wheel bearings maintenance - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-22-2016, 09:27 AM   #1
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Name: Eugene
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wheel bearings maintenance

At how many miles do you clean, repack and replace wheel bearings seals on your camper?
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Old 09-22-2016, 10:06 AM   #2
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That is a $64,000 question around here! Let the debate begin... LOL

Every two years for me. I tow about 2K miles a year, one longer trip and two or three shorter trips, and store on jack stands so I can give the wheels a spin every now and again.
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Old 09-22-2016, 10:08 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
Every two years for me. I tow about 2K miles a year, one longer trip and two or three shorter trips, and store on jack stands so I can give the wheels a spin every now and again.
I do exactly the same. I would add that I check hub temps also at most every stop.

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Old 09-22-2016, 10:27 AM   #4
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I picked the scamp up in March and have 10,000 miles on it
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Old 09-22-2016, 10:53 AM   #5
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Wow! That sounds like a happy Scamp! Mine gets kind of lonely, I'm afraid.

I'll leave your answer for other high-mileage users.
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Old 09-22-2016, 10:56 AM   #6
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I put about 10,000 miles a year on my Scamp, one 90+ day trip between 6,000 and 9,000+ miles. Then a number of shorter trips through out the spring, summer, and fall. I have bearings repacked every year close to when we head out for the long trip.
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Old 09-22-2016, 11:47 AM   #7
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This summer I had to replace the brakes* and so had an opportunity to check out the bearings. My Scamp is 2004, the first two owners put very few miles on it, as far as I know. I have pulled it about 40k miles in three years that I owned it, and the bearings and grease were in perfect shape. Like Jon, I store the Scamp on stands and give the wheels a little spin when walking by occasionally. To actually inspect them, feel the wheel when turning it and listen for a sound other than the shoes lightly rubbing. The hubs allow for a good supply of grease, so it should last many, many years. Bear in mind that boat trailers are a totally different story. They may get dunked in (salt) water while they may be hot and they will suck the water in.
*) Replaced with self adjusting assemblies and repacked the bearings.
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Old 09-22-2016, 12:41 PM   #8
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Keep in mind I dont do "long" trips since I picked my Scamp up in Backus. I may do 600 mile ROUND trips..that's it. Most of my round trips are 200 or less miles.

Bought new in 2010; has 10K Miles on it, never pulled the hubs. It's on jacks as I speak; spin it occasionally, there's no excessive play/slop. They spin freely with NO bearing noises...only the light scrape of the brake magnets.

I test hub temps REGULARLY on the road with the same infrared temp checker I've used since pulling from Backus. The temp never gets over what they did new. (Unless there's excessive braking!!) Brakes work perfect.

My Scamp travels @ 1800 lbs MAX! So it's not abusive on the axle/tires. Apx 200 lb tongue weight leaves apx 800 lbs per axle hub/tire. So that would answer why I would have less chance of issues than someone running the max or near it at 1100 lbs per side. (2200# Dexter Axle) Close to a 30% safety factor on the axle and 50% on the tires. (C-rated @ 1360 lbs)

If I was getting ready to pull across America etc (long haul), I'd go through the repack process and a firm test drive before leaving.
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Old 09-22-2016, 01:15 PM   #9
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Dexter recommends 12k miles or 12 months. I believe Scamp now uses Lippert? axles. Not sure what they recommend. I did mine at the start of the season and have over 11k miles since then. With that many miles I usually find dirt has gotten past the seal. We'll head out again soon so I will do them before we go and be set for next spring. I'm more concerned with mileage than the time. I'll post a picture of what I find.

Oh, Darrell, you're working too much. Time to go camping Raz
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Old 09-22-2016, 01:23 PM   #10
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Yer right my friend! I'd have MUCH more time to "repack" and not consider it a chore if I wasnt working. Oh well.... I'm 56...guess I'll have more time to think about getting serious with this stuff in 10 yrs. But seriously...gonna try and enjoy my short trips and watch my 3 & 4 yo grandsons grow in the process. Believe me...time is flying fast enough as it is!!

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Dexter recommends 12k miles or 12 months. I believe Scamp now uses Lippert? axles. Not sure what they recommend. I did mine at the start of the season and have over 11k miles since then. With that many miles I usually find dirt has gotten past the seal. We'll head out again soon so I will do them before we go and be set for next spring. I'm more concerned with mileage than the time. I'll post a picture of what I find.

