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Old 03-13-2016, 10:32 AM   #221
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We always cranked the castle nut down pretty tight then backed off a notch or two so the cotter key would go in and before inserting, we would take a thin flat tipped screwdriver and make sure there was a tiny amount of play in the thrust washer. Then put the key in and finish up. You must make sure the castle nut has not hung up on a bad thread and left the thrust washer and consequently the outer bearing loose. Unless I am towing in extreme conditions, I have no problem with 20 to 25 thousand miles on the bearings. Depending on conditions, mountains etc, checking the brake linings and knowing how much you had to start with as a reference and keeping them adjusted is very important too
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Old 03-13-2016, 02:49 PM   #222
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We always cranked the castle nut down pretty tight then backed off a notch or two so the cotter key would go in and before inserting, we would take a thin flat tipped screwdriver and make sure there was a tiny amount of play in the thrust washer. Then put the key in and finish up. You must make sure the castle nut has not hung up on a bad thread and left the thrust washer and consequently the outer bearing loose. Unless I am towing in extreme conditions, I have no problem with 20 to 25 thousand miles on the bearings. Depending on conditions, mountains etc, checking the brake linings and knowing how much you had to start with as a reference and keeping them adjusted is very important too
Dave
Dave question for you being I only have about 8000. mi even though it has been 2 1/2 years
Instead of mi am I to be concerned about mi or time if I make sure after jacking up wheels they are not loose and I always check brakes and lugs ? Or because of this time take apart , regrease and check bearings and races ? Pat
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Old 03-13-2016, 04:08 PM   #223
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I don't see elapsed time as detrimental to amount or condition of grease in the bearings or on the spindles. Although this spring I did repack the bearings and install new seals and they had not been done since August of 2014, if I had not been changing out the tires and had a burning desire to evaluate the brakes, I would not have been greasing. If we run as much as we plan this year, it will be time for brake shoes next spring. I'm easy on brakes and just had front and back done for the first time on the Highlander this last week. 114,000 miles and still had 40% lining left. Could have made a lot more miles but my shop guy needs to make a living too.
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Old 03-14-2016, 11:38 AM   #224
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Hi Jim, Thanks very much. I feel we could at least go a couple of years between wheel bearing service, but it helps to have a supporting opinion. Hope your doing well in your beautiful cold country this winter.
Best regards,
- King
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Old 03-29-2016, 07:54 AM   #225
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I finally got the bearings repacked in our 19' Escape. Just under 9,000 miles & almost 2 years. (Biggest part of mileage was return trip from Chilliwack - 6,800 miles) Cost was only $70 from a local shop that works mostly on non-RV trailers. Mechanic suggested repacking 2X's per year, but I feel that I'll go once per year at the start of the season. He also checked brakes and felt that I had the tension right - so I felt good that my adjustments were correct.
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Old 03-29-2016, 09:09 AM   #226
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I don't see elapsed time as detrimental to amount or condition of grease in the bearings or on the spindles. Although this spring I did repack the bearings and install new seals and they had not been done since August of 2014, if I had not been changing out the tires and had a burning desire to evaluate the brakes, I would not have been greasing. If we run as much as we plan this year, it will be time for brake shoes next spring. I'm easy on brakes and just had front and back done for the first time on the Highlander this last week. 114,000 miles and still had 40% lining left. Could have made a lot more miles but my shop guy needs to make a living too.
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I had mine repacked after one year, 10K miles. I'm glad I did, there was one blown seal. I think I will have it done once a year, you never know...
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Old 03-29-2016, 11:40 AM   #227
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Mechanic suggested repacking 2X's per year, but I feel that I'll go once per year at the start of the season. .
2X per year, whoa, seems really excessive. To me, even every year is more than I do, except for a boat trailer.

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Old 03-29-2016, 11:56 AM   #228
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every other year here....
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Old 03-29-2016, 12:49 PM   #229
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2X per year, whoa, seems really excessive. To me, even every year is more than I do, except for a boat trailer.

