What Should the Tire Pressure Be On an RV?

Before you hit the road in your RV it is important to know how to check your tire pressure. Knowing what the tire pressure should be on your RV is essential to maintaining your vehicle. Low tire pressure could cause a tire to blow on the road resulting in a dangerous accident. Continue reading, What Should the Tire Pressure Be On an RV? To learn how to determine the correct tire pressure for your RV.

Quick Answer

Tire pressure is an important aspect to maintaining your RV. To much pressure can cause your RV to lose traction, and to little can cause a blown tire.

  • The tire pressure on an RV should be set between 35 to 80 PSI depending on the size of the tire, weight of the RV, and number of wheels your vehicle has.
  • Improper tire pressure will cause uneven wear on your RV’s tires.
  • An average RV tire is 16″. The larger the tires, the higher the PSI required is.
  • Most RV’s state what the recommended tire pressure is on a sticker. Often the sticker is located inside the passenger door.
  • The tires will state the recommended max pressure in their instructions, or along the side of the tire itself. If you cannot locate the recommended max pressure, call the tire manufacturer to retrieve this information.

If you are an RV owner you should make sure you maintain the correct tire pressure on your vehicle. Incorrect tire pressure can be dangerous on the road. Continue reading to learn more about recommended RV tire pressure.

How To Determine What The Correct Tire Pressure For Your RV

Determining the correct tire pressure for your RV is an important part of vehicle maintenance. Having tire pressure that is too high or too low can result in major problems. Know how to check and set your tire pressure before hitting the road.

Finding the Correct Tire Pressure For Your RV

Setting the tire pressure for your RV should be done prior to taking any trips. To find the correct tire pressure for your RV follow these easy steps.

Step 1: Check the sidewall – Each tire has a maximum pressure listed on the sidewall. Check the maximum pressure, and be sure not to exceed it when filling your tires.

Step 2: Check the vehicle plate – There will be a recommended pressure listed on the chassis plate. Check this number and use it as a reference point. Remember, this may not end up being exactly what you set your tire pressure to.

Step 3: Determine your RV’s axle and vehicle weight rating- This should be located on your vehicle’s drivers side pedestal, or somewhere else around the door. Record the weight for future reference.

Step 4: Weigh your RV – Make sure your RV is fully loaded, and the gas tank is full before you weigh your RV. Record your vehicle’s full capacity weight.

Step 5: Check the inflation table for your RV’s tires – Once you have both weights recorded, look up your tire’s inflation table. This can be found online or by contacting the tire manufacturer. Use the table to determine what your tire pressure should be set at based on your RV’s weight.

Step 6: Test Drive – The last step is to take your RV for a test drive after you have inflated your tires. If you feel pulling to either side of your vehicle reassess your tire pressure.

Now you will know the correct pressure to set your tires at before hitting the road. Remember, the correct tire pressure is an essential part of RV maintenance.

What Happens If Your RV Tire Pressure Is Too High Or Too Low?

Tire pressure that is too high or low can result in unnecessary wear and tear on your RV. Here are a few problems that can occur from incorrect tire pressure.

Limited traction: An overinflated tire can cause limited traction, because the extra pressure bears down on the sidewall and tread.

Noisy: Tires that are overinflated or underinflated may make a squeaking or harsh noise.

Wear and tear: A tire that has to little or too much pressure can result in the treads wearing down faster.

Exploding: When the tire pressure is set to high there is a chance the tire will explode; however, this is more likely to occur when tire pressure is to low. When the tire pressure is to low, the tires rubs against the asphalt creating to much friction.

Safety: Underinflated tires are cause for concern on the road, because they explode often when the vehicle is traveling at a high speed. This is dangerous for both the RV, and the vehicle’s around the RV, and could result in an accident.

What Does the Maximum Pressure Mark Mean?

The maximum pressure mark is used to describe the highest point a tire should be filled to. Any pressure exceeding the maximum pressure mark could be damaging to the RV’s tires.

Know the location where the maximum pressure mark is list: The max pressure mark is usually listed on the sidewall of tire. If you cannot find the max pressure mark contact the tire manufacturer.

Determine the rate-load of your tire: Once you have determined your maximum tire pressure remember this pressure is for your RV at its max weight. The max tire pressure should only be used when your RV is carrying its max weight.

Understand how the maximum pressure mark is determined: The maximum pressure mark specifies how much pressure is needed to support the maximum weight of the RV, and is calculated by taking the pounds at maximum capacity per square inch of tire.

Do not exceed the maximum pressure mark: When filling your RV’s tires, the maximum pressure mark serves as a guide for the absolute highest pressure your tire can be set to without potential damage occurring.

On Average What is the Recommended Tire Pressure For an RV?

The average recommended tire pressure for an RV can be anywhere between 35 to 80 PSI (280 to 550 kPa). The recommended pressure will depend on a few different variables. Below you will find the recommended pressure based on the average RV tire size, number of wheels, and RV weight.

RV weight: The average RV weighs roughly 10,000 pounds. An RV that weighs 10,000 pounds will most likely have a tire pressure set around 50 to 60 PSI.

Number of wheels: The number of wheels the RV has will have a big impact on tire pressure, because the weigh that a tire needs to support depends on how many other tires the vehicle has absorbing weight. Most RV’s will have been four and eight tires. This is part of the reason why you should check the RV’s recommended tire PSI, as well as the tires listed recommended PSI.

