DWAYNECHERAMIE

Valve Stem Extensions

24 posts in this topic

I've heard a lot about whether or not to use valve stem extensions for my rear inside tires,but knowing how important tire pressure is, wanting to add the extensions just to make it a little easier to check pressure since I do it pretty frequently.

Wanting input as far as what brand/type extension should I use?

Any recommendations??

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I went to a truck tire store and had them put in the correct metal rigid extensons on all rear tires . They handle thousands of tires every year and I followed their reccomendations ... Work great for my Pressure Pro sensors on them.

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If you have a Workhorse or Ford chassis I would get DuallyValve solid metal extensions.

They come with rubber grommets that fit in the handhold to provide support for the extension. This is really valuable if you have tire pressure sensors.



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The valve extensions that were on our coach when we bought the coach cost us over $650.00!!

The extensions were addons to the existing inside reqar valve stems. The added weight was enough to fatigue and crack the regular valve stems where the thread ends. Road service: $90. New tire, valve stem, and removal and replacement in our driveway: over $560.00

We now have one piece, longer valve stems on the inside duals, a long straight air chuck and air gage to reach in.

STAY AWAY FROM ADDING AN "EXTENSION"....One piece supported longer valve stems are OK.

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The solid extensions I had installed at Southside Tire cost me $5.00 each - installed..... have worked great for 4 years.

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General comment on extensions. When I was racing I towed with 1-Ton dually and had steel braided extensions. Ran about 78,000 miles with no problems. When I got my Class-C my first add-on was TPMS followed by steel braided extensions. With only 16,000 miles no problems.

Now there are TWO main things that I would consider a MUST. First you need bolt in metal valves. Second you need a hard attaching point on the outer end of the hose to prevent movement of the hoses. The hoses come in different lengths so you should run the shortest hoses that allow you to easily bolt the end down and you need to support the end of the hose when pushing on it with your tire gauge or air chuck.

I can only guess as to why a metal valve would fatigue as without significant movement of the hose there should not be enough to stress the valve stem. Metal valve stems should be replaced or at least have all the rubber O-rings and gaskets replaced whenever you change a tire. The rubber parts age just as the rubber on your tire ages. Replacing when you replace tires eliminates the need of keeping track of the age of the O-rings and seals. There is a rubber interior to the hose and this will also age so when I replace my tires I will get new hose extenders along with new valve rubber parts.

I have seen spring clips that are supposed to retain the steel braided hose but they don't look too solid to me. I have not looked at the rubber "grommet" that fits the hand holes but have to wonder if they hold the braided steel line solidly. Clearly they do not support the hose end so there will definitely be some movement.

You can see in my set-up that I have the hose firmly attached to my hub cap. I do hold the extender hose when ever using a gauge or air chuck.

209qedy.jpg

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I have Alcoa aluminum wheels. The extensions on current 1994 coach were junk when I purchased it used. I replaced them with solid extensions from Alcoa. They have many different types and styles for their aluminum wheels. You can see them at http://www.alcoa.com/alcoawheels/north_america/en/info_page/accessories_hd_valve_stem_ext_stabilizer_kits.asp Do some searching on their site as they also have some other options such as different length valve stems. I figure that if Alcoa sells them for their wheels, they should be good enough for me.

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Hmmm I am going to install this kit with my PressurePro TPMS

Anyone had experience with Phoenix MAXAIR extenders?

(by the way I have metal valve stems)

AirMaxdiag.jpgAirMaxInstalledinset.jpg

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Woofer01,

I have-- those are a standard on most Ambulances on a Ford E450 or GMC 4500 Savanna chassis. While I have not experienced problems on those vehicles I did have them chafe on my wheel simulators on the Class C I used to own. The Ambulance only runs short distances while an RV runs long distances at highway speeds. My class C was a Ford chassis and it had the small holes in the wheels for those to pass through not like the photo above, which Ford changed to in the mid 2000's (2008 I believe).

I ended up sliding a rubber hose over the part where it came through the wheel and placing a wire tie to hold it in place, while driving the hoses would flex and bang against the simulator which caused two to fail on me. My TPMS system saved me both times.

The coach we have now I have solid extensions that utilize a rubber grommet on the outer wheel for support.

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Tireman9,

My stainless steel braid valve extensions were leaking air from the rear outside tires. I went to a tire dealer and they installed new steel bolt-in valves, and a European design valve extension that is plastic with a rod down the middle. These extensions do not have air in them except when checking or filling the tires. I checked and found that these are DOT approved and seem to be a better design than the stainless braid.

Since you are a tire professional I would welcome your comments.

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I use "Catseyes" no batteries, "quick" visual yet allows for recheck using pressure gauge.

They do NOT alert drive to loss of tire pressure "blowout" while driving.

http://www.linkmfg.com/products/cats-eye/

The over riding theme is proper inflation and checking of pressure, coupled with proper maintenance of tires.

What has the greatest bearing on traction, handling and braking........ tires.

Happy motor coaching.

