The vast majority of household trailers spend their time just sitting and waiting. They are likely to be untended in the driveway all week, waiting for the weekend, or the next weekend, or the summer, or they are biding their time at your destination until you return with your boat or your motorcycles or whatever you hauled there. In fact, trailers spend so much of their time without moving that trailer tires tend to deteriorate and become unusable long before their tread is worn out.
For that reason, to maximize the lifespan of your trailer tires, it is very important to focus on how to care for them when they are not in use:
Protect Your Trailer Tires from the Sun, Whenever Possible
Over time, ultraviolet rays from the sun cause tire compound to break down. When parked outside, cover your trailer tires with tire wheel covers or UV reflective material. These products are available at RV shops and other automotive stores. If you don’t have tire wheel covers, protect your tires from the sun by leaning a plywood board against each tire, large enough, of course, to shield the tire fire from the sun. If nothing else, park your trailer in the shade. Be aware, however, that your tires can still get a good dose of ultraviolet rays in the shade.
Protect Your Trailer Tires from the Ground, When Parked
Pressure from the weight of the trailer on the same section of your tire for an extended period of time can begin to damage your tires, especially on hot asphalt. Long-term contact with the ground can cause dry rot.
One method to avoid the heat and delay the occurrence of dry rot is to jack up your trailer tires when they are not in use to keep them from the ground. An alternative message is to position your wheels on thin plywood boards so the tires don’t have direct contact with the hot ground.
When sitting for an extended period of time, trailers should be moved occasionally so that the pressure on the trailer tires doesn’t press against the same contact patches for an extended period of time.
Short-Term Storage Care
Tires on a trailer should also be properly inflated even when the trailer is in short-time storage or not in use. Check your tire pressure regularly when your trailer is not in use for a lengthy period of time. Do not overload your trailer when in storage.
Long-Term Storage Care
For long term storage, tire and wheel sets should be removed from the trailer, underinflated and stored in a cool, dark area.