Wheel bearing repacking - Escape Trailer Owners Community
Journey with Confidence RV GPS App RV Trip Planner RV LIFE Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Take a Speed Test Free 7 Day Trial ×

Go Back   Escape Trailer Owners Community > Escape Tech > Problem Solving | Owners helping each other
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 01-14-2024, 09:48 AM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Cortez, Colorado
Trailer: Casita 2008
Posts: 10
Wheel bearing repacking

We have an Escape 21 with a little over 5,000 miles on it. This Spring we will get a Spring service on it before we put about another 2,000 miles on it. When should I have the wheel bearing cleaned and repacked??
canoeman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2024, 11:10 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Perry Butler's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Lanesboro, MN, between Whalan and Fountain, Minnesota
Trailer: 2016 Bigfoot 25RQ - (2018 Escape 5.0 sold)
Posts: 2,129
Quote:
Originally Posted by canoeman View Post
We have an Escape 21 with a little over 5,000 miles on it. This Spring we will get a Spring service on it before we put about another 2,000 miles on it. When should I have the wheel bearing cleaned and repacked??
We put 10-15,000 miles driving our camper(s) down the road. Every fall I have the bearings repacked, and brakes inspected/adjusted. At 7,000 miles a year you should be able to go two years before servicing your bearings.

Enjoy,

Perry
__________________
Those who know everything use pens. Intelligent people use pencils.
Perry Butler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2024, 03:16 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2022
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Trailer: 2023 Escape 5.0TA
Posts: 759
I had always heard the guidance and 1 year or 10,000 miles. I'm sure your trailer will not turn into a pumpkin if you go over a tad.
SageRpod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2024, 03:52 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Ocean Park, Maine
Trailer: 21NE picked up in May 2022
Posts: 199
I agree that 15,000 miles or about every 2 years is OK to drive before the wheel bearing need repacking. Unless:

1) the tires are wearing unevenly or just on the inside or the outside edges, or
2) when jacked up you can get some sort of rocking or wobbling when you push/pull on the wheel at either the 3&6 o'clock or 6&12 o'clock positions, or
3) the trailer brakes are awkward or erratic or need to be looked at anyway.

It is not big money ~ $50 or a real high skill operation to repack the wheel bearings. I can do all 4 of mine in a day or so with just some new seals and fresh wheel bearing grease. I have owned a few VW busses over the years and I had to do it on them also.
Randy in Maine is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2024, 04:04 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
C&G in FL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Tampa Bay Area, Florida
Trailer: 2015 Escape 5.0TA (Little Elsie) Extensively Personalized
Posts: 2,917
Honestly, I will go 2 years or 25,000 miles, have done that for many years and have never had a wheel bearing problem. I usually do clean and pack them myself, and there was no unusual wear on the bearings or races when I last serviced them. I use Lucas Red “N” Tacky which doesn’t seem to separate as much as some of the other greases I have used in the past. The brakes get adjusted every 6,000 to 8,000 miles.
__________________
What a long strange trip it’s been!
C&G in FL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2024, 05:50 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2022
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Trailer: 2023 Escape 5.0TA
Posts: 759
Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy in Maine View Post
...2) when jacked up you can get some sort of rocking or wobbling when you push/pull on the wheel at either the 3&6 o'clock or 6&12 o'clock positions, ...
I prefer 3:15 and 5:45 so I can call it a day 30 minutes early

(Thank you, the late great George Carlin for that one)
SageRpod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2024, 06:58 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Little Rock, Arkansas
Trailer: 2016 Escape 19
Posts: 212
Does grease age out with low mileage?
Kingfish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2024, 07:03 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
MrLynn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2021
Location: Framingham, Massachusetts
Trailer: 2019 Escape 21C, NTU April 2022
Posts: 962
Last summer, before our aborted trip to the Pennsylvania Wilds, I greased the wheel bearings using the EZ-lube feature. My understanding is that if you do that once a year or so, you don't need to pull off wheels and repack bearings.
__________________
• "The Molded Fiberglass Obsession," https://walkingcreekworld.wordpress....ass-obsession/
MrLynn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2024, 08:38 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
HABBERDABBER's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Madison area, Wisconsin
Trailer: 2016 Escape 19 Chevy 2012 Express 3500 Van
Posts: 1,691
I don't think so

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kingfish View Post
Does grease age out with low mileage?

I don't think so, in a normal lifetime. It's just another hydrocarbon concoction.

Given decades or millenia, it may not last.

