There is no other aspect of trailer mantenance more important than tire maintenance. Under inflation and poor tire upkeep are the number one causes of trailer tire failure.
There are two "seasons" for tires that make them even more vulnerable. These two "seasons" are blow-out season, and here in the south, the fall.
“Tire –blowout season (yes, there really is a “Tire-blowout season”) runs from roughly the middle of May through early October (tire companies closely track such information but guard it carefully). The reason more tires fail from late spring to early fall is simple: That’s when the outside temperature is the hottest, and when motorists are driving farther, and faster, in more heavily loaded vehicles. The combination can push a neglected or injured tire beyond its breaking point. However, tire failures can happen any time of year, especially in the warmest parts of the United States. Besides heat and overweighted trailers, other major bad guys for tires include lack of proper air pressure and, of course, impacts with obstacles.” (Excerpt from Popular Mechanics, “Why Blowouts Happen & How to Avoid Them”).
Here in the south, fall can be quite the rainy season. As cold fronts move through, the roads are increasingly wetter with the rain that these fronts bring. Overloading and improper tire inflation can cause traction failure in these conditions, with catastrophic loss of life and property possible.
Ensuring that your trailer's tires are at proper inflation pressure prior to every use is an important habit to have as a trailer owner. A $5.00 tire pressure gauge can save you hundreds in the long run.
Proper inflation pressure can be found here:
Frequent tire inspection is another critical habit to have as a trailer owner. Tire wear pattern can determine not only inflation issues, but can also be a strong indicator in other factors that may affect your tires; such as bent axles or loose hub issues.
Please refer to this chart to help you potentially identify tire issues with your trailer:
Per NATM (National Association of Trailer Manufacturers) guidelines – Before each tow, check the tire pressure to make sure it is at the level indicated on the tire sidewall or VIN label. Tire pressure must be checked while the tire is cold. Do not check tire pressure immediately after towing the trailer. Allow at least three hours for the tires to cool, if the trailer has been towed for as much as one mile. Tires can lose air over a period of time. Replace the tire before towing the trailer if the tire treads have less than 2/32 inch depth or the telltale bands are visible.A bubble, cut or bulge in a side wall can result in a tire blowout. Inspect both side walls of each tire for any bubble, cut or bulge; and replace a damaged tire before towing the trailer.If you are storing your trailer for an extended period, make sure the tires are inï¬‚ated to the maximum rated pressure indicated on the sidewall or VIN label and that you store them in a cool, dry place such as a garage. Use tire covers to protect the tires from the harsh effects of the sun.