RV Tire Safety
with RV tire expert Roger Marble
I saw an RV forum post on whether you need your own air compressor, as well as where to find certified tire inspectors/technicians. Here was my answer.
If you are running a TPMS (which, of course, you should be), you should have received plenty of advance notice of needing to add 3 to 5 psi. This slight loss of pressure is due to normal air loss and pressure change due to change in ambient temperature. You can easily top off your tires at your next fuel stop.
If you don’t have a TPMS and discover you have been driving on a tire that needs more than 20% of its required inflation, you should be calling road service and have the tire changed, as there is a good chance you may have done permanent internal structural damage. I consider this operation on the under-inflated tire made the tire unsafe to re-inflate until the tire has had a complete internal and external inspection by a trained tire service person, not just the guy that mounts tires, who probably has not received the training.
Regarding how to find trained, certified tire inspectors/technicians … use THIS link from the Tire Industry Association. There is a directory that you can search by zip code. Those listed are TIA Members, and those with the Certified Patch next to them have been TIA Certified.
I will suggest that folks with 19.5 or larger tires or with Load Range E, F, G or higher or with any steel body ply of any Load Range go to a Certified Commercial inspection location.
People with Passenger, LT or ST type tires of lower load range can use the “Automotive” link, but a Certified Commercial person should be able to inspect smaller tires too.
Remember as Sgt. Esterhaus (“Hill Street Blues”) said: “Let’s be careful out there.”
Read more from Roger Marble on his blog at RVtiresafety.net.