Nothing is forever, and nothing lasts.

Forever.
HABBERDABBER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2024, 09:10 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: SLO County, California
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21C 2019 Expedition
Posts: 5,199
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrLynn View Post
Last summer, before our aborted trip to the Pennsylvania Wilds, I greased the wheel bearings using the EZ-lube feature. My understanding is that if you do that once a year or so, you don't need to pull off wheels and repack bearings.
If it were me having bought a used trailer I would treat it like buying a used car and err on the side of caution. There is a whole thread on EZ lube or not, however your trailer is now 4-5 years old and I would want to do a full bearing and brake inspection.
__________________
"We gotta get as far away as we can!"
- Russell Casse, Independence Day
Rossue is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2024, 09:54 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
MrLynn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2021
Location: Framingham, Massachusetts
Trailer: 2019 Escape 21C, NTU April 2022
Posts: 962
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossue View Post
If it were me having bought a used trailer I would treat it like buying a used car and err on the side of caution. There is a whole thread on EZ lube or not, however your trailer is now 4-5 years old and I would want to do a full bearing and brake inspection.
I'm pretty sure previous owner Shawn greased the E-Zs now and then, and just before we bought the trailer. We're not putting on a whole lot of miles, so I'm not too worried. When we took it down to VA and back in November, I would check the hubs for heat when we stopped; they stayed cool.

When we start off I usually check the trailer brakes with the controller in the truck. Can't really tell if they're making much of a difference in normal braking, but assume they are.
__________________
• "The Molded Fiberglass Obsession," https://walkingcreekworld.wordpress....ass-obsession/
MrLynn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2024, 06:28 AM   #12
Senior Member
 
C&G in FL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Tampa Bay Area, Florida
Trailer: 2015 Escape 5.0TA (Little Elsie) Extensively Personalized
Posts: 2,917
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kingfish View Post
Does grease age out with low mileage?
Grease does not necessarily “age out.” Grease is essentially oil in a carrier agent. But grease can separate (oil separation from the carrier), especially if stored in hot locations. Peanut butter can be used as an analogy. Have you ever seen a small puddle of oil in the “nooks and crannies” of the peanut butter after it has set for a while? Or have you ever found parts of your grease gun oil covered?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrLynn View Post
Last summer, before our aborted trip to the Pennsylvania Wilds, I greased the wheel bearings using the EZ-lube feature. My understanding is that if you do that once a year or so, you don't need to pull off wheels and repack bearings.
MrLynn, I would respectfully say that you are badly mistaken in your understanding. In as much as the so-called EZ-lube feature could be considered an “interim” bearing maintenance method, this feature pushes old grease from the inner bearing through the outer bearing until “clean” grease appears and the method can displace the rear seal contaminating brake surfaces if not done with care. My analogy for that is like spraying a dirty dish in the sink. It may look clean, but do you want to eat your next meal on it? Bearings and races should be examined for wear periodically and brakes can be examined at the same time. Last I knew, unless it has been endowed with AI, the EZ-lube feature lacks optical abilities.
__________________
What a long strange trip it’s been!
C&G in FL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2024, 07:34 AM   #13
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Naples, Florida
Trailer: New 21 Escape (not classic)10/16 Sold Lil Snoozy 7/16
Posts: 484
bearing life

We have a 2016 Escape 21 with maybe 8000 miles on it .We have used the EZ lube feature a few times .and I check the grease and use a temp gun to see that nothing is heating up .For the last 5 years we keep the trailer about 1 mile away from its Summer location on a small lake near the Grandkids in Illinois. We might start using it again to travel then we will inspect and redo or replace our bearings .
BTW I've trailered for over 50 years never had a bearing problem but on my boat trailers they usually get replaced after 2-3 years of saltwater usage .
jennykatz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-29-2024, 09:01 PM   #14
Member
 
CE Vogel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Battle Ground, Washington
Trailer: 2020 ATC 31'
Posts: 95
I learned the hard way a reason for annual bearing inspections. I pulled the wheels off my two year old trailer and found the grease seals had failed. Grease was all over the brakes! The bearings were fine, but I needed new seals and brake shoes, and a big cleanup of the drums and magnets. Annual inspections are cheap insurance.
__________________
Craig Vogel
Battle Ground WA
1963 Kenworth
2020 31' ATC Toyhauler
CE Vogel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-31-2024, 12:44 AM   #15
Senior Member
 
