3 Greasing Mistakes That Cause Trailer Wheel Bearing Damage

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3 Greasing Mistakes That Cause Trailer Wheel Bearing Damage

8 May 2017
 Categories: , Blog

Some inexperienced owners of boat trailers make mistakes regarding the routine maintenance of their trailers. Those mistakes can result in frequent trailer repairs that increase the total cost of ownership. This article discusses some mistakes that you should avoid on the issue of greasing the wheel bearings of your boat trailer.

Using the Wrong Grease

Using the wrong type of grease may be as bad as not using grease at all. This is because the wrong choice of grease will leave the bearings exposed to metal-on-metal contact as you tow your boat trailer. What is the best grease to use?

Select a brand of grease that is graded for marine conditions. Such grease will not be easily washed off each time the wheels are in contact with water. The grease additives in the correct grease should also cause water to slide off the bearings instead of mixing with the grease. You should therefore check and confirm that you are using the right grease. A good place to start is by checking the recommendations in the trailer manual.

Checking the Grease at the Wrong Time

Some people have routines that they follow when maintaining their boat trailers. Those routines serve them well if they include the correct steps and actions. However, wrong steps often characterise the routines followed by inexperienced boat trailer owners. For example, the person may get into a habit of checking the grease in the wheel hubs after retrieving a boat from the water.

This may be a wrong time to check the wheel hubs because the trailer may have remained unused for an entire day with no grease in its bearings. Rust can therefore start destroying the exposed bearings. It is better to check the bearings just after launching your boat. You should also check them during each fuel stop when you are on a long journey. In this way, you will be able to top up the grease when it is most needed.

Topping Up the Grease at the Wrong Time

Always top up grease in the hubs as soon as you check and find that it has reduced. The best time to top up reduced grease is when the hubs are still hot during the journey or when you have just launched your boat. This is when your bearings are most vulnerable. Why? Hot grease reduces in viscosity. Consequently, water can easily reach the unprotected metal of the bearings and other wheel components. Topping up at this point restores the protection offered to your hubs and their contents.

Adjust your trailer maintenance habits in case you have been making any of the mistakes above. You will then notice a change in how frequently you require repairs to the hubs and bearings on your trailer.