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Do I Need A Spare Tire?

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With the 22.5 tires on our American Coach (33k lbs) I am wondering if I should invest in carrying a spare tire (no rim). We have "roadside coverage" with GoodSam, but that only covers the labor. A friend had a front tire blow 400 miles from home in West Texas (sparse country), his policy took care of the labor, but the ONLY local tire supplier available charged him $700.00 plus FET and sales tax for his 19.5 tire.

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Reasons TO carry a spare tire:

1. Saves time in case a tire is needed.

2. A corollary of #1-- the more remote the area traveled, more unusual the tire size, and more critical your time schedule the more importance to be placed on #1.

Reasons NOT TO carry a spare tire:

1. Weight of spare tire.

2. Takes up a lot of bay storage.

3. Ages and needs to be replaced even if not used.

4. You still need road service to install it.

Brett

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Guest BillAdams

I have not carried a spare in over 10 years of full-timing. I did have a blow-out of the inside rear dual (my bad...80,000 miles on the tire) and I was able to drive to a tire center and have it replaced. No big deal. Should that have been a front tire, I could have had one of the rear duals removed, installed on the front and driven to a tire center to have it replaced. I just don't see an issue here, but the choice is yours, not mine.

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Bill,

I strongly suggest that a motorhome not be driven with one of two tires on a dual location flat/removed.

That severely overloads the remaining tire, often resulting in structural damage.

Here is a quote from the Michelin RV Tire Guide:

When one tire in a dual configuration comes out of service due to under-inflation/run-flat damage, the other tire in the dual configuration should be inspected immediately. If the unservicable tire was under-inflated, that means that the servicable tire was carrying more and more of the load for that wheel position. Consequently, it too may have suffered some casing damage.

Brett

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Guest Wayne77590

I do not carry a spare.

I had also had a blow out on the left inside dual. However, it was my bad also. Previously I had a flat and did not know it. I suspect I drove on the one rear good tire for 15 miles. It was a valve stem problem. I had both of those rear side tires check by a tire company and all appeared good.

What is suspected is that riding on the flat tire weakened the sidewalls, and it is also suspected and reported that the other dual, supporting all the weight for both tires, had weakened. So "when" the blow out happened i replace both tires as a precaution.

My personal opinion is that it is a lot better to just stay put where a flat occurs and have the mobile tire repair replace the tire.

If you call your roadside assistance company, they will not send a tire, just a wrecker for towing, or a mobile tire repair. At this point tell them that you want the tire repair company to call you. When they do, explain that you want a new tire and give them the information on what you want. They will bring one to you - and it most likely cost more than what you can buy if you walked into the shop.

Happy trails.

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Guest BillAdams

It's also important that if you add a new tire to a set of duals that you add 2 tires of the same size/age to that set of duals. A new tire added to a tire with half it's tread gone will cause undo wear/stress on the new tire which is now larger. You could do the field install but you would then need to get to a tire center and either move those tires to the tag using the 2 tags as the dual setup, get a second new tire for that set or move the new tire and one old tire to the front and use the fronts as the dual set. I don't care of that particular option as I want to have a good matched set on the front.

As to not driving on a single dual, I can see where this could be an issue if the other tire were pretty new but usually a flat tire comes with age (in my case the tires had 80,000 miles on them) so I replaced both tires anyway (all 4 on the drive since they had so many miles). I also slowed down for the short part of the drive that was Interstate.

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I have never had the opportunity to use my Emergency Roadside Service yet.

This thread discusses whether to carry a spare tire (no rim). So if you need road service, does this mean if you have a spare tire, they will remove your flat, dismount the blown tire, mount your spare tire onto that rim and install it on the coach? Does road service typically have the equipment to do that in the field, or do they take your blown tire and spare tire back to the shop to mount it?

I am asking because I have a spare tire mounted on a rim. My logic was to cut down on the amount of time it would take to remove the blown tire and replace it in the field.

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Guest Wayne77590

Richard,

Yes. Most mobile tire repair services can dismount and mount a tire with no problem. When I had my blow-out I was fortunate enough to be 1/2 mile away from Pacific Tire Co. They dispatched a truck and they had a used 22.5 inch to get me where I was going 30 miles up the road. When he showed up he jacked MH, removed both duals, unmounted the tire on the inner dual, mounted the used tire, and replaced everything. Lowered the jack and I was on my way.

I have always been called by the repair service when I have contacted my roadside assistance. It is then that I start asking questions. If I don't get the right answers I'll call roadside assistance and cancel if they can provide another service center.

I don't carry a spare because of the space it occupies. If I were traveling across Alaska I would give that a second thought as I could put it in the back of the Saturn Vue.

Good luck.

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Hi Graybeard315,

I carry a fully mounted spare tire. For my coach the size is 275X70X22.5 tire. I've always carried a spare tire (since 1978). On the coach in my signature, I've changed a tire 2 times. The first is a right front and the second time was the right rear inside tire. I do have roadside assistance. The reasons I changed the tires is another story and I do not want to detract from the topic of this thread. I will continue to always carry a fully mounted spare tire, for the reasons Brett mentioned in his post. For me, plan A is to have roadside service make the change. Plan B is for me to do it.

