Trailer Wheels/Tires

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S.G.

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Are the wheels on my trailer supposed to tilt in opposite directions, stressing the tires, when I'm making a strong turn?
 

S.G.

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I believe that’s pretty typical! I know that things look pretty ugly with my 3 axle on a very tight turn! memtb
That's relieving. I have 2 axles. I never looked back at the wheels until yesterday and was blown away at the way they looked while I was maneuvering a tight loop. They looked very stressed, but went right back to normal when I pulled straight ahead. I'm hoping that's just the way they function and not an anomaly.
 

RVfixer

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Yes, that is normal. If I back into a spot and the tires are stressed like that from the turn I pull forward and back to straighten the tires up and take the stress off the side walls before unhitching.
 

PerroSucio

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I unhooked on a cement pad with the tires stressed in that position. Soon as it came off the ball, the trailer rotated almost a foot. Not a safe situation even with the tires blocked…..
 

Kirk

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Think of it like there was a pivot point in the center of your 2 axles and when you turn the tires must absorb side stresses in opposite directions due to that pivot. The sharper the turn the more that stress will be. Because it is impossible to prevent the tires for trailers are designed differently that those for driven wheels.
 

RVfixer

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Both of my trailers, with solid axles and suspension did exactly the same as the op's did...many times for years and years. The tires leaned and/or pointed a little in different directions after a backing turn. I wouldn't think that would be good for the tires, wheel bearings and suspension components to leave them that way long term. I normally pull straight forward and back, to straighten the tires, when I see that happen...which is often. The op's wheels straightened themselves when the trailer was unhitched so that took the pre-load off but the tongue swung to the side and was scary. I don't think it is the wheels that are leaning or pointing opposite each other as much as it is the pre-loading and squirming of the tires.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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There IS a lot of stress like that and Kirk explained why it happens. I'm just surprised that you can actually see a tilt or angle from straight-ahead. You can see a bit of flex as the rubber tire pushes sideways against the wheel rim, but the hub and spindle shouldn't move.
 

RVfixer

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I don't know about the hub spindle but when you back in a turn the flex in the trailer tires sure looks scary. The first time I saw it, years ago, I had the same reaction as the op....something must be broke. Now I am use to it. If it wasn't for the stiff sidewalls on trailer tires I think you could easily roll a passenger vehicle tire off a dual axle trailer wheel in a backing turn. I never had the trailer tongue move when unhitching, like the op, but I always pull straight forward and then straight back, when i see the tires flex, to take the pre-load off.
 

S.G.

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It's normal if you have a Morryde independent rubber suspension, but not if you have the more common solid axle & spring suspension. Tilted wheels on a spring suspension typically indicate failed wheel bearings.

Yes, the sidewalls of an ST-type tire will tolerate a lot of wheel lean. If you are running LT tires instead of ST, not so much.
I'm not sure what my suspension is, but the tires are ST
 

S.G.

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I don't know about the hub spindle but when you back in a turn the flex in the trailer tires sure looks scary. The first time I saw it, years ago, I had the same reaction as the op....something must be broke. Now I am use to it. If it wasn't for the stiff sidewalls on trailer tires I think you could easily roll a passenger vehicle tire off a dual axle trailer wheel in a backing turn. I never had the trailer tongue move when unhitching, like the op, but I always pull straight forward and then straight back, when i see the tires flex, to take the pre-load off.
My wheels straighten back out when it's not making a turn, so they're always flush when I'm going straight or park it.
 

RVfixer

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Yup, that is completely normal. If you back up while turning the tires flex and it looks like something is broke. If you don't unhitch they will stay in that stressed/pre-loaded condition and that can't be good for the tires and wheel bearings if left that way long term. If you unhitch with the tires flexed like that they will straighten up but you will get trailer movement like you did. That is why after backing in a turn I try to get straight before stopping. If I can't I pull forward and back in a straighter line to get the tires straighten out. Been doing that for at least 25 years
 

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