Voltage GVWR/Tires Under Rated - Dutchmen Owners

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Old 08-26-2019, 04:23 PM   #1
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Voltage GVWR/Tires Under Rated

My 2018 Voltage 3605 came with Westlake 235/80R/16E tires and 7k axles. After a blow out and damage, I decided to swap tire with a set of Goodyear Endurance 235/80R/16E tires. Believing the Goodyear set would be an upgrade of an equal rated tire. Lesson learned was the Westlake had a weight rating of 3520 lbs and the Goodyears are rated at 3420lbs. Goodyear is upgrading my tires to G rating to increase the load, but it brings up the point of just because tires are rated the same do your research.

Please correct my math: Voltage 3605 has a 16800 GVWR. If I have 2 axles at 7k (14000lbs) and 4 tires rated to carry 14800 lbs from the factory, Is Dutchman selling dangerously under rated suspension and tires?
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Old 08-26-2019, 06:39 PM   #2
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You would need to take your hitch weight into account. GAWR plus the hitch weight would equal your GVWR. This is because your tires and axles do not carry all the weight, your truck is responsible for some of it also.
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Old 08-26-2019, 07:31 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Revere411 View Post
You would need to take your hitch weight into account. GAWR plus the hitch weight would equal your GVWR. This is because your tires and axles do not carry all the weight, your truck is responsible for some of it also.
Ive read to take 15% off the total. Is that accurate for hitch weight? Or is there a specific number
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Old 08-26-2019, 08:15 PM   #4
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Fifth wheels are 15% to 25% and travel trailers are 10% to 15%. This is outlined in the owner's manual.
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Old 08-26-2019, 08:57 PM   #5
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Thank you for the help. Just get so many opinions in General RV forums that are erroneous. I had guy telling me that I couldn't add anything to my rig because the tires could only carry 14k. Swore he was a career mechanic and I was going to kill someone on the road.
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Old 08-26-2019, 11:08 PM   #6
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If you really wanna know how much hitch weight you have... tow your rig to any truck stop with a CAT scale.

Pull across the scales twice (doesn't matter what order)

1) Once with just your truck

2) The other with with both the truck & RV


When done, you will receive 2 weigh tickets like shown below:

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The added weight to your truck axles (Steering axle + Drive axle) is your hitch weight.

In the examples above... this is my Ford F-450 dually. My truck alone had:

5600 on the Steering axle, and 4140 on the Drive axle, for a Gross weight of 9,740 lbs.

When hitched to the RV:

5640 on the Steering axle, and 7160 on the Drive axle. That's an addition of 3,060 lbs... which is my hitch weight.

The Gross weight of my truck & RV combined was 26,640. If we subtract the gross weight of the truck alone (9,740)... we're left with 16,900 lbs... which is the gross weight of my loaded RV.

Finally, to cross check... if we subtract the 3,060 lbs of hitch weight from the 16,900 lbs gross weight of the RV... we're left with 13,840 on the RV axles... which equals the amount shown on the weight ticket

13,840 divided by 2 axles = 6,920 lbs per axle... and if we further divide that by 2 tires/axle, we get 3,460 lbs supported by each tire.
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Old 08-26-2019, 11:44 PM   #7
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I agree - CAT scale.
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Old 08-27-2019, 01:32 AM   #8
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Yes cheap tires our voltage I doubt has 4000 miles we live by St. Petersburg and usually keep camper in Arcadia on a site occasionally we will bring it home to use at Disney ft wilderness our last trip to Disney three weeks ago got home had bubble on sidewall (blessed we got home) I don’t rub curbs have been wanting to put sailun load range g now I will. We usually carry three full size four wheelers or the golf cart. the factory tires suck mushy tire soft sidewalls. All our best Largo fl
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Old 08-27-2019, 03:28 AM   #9
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CAT Scale it is. Thank you for the thorough explanation versus what Ive gotten in other forums
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Old 08-27-2019, 01:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jcop243 View Post
CAT Scale it is. Thank you for the thorough explanation versus what Ive gotten in other forums
CAT scales are the definitive answer. You have real-world numbers to work with.