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Tireman9,

My stainless steel braid valve extensions were leaking air from the rear outside tires. I went to a tire dealer and they installed new steel bolt-in valves, and a European design valve extension that is plastic with a rod down the middle. These extensions do not have air in them except when checking or filling the tires. I checked and found that these are DOT approved and seem to be a better design than the stainless braid.

Since you are a tire professional I would welcome your comments.

I understand the two basic designs of hose extenders.

One is pressurized as it opens the valve core on the stem that is bolted through the wheel. This type can be used with an external TPM sensor at the outer end of the hose or with a "flow-thru" type TPM sensor attached to the bolt in valve and then the hose running out to allow air to be added to the tire.

The second system has a hose with a flexible "rod" on the inside which opens the valve core in the valve bolted to the wheel. This hose is not pressurized except when measuring tire pressure. BUT if you attach an external sensor to the outer end it must depress the "rod" and then pressurize the hose for the sensor to provide a reading. A "flow-thru" sensor could also be used with this system if it is placed on the valve stem with the non-pressurized hose connecting to the outer end of the flow thru sensor. Since this is the hose you have I believe you need to use flow-thru TPM sensors so this might limit your choices.

If properly installed I see no reason for either system to work Now it is of course that either design could have detail features such as better quality hose or "O-Rings" or attaching points of hose to fittings but without doing detailed examination of specific product and possibly conduction some testing so I would not call one any "better" than the other.

RE "DOT Approved" While I have not done research on the specific question of hose extenders, I do understand the "DOT Approval" of tires. This is a very common misunderstanding of how DOT works.

They write rules and regulations and test procedures to be used by a manufacturer when they want to certify a tire or other component as meeting DOT regulations. To my knowledge DOT does not approve specific products. It is the manufacturer who "certifies" that a product would pass all DOT test requirements, if it were tested.

For example, I have seen plastic brake light lenses with "DOT" on them. To me this is nothing more than an indication by the manufacturing company that the lens is "certified" by the manufacture to pass the appropriate DOT standards.

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Tireman9,

Thank you for your reply. I appreciate the information given and am satisified with my choice of valve extensions.

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IMHO. The tire shop that I use added extensions to the inside tires. A screw on with a cap. If you put the cap on with a little too much force getting the cap off will spin the extension loose or off when checking pressure. Their are metal flow through caps available where truck tires are sold. Don't like the plastic version. A tool available at truck stops can push on to a regular cap and easily spin it off if you want a cheaper cap. A quality gauge that has a straight in (not angled as on the cheapies) will be fine for pressure checks. I use the same straight in style for my air chuck that ***** and locks. Get inside, watch your gauge, hit the brake pedal to get the compressor to recycle and stay comfortable while you air'em up. Nice on a cold or rainy morning. Used that method when I sometimes had to air up 18 of them.

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Plastic caps are probably fine for passenger tire applications. Metal caps with soft rubber O-Ring gaskets also work fine for higher pressure applications.

The primary purpose of a cap is to keep dirt out of the valve core area. Too often people think that if they have an air leak just "cranking" down will stop the leak. Well tire valves do not work like water valves.

Over tightening the core will not stop a leak and most likely will make it worse by splitting the seal on the core.

Here is a post on why valves may leak.

Rubber valves are rated for applications less than 60 psi

Valves are not just little rubber things

Rubber seals in valve caps and around the bolt in valve stems get old and can leak which may lead to a tire failure.

If you have metal caps just finger tight (where you feel the seal contacting the stem) + 1/4 turn is plenty tight.

Caps are cheep. Get new ones whenever you change tires or maybe every 5 years.

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I have a Class C RV Ford E350 super Duty with 16" wheels, I called my local truck tire shop and they told me that the rigid long stem valves (Brass) won't fit my tires I'd have to find some that do. I find this hard to believe. I remember a long time ago I worked at a shop that did tires and seen them use truck valve stems on a 16" E350 before.

Does anyone know if this is true and if so where could I get the correct valve stems for my inner dual's I would like to use the rigid ones that bolt on the rim?

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Although this thread is mainly devoted to RV's let us not forget our TOADS. I recently purchased a new TPMS. My TOAD has "vogue" wheels and low profile tires. (Think 2013 Lincoln MKX with 22" wheels.) Like others, my concern is for tire information when towing behind the MH. The MKX comes with built in tire sensors and to remove them would cause the dash warning light to be on constantly. The valves in the MKX were the rubber base snap in. I did not want to put a sensor on it that could vibrate and cause a shift in the rubber base, or worse. Also, the TPMS Sensor stuck out about 3/4" past the tire. Not good if a curb is encountered.

I could not find a 90˚ stem to circumvent that problem. The stem I found would not traverse the hole bend in the chrome wheel. I ordered new tires from Discount Tire and a very knowledgeable person worked with me to try and find a solution. He disappeared for a while and came back with four Schrader 34000 valve stems that accept my built in sensors. These are metal, fit in the hole and the sensors now do not thrust out but to the edge of the tire. I'll still have to be careful but it is doable. There are other valve stems for the different kind of built in sensors.

