The importance of Caravan & Trailer tyre safety
Tyre failure is one of the leading causes of caravan and trailer accidents. According to a study conducted by the Queensland University of Technology in Australia, almost 50% of all caravan tyre failures are caused by underinflation, while overloading and high speed are other factors that can increase the risk of a tyre failure.
Furthermore, a survey conducted by the UK's National Caravan Council found that 67% of caravan owners didn't know how to check their tyres' age or condition, and 34% had never had their caravan's tyres changed. This suggests that many caravan and trailer owners may not be taking the necessary precautions to ensure their tyres are in good condition, which could increase the risk of accidents.
It's clear that ensuring your caravan or trailer tyres are in good condition is crucial for your safety on the road. Regularly checking tyre pressure, inspecting for wear and tear, and replacing old or damaged tyres can help reduce the risk of accidents and keep you and your passengers safe.
Caravan and trailer tyres can often be overlooked, but they are an essential part of your vehicle's overall safety system. Here are some tips to help you ensure that your caravan or trailer tyres are safe and ready for the road:
Check Tyre Pressure Regularly
One of the most important things you can do for your caravan or trailer tyres is to check their pressure regularly. Tyres that are underinflated or overinflated can cause handling issues and increase the risk of a blowout. Always follow the manufacturer's recommended tyre pressure, and check the pressure before every trip, or at least once a month when not in use.
Inspect for Wear and Tear
It's essential to inspect your caravan or trailer tyres for wear and tear regularly. Look for any signs of uneven wear, bulges, cuts, or cracks in the sidewall or tread. If you notice any of these issues, it's time to replace your tyres. Tyres with damage can fail unexpectedly, which can be extremely dangerous, especially when towing a heavy load.
Check the valves
Very often the forgotten aspect of the tyre is the valve. Your tyre might be in good condition with decent tread depth and no issues on the tyre wall, however, if your valves are not in good condition then you’re still at risk! Check the valves for any cracks, degradation or discolouring. If you see anything untoward then ask your local caravan workshop or a local tyre centre to change the valves. They will be able to do this without needing to change the tyre if the tyre is suitable and safe to use.
Keep the Load Balanced
When towing a caravan or trailer, it's crucial to keep the load balanced. An unbalanced load can cause undue stress on the tyres, leading to premature wear and even blowouts. Make sure to distribute the weight evenly throughout the trailer or caravan, and don't overload it beyond the manufacturer's recommended weight limits.
Consider Upgrading to Reinforced Tyres
Reinforced or 'C' rated tyres are designed to handle the extra weight and stresses of towing. If you're planning to tow a heavy load or travel long distances, it may be worth upgrading to reinforced tyres. This will provide you with extra peace of mind and ensure that your tyres are up to the task.
Replace Old Tyres
Even if your caravan or trailer tyres appear to be in good condition, they should be replaced after a certain amount of time. Tyres that are over six years old are at a higher risk of failure, regardless of their condition. Always check the manufacture date, which can be found on the tyre sidewall. If your tyres are over six years old, it's time to replace them, regardless of their condition.
By following these tips, you can ensure that your tyres are ready for the road and that you and your passengers arrive at your destination safely. Remember to check your tyre pressure regularly, inspect for wear and tear, keep the load balanced, consider upgrading to reinforced tyres, and replace old tyres.
If you are unsure on the quality of your tyre and need it replacing, be sure to ask your local NCC Approved Workshop for advice.
Gavin Hughes 05/04/23
Gavin is the UK Sales Manager for Rema Tip-Top Automotive and has extensive experience in the leisure & automotive markets. Rema Tip-Top are the leading provider of tyre repair and wheel related consumables in the UK.
The study conducted by the Queensland University of Technology was published in 2014. Here is the reference: "Caravan Tyre Failure Study: Causes and Prevention", R. W. G. Anderson, N. Haworth and P. J. Wood. Accident Analysis & Prevention, Vol. 66, pp. 87-96, 2014.
The survey conducted by the UK's National Caravan Council was published in 2015. Here is the reference: "Caravan Tyre Safety: A Survey of Tyre Age and Condition in the UK Caravan Market", National Caravan Council, 2015.