If you really want to drill down the numbers find a shop with individual wheel scales.
I did this with a single axle pop up I had years ago that kept wearing out left side tires. Found out it was overloaded on the left side due to poor design.

In answer to your original question; the tires from the factory are barely adequate, not to mention the fact you lose load capacity as the tires age. IIRC it is somewhere in the 2%-5% per year range. So theoretically a 4 year old tire could be running 20% under capacity.

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Old 08-27-2019, 03:56 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Jcop243 View Post
CAT Scale it is. Thank you for the thorough explanation versus what Ive gotten in other forums
This is in your neck of the woods, single tire measurements. I wish I had something like this by me.

https://www.escapees.com/education/smartweigh/
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Old 08-31-2019, 10:43 PM   #12
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A simple answer to your question is Dutchman Voltage TT are not built to support the weight. I don't care how many times you weigh your rig the suspension is built using the cheapest frame LCI makes. All suspension parts are not equal to weight the trailer carries. I have a 2016 Voltage 3605 in a two year period of time I experienced a snapped leaf spring, flattened out leaf springs, bent the spring holders which bent the chassis frame. This was without any toys in the garage. LCI came to house and completely upgraded my frame and all spring holders to their more heavier I beam system. Also found out the leaf springs were underrated for the unit. I had 8,000 lb springs installed. As you can see, when you call the manufacture they throw those weight rating numbers at you. But unfortunately as I found out, they dont mean anything when you are looking at quality in manufacturing.
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Old 08-31-2019, 11:02 PM   #13
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We upgraded to moryde 8k IS suspension and G rated tires. No issues since.
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Old 09-01-2019, 04:12 AM   #14
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it s the internet, you find alot of " experts " out there, that being said, mine came with a D rated tires from the dealer, didnt dawn on me until we were about to cross the country..
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Old 09-01-2019, 04:15 AM   #15
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Make sure your wheels are rated for the increased air pressure required for G rated tires. My Denali came with D rated which I upgraded to E. My wheels are limited to 80 PSI, so to upgrade to F rated tires I'd need to upgrade wheels.
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Old 09-01-2019, 05:05 AM   #16
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Or...don't buy a toy hauler with less than three axles. My three axles are 7,000 pounds each for 21000 pounds total. Not bad for a GVWR of 19000. I run truck tires that are rated for 3042 pounds each which equates to 18252 max pounds the truck tires can carry. Subtract out my scaled 3500 pound hitch weight leaving 14752 pounds on the six tires or 2458 pounds on each tire. That gives me a weight cushion of 514 pounds per tire. If I was running ST trailer tires I'd have an even larger cushion but I'll never run those cheap Chinese tires on my trailer.

I'd say Voltage did a real good job at getting the proper frame for my trailer for the weight to be carried.
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Old 09-01-2019, 05:30 AM   #17
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One other thought. What does running a G rated tire at 110 psi get you? If an E rated tire can handle the load, why go to a G? If you think it's going to get you a better tire and that tire is still a Made in China tire, what's the benefit? That Chinese G has as much chance of failing as the E. Are you running G tires on your truck? I'll guess and say no. My point being if you run a quality E tire (which is nothing made in China) then you don't need a G tire. Also, if you're running 110 PSI won't that high pressure help beat your trailer to death? I run a quality E truck tire, Michelin XPS RIB, at 70 psi and they've given me five years of trouble free service. I was considering 6 new tires the other day but when I checked tread depth and tire condition I decided these tires aren't ready to be replaced. Well one is but that's another thread.
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Old 09-01-2019, 04:01 PM   #18
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Tire loading

I have a number of posts on weight and tire loading on my RV Tire Blog. You might want to review that info but here is a summary.


