China Bombs or Improper Tire Maintenance? Take Care of Your Tires.

Ugh, I hate this whole China Bomb thing. Sure, some tires are better than others, but acting like the place of origin is the sole reason for tire blowouts is irresponsible. Let's all stop passing the blame.

Tire Speed Rating

Tires have speed ratings, do you know yours? I’m pretty sure that person that flew past me on the expressway doesn’t.

I bet you'll be surprised to learn that many trailers ship with tires that aren't rated for expressway speeds. Its very possible that some of the people whining about their China Bomb blowouts actually caused their problem by driving too fast.

Check your tire sidewall to find the speed rating.

Trailer Tire Speed Ratings

  • G: 56mph
  • J: 62mph
  • K: 68mph
  • L: 75mph

Tire Weight Rating

Tires have weight ratings that are dependent upon proper inflation. How many RVers do you think have taken their rig to a scale? How many check their tire pressure on the morning of a tow? Isn't it possible that these suppossed China Bombs were just overloaded? And maybe driven too fast?

Look up your tires on the manufacturer's website

Your tires

You regularly use a torque wrench on your lugs, right? Your trailer tows level so it doesn’t put excess load on the rear tires?

Tires like to roll, tires that sit go bad faster. UV radiation exacerbates the problem. While some tires might last ten years in perfect conditions, most people should at least consider changing them after the five year mark.

You use a TPMS that shows you pressure and temperature so you can see that your tires heat up evenly?

My Towing Experience

I have around 20k miles on two different trailers and four sets of tires, all from China. The first trailer was 8 years old when I bought it. The tires quickly developed bubbles. Those tires were old and I was stupid enough to overload them. It’s not fun discovering that problem at a rest area and having to find a tire shop in the middle of a trip.

The second trailer was bought new. I got around 10k miles on the factory tires. I noticed that one started running about five degrees hotter than the rest, even after accounting for the sunny side being a little hotter. The tires also began to cup a bit. I replaced them with a higher-rated tire.

My Current Tires

I'm currently running Sailun S637s. They are L speed-rated for 75mph, and 3640 per tire/14,560lb combined at 110psi, though I usually run them around 100psi where they have a 3,415lb per tire/13,660 pound combined rating, which is still over 1k pounds more than my actual combined trailer axle weight. I usually drive 64-67mph, depending on road quality and traffic. I'll occasionally get to the low 70s going downhill for short durations.

What Should You Do?

My recommendation is to buy tires a level above what you need and learn to take care of them. That might be an American tire, but those blow too if you don’t maintain them properly.

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