Help selecting a tire tread

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Skookum

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I'm gearing up to put our new-to-us 06 Jayco Seneca 34SS in the shop for some tires. But I want to go in with some knowledge versus just being sold something I've never seen and features I don't know about, right off the shelf.

Right now it has Cooper/Roadmaster RM170 245/70/19.5's, Load Range G, all 6 tires. Rides okay, although I don't have anything to compare it with.

Someone on here mentioned Roadmasters are more of a value/budget tire but I'm not sure what that means in terms of features, how that would compare in the car-tire world. This model of Roadmaster has a very smooth, highway-type tread. I don't like the look of them, but, I am more concerned about function over form.

What would the use-case be for a tread with more siping, like a more all-terrain pattern? Most of what we do will be 98% on highways mostly in the pacific Northwest. Rain, shine, but no extreme temperatures and no snow. Maybe some dirt roads in summer, but not regular use off-highway.

What is the use-case for having different steer and drive tires? I see some models regardless of load rating are recommended for steer-only or drive-only, some are all-position.

What is reasonable in terms of manufacture date on new tires? Is a year old OK, 6 months? What's pretty normal?
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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I don't think there is much case for either in a motorhome.  Mostly the concern is to have enough grooves to funnel water away (prevent hydroplaning) and rubber grippy enough to give decent traction (steer and drive) yet still be durable.

Generally, a more aggressive tread hurts fuel economy and is noisier.  You probably don't need ultra-high-mileage tires because most RV tires die of old age long before they wear out (miles).  The rationale for different steer and drive tires is simply that the steer tires needs to be able to adjust to turns whereas the drive tire is always going straight, so the tread and rubber compounds can be optimized for one or the other. If you travel 100k miles a year, you can maybe benefit from improved tire life that way, but no significant advantage for typical motorhomes.  And you can't move a drive tire to the steer axle if needful.
 

donn

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I really like Gokahama for  value and quiet ride.  But Hankook has been popular among motor homers
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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Some of the best values in larger tires sizes are Sumitomo, Yokahoma, Toyo, Hankook and Kumho.  Commercial truck owners have been familiar with them for years, but car owners either don't know them or think they are "China bombs".
 

Skookum

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Gary RV_Wizard said:
Some of the best values in larger tires sizes are Sumitomo, Yokahoma, Toyo, Hankook and Kumho.  Commercial truck owners have been familiar with them for years, but car owners either don't know them or think they are "China bombs".

Stopped by the local tire outfit today and they recommended Toyo M143's as a decently-premium option, as well as "Double Coin" (RT600) as a cheaper alternative.

I gave the guy a cockeyed look when he tried to sell me on "Double Coin". I know big name brands manufacture tires all over the world with good results, so I'm not really sure what to think of Chinese-made tires anymore, let alone Chinese-brand tires made in China.

I'll probably skip the Double Coins, unless anyone has exceedingly great things to say about them?

Half the problem around here is finding tire shops that will work with 19.5" tires, let alone commercial shops (there aren't many here).
There's a Goodyear commercial shop...they wanna push Goodyear
Camping World (uuuuugggggh)
Discount Tire won't touch 19.5's...they will sell them, but none of the shops in the area can mount them (?)
Les $chwab $$$$$$$$
 

Old_Crow

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Tom's Place, California
Gary RV_Wizard said:
Some of the best values in larger tires sizes are Sumitomo, Yokahoma, Toyo, Hankook and Kumho.  Commercial truck owners have been familiar with them for years, but car owners either don't know them or think they are "China bombs".

Haven't had to deal with tires on my coach yet, but I've been using the Hankook's on my other vehicles for years.  I also, at some point, had a set of Kumho's on one of my Jeeps, and I thought I'd never wear them out.
 

Back2PA

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No personal experience with them but I have read several negative reviews of Double Coins
 

ELeland

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Jupiter, FL
This brand wasn't mentioned, but stay away from Hercules.  PO installed them on my MH and they are junk.

Ed
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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The cheap Chinese brands seem to have improved considerably in the past couple years, but one of the ways they keep the price down is to skimp on quality control and dealer support for warranty claims.  If you get one of the not-quite-perfect ones it's often a hassle, but many or even most of them are probably fine.  When Michelin or Hankook have tires made in a Chinese factory, they insist on their own quality standards and of course have their US dealer support network already in place.  Plus they are proud of their brand name and want to protect it by avoiding unhappy customers and dealers. It's the tire brand itself, not the location of the factory, that makes the difference.

Most of the older China Bomb complaints I saw involved tires that were out-of-round, causing harsh vibrations that often could not be adequately fixed by balancing.  I haven't seen  any of that kind of complaint lately.
 
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