Oh, Darrell, you're working too much. Time to go camping Raz
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Old 09-22-2016, 01:58 PM   #11
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A related newbie question: what kind of stands do you use when in storage? Would love a pic also.
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Old 09-22-2016, 02:10 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Raz View Post
Dexter recommends 12k miles or 12 months. I believe Scamp now uses Lippert? axles. Not sure what they recommend....
Same.
See http://www.lci1.com/assets/content/s...aintenance.pdf

OP asked how often we do it, but I won't answer that because I might deviate from the best and recommended practice out of laziness or lack of time.
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Old 09-22-2016, 02:21 PM   #13
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Ask and ye shall receive:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/50351683@N08/5164785883/

I bought these jack stands (Kobalt) at Lowes. In the winter during the long-term storage, I move the jack stands in a little closer to the axle- the short piece of tubing you see there where the red wire runs across.

This keeps pressure off the torsion axle and the tires off the ground AND it lets you spin the wheels for kicks .

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A related newbie question: what kind of stands do you use when in storage? Would love a pic also.
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Old 09-22-2016, 03:42 PM   #14
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I do mine every 10k. Repack and new seals.
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Old 09-23-2016, 12:45 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Paul O. View Post
This summer I had to replace the brakes* and so had an opportunity to check out the bearings. My Scamp is 2004, the first two owners put very few miles on it, as far as I know. I have pulled it about 40k miles in three years that I owned it, and the bearings and grease were in perfect shape. Like Jon, I store the Scamp on stands and give the wheels a little spin when walking by occasionally. To actually inspect them, feel the wheel when turning it and listen for a sound other than the shoes lightly rubbing. The hubs allow for a good supply of grease, so it should last many, many years. Bear in mind that boat trailers are a totally different story. They may get dunked in (salt) water while they may be hot and they will suck the water in.
*) Replaced with self adjusting assemblies and repacked the bearings.
*) self adjusting brakes do their adjusting when you reverse and apply the brakes.

Boat trailer wheel hubs have the inner seal installed with the lips pointing outward. The bearings are packed full of grease, so water cant get in, but grease can squeeze out.
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Old 09-23-2016, 04:07 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Wayne Collins View Post
*)
Boat trailer wheel hubs have the inner seal installed with the lips pointing outward. The bearings are packed full of grease, so water cant get in, but grease can squeeze out.
LOL in theory that is how boat trailer bearings are suppose to work but suspect there are a few owners of boat trailers that might suggest from experience that the theory is flawed

Its just as many folks (including most large axle manufactures) here through their experiences suggest that those who believe a trailer bearing will go for years without needing inspection or repacking is also flawed
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Old 10-11-2016, 01:56 PM   #17
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Finally got to greasing my bearings today. Here are the pictures I promised. Trailer has 11.2 k miles since they were done at the beginning of the season. First picture, the outer bearing is on the right, inner on the left. Both from the drivers side. The other side looked similar. Raz
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Old 10-11-2016, 03:32 PM   #18
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Finally got to greasing my bearings today. Here are the pictures I promised. Trailer has 11.2 k miles since they were done at the beginning of the season. First picture, the outer bearing is on the right, inner on the left. Both fron the drivers side. The other side looked similar. Raz
Good pics Raz, but how are the bearings? Spin freely? Are you going to clean them or just replace them?

I need to do maintenance on mine sometime real soon! Best of luck to ya!

Frank
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Old 10-11-2016, 05:01 PM   #19
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On my Scamp 13 I try to do them every 2 years but sometimes 3 years. On the Scamp 13 the tires are small diameter and the bearing are very small diameter and very narrow in width. They are getting much more workout than larger trailer axles and tires. I think it is better to be on the safe side. My trailer sits allot and currently used on short trips. I think it is prudent for me to check them more often than most. I am fortunate to be doing my own work so it is more of a 1/2 days inconvenience than a cost issue. Not nearly an inconvenience as a failure on the road would be. Bearings don't like sitting around in old grease going unused for long periods of time. Frequent use keep the grease in a more fluid state and keeps moisture cooked out of the system. You only get a certain amount of vacation time, wasting it broke down on the side of the road trying to figure your way out of the predicament is no fun. Most of these trailers you can't unbolt the spindle and replace a hub and drive off with a simple fix.
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Old 10-12-2016, 03:15 AM   #20
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Good pics Raz, but how are the bearings? Spin freely? Are you going to clean them or just replace them?

I need to do maintenance on mine sometime real soon! Best of luck to ya!

Frank
Bearings looked fine after cleaning. New grease. New seals. Good to go.

In regard to the original question, I think they were due to be serviced. What do others think?
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