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Old 06-09-2020, 08:36 PM   #1
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Do you top off your bearings during long trips?

Bear with me, a couple of years ago I had a nightmare day involving a burned up axle on a Sunday evening in South Carolina returning from a trip in the Smokies. 2 hours at a gas station as some road-side swifty guy "fixed" it. $300 and 100 miles later it burned up again. Now it was dark, side of busy state road and Sunday. Had crawl on the embankment to the exit ahead and sleep in the summer heat in a Walmart parking lot.Then someone from another "establishment" charged $600 to put a new hub on in the parking lot, but wouldn't guarantee I would make it down to Miami because the axle was damaged by the first guy. OK, did it so it got me to a trailer repair shop in Gainesville where I left it for 3 weeks, came back after axles and hubs swapped to pick up to find water damage from heavy summer rains somehow getting in. LOL, It's stressing me just thinking of that costly trip.


So now I'm paranoid about axle grease and bearings and I'm returning mid-July to the Smokies and I'm trying to do everything I can to prevent a scenario like that again. I had the bearings re-packed, new tires and brakes done a month ago and have done one trip since, maybe 1000 miles worth.



My questions are, should I take a mini-grease gun on my trip and top off the Dexter bearings once perhaps I get in the Smokies? Does anybody regularly add grease during or between trips? I know 12k-12 months for repacking is the general rule, but I really want to be sure I'm in the best shape to prevent a repeat performance. And yes, I'm paranoid about it.
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Old 06-10-2020, 04:02 AM   #2
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First off I would check all the lug nuts to make sure they are tight. Had a friend who had tires and bearing work done, after about 200 mile drive he check all the lugs and found more than half had become loose.

One thing you do not want to do is over grease. If you break the back seal the grease could get into the brake system and cause failure there. With that said I would put no more than two shots of grease in before going and not worry.
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Old 09-16-2020, 08:28 PM   #3
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I carry a Infrared Thermometer to check rim/hub temperature when filling up at a gas station.
It'll immediately identify if one is hotter than the others and if so, you're in a well lit area to do repairs or wait for a tow.


BTW it's possible that the swifty guy either had the nut too tight or too loose or worst yet, didn't pack the bearing correctly.



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