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Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Unhappy with the quality of the tires on your RV?

Post on an RV forum where there was a thread about "poor tire quality". There was this interchange:

"ST tires may be approved by government regulatory agencies. They still have a 3 year life. When I had tread separations, documenting the event for a government agency was not my focus. Getting new tires and going camping was my focus."


I responded...

First off, there is no government agency that is "approving" tires. The DOT does publish performance regulations that the tire company is "certifying" all the tires they make are capable of passing the requirements. If a tire company wants to game the system and make tires that do not meet the regulations there is no way for the DOT to learn this unless they conduct an investigation. The DOT will not start an investigation without justification or they could be accused of wasting taxpayer money. A major part of that justification is the number of complaints on file.

Sending a complaint to NHTSA not being your focus after a tire failure is clearly understandable. But if you never bothered to record the DOT serial number (S/N) of your tires and simply disposed of them, then you will never be able to file an actionable complaint. [Editor: The link to NHTSA is for filing a complaint regarding a tire.]

No actionable complaint =>  No Investigation =>  No findings of low quality =>  No recall => No improvement in quality of ST tires.

IMO there are some in the business of low cost tire production and sales who know the average RV owner will never complain. They are playing the odds that there will never be a recall, so with no future penalty there is no incentive to improve quality.

Even if you can't focus on filing a complaint at the time of the failure you certainly could file it a few days later, but that would mean you had made the initial effort to record the S/N for your tires.

If RV owners can't make that minimal effort of recording the S/N and spend the few minutes it takes to file a complaint,  I simply do not understand why they feel they can take the moral high ground and complain about poor tire quality.

Filing a complaint only takes a couple of minutes. Maybe less time than what many are willing to spend complaining on an RV forum.

Have you recorded the DOT S/N for your tires?


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4 comments:

  1. Where do you FIND the DOT serial number on the tires?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Bryan,
      Sorry for the delay in responding to your question. Here is a link to one of Roger's earlier articles which explains the numbers on the tires, including the DOT serial number: http://www.rvtiresafety.com/2013/04/have-you-read-tire-lately-tire-marking.html I hope this helps.
      Diane at RVtravel.com

      Delete
  2. The correct page to file the NHTSA tire complaint is: https://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/ivoq/Complaint.cfm

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, David. I've changed the link so it goes to the tire complaint form, specifically. The link originally in the article was for vehicle complaints in general. Thanks for catching this.
      Diane at RVtravel.com

      Delete

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