Size of the tires: Some of the most popular tires diameter sizes an RV may have, in inches, are 16.5, 18.3, and 21.1.  The size of the tires will impact the recommended tire pressure, and max PSI.

Before you hit the road in your RV keep safety in mind, and check your tire pressure. Understanding max PSI, and what your RV’s recommended tire pressure is can help you maintain your vehicle for years to come.

How Does Load Weight Affect Tire Pressure?

Load weight will impact the recommended tire pressure for your RV, because the weight bearing down on the tires causes the tires to lose air volume. Also, as you increase the weight of your RV, the pressure put on the tires increases, and it becomes increasingly challenging to pump your tires.

Checking tire pressure: The load weight should be taken into consideration when setting and checking tire pressure. To determine your RV’s proper tire pressure, weigh your vehicle after you have loaded your RV and filled your tanks.

Impact of improper weight to tire pressure: When added weigh is put on a tire it will squish downward, putting pressure against the sidewall. In extreme cases this can be visible when inspecting the tires. This can be damaging to both the RV and the tires. The tires can wear out on the sides, or even rub again the wheel wells creating damage to the RV.

Maximum PSI: The maximum PSI is the recommended tire pressure when the RV is carrying its maximum weight. Setting the pressure under the maximum PSI can be damaging when the RV is carrying a full load; however, overloading a vehicle can also cause damage to the tires and RV.

What Are Tire Size Markings and Why Are They Important?

The tire size markings are located on the sidewall of your tire. Reading the size markings will help you determine the right tire pressure for your RV. You will find a few different things on your tire sidewall.

Temperature Ggrade: This refers to the tire’s resistance to heat, and is graded on a scale of “A”, “B”, and “C”. An “A” grading being the most resistant, and a “C” meeting the minimum performance requirement.

Maximum Inflation Pressure: The maximum inflation pressure refers to the highest possible air pressure the tire can stand before it is at risk of exploding, or damage.

Maximum Load Rating: Ever tire has a maximum weight it can carry, which is referred to as the maximum load rating. This will impact the recommended tire pressure.

Width/Diameter: Another side marking is the width and diameter of the tire. These aspects of the tire are important, because modifying your tire size can completely change your RV’s drivetrain.

What Are Common Factors That Affect Tire Pressure?

There are a few different common factors that can cause your RV’s tire pressure to change. Being aware of these things can help you maintain the correct tire pressure and avoid an accident, or damage to your RV and tires.

Holes: The most common cause of low tire pressure is a hole in the tire. Nails are the most common culprit, and will cause a slow leak.

Temperature Change: Another common factor that will impact your tire pressure is a drop in temperature. When the outdoor air temperature makes a sudden change, it impacts air density. If the temperature falls quickly, the air pressure in your tire will also fall.

Age: As tires age they are not as effective at containing air pressure. Older tires allow more air to leak into the environment, and will need to be filled more regularly until you can get new tires.

Tire Rim: When your tire rim becomes damaged the tire will leak air resulting in low tire pressure.

Speed and travel time: The more time spent driving at an elevated speed will increase your tire pressure. Speed causes the tire to heat, and if you maintain a fast speed for several hours the pressure will build resulting in a flat tire.

How to Check & Monitor an RV’s Tire Pressure?

The best way to monitor and check your RV’s tire pressure is to install a tire pressure monitor system (TPMS). Many newer RV’s will come with a monitor installed; however, older RV’s typically will not. This is an important safety feature, and allows the driver to constantly monitor their RV’s tire pressure. If your RV was manufactured before 2008 chances are you do not have a tire pressure monitor system installed. Follow these easy steps to check and monitor your RV’s tire pressure.

Step 1: Determine if your RV has a tire pressure monitor installed – The tire pressure monitor sensors are located along the tire rim, or on the valve stem. If your RV already has a tire pressure monitor installed there will be a light dedicated to it on your dash. It may read TPMS.

Step 2: If you don’t already have a tire pressure monitor purchase one – Tire pressure monitor systems are available to be purchased online, or at many big box stores. The cost of a TPMS system ranges from as low as $50 to upwards of $300 per unit.

Step 3: Install your TPMS system – To install your TPMS system follow the directions provided with the system you purchased. In most cases, the directions will ask you to install a sensor on each wheel, either on the valve stem, or just inside the rim. The sensors are linked to a control that will read the tire pressure. You can also have a mechanic install your TPMS system for a fee if you don’t feel comfortable installing it yourself.

Step 4: Test your system – To test your system take a read of the tire pressure. Record the TPMS system’s pressure. Then take a tire pressure read by hand using a gauge. If the measurements are not consistent contact the TPMS system manufacturer.

Now that you understand how to check and monitor your tire pressure you are one step closer to hitting the road. Don’t forget to test your system before you get going.

Wrap up

Safety and maintaining your RV are two very important aspects to RV ownership. Making sure your tire pressure is correct can help you avoid an accident. Know what factors can influence pressure. Having a system in place to measure tire pressure can help you feel confident on the road, and promotes safety. Please leave a comment below if you feel strongly about RV safety, and maintaining tire pressure.

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