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Friday, January 18, 2019

Another question on having a spare

Was reading another RV Forum thread on spare tires. The questions about cost and difficulty in actually doing the change came up. One person said a spare for his Ford Transit van (Class-B?) would cost $400.
I offered the following.

A little shopping around and you should save a lot. New steel Ford transit wheels are available for $70 on eBay. Probably $25 at a local junkyard. Remember Class B and C RVs are basically just large pick-up chassis and there are thousands of those in junkyards. Also, a steel wheel is fine for a spare.  Used tires usually go for $25 to $50. A spare only needs to be good for 50 to a couple hundred miles so again a few phone calls to local tire dealers and you should be able to find an acceptable spare, especially for Class-B or Class-C. Class-A owners will need to check with HD truck repair shop.

You need to be a bit creative and not simply go to your RV dealer and ask for a new tire & wheel. Very few RV dealers are in the business of selling tires & wheels and if they are, they probably only have new tires.

What I am suggesting is that if you have to buy a tire from the service truck, on the side of the road, the price will probably be 125% to 200% of a sale price.  If you have a Class B or Class C most people should be able to do the change themselves with a little planning and preparation.
Planning and maybe even practice on a nice sunny afternoon would be a good time to confirm you have all the tools and supplies (like a solid platform to place under the bottle jack if you are on dirt)
 
 Class-A can save time (hours or days) and maybe $hundreds and space by being able to provide just a tire that fits their RV. HD Service Trucks are equipped to change and inflate a tire on the side of the road. If you have different size front and rear I suggest you have a spare for the rear as they suffer a higher percentage of punctures than the front.

##RVT880

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