If I could put a 90˚ short valve extension on the present valve stem it would reduce the sticking out part completely.

Tierman 9, any thoughts on putting a 90˚ extension on a valve stem and a TPMS Sensor on the end?

Thanks.

For the MH, I also purchased the Dually Valves mentioned earlier. New tires will be installed with the stems sometime this week.

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Although this thread is mainly devoted to RV's let us not forget our TOADS. I recently purchased a new TPMS. My TOAD has "vogue" wheels and low profile tires. (Think 2013 Lincoln MKX with 22" wheels.) Like others, my concern is for tire information when towing behind the MH. The MKX comes with built in tire sensors and to remove them would cause the dash warning light to be on constantly. The valves in the MKX were the rubber base snap in. I did not want to put a sensor on it that could vibrate and cause a shift in the rubber base, or worse. Also, the TPMS Sensor stuck out about 3/4" past the tire. Not good if a curb is encountered.

I could not find a 90˚ stem to circumvent that problem. The stem I found would not traverse the hole bend in the chrome wheel. I ordered new tires from Discount Tire and a very knowledgeable person worked with me to try and find a solution. He disappeared for a while and came back with four Schrader 34000 valve stems that accept my built in sensors. These are metal, fit in the hole and the sensors now do not thrust out but to the edge of the tire. I'll still have to be careful but it is doable. There are other valve stems for the different kind of built in sensors.

If I could put a 90˚ short valve extension on the present valve stem it would reduce the sticking out part completely.

Tierman 9, any thoughts on putting a 90˚ extension on a valve stem and a TPMS Sensor on the end?

Thanks.

For the MH, I also purchased the Dually Valves mentioned earlier. New tires will be installed with the stems sometime this week.

Wayne, Some of the newer OE TPMS sensors have what appears to be a "snap-in" rubber valve but in fact there is a solid brass core. If you press lightly sideways on the end of the stem I think you will see that the stem does not bend. This type of valve sensor looks like this.

23ucsbs.jpg

The original aluminum design sensors were bolt in which took time ($$$) to install so there was a concerted effort

svgz0k.jpg

I think if you contact your local Ford dealer and ask for a price on a replacement valve stem. if the price is in the $40 to $80 range then you definately do not have a standard rubber stem and should not worry about installing an aftermarket "cap" style sensor.

RE 90 degree fitting. Not aware of this type of fitting that will solve your clearance issue. This is one of the down sides to the "Big Wheel" look that comes on many image vehicles today.

.

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I have a Class C RV Ford E350 super Duty with 16" wheels, I called my local truck tire shop and they told me that the rigid long stem valves (Brass) won't fit my tires I'd have to find some that do. I find this hard to believe. I remember a long time ago I worked at a shop that did tires and seen them use truck valve stems on a 16" E350 before.

Does anyone know if this is true and if so where could I get the correct valve stems for my inner dual's I would like to use the rigid ones that bolt on the rim?

OK lets start at the basics. Your chassis is basically a LT not a real "heavy truck" so the valve hole in the wheels is smaller than the hole size in 22.5 "truck" wheels.

Now that we know that we are looking for LT style metal valves. I did a Google search on "bolt in metal tire valves" then selected IMAGES.

I note a number on valves that have various angles.

Of course the other option is to use a standard straight bolt in valve and to get a "dual foot" or "dual chuck" tire inflation extension.

Visit Harbor Freight and search on "air chuck"

Now I don't know if you have on-board air available on your RV. If you do then with a little planning you can assemble your own tire inflation system.

The other thing to do is to inflate your tires to 10% more than the minimum you need for tha actual load. With this extra margin you should be able to go a few months before you need to add any air to your tires.

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I have a Class C RV Ford E350 super Duty with 16" wheels, I called my local truck tire shop and they told me that the rigid long stem valves (Brass) won't fit my tires I'd have to find some that do. I find this hard to believe. I remember a long time ago I worked at a shop that did tires and seen them use truck valve stems on a 16" E350 before.

Does anyone know if this is true and if so where could I get the correct valve stems for my inner dual's I would like to use the rigid ones that bolt on the rim?

Royclem, I put them on our old coach, E450 (same wheels). I bought mine from the Ford dealer, Funny thing I just saw one still in the package in my tool box the other day.

Ford part number, 2C3Z-1700-AA. They became standard in later years and they used the same wheels up to 2008 on the E350 and E450, in 2008 they switched to a 4 hand hole design from the 10 small holes around the wheel. Sorry I do not remember what they cost.

Joe

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Thank you for the feed back. I decided to go with the airless valve extenders but will definitely try Ford for the correct valves as I would feel safer with a single valve instead of extensions.

Thanks again for feedback.

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Royclem, the Ford valve stems will get you a solid metal stem with a curve to direct away from the wheel. I used an extension kit I found on the web that had solid extensions with rubber inserts for support, simillar to the Alcoa oe design. Once these were installed I never had a leaking valve stem problem, the braided stainless steel ones seemed to become a problem after 2 years.

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