CharlesinGA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2021
Location: 50 miles S of Atlanta, Georgia
Trailer: 2008 BigfootRV 25B21RB
Posts: 271
Buy good seals. National Seal 473336 Has a spring loaded double lip and will replace the Dexter 010-019-00 that is used on 3000 to 4400 lb axles. 1.719 inside dia, and 2.565 OD

Charles

__________________
'03 Ram 2500 CTD, 5.9HO PacBrake six speed std cab long bed Leer top and 2008 Bigfoot 25B21RB.. Previously, 2008 Thor Freedom Spirit 180, SOLD! 2007 Winnebago View 23H Motorhome, SOLD!
CharlesinGA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-31-2024, 08:24 AM   #16
Senior Member
 
HABBERDABBER's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Madison area, Wisconsin
Trailer: 2016 Escape 19 Chevy 2012 Express 3500 Van
Posts: 1,691
Lesson learned

I've posted this info before, and it might help someone.
On my 2016 "classic" vintage E19, the inner grease seals were glued in. I damaged the bearings on the first wheel I was working on and replaced the races and bearings, trying to remove the grease seal. I had to use heat on the brake drum to overcome the adhesive.
First time I've seen them glued in. I have done tear downs and re-greasing before on boat and other travel trailers before. I don't know if Dexter still glues them in.
I believe they glue them in place to avoid pop-out from overzealous greasing with the EZ Lube feature. I didn't use glue on the inner seals when I performed my repack.
HABBERDABBER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-31-2024, 08:38 AM   #17
Senior Member
 
brroberts's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2020
Location: Overbrook, Kansas
Trailer: 2021 E19 (Padawan)
Posts: 1,831
I agree with Habberdabber. I didn’t use heat as the bearing was going to be toast. Instructions recommended adhesive on the replacement. I did not since I am careful and typically do lube by tear down so I can inspect things.
__________________
Randy & Barb
1998 C 2500 (Cruncher) and 2021 Ranger (Yoda)
brroberts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-31-2024, 10:47 AM   #18
Senior Member
 
Iowa Dave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Benton County, Iowa
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 Classic Number 6, pulled by 2018 Toyota Highlander
Posts: 8,190
We have Easy Lube axles on our 2013 21. When we got it I disassembled the hubs, examined the brakes, and repacked the bearings. When I cleaned up the spindles it gave me a chance to closely examine how that feature works and to put some new clean grease in the easy lube voids, driving out the old grease. Then I cleaned everything up and reassembled with hand packed new grease. Then I did this again in 2018, 2019 and 2020 because we traveled a lot in those first three years. Since then with Covid I’ve grease every 8,000 to 11,000 miles. I’ve posted several times that I feel the examination gives me Peace of mind and I’m working on the trailer anyway rotating the tires, cleaning things up and checking the other systems so to me it’s just what I do.

I bought my first boat trailer when I was 15, got the wheel bearing lesson from my dad who was a European Theatre tanker in WWII and never looked back except to back in, and then not that often after I mastered the mirrors. I buy grease and parts from Midwest Wheel in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Smart people on the counter, genuine Dexter dealers and speedy service. YMMV
Iowa Dave
__________________
Ain’t no trouble jacking a double Burma Shave
Dave
Iowa Dave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-01-2024, 12:03 AM   #19
Senior Member
 
ghosthunter's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2021
Location: Mount Vernon, Washington
Trailer: 2013 Escape 15 B. Room4Two
Posts: 438
We purchased a 2013 15 B in spring of 2021. It was current on maintenance than. I used the EZ lube feature each year since. But we are driving less than 5 k a year.

I have it scheduled in two weeks for break inspections and wheel bearing service.
$150.00 per axle for bearing service.

I don’t care to mess with it.
ghosthunter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-01-2024, 08:52 AM   #20
Senior Member
 
HABBERDABBER's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Madison area, Wisconsin
Trailer: 2016 Escape 19 Chevy 2012 Express 3500 Van
Posts: 1,691
I don’t care to mess with it.

Wise enough decision.
It's knuckle scraping, grease monkey grunt work. A chore for the driveway mechanic, rough on the back, hands,... heck, the body.
I do mine, as it is an infrequent task, and I forget how much ache it creates.
That, and the fact that I am retired and enjoy a super-abundance of time, the sort of which is not money, and I have 2 axles on the E19, lead me to my misspent dotage.
Who does the deed doesn't matter. What matters is that the deed gets done.
HABBERDABBER is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Escape Trailer Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:28 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2024, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright 2023 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.