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Old 01-17-2013, 11:03 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Trailer hub maintenance

This is probably an easy question, but how often should the trailer hubs be torn down and inspected/rebuilt with new bearings as needed? I do have a grease fitting on the hubs, so it's easy to keep them greased. With boat trailers, you really had to do a lot of maintenance since the hubs were often dunked in water. Not so sure about the rule of thumb for sled trailers.

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Old 01-17-2013, 11:12 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I've had cheap axles where seals wore out and I had to replace within a year. Other high quality hubs, I would tear apart and all was good two years after. Just like a sled, if you have to rely on it, check it often at first to see how soon it goes to crap.
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Old 01-17-2013, 12:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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You have to maintain trailer hubs?
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Old 01-17-2013, 12:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I have a crappy little utility trailer that is about 10 years old. Doesn't get a ton of use, but I figure it has around 5000 miles on it. I checked those bearings this past summer and they looked new. And those hubs didn't have a zerk, so I couldn't even grease them!

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Old 01-17-2013, 01:20 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Depends on tire size as well. Smaller tires turn more revolutions to go the same distance as a larger tire. Trailers with small tires would require more frequent maintenence.
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:08 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Trailer hub maintenance

I was kidding above, I know you need to check them. I give the hubs a feel after every long trip to see if there are any problems cropping up. I should actually open them up next spring just to say I've done them.


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Old 01-17-2013, 05:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Same here. I have bearing buddys on my trailer too. Hit them with grease evey year or so to top them off- done.
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:58 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by babzog View Post
...I give the hubs a feel after every long trip to see if there are any problems cropping up.

I do the same thing on long hauls with the camper at gas stops and smoke breaks. I touch the hub to see if it's getting hot.
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:05 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Same here. I have bearing buddys on my trailer too. Hit them with grease evey year or so to top them off- done.
I was planning on using the same low temp grease I use all over the sled in the zerk fittings. Or is there something special I should use in the hubs?

Babzog LOL! Sorry about that.
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:48 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smallengineguy View Post
Same here. I have bearing buddys on my trailer too. Hit them with grease evey year or so to top them off- done.
And, jack it up and check for bearing play at least once a year, twice it you use it a lot.
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Old 01-21-2013, 11:44 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Thanks.

A question on the grease though...according to the Dexter Axle service manual, I should be using a Lithium Complex grease for the wheel bearings. Locally, I can find Valvoline DuraBlend (part synthetic). It has good water resistance which is nice, but the low temp range is -10 on the tube (website says -25, so something is wrong!). That's cold sure, -10, but some of my trailering areas hit that from time to time. Do I need to be concerned that it's operating temp isn't low enough?

I assume after a few turns the hubs start to warm up. I could go with Valv SynPower grease, which goes to -60, but doesn't offer good water resistance (according to the website). I figure that's a better grease feature to have than the lower temp (for those wet, soggy long drives home from the trails). Again, I'm sure I'm overthinking, but since SynPower wasn't one of the greases listed (even though it meets the specs) in the Dexter manual, I also wondered if I should just not bother with it and if I'm just fine with the DuraBlend.

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Old 01-22-2013, 08:43 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Temp isn't a problem for hub use. The hubs warm up enough, even just the friction of the grease will heat it up.

Low temp stuff is for things that tend to bind up if the grease gets a little solid. (suspension components)
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Old 01-22-2013, 09:24 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Thanks. That's what I figured. I did call Valvoline and Dexter Axle though. Dexter They said their list of greases is a bit outdated, and that SynPower was fine as well. I asked Valvoline about it's lack of saying it was water resistant, like they say DuraBlend is. The tech said it was resistant as well. I can't decide if I should just switch what I bought to SynPower, or just use the DuraBlend...
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Old 01-22-2013, 07:39 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Steve,

I wouldn't worry to much about 1 being more water resistant than the other. If you were doing the bearings on a boat trailer, then yes, but the seals should keep any road spray out of the bearings just fine on the sled trailer.

Dure vs Syn.... Flip a coin! Both should be fine as mentioned!

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Old 01-22-2013, 07:44 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Thanks. I over think the small things. But I can buy a house after thinking a bout it for 10 min! Lol. I went with the all synthetic SynPower to get the better low temp rating.
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:05 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Thanks. I over think the small things. But I can buy a house after thinking a bout it for 10 min! Lol. I went with the all synthetic SynPower to get the better low temp rating.
Sometimes I do the same, so your not alone! Lol
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