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Lwiddis

Monterey, California

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Posted: 03/31/21 08:39am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Not scientific at all but I use NMDriver’s touch the center cap at every stop method.


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cummins2014

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Posted: 03/31/21 08:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MFL wrote:

This thread should generate some activity, due to the many opinions on the subject, and the CYA recommendation of the manufacturers.

My opinion...bearing service is either done way too often, or just completely ignored, until there is a failure. I do the bearings very soon after purchase, when new, and right away if trailer is purchased used.

Once I have inspected the bearings, and packed them well, with quality grease, they are good for 4-5 years, in my use. The seals should be replaced any time they are removed obviously.

I have used the zerks also, and no issue with the seals leaking grease onto the brakes. Follow the manufacturers recommendation on the proper procedure for zerk use. A tip...I tow the trailer to warm the bearings/existing grease first, before using the grease gun, that I lay in the sun to warm/soften the grease. I add enough grease, to see fresh coming out the front bearing.

Jerry



Same here , but I do not use the zerks at all. I purchased my last fifth wheel from a friend ,and he full times, the bearings were packed less then 2 years ago, its been towed from Texas to Utah, and two other trips since last spring. when purchased . . I will do what I always do, check the temperature on them when I stop on trips. I know how my friend does things, so no worries there. Otherwise they would have been serviced as soon as I could have . 4-5 years is my normal maintenance on bearings.

mtofell1

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Posted: 03/31/21 08:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MFL wrote:


My opinion...bearing service is either done way too often, or just completely ignored, until there is a failure. I do the bearings very soon after purchase, when new, and right away if trailer is purchased used.

Once I have inspected the bearings, and packed them well, with quality grease, they are good for 4-5 years, in my use. The seals should be replaced any time they are removed obviously.



This is my exact methodology - do them good when the trailer is new or new to me so I know it's done well and they can go a while. I don't put on a ton of miles so I have no problem going 4 or 5 years but do check temps while traveling. I've heard it's much more miles dependent than time so if I were lucky enough to be putting on 10-15K/year I'd probably repack/inspect every year or two.

cummins2014

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Posted: 03/31/21 08:44am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

phillyg wrote:

I'm in the every two year crowd and we're not full-timing, but it gives you an opportunity to check the brakes. This year, I found one brake magnet wire severed, and I hadn't noticed any reduction in stopping power. I'm reconsidering every year now.



Thats the beauty of disc brakes, no worries about magnets ,adjustments etc. I would highly advice anyone to go disc on a fifth wheel. There is no comparison to drum brakes , will never own another fifth wheel without them.

cummins2014

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Posted: 03/31/21 08:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mtofell1 wrote:

MFL wrote:


My opinion...bearing service is either done way too often, or just completely ignored, until there is a failure. I do the bearings very soon after purchase, when new, and right away if trailer is purchased used.

Once I have inspected the bearings, and packed them well, with quality grease, they are good for 4-5 years, in my use. The seals should be replaced any time they are removed obviously.



This is my exact methodology - do them good when the trailer is new or new to me so I know it's done well and they can go a while. I don't put on a ton of miles so I have no problem going 4 or 5 years but do check temps while traveling. I've heard it's much more miles dependent than time so if I were lucky enough to be putting on 10-15K/year I'd probably repack/inspect every year or two.


When I purchased my previous fifth wheel , I ordered it, and went to Indiana to pick it up. The return trip was 1600 miles. There were no issues on the trip, and those bearings went 5 years before I did anything to them, and there was never a problem with them. If I hadn't went that 1600 miles knowing there were no problems ,most likely I would done them a lot sooner .

ACZL

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Posted: 03/31/21 10:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You have been on here for many years, not much more can be written on the subject.

Yes I have been on for some time, but have NEVER have worried too much about them cuz we hardly went long distance w/ old coach and it was inspected every year in NY and just like PA, 1 wheel has to pulled off and dealer never found anything wrong and that coach too had zerks on end of axles. Perhaps in the 12 years of ownership of the old 1, they may have been changed 1x don't recall exactly. So I was just simply asking if there was a right/wrong way on this. I know everyone has their own take on things, but from all those takes, one can come to some kind of conclusion wether or nor not others agree. Just like changing oil and brand of oil. Some say dump every 5k miles, others every7500 miles. Some say Rotella,others say Delo. We all learn from others despite how long we've been around.


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Cummins12V98

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Posted: 03/31/21 11:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

"I have used the zerks also, and no issue with the seals leaking grease onto the brakes. Follow the manufacturers recommendation on the proper procedure for zerk use. A tip...I tow the trailer to warm the bearings/existing grease first, before using the grease gun, that I lay in the sun to warm/soften the grease. I add enough grease, to see fresh coming out the front bearing."

Great advice. It also helps to use quality synthetic grease.


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opnspaces

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Posted: 03/31/21 11:48am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I do mine every fey years if I remember. To me these are no different than cars of old where you had to pack the front wheel bearings from time to time.

The fact that you are pumping 4 or 5 pumps of grease into the zerk every year is almost as ineffective as not pumping at all. But the fact that you have not had a failure is actually a testament to not really need to pack every year. If the bearings are properly greased and adjusted then they will go many years without care.

Yes you will read reports of inadequately lubricated bearings on here. But I think most people don't really realize what a properly packed assembly looks like. I think they are expecting a bunch of grease in the hub between the inner and outer bearings. But this is an incorrect assumption. A properly packed assembly is grease in the bearing and little to no grease in the hub itself.

Below is Dexter Axles steps for packing a bearing. In the steps there is no mention of packing anything except the actual bearing. I personally disagree with the 12 month 12,000 mile statement as a manufacturers CYA. But I left it on here as it is Dexters procedure not mine.

[image]
[image]Click For Full-Size Image.


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cummins2014

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Posted: 03/31/21 01:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

opnspaces wrote:

I do mine every fey years if I remember. To me these are no different than cars of old where you had to pack the front wheel bearings from time to time.

The fact that you are pumping 4 or 5 pumps of grease into the zerk every year is almost as ineffective as not pumping at all. But the fact that you have not had a failure is actually a testament to not really need to pack every year. If the bearings are properly greased and adjusted then they will go many years without care.

Yes you will read reports of inadequately lubricated bearings on here. But I think most people don't really realize what a properly packed assembly looks like. I think they are expecting a bunch of grease in the hub between the inner and outer bearings. But this is an incorrect assumption. A properly packed assembly is grease in the bearing and little to no grease in the hub itself.

Below is Dexter Axles steps for packing a bearing. In the steps there is no mention of packing anything except the actual bearing. I personally disagree with the 12 month 12,000 mile statement as a manufacturers CYA. But I left it on here as it is Dexters procedure not mine.

[image]
[image]Click For Full-Size Image.


Although I quit several years ago packing a wheel bearing by hand, I have one of those bearing packers, that do a much better job of getting that grease inside the rollers then I can with the palm of my hand ,and a whole lot less messy.

Lynnmor

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Posted: 03/31/21 01:55pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I replaced my entire assemblies, brakes, drums, bearings and seals after which I drove about 8,000 miles one summer. I then pulled the hubs and found that 5 of the 8 cheap Chinese bearings were failing. I replaced with quality Timken bearings and had no issue since. Yes, the all of the work was done correctly, the bearings had manufacturing defects. Do what you want and believe what you want, but until you inspect this cheap junk you are only guessing. Had I pumped a bit of grease in there and called it good, total failure would have happened. Yes, I have a temperature gun and saw no elevated temperatures.





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