Motorhome Tyres – Motorhome safety
Minimum tread depth in Europe
Motorhome Tyres. Poor-quality car and motorhome tyres with reduced tread depth may cause your car or camper to skid in wet weather or when braking. New, quality tyres hold your car or camper on the road, save fuel and reduce noise and emissions.
The EU has introduced a labelling scheme (from 1 November 2012) to help consumers choose the best tyres in terms of fuel efficiency, wet grip and noise. Tyres for cars and light commercial vehicles must have a sticker on them with product information. For heavy-duty-vehicle tyres, the label will appear in technical documents and on websites.
Fuel-efficient tyres – if widely used – could save an estimated 6.6 Mtoe (million tonnes of oil equivalent) of fuel per year by 2020. They could also cut CO2 emissions by 4 million tonnes a year, the equivalent of removing 1.3 million passenger cars from EU roads annually.
The labels will grade a tyre’s ability to brake on a wet road. High-performing tyres can reduce braking distance by several metres.
Labels will also provide information on which are the quietest tyres.
What are the differences between Motorhome Tyres and Normal Tyres?
One of the most important qualities of Motorhome tyres is their ability to carry heavy loads. They have a much higher weight carrying capacity than normal tyres and van tyres.
Normal car tyres can typically take a load of up to 500kg with van tyres able to withstand about 700kg. Even smaller motorhomes that weigh around 2700kg, can put loads of 675kg on each tyre. This will certainly burst normal car tyres at speed. Some motorhomes require tyres that can take a maximum load of over 1200kg on each tyre.
Whatever tyres are fitted to your motorhome, it is essential to the safety and stability of the combination that all tyres are correctly inflated for the applied load. Motorhome tyres are the only parts of the motorhome which are in contact with the road. Safety in acceleration, braking, steering and cornering all depend on a relatively small area of road contact.
It is therefore of paramount importance that tyres should be maintained in good condition at all times and that when the time comes to change them the correct replacements are fitted. The original tyres for a motorhome are determined by joint consultation between the vehicle and tyre manufacturers and take into account all aspects of operation.
It is recommended that changes in tyre size or type should not be undertaken without seeking advice from the motorhome or tyre manufacturers, as the effect on motorhome handling, safety and clearances must be taken into account. In some other European countries it is illegal to use replacements which differ in certain respects (e.g. size, load, and speed rating) from the tyre fitted originally by the vehicle manufacturer.
Due to the shear load, motorhome tyres need to withstand high pressure. A typical car tyre is limited to a maximum pressure of around 40 psi compared to a light commercial vehicle tyres which are inflated to around 65 psi. Specialist motorhome tyres can be inflated to 80psi.