To grease of not to grease? - Dutchmen Owners

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Old 02-24-2016, 03:21 PM   #1
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To grease of not to grease?

I just repacked our bearings on the FW and I want to know what you all think about using the zerk to put additional grease in the hubs. I know a lot has been said on this and other forums about how you dont want to use the zerk fittings on the axles to grease them out of fear of forcing grease past the seals that can then get on the brakes but, I have just replaced the seals and it seems to me that if I use a grease gun to put more grease in that excess grease will come out of the outer bearing before it could be forced past the new seal.
Now lets hear from the experts...
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Old 02-24-2016, 04:43 PM   #2
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From an old mechanic's point of view, you pack the bearings with grease and that's where the lubrication is. You add grease to the inside of the hub and that's where it stays.
The idea of a Zerk fitting sounds good and it is on boat trailers where the bearings get submerged but on a land vehicle is doesn't do much more than waste grease.
The inner bearing is the one closest to the seal, really close so you'd have to be pretty careful to push enough grease to fill the axle nut cap that would fill and exit the outer bearing and then fill the void in the hub and then fill and exit the inner bearing just before the grease touches the seal.
The seal is the safety margin for grease to be maintained where it belongs, if you have grease already there the safety margin is gone.
In a word, leave the Zerk fitting for suspension parts and the boat trailer.
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Old 02-24-2016, 04:48 PM   #3
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I have seen several guys packing extra grease in to the hubs, most of the just load the dust cap with grease and pound it back on the hub.

Personaly I don't see a lot of benefit it doing so, you have to get grease a lot hotter than the wheel bearings get to liquify it to run into the bearings. If the bearings a packed properly and adjusted correctly you wind up with a big wad of grease in the dust cap when it's time to repack them.

My trailer has ezlube hubs and I don't rely on them to grease the bearings. In order to properly use the ezlube hubs, you still have to get the wheel off the ground to allow the grease to make it's way through the bearings.
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Old 02-24-2016, 11:53 PM   #4
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The only time I load up a wheel with lots of grease is on a boat trailer to help prevent water damage. Our trailers don't need to be full of grease any more than our trucks and cars need it.
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Old 02-25-2016, 03:29 AM   #5
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I believe in EZ Lube, and use them as designed. Shoot grease in, it goes first to the rear, then through the middle, and finally to the front bearing and out. Works like a champ. Yes, each wheel should be jacked up off the ground so the wheel can be turned while greasing. Our wheels are smaller than truck and car tires, and thus have to make more revolutions to attain the same speed. Any reference to boat trailer, submerged Bearing Buddies is confusing the issue, and comparing apples to oranges, IMHO.
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Old 02-25-2016, 02:43 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MartyG View Post
I believe in EZ Lube, and use them as designed. Shoot grease in, it goes first to the rear, then through the middle, and finally to the front bearing and out. Works like a champ. Yes, each wheel should be jacked up off the ground so the wheel can be turned while greasing. Our wheels are smaller than truck and car tires, and thus have to make more revolutions to attain the same speed. Any reference to boat trailer, submerged Bearing Buddies is confusing the issue, and comparing apples to oranges, IMHO.
Thanks Marty and everyone else for sharing your knowledge! After thinking about it and asking everyone I know that has owned a trailer, I think I am going to use the zerks to fill up the voids in the hubs with grease. One guy I know made a very good point I think, he said these spindles were designed to allow you to fill that void and by doing so you can prevent moisture from condensing inside there. Unlike the typical automobile, trailers tend to sit for long periods of time and don't regularly heat up and drive out that moisture. Another friend of mine did have grease get past a grease seal and get into his brakes but his case was different than mine. He had bearing buddies that allow you to grease your bearings with a zerk that is part of this aftermarket grease cap on spindles that are not drilled and designed to be greased in this way. These force the grease through the outer bearing instead of injecting the grease between the bearings and allowing the excess to flow out of the outer bearing.
Time will tell if I made the right choice; its all about trial and error.
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Old 02-25-2016, 03:47 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MartyG View Post
I believe in EZ Lube, and use them as designed. Shoot grease in, it goes first to the rear, then through the middle, and finally to the front bearing and out. Works like a champ. Yes, each wheel should be jacked up off the ground so the wheel can be turned while greasing. Our wheels are smaller than truck and car tires, and thus have to make more revolutions to attain the same speed. Any reference to boat trailer, submerged Bearing Buddies is confusing the issue, and comparing apples to oranges, IMHO.
Marty,

I believe in EZ lube hubs, I just don't rely on them. They work as designed if the wheel is off the ground and rotated as the grease is being injected. I have seen the results of relying on the EZ lube hub to pack the wheel bearings. My neighbor had the habit of greasing the wheel bearings while his camper was sitting in his driveway. Worked great for him until he started burning up bearings.

I will use the EZ lube to inject grease periodicaly during my high mile trips, but a complete tear down is done at least once a year.
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Old 02-26-2016, 01:02 AM   #8
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I do two things when taking the TT on the first trip after winter storage, Take it to Schwab (west coast), as can't doe the work my self anymore, and have the bearings packed and tires checked, and if the tires are older than 5 years change them (especially with the chines CR**), NO exceptions, as we do not full time RV.
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Old 02-27-2016, 01:21 AM   #9
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Given the title of the thread, i felt the need to add my recommendation for the best grease ever made (full disclosure: this is my company) for bearings, especially if they ever meet salt water like with boat trailers: http://www.amazon.com/Alco-Metalube-...s=alcometalube
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Old 02-28-2016, 11:27 PM   #10
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VCToyhauler, thanks for your (admittedly biased) info. You bring up a good point. When I went to AutoZone to get wheel bearing grease, I thought I'd have one or two choices. Wrong! American/Japanese/Euro, and disk or drum. Our brakes are a little different than many auto brakes, I went for an American Disk (higher temps). What are you other guys using?
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Old 03-01-2016, 03:24 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MartyG View Post
VCToyhauler, thanks for your (admittedly biased) info. You bring up a good point. When I went to AutoZone to get wheel bearing grease, I thought I'd have one or two choices. Wrong! American/Japanese/Euro, and disk or drum. Our brakes are a little different than many auto brakes, I went for an American Disk (higher temps). What are you other guys using?
Following a recommendation from an RV tech, I went with high temp disk brake grease from Oreilly Auto Parts. MasterPro Chemicals 90376 - High-Temp Wheel Bearing Grease | O'Reilly Auto Parts
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