A few weeks back we were driving to the Outer Banks in North Carolina. Prior to heading out onto the islands, we decided to fill up with fuel. We had only been on the road for about two hours. As a normal practice, we always check the tires prior to taking off for the day and when we stop.
After filling up with fuel, I noticed a large bubble on the side of one of the tires. We located a rest area and we went to work changing the tire. Years ago, with our old trailer, our attempt to change a tire didn’t go well. I placed a jack under the axle and on top of a cinder block. The result was a crushed cinder block and a call to a wrecker for assistance. Shortly after that, I came across a slick item that would have helped considerably.
This gadget, shown below, is really handy. Basically, you drive the good wheel up on this little ramp and the weight is lifted off of the tire to be replaced. Slight use of a jack on the axle lifts the tire from the ground after the lugs have been replaced.
Changing the tire was the right thing to do. When we arrived in Charleston to have the tire replaced, the bubble had burst. Had this happened while driving, we probably would have had a blow-out which would have been quite inconvenient and would have caused damage to the underside of the 5th wheel.
The 5th wheel manufacturer recommends the use of a torque wrench at frequent intervals after a tire change and at the beginning of each trip to check the lug nuts. We’ve made a practice of doing this and, sure enough, after a change, I have had to tighten the lugs on several occasions.