For those about to post on the dangers of changing a tire, I carry all the correct equipment for making the change safely.

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First, thanks to all the responses, it looks like there are reasons (specifically including geography) to carry the mounted tire. Will have to give this some more thought.

Herman,

Well fellow Texan, all I can say is "Hold my beer and watch this,,," :rolleyes: Fer ya North of the Mason Dixon, that's Texican for 'Probst'

We WILL be joining a FMCA chapter this spring!

Fred

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I have always carried a spare, and hopefully never need it. My tires are not easy to find(12Rx22.5), so I feel better with one onboard.

It lays on the roof, and I carry a crane to lower it. It also is covered.

A lot of this is personal preference and where you travel. Oh, and most important is the size of tire. In other words, are they easy to find.

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I prefer not to carry a spare. I would if my size was hard to find or I was traveling to a remote area. The cost of a spare that you may never use and have to replace has to be weighted against the inflated cost of buying on the road. JMHO

Dan

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I do carry a unmounted spare that has 39,000 miles on it. The reason I have this tire is I had a rear outside dual tire that got a slit in the side wall and could not be repared. I replaced both tires on that side, discarded the damaged tire and keep the remaining good tire as a spare. I have plenty of storage space to store the spare and actally store some small items inside the tire that I don't want to move around in the basement storage area.

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The only reason I would carry a spare unmounted tire is if it was near impossible to get a replacement locally. I have a tag axle coach, so my worse case is to put whatever condition tire the service center can provide on the tag and use the tag for the failed tire, assuming the failure is not on the tag axle.

Gil

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I have traveled about 400 thousand miles in ten different motorhomes in the last 35 years and have never been without a spare tire and equipment to change it. You never know when your going to need to use it. Waiting for hours or even days to get the correct replacement is not something I want to endure. I invested in professional tire changing tools to get rid of having to use crowbars to change tires on the wheels. I discovered a damaged outer dual tire and changed it 3 days ago. I have built a carrier underneath the frame which uses an electric winch to lift the spare wheel off the ground. My tire size is 235/80/R22.5. I have had to change about 10 tires/wheels on the road.

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I bought my Airstream because I thought this was supposed to be fun. The day after Christmas I had a blowout...no spare and absolutely no knowledge of what to do with it if I did.

I called Good Sams. Best One Tires fixed it and I drove another 2,600 miles with no problems. Fixing it it cost me $400. I tipped the guy from Best One another $100 because it was 15 degrees on a Sunday night.

It takes money to play this game. If you ain't got it, forget it.

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That's 80,000 between flats, on average. Lets see, if I drive 5k per yr, I have 16 yrs till my first flat. Should I carry a spare in 2026 or wait?

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I have a Damon Challenger, and it has a spot for a spare tire right above the propane take. I have had 2 occasions to have a tired changed, and was very glad that I had the spare. both times were in remote areas and replacement tires were not only unavailable BUT the time of the incident was after business hours so if there was one available I would have to wait for business hours to get one.

I think it is worth it to carry a spare tire

George

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With the 22.5 tires on our American Coach (33k lbs) I am wondering if I should invest in carrying a spare tire (no rim). We have "roadside coverage" with GoodSam, but that only covers the labor. A friend had a front tire blow 400 miles from home in West Texas (sparse country), his policy took care of the labor, but the ONLY local tire supplier available charged him $700.00 plus FET and sales tax for his 19.5 tire.

Been RVing for more than 25 years and soon my luck will run out as I have never had a flat while on the road!!

Lou

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I'm quite interested in the system used to suspend the spare under the motorcoach. Is this a third-party aftermarket appliance that one can buy or did you fabricate this yourself? I imagine It's quite expensive. Perhaps, if it was an original equipment manufacturer device it would be more cost-effective.

This whole debate on the spare tire or spare wheel is quite useful discussion. It is too bad that motorhome sales people do not discuss this at the time of purchase. Those of us new to rving would be better served by such a discussion prior to purchase.

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Bryan,

Welcome to the FMCA Forum.

Much of the answer depends on TWO things:

What chassis?

How the motorhome manufacturer built the coach on top of the chassis (i.e. did they leave room either under the coach or in a basement for a tire).

The only other decision is whether to carry a spare tire or spare tire already mounted on a rim. If you have the ability to change a tire yourself (weight, lug nut torque,etc) AND travel in very remote areas, the mounted spare may be the way to go. But mobile tire services are available virtually everywhere and have the equipment to mount your spare "on the side of the road".

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Bryan,

There is a company that makes a spare tire carrier that works in conjunction with your receiver hitch. If I remember it can fold down so the tire can be lowered.

Brett may recall the name. I have seen them at different rallies.

Herman

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