probably what I need to do. Do you know if the 10-15% of trailer weight on tongue rule applies to before or after hooking up the weight distribution bars? regarding the tires they are Freestar brand -- and I looked up the DOT code info and they are from 12th week of 2011. So last summer's blowout would have only been 3 year old tire and 4yr old on recent blowout. I aired the tires up to max 50psi before both trips. Great info regarding the age, thanks for sharing. I did just do some quick online searches on Freestar tires and the reviews were not good with some blowout problems so that would appear to be my problem - cheap tire and slightly overweight. I will continue trying to tweak my setup. Many thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
As Dave pointed out above, you will need to review the DOT stamp on the tires. After you gather that info, you should be able to google the code to find out when the tires were manufactured. Are they original to the camper? With a quick search of this website, you will find many threads about the "cheep Chinese tires" that Keystone has used in the past. Usually, when 1 blows for any unexpected reason, it's time to replace them all. I had a road side trailer tire fail on my 2004 28BHS while going around Milwaukee during rush hour traffic several years ago. Those lanes are very tight with not much of a shoulder.....you can imagine how much fun that was to chance.

Welcome to Outbackers!!
Thanks for the great info. I think my Freestar tires apparently are junk and cant handle a little overweight. I sympathize on the changing tire on shoulder of road... no fun at all. Would pay any price for a good tire at that point in time. I did just order a Camco Trailer Aid to assist with changing any future potential flat tires. using a jack just wasn't any fun.
Many thanks.
 

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Firstly, you are doing the right thing by getting to know your vehicles weights and comparing that with the load limits.

Secondly, you need to know the difference between the actual tongue weight (TW) and the TW with the weight distribution hitch (WDH) is activated. There is a simplified 4-step weighing plan for conventional trailers available at Fifth Wheel St.

Thirdly, what tire brand and size are on your trailer? What is the DOT date stamp on the tires? Tires should be replaced between 5-7 years regardless of how well they may look on the outside. Since the blowouts were on the side, that indicates an overload condition. The tires could have been under inflated too.

Lastly, for now, continue doing your homework. A little time and effort will put you on the road to safe travels.
Dave - Thanks for the feedback. I was thinking about getting a tongue weight scale and that is probably what I need to do. Do you know if the 10-15% of trailer weight on tongue rule applies to before or after hooking up the weight distribution bars? regarding the tires they are Freestar brand -- and I looked up the DOT code info and they are from 12th week of 2011. So last summer's blowout would have only been 3 year old tire and 4yr old on recent blowout. I aired the tires up to max 50psi before both trips. Great info regarding the age, thanks for sharing. I did just do some quick online searches on Freestar tires and the reviews were not good with some blowout problems so that would appear to be my problem - cheap tire and slightly overweight. I will continue trying to tweak my setup. Many thanks!
[/quote]

In order to obtain the true TW, it is important that the TW be measured without the WDH activated. And yes, the TW should be 10-15% without the WDH activated. But both measurements are beneficial. The Fifth Wheel St. website explains that. TW scales are convenient, but they expensive compared to visiting a local truck scale that may be free. CAT Scale is not the only option, but weighing there sure makes it easy to get the three required weigh-ins. The maximum you'd pay at CAT Scale is $16.50 for a 24 hour period at the same location.

Regardless of the quality of any tire, overloading and under-inflation will damage any tire and start the process to premature failure. The failure process can take up to 6 months. I learned this from my own experience and non-scientific testing.
 

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Like others have said, if the DOT shows the tires as older then 3-4 years, time to change them out. I think the stock tires are 14's for that year. Recommend you change out for 15's in a load range D or E. This will get you a few hundred more pounds of carrying capacity. You'll have to change rims, so it will not be cheap, but it will be cheaper than buying tires all the time. Of note, the 14 inch tires are marginal for these campers. They're barely adequate for the camper totally empty...

Of course, changing tire sizes doesn't mean you should drive over-weight, so checking out your weight is a good thing.

My experience---three blown tires on one trip (including my spare) on a previous camper, and one blow out on my current camper. Haven't had a blow out or worried about them since moving to 15 inch load range D tires.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Like others have said, if the DOT shows the tires as older then 3-4 years, time to change them out. I think the stock tires are 14's for that year. Recommend you change out for 15's in a load range D or E. This will get you a few hundred more pounds of carrying capacity. You'll have to change rims, so it will not be cheap, but it will be cheaper than buying tires all the time. Of note, the 14 inch tires are marginal for these campers. They're barely adequate for the camper totally empty...

Of course, changing tire sizes doesn't mean you should drive over-weight, so checking out your weight is a good thing.

My experience---three blown tires on one trip (including my spare) on a previous camper, and one blow out on my current camper. Haven't had a blow out or worried about them since moving to 15 inch load range D tires.
Justman -- Thanks for your comments. I agree. I did just place a call this past week for some quotes on new 15 inch wheels and tires so that is the direction I'm headed and will definitely upgrade to a load range D or E. I think its a shame the trailer manufacturers put on cheap undersized tires. I'm still frustrated with my travel trailers lack of payload capacity -- unloaded weight of 5,770lbs with max TT GVWR of 6,000lbs. Hopefully with better tires I won't feel so guilty about taking the one extra case of beer.

