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Old 08-16-2018, 10:35 PM   #1
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Default Repacking Bearings

I have a 2014 225RBS which apparently has EZ-Lube bearings. I have been advised by my RV mechanic that it is best to not use the Zerk fittings but rather just replace the bearings on a regular basis. Does anyone have experience doing this, and what kind of brake maintenance does one do at the same time? My mechanic mentioned sanding the brake shoes when doing a bearing replacement/repack. I would like to get a step by step tutorial on removing the bearings.
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Old 08-16-2018, 10:57 PM   #2
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Sounds like your mechanic is trying to make some additional income. There is nothing wrong with using the zert. The trick is to jack up the wheel so it can be rotated while grease is pumped in through the zert. You keep on pumping grease until fresh grease comes out. I personally use Lucas Red N Tacky. Good luck.
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Old 08-17-2018, 02:41 AM   #3
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I have my mechanic lube and repack the bearings every year -- never had to replace them, even with about ten thousand miles of towing every year. And he inspects the brakes -- has not had to do anything to them, so far.

I am sure I could do both of these jobs myself, but I am mostly paying for his trained eyes to inspect things up close. I would not really know what to look for.
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Old 08-17-2018, 09:07 AM   #4
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The only issue I have seen with using the zerk fitting is putting too much grease and blowing out the back seal.
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Old 08-17-2018, 12:13 PM   #5
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Not sure what too much grease means. As you slowly pump in new grease the old grease exits the bearing. I always pump in new grease until the new grease starts coming out. Only way you would get a blown out seal is if you are pumping in a lot of grease at high pressure or if the old grease has hardened. I use a manual grease gun and slowly pump in grease while turning the wheel.
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Old 08-17-2018, 04:35 PM   #6
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Pretty sure my mechanic was not trying to make an extra buck because we were discussing doing it myself. He just said that in his experience, using the zerk fitting caused grease to get all over the place and he preferred repacking them, and because the bearings themselves aren't too expensive he recommended just replacing them. He didn't think it was necessary to do it every year based on my mileage of less than 5K/yr. He is a guy I have had enough experience with to have a great deal of trust in but as always, his is just one opinion. If people here are having good experience with the EZlubes then maybe I will cautiously try that. I have had boat trailers with buddy bearings in them and when I would launch in salt water I would lube them before every launch and never had any problems. Would still be interested in the procedure if I choose to replace the bearings.
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Old 08-18-2018, 05:46 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twinster2 View Post
Sounds like your mechanic is trying to make some additional income. There is nothing wrong with using the zert. The trick is to jack up the wheel so it can be rotated while grease is pumped in through the zert. You keep on pumping grease until fresh grease comes out. I personally use Lucas Red N Tacky. Good luck.
Above is what I do too. I've used Lucas Red N Tacky grease and have used Mobile 1 synthetic grease~ either is great.

I've never replaced the bearings in my 2012 toy hauler and never had a brake issue so haven't had to remove the hubs.

Years employed as an auto mechanic I've packed many wheel bearings and there is nothing 'technical' about it.

Here is the procedure, step by step for trailers.

10 Easy Steps to Repack Your Own Trailer Wheel Bearings

In video format:

Note: In order to get the wheel seal properly inserted, a wheel seal driver should be used IMO instead of a block of wood as in the video. Here is an example: https://www.harborfreight.com/18-pie...kit-35555.html

Hope this helps.
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Old 08-19-2018, 04:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thor View Post
I have a 2014 225RBS which apparently has EZ-Lube bearings. I have been advised by my RV mechanic that it is best to not use the Zerk fittings but rather just replace the bearings on a regular basis. Does anyone have experience doing this, and what kind of brake maintenance does one do at the same time? My mechanic mentioned sanding the brake shoes when doing a bearing replacement/repack. I would like to get a step by step tutorial on removing the bearings.
Hi Thor,
I'm going to add my 2-cents and don't want to start any arguments because as you see, there are different opinions. With that said here are my thoughts... I do NOT use the zerks on trailer wheels. The first time I saw these used was back in the 60's on boat trailers and the thought was to add a tiny bit of pressure and grease to the hubs before backing a warm hub into cool/cold water, thus, precluding a vacuum from sucking water into the bearings. Anyway, I follow Eagles post; cleaning and inspecting the bearings and races before hand-packing or replacing.
Good luck and it really isn't a difficult job.
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Old 08-23-2018, 03:42 PM   #9
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I take a little different approach. First, I only put 2 to 3 thousand miles per year, and use a two year cycle to service the wheels. Year one I use the EZLube to add grease until new grease comes out the front. In year two, I replace the bearings, races and seals, repacking the bearings by hand. This gives me a chance to see the conditions of brakes and other parts within the wheel. The first time I did this I noticed where the spindle got a little hot, but not where the bearings were located. The second time I did this I noticed a small amount of grease on the outside of one of the seals. The seal was being replaced so not a big deal. I was also able to see that the brake linings use was minimal. I bought a wheel bearing kit from etrailer for about $9 per wheel. The kit had new bearings, races, seal and cotter pins. I also bought the tools to press in the bearing races and to seat the seals. This was purchased at Harbor Freight. I initiated this approach after reading a thread in this forum about an issue one of the forum members had with having a bearing go bad while they were on the road.

I don't see my approach as being much different from those above, but since I don't have the experience Eagle has I want to buy myself some peace of mind.
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Old 08-24-2018, 05:23 AM   #10
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I would add a few thoughts about replacing the wheel bearings and races.
1. Always replace both the bearing and race at the same time.
2. When removing the bearings to repack, completely clean the old grease off and inspect the bearing for any wear spots and/or metal 'flaking' off, an indication replacement is required.
3. For a QUALITY replacement bearing/race, buy them in a set and buy Timken brand and not the cheap china ones. Timken makes the best wheel bearings!
4. Do not overtighen the castle nut holding on the bearings.

Happy camping.
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