Yep part ONE.  There is so much to cover in this area that I think the best way is to tackle it in segments.  I plan to have 3 to 5 relevant posts on this topic and hope to pass on info that will help someone else out there.  I know there are many blogs I follow, and info they offer has been quite valuable for me.

For today, checking and maintaining tire pressure in dual rear wheels.  At least for my vehicle and my fat fingers, I need valve extensions or it ain’t gonna get done.20121127_1208081.jpg

The Beast

Well it started a week ago, my ‘short list’ included fill the fresh water tank and check all tires on truck and camper.  We were headed to the laundry and it was my first of three days off, so an early start was important so I could get to the job of tending to some of that Makers Mark we had stocked up on…  It is already aged, no need for too much more sitting around in my way of thinking.  Oh, back to the story.  I filled the water tank, check.  Next is the tires, truck first.  Fronts, OK right where they are supposed to be, 80lbs.  Now the rear dually’s.  To make the job easier, I had valve extensions added last summer.  As anticipated from the last two times I had done this maintenance, two of the rear tires were low, about 40lbs in two weeks, yikes.  Well, the more I thought about it, the more I knew it had to be dealt with.  When that is the situation it is priority one, get it fixed.  After going to two tire dealers I found one willing to do it right.  The first told me to do away with the extensions.  Not an option.

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I highly recommend the Goodyear Tire dealer, Campbellsville Auto Service, in Campbellsville, KY for anyone in that area needing any auto service particularly tire issues.

 

Here was the problem as identified by Jerry at Campbellsville Auto Service.  The extensions on the outside tire on each side were causing the rubber valve stem to be pushed to the side, and air was slowly leaking from the point where the valve stem mounts to the wheel.  The fix was a shorter threaded valve stem and new extensions to replace the poor design of the two causing the problem.  Here are pictures that may make this a bit more clear.

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On the left is the cause of the failure.  On the right shows the rubber valve stem we replaced with the metal one on the far right.  The metal stem bolts firmly into place and can’t be ‘pushed’ to the side allowing air to leake at the base.

 

The one on the right was causing the problem.  The 90 degree elbow just caused a mess in the small space and there was no way to get that to work.  In addition, the coupling was made by way of a knurled fitting that spins on the 90 degree elbow.  This is a very weak link and can vibrate loose causing a leak there also.  The replacement extension (shown on the left) from NAPA is one piece.  In other words, once the extension is tightened onto the valve stem there is no way for it to come loose.  The whole extension would have to be turned.  Hope that makes sense.  Now all four rear wheels have this type of fitting joining the valve stem and the extension.  SOLID

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Jerry put it all back together and I can say with confidence we have a fix to the problem.  The right tools are now in place for this job and maintaining proper air pressure will be easier to deal with and these parts will be more reliable.

The right tools for the job… Part TWO will be also on tire issues.  I have DURO tires on the Cameo, and from what I have been reading about those, I‘ve got to make a change.  Yep it will be Campbellsville Auto Service to the rescue for that too.  I will tell that story next time.  You will be impressed, I was.

For now, my Makers Mark is getting older.  Can’t let that happen.

UPDATE 12/4/12

I just checked the air in the tires.  Have not lost an ounce of pressure in nearly two weeks.  This was a for sure fix.  Gotta love it, so many say these extensions don’t work.  Phoey, get the right parts & they will.