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rcoman

18" vs 14" Tires for Boatmate Trailer

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rcoman

I just purchased a 2011 23LSV in Houston and pulled it home to Phoenix. The trailer was 14 months old and we experienced one blow out in the factory 14" tire. I'm debating to replace the rest of the tires with the same size or should I jump up to an 18" tire which would look much nicer. If looks were the only reason to upgrade, I probably couldn't justify the added cost. However, if the tires will last longer and blowouts would be minimized, it would be worth it. I do plan on towing this boat 3-4 times a year to Lake Powell (600 miles round trip). Any recommendations on what I should do? Thank you.

Denaliwithboat.jpg

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Soon2BV

Buy 4 of these - Kumho Radial 857.

Load Range D - pretty rare for a 14" tire.

I ordered mine on line, and then went to a BigO tire and had them installed.

An 18" tire won't necessarily give you more load carrying capacity.

http://www.tirerack.com/tires/tires.jsp?tireMake=Kumho&tireModel=Radial+857&partnum=9R4857&vehicleSearch=false&fromCompare1=yes

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Bradley Thornton
rcoman

Thanks for your input Soon2BV. Did you go with the 205/R14 or the 195/ R14? Maybe it doesn't make a big difference?

Bradley, thanks for the links. Very helpful.

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Miljack

Rcoman,

a little off topic, but curious which tire position blew? I have a theory, but would like to hear your answer first :)

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bamabonners

i predict front tire, but I have no scentific data to back up my opinion. LOL!

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lonestar

These trailers use a torsion beam axle setup. This type of axle does not distribute the load like a leaf spring axle setup. Therefore it is extremely important to level the trailer in order to level the load and evenly distribute that load to each tire. (As a project at work on our industrial equipment trailers with G rated Goodyears) I used individual truck scales and measured the load at each tire and overloaded tires easily by adjusting hitch position only 2" high or 2" low from the trailer horizontal (level) position. In the boats case, I measured the trailer height at the front and rear and purchased different height offset couplers for my wife's Tahoe and my F150 in order to get the trailer level with each (this required buying and returning a few different offset couplers).

Not saying this is the cause of everyones blowouts but I was surprised by my measured results.

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rcoman

Ya I need to get a different hitch for my Denali. It sits too low in the front. It was the front tire that blew but it was pulled with a different truck. Not sure if it was level or not. Thanks for the advice.

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pennery

If you go with the 18" tires you will need to replace the fenders with wider fenders as well. Or at least Boatmate uses wider fenders for the 18" setups. The 18" wheels do not bounce or sway as much as the 14". I have pulled both back to back and the 18's do pull nicer however the cost doesn't make sense as a resale point of view. I personally would not replace your current setup with 18".

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Nitrousbird

Your setup would look so much better with a set of 18's. Your tow rig has rims, you have a pretty expensive and flashy boat - WHY NOT??!!!

I need to get around swapping mine with 18's as well; I can justify it as my car hauler uses the same size tires and could use some new wheels/tires (though I rarely use my car hauler).

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nuttyskier2002

Rcoman......I would go with a 15" rim/tire combination as opposed to 18". Tire replacement would be cheaper and you won't have to do as many mods to fit them under the fenders. I was having blowouts with my Eagle trailer hauling a 95 Echelon. I had 5 total in the 4 years of owning that boat. 2 of them happened only 1 month apart. Most of the tires were less than 1 year old. When I stepped up to 15" rims with "E" rated tires the blowouts stopped. This was one of the most worthwhile mods I made. To clear the fenders I used taller shackles to raise the trailer frame on the axle. And I raised the fenders by about 3/4". This opens options for tire selection by a huge margin.

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G-Mack

Worthy of investing in air bags for you Denali it will also help with handling if you find the steering a bit light. I assumed your Denali would have autoride .... On our escalade it works very well to level the truck

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Launch22

It is a must to have a leveled trailer. I had the same thing happen to me. I was pulling a 10k lb cruiser with too much weight on the front tires and had a blowout. The tire starts to overheat and it's just a matter of time. You can also have a tire overheat and blow due to a trailer break dragging.

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

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DP167

I just put new 14" tires and rims on my trailer because I have had many bad expiriences with over sized rims on toyhaulers and vehicles! Go with a higher load range tire, watch your air pressures, and rock on!

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Night Rider

Personally, running approximately 3 to 4000 miles per year and having experience with both 14s in 18s, the larger wheel will offer significantly more stability at highway speeds. Since I'm in the market again I will most definitely be putting 18s on my new trailer. But as others have noted there are additional costs associated with the fenders and axle adjustments required for bigger wheels

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