How Tires and Wheels Work

Installing Tires and Wheels

Installing tires and wheels on a trailer is much like changing an automobile tire.
Installing tires and wheels on a trailer is much like changing an automobile tire.
© Daniel Loiselle

If you've ever changed a tire on an automobile, then you're well prepared for the challenges of installing trailer tires and wheels. If your trailer is wheelless, make sure its frame (not the suspension) is securely elevated. If you're replacing or installing wheels and tires manually, you'll need to check the opposite side wheel, secure a jack to support the trailer's weight and loosen the lug nuts with a lug wrench before raising the wheel off the ground. Then it's just a matter of removing the nuts and sliding the old towing wheel off.

Most trailer tire failures occur due to underinflation [source: Discount Tire]. Always inflate trailer tires to the maximum inflation level to prevent a failure from happening. You can find this level, in psi, listed on the tire's sidewall. If your tires are hot due to sunlight or day-to-day operations, the expanded air will give you a false pressure reading, so check tire pressure under cool conditions if possible. If they're hot, add 3 psi to the maximum inflation to account for the interior air's eventual contraction. To ensure safety and proper performance, tire makers recommend replacing trailer tires every three to five years.

Explore the links below to learn even more about towing.

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More Great Links


  • Cook, Miles. "Trailer Towing Q&A." 2008. (Oct. 17, 2008)
  • "Frequently Asked Questions." KMT Service Parts. 2008. (Oct. 17, 2008)
  • "Special Trailer Tires Vs Passenger Tires." Taskmaster Trailer Tires. (Oct. 17, 2008)
  • "Trailer Tires." Natasha's Camping Site. April 16, 2006. (Oct. 17, 2008)
  • "Trailer Tire Facts." Discount Tire Company. (Oct. 17, 2008)