Ron
Agree with Ron. There is only one situation under which you can't go 3 years/20,000-25,000 miles between bearing service, that situation being if you are in the habit of parking the trailer in 8 to 10 inches of salt water. I'm do mine every two years, primarily because I want to inspect the bearings and the brakes.
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Old 03-29-2016, 02:53 PM   #230
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I had mine repacked after one year, 10K miles. I'm glad I did, there was one blown seal.
Was grease ever pumped into the E-Z Lube fitting? That could explain blowing the seal.
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Old 03-29-2016, 03:25 PM   #231
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I have EZ lube fittings that were never used- and never will be by me after looking into it. Last July when the trailer was 10 months old I decided to do the bearings as we had over 15K miles at that point. Two seals were leaking.
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Old 04-07-2016, 08:22 AM   #232
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I have EZ lube fittings that were never used- and never will be by me after looking into it. Last July when the trailer was 10 months old I decided to do the bearings as we had over 15K miles at that point. Two seals were leaking.
I had a seal leaking on mine as well after one season. That's just one reason why I'm going to do the bearings once a year. Some think that is way too often, but I'd rather error on the side of caution...
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Old 04-07-2016, 08:32 AM   #233
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I have EZ lube fittings that were never used- and never will be by me after looking into it. Last July when the trailer was 10 months old I decided to do the bearings as we had over 15K miles at that point. Two seals were leaking.
I have those on the new cargo trailer I bought, and they warn everyone to just give them one really small shot of grease once a year, as otherwise you can easily blow a seal, and possibly contaminate the brakes. The service manager there told me they would prefer not to have them, but that consumer demand drives the manufacturer to install them.
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Old 04-07-2016, 09:26 AM   #234
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When we had our refrigerator replaced in February, I asked the RV place to give me a quote for wheel bearing maintenance. $210 per axle plus parts--holy cow! That would be over $400! I said I would wait a bit to have it done (the trailer will be 2 years old in July). I'm glad there are others that have found better prices--gives me hope that we won't have to spend so much money. Or maybe I just need to learn a new skill and do it myself....hmmm.
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Old 04-07-2016, 09:38 AM   #235
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Tash, I too called an RV place and their stated charge was twice what a nearby mechanic charges me. I pays to shop around.
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Old 04-14-2016, 06:17 PM   #236
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We took our 11-month old Escape 19 to our local brake and wheel shop to get the bearings and brakes tuned up for the coming season. We put about 5200 miles on the trailer last year. The shop found that two of the bearing seals were leaking and had leaked on the brake magnets. They were able to clean them off without further damage to the brake shoes. They also found that the bearing adjustment was too loose on one of the wheels and got it tightened properly. I have worked with this shop for a few years and believe they know what they are doing. I'm glad I spent the $250 to get the work done as we are planning about 10,000 miles this season. Your trailer may not need work like this, but consider if you should have the bearings and seals checked in case you also had a problem like we did. YMMV.
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Old 04-14-2016, 07:26 PM   #237
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We took our 11-month old Escape 19 to our local brake and wheel shop to get the bearings and brakes tuned up for the coming season. We put about 5200 miles on the trailer last year.
...
The shop found that two of the bearing seals were leaking and had leaked on the brake magnets.
That's leaking seals after what would be half a year of light use for a car. When cars had this style of bearing they went years without this issue. Have you previously used the E-Z Lube feature?

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They also found that the bearing adjustment was too loose on one of the wheels and got it tightened properly.
...
I have worked with this shop for a few years and believe they know what they are doing.
Can I assume that they're not the ones who installed or adjusted the bearings only a year ago, because those bearings were not touched since they came from Dexter Axle?
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Old 04-14-2016, 07:50 PM   #238
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No one touched the bearings since the trailer left the factory and I did no E-Z-Lube. My shop asked if I had done any work as they were about to school me on the bad job I did, but it was all straight from the factory.
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Old 04-14-2016, 08:03 PM   #239
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Another endorsement for adhering to Dexter's interval of One year or 10K miles, which ever comes first. We also had two leaking seals within one year.
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Old 04-14-2016, 08:13 PM   #240
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No one touched the bearings since the trailer left the factory and I did no E-Z-Lube. My shop asked if I had done any work as they were about to school me on the bad job I did, but it was all straight from the factory.
Thanks Bill

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Another endorsement for adhering to Dexter's interval of One year or 10K miles, which ever comes first. We also had two leaking seals within one year.
I still think that's far more frequent than should be required, but maybe at the one-year mark is a good opportunity to catch problems that were created at the factory - Dexter's, not Escape.

What I find really sad is that the standards in trailer running gear are so low that the dominant supplier in the industry - Dexter Axle - has this sort of issue; they're not some second-rate economy brand
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