Thanks,
Charles
 

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I'm new to the forum this is my first post. Looking for advice please. I've had two trailer tire blowouts on my last two trips. Not much fun changing tires on the side of interstate in 80mph traffic. I'm pretty sure I probably know part of the answer is that the travel trailer was overweight and had some sway going on which took a toll on the tires apparently. I have a 2005 Keystone Outback 25' RSS. I will list all the specs below of my truck and trailer tow combo but the trailer is supposed to have a 6,000 Gross Vehicle Weight Rating per the sticker inside the trailer. It states it has an unloaded original dry weight of 4,895lbs and availability of 1,105lbs of cargo capacity--and very key point the cargo capacity would be reduced by any options on the trailer and by the storage tank contents. In doing some homework online I found some info and an old original sales flyer for the camper that listed options weights for various option packages. So on my camper the rooftop AC was add-on option, the awning, the microwave, etc. So the 1,105lbs of cargo capacity is already greatly diminished before one even thinks about filling the fresh water tank with 50gal of water that weighs 415lbs, and before two propane tanks, spare tire, and battery... which leaves very little for pots/pans, bedding, etc. So rather than guess my trailer weight I took it to the scales after last trip to weigh it. My camper unloaded with empty tanks (black/grey/fresh water) weighed in at 5,770 lbs. So that only leaves me with 230lbs of cargo capacity! not enough to even fill the fresh water tank. I'm not sure how they can advertise "light weight trailer with lots of capacity". My trailer basically has no cargo capacity once it is outfitted. I found an online thread that mentions that Keystone did something on the 2006 model of my Outback 25'RSS to increase the total GVWR to 7,000lbs from the 6,000lb rating for 2005 --- Does anyone know what they did??

So on my most recent trip I know I was overloaded. I had the water tank full, some starter water in the black tank, and some gear, although most all of the gear was loaded in the truck because I knew it was heavy. Probably around 6,300lbs total weight for the trailer. Going on a 100 trip camping at site with no hookups/services etc. and no where to fill fresh water tank upon arrival so had to fill before leaving home. I was only 10 miles away from home when the blowout happened! Not a great or fun way to start a trip. I put the spare tire on and continued luckily with no other problems. (stopped at next town and purchased new spare for peace of mind). The tires on the trailer are/were all in good shape so I'm just at a loss as to how a 300lb overweight trailer can cause a blowout. And basically the same think happened last summer on 700 mile trip but the water tank was empty and was traveling light because of the greater distance. Both blowouts were inside sidewall blowouts. One was passenger side rear and one was driver side front so no real apparent pattern there. On both trips I was only driving approximately 65mph so I wouldn't think speed was in issue.

Here are all my specs: (I weighed the truck and trailer connected with weight distribution hitch/bars in place as it would be towed and then unconnected to weigh truck only and do math for difference)
2013 Ford F150 Ecoboost Supercrew 4x4
15,500 GCWR
9,600 towing capacity 145" wb. 3.55axle L9
Tow Vehicle- 1401 max payload
7,200 GVWR
FRONT GAWR 3750
REAR GAWR 3850

2005 Keystone Outback 25' RSS
GVWR 6,000
Unloaded weight 4,895
Cargo capacity 1,105 -
Reduced by water 415lbs
Reduced by propane 60 lbs
Reduced by other options....

Actual Weights Unloaded From Scales:
6440 truck with trailer tongue
11760 truck and trailer
5320 trailer (with tongue on truck)
5990 truck only unconnected (with 30lb hitch)

5770 camper with 450 tongue wgt (11,760 truck and trailer minus truck only 5,990 = 5,770lbs camper only. 6,440 truck with tongue minus unconnected truck only 5,990 = 450 tongue)

So I also realize from reading on the forums that the tongue weight is supposed to be 10-15% of the total trailer weight so at 6,000lbs my tongue weight should be 600-900lbs. So at 450lbs it would appear my tongue weight is way to light and that most likely is the reason I have sway issues. I really don't know how I could move 150-450lbs around in the camper to move it forward on the tongue. The spare tire is on back so that could be moved into and forward in the storage area under front bunks. Does anyone know if the weight distribution bars have an effect on this? I have them on 5th chain loop trying to redistribute as much weight as possible to the tow vehicle knowing I have a possible weigh problem on the travel trailer, but did this perhaps exacerbate the problem by making the tongue too light, and possible the sway caused more of the problems on the tires/blowouts?

Any help is appreciated.
Thanks,
Charles
Charles,I can relate to your problem. I purchased a 2009 Wildcat 5th wheel from a Sales/Service dealer in Ontario. During my 1st trip I endured 3 blow outs. The first was on the QEW 100 km highway. Luckily I had CAA rv roadside coverage. The tire guy installed the spare and put the blowout on the tire bracket on the back. The next problem wasn't a flat, I noticed a bulge on the sidewall, and thirdly a out of round tire. The tire problem wasn't to much weight, or worn tires, the problem was due to weathered and sun drying out the rubber. Consequently on my return trip home I stopped at a tire dealer and bought 5 x 10 ply tires with steel bolt on valve stems. Problem rectified!
So Charles, check the ply ratings of your tires, also check them for weather checking. The tires on your trailer should be letter D or E...8 ply or 10 ply
Anything less is is unsuitable and dangerous.
I hope this helps with your dilemma!
Sincerely yours Mike R
 
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