As avid RVers, our main focus is on one thing - fun! However, there often seems to be that nagging, fearful voice reminding us of all the things that could go wrong. One of those fears many of us can't seem to shake is our tires and what could happen if there were any issues with them. You've probably considered investing in a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), but do you really need one and will it really help eliminate that nagging anxiety?
Here are a few reasons we believe every RVer should consider adding a TPMS to their rig!
1. RV Blowouts Are Dangerous (and expensive)
The primary reason we recommend every RVer use a TPMS is simple - safety! Most of us know how scary it can be to get a flat tire in a regular vehicle, let alone an RV. With larger tires, more air pressure and the significant weight of your motorhome, a blowout can cause a lot of damage to your RV and put those around you in danger.
Dual-tires: If you have duallys in the rear, there are a number of other concerns you may have. Namely, if you have a low, overinflated, or flat dual-tire (possibly leading to a blowout) you may no idea there's an even an issue without a TPMS to alert you. That's right, its companion tire can support the weight of the RV while rubber from the blown tire wreaks havoc on your RV. We know, it sounds dramatic... But we've seen this exact scenario lead to thousands of dollars in damage.
2. Tire Pressures Change, Sometimes Rapidly
You probably know that tire pressures increase as their temperatures rise. As you drive down the road your tires are rubbing against asphalt - this generates a fair amount of heat, causing your tire pressures to increase.
You're almost always inflating and checking your tire pressures while they're cold, prior to each departure. "Cold" meaning the tires haven't been driven on for an extended period of time. When you hit the road these pressures will change, wouldn't you like to have an eye on each tire to make sure they aren't overheating and/or becoming overinflated? We sure would!
3. Want To Save Fuel?
Your RV's tire pressures and overall "tire health" are crucial factors in not only safety, but fuel economy! When your tires aren't properly inflated, they aren't making optimal contact with the road's surface. This can lead to premature wear on the tires, and yes - more fuel consumption. A good TPMS will give you live readings of all your tire pressures so you know immediately if there's an issue.
4. Proper Inflation & Tire Wear
You'll also want to pay close attention to the tread and overall wear of your tires. This will alert you of any issues with inflation and/or overheating, or simply the age of your tires. The general rule of thumb is to change RV tires anywhere between three and six years, depending on how frequently you travel. However, improper inflation can cause excessive or uneven wear and lead to premature maintenance requirements.
Here's a great visual showing how inflation affects your tire's contact with the road and overall wear & tear:
This video covers whether or not you really need a TPMS for your RV.
Don't Risk It!
There are plenty of things we can do to prepare for our next RV adventure, but the unexpected happens from time to time. For that reason, we created Tire Patrol: a tire monitoring system that allows you to monitor up to 14 tires on a single, touch-screen display.