1. All RVs have a Vehicle Certification label AKA Tire Placard. In Mothrhomes they are near the driver's elbow or in Class-C on the driver door jam. On trailers, the sticker is on the outside, driver side toward the front of the trailer. The sticker provides bylaw: The Full tire size including the Load Range. The GAWR and the recommended tire inflation.
2. The load capacity when inflated to the sticker level psi MUST be 110% of the GAWR (2017 and newer trailers) or at least 100% GAWR of older trailers.
3. When you want to check tire loading you can get individual axle loads on a CAT scale or similar when hitched up. The load that is of concern for the tires is what you weigh going down the road, not the load on the tires when parked, unhitched at a campground.
4. Multiaxle trailers suffer from High Interply Shear so should run the inflation on the tire sidewall. I have a number of posts on Interply Shear on the blog if you want to understand why this is important.
5. Just because a specific axle tube is rated for XXX# does not mean that is the GAWR as the frame, springs, hubs, shackles, bolts, etc also must be strong enough to support the GAWR.


Hope this helps.
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Old 09-01-2019, 04:18 PM   #19
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Just don't do what I did when scaling. Had my passengers in on the first pass, then forgot to have them get back in on the empty pass. DOH!
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Old 09-01-2019, 05:57 PM   #20
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While it's obvious that dmcvey had some issues with his rig... my experience has been just the opposite.

Bought my Voltage 3200 tandem axle rig new in April 2013... and even though I've only been full-timing in it since mid-2015, it's seen damn near continuous service since I took possession. In fact, during the first 2 years of ownership, it only sat idle in my driveway about 5 or 6 months total... which is why I eventually decided to go full-time.

According to the combined on-dash trailer monitors in both trucks I've pulled it with... after criss-crossing the US no less than 5 times now, the rig now has just over 54,000 miles on it. And yet, during all of this traveling, the only suspension component I've had fail is a single bolt from one of the EquiFlex rockers & leaf spring, which was easily repaired.

This is especially amazing because, during all that time, the rig has either been loaded right at, or... I'll admit it... slightly overloaded on the GVWR the majority of the time. On the CAT scale tickets that I used in the example above... the 16,900 lb RV weight is 400 lbs over it's GVWR of 16,500 lb.

My cargo load in the rear has almost always included not only a large touring motorcycle that weigh damn near 1,000 lbs, but also my fully-stocked Carftsman 10-drawer workbench-style tool cart that probably weighs more than the bike. Plus my Splendide Washer-Dryer unit, an upgraded (heavier) mattress for the Happijac bunk bed, 8' step-ladder, 2-drawer file cabinet, etc, etc, etc.

Now, I will say that I'm pretty anal about my preventive maintenance. After running the cheap china-bomb tires that came with the rig for about a year, they were replaced by Goodyear G614s... and I'm on my 2nd set of those. I've had the axles aligned once back in 2017, and plan on doing so again sometime during my trek back down to Arizona in the next few weeks. And all 4 brake assemblies were just replaced a few months ago, back in May.

Bottom line in nothing that we all haven't said before. The quality control of the builders is suspect. It's a volume over quality environment. Sometimes it's good, and other times you gotta wonder if the guy was drunk. And while many of the OEM components are not what we'd call "quality" items, they are up to spec. As to how long & how well they'll hold up is simply a matter of chance. Take 10 identical parts of pretty much anything... 8 or 9 of them will probably meet or exceed their warrantied life. The problem is that someone has to get the 1 or 2 that don't... and they're usually the ones we hear about. Not many people get online, log on to a forum, and type out how well their item preformed today. We only hear about things when there's an issue.

A select few get a rig that's not only built pretty well, but most of the components hold up as advertised. Other few get a lemon rig that is not only poorly built, but the components fail also. Most of us fall somewhere in between. The real problem is that the public is being sold these things as if they have the same quality standards of a modern automobile, and that's just not the case.
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