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  1. #1
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    Tire Alignment On Campers?

    I was in a store the other day having brief chat with the gentleman behind the counter. The subject of getting campers out of storage came up, and he made the comment about probably having an alignment done on his 5th wheel this year. "I have that done every few years" he said. He said it only takes the place about an hour to do the alignment.

    I have never of such a thing! I mean there is no camber/caster or toe in/toe out adjustments on camper axels is there? Other then bending things? I think he's being unfairly relieved of some hard earned money.

  2. #2
    Fireside Member PHMadness's Avatar
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    Nope. It's a thing anf can make tremendous differences in your tire life and fuel mileage if it's very far out. Unfortunately the only place I was aware of that does it is in Salt Lake City, Alignment Specialists. I need to find someplace here in Texas that can do it, if I don't, I will have it done when I pass through SLC in the fall.

    2020 310GK - 2011 F350 SRW

  3. #3
    Seasoned Camper huntindog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TyeeMan View Post
    I was in a store the other day having brief chat with the gentleman behind the counter. The subject of getting campers out of storage came up, and he made the comment about probably having an alignment done on his 5th wheel this year. "I have that done every few years" he said. He said it only takes the place about an hour to do the alignment.

    I have never of such a thing! I mean there is no camber/caster or toe in/toe out adjustments on camper axels is there? Other then bending things? I think he's being unfairly relieved of some hard earned money.
    You are correct. If the axle hangers are installed correctly, and the axles are not damaged.... It will be in alignment. These so called alignments that are done on trailers consist of bending the axle. Either to correct damage to the axle (which MAY have some merit) or to compensate for spring hangers that were installed incorrectly...(Which has much less merit) If one is needing repeated alignments, then things are bending often. Usually the axles, which are too lightweight for the conditions they are operating under.

    I would NEVER do such an alignment to compensate for Hangers welded in the wrong location. The proper fix is to cut them off, and weld new ones on properly.
    Then if an axle happens to be damaged on the road nescessitaing a replacement,(such as a bearing failure) all that would need to be done is to bolt up a new axle. If you had custom bent the axle to compensate for the incorrectly installed hangers, you would need to get a new axle, and then have it custom bent to match the old one. Not something that is easy on the road.
    I "might" consider doing an alignment on a unit I was not going to keep very long. Fix it just good enough to get it off my hands.
    2021 398M
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  4. #4
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    There is next to no adjustment available. If it is very far out you are cutting off hangers and welding new ones. (at least on the trailers I have owned)
    I do my own checks. As you said, there is no caster, or camber or toe to set like on a car or truck. Only parallelism, and equal distances from hitch to leading axle.
    The place that takes an hour is only taking some measurements and saying it's good.

    Huntindog beat me to it.
    Last edited by Scott'n'Wendy; 04-05-2021 at 01:54 PM. Reason: typed too slow....
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  5. #5
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    Kind of what I was thinking. I've been around various kinds of trailers for a bunch of years and I've never heard of doing an alignment. Or as previously stated re-bending a bent/damaged axel in which case I would think replacing would be the better rout.

  6. #6
    Fireside Member PHMadness's Avatar
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    Say what you will, I have seen the results and improvements made by Alignment Specialists. A whole hell of a lot less work than cutting off and re-welding hangers and such. Given all the QC issues that seem to show up on forums like this, do you really think any manufacturer gets their axles on perfectly square?

    2020 310GK - 2011 F350 SRW

  7. #7
    Seasoned Camper huntindog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PHMadness View Post
    Say what you will, I have seen the results and improvements made by Alignment Specialists. A whole hell of a lot less work than cutting off and re-welding hangers and such. Given all the QC issues that seem to show up on forums like this, do you really think any manufacturer gets their axles on perfectly square?

    2020 310GK - 2011 F350 SRW
    Yes a shortcut is less work (at least intially) But it will always be a shortcut that can bite you later.
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