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Old 06-14-2017, 03:35 PM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Four Winds 22e
State: Virginia
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THOR #7211
To Spare or Not to Spare

Greetings, My 2016 Four Winds 22e did not come with a spare tire. It is built on a Ford E450 dually. My question is, if I do not carry a spare, what type of roadside assistance should I expect for a flat. I imagine that those wheels are rather hefty. Include a mounting system and that would be a fair amount of additional weight to haul around. Not to mention, if I did have a spare, there is no way that I would attempt to change a flat on my own. What do the A-Class pushers do for roadside flats? I can't imagine carrying one of those massive wheels as a spare.
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Old 06-14-2017, 04:26 PM   #2
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You will find many differing views on carrying or not carrying a spare... Search a bit and you'll find them.

My 2000 Infinity came with spare, jack, etc... My 2014 Hurricane did not...
I have chosen not to add a spare myself - based on my travel, and subscription to road service... and don't even want to be tempted to try to change it myself...

Another with no right/wrong answer - need to do what you feel comfortable with.
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Old 06-14-2017, 04:42 PM   #3
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I chose to carry a spare, even with the road side protection. My thought is that it is pretty easy to find someone to change a tire but finding a shop in the middle of the night or the middle of no where that had a replacement tire was a lot less likely. Not to mention the chance of having a damaged wheel also. In addition I have read lots of stories of the $500 replacement tire...
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:14 PM   #4
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THOR #1793
I am spareless. I learned a little this past week on the issue.

I have Progressive insurance/roadside assistance. This past week during post-trip cleaning, I noticed a nail between treads on my rear left outboard tire. The nail looked to be at a very flat angle, nearly tangent to the tire. I called Progressive and was informed that if I had a spare, they would dispatch someone to change the tire. Since I do not have a spare, that would require a tow to the nearest rv repair center. At that time I was not thinking about regular tire shops. I was informed that my coverage would cover only 15 miles of tow. Very disappointed. Would be aweful as mentioned above if out in the middle of nowhere. I was able to find a local tire shop who came over to inspect and either repair or replace with new tire. I did not want to be the one to pull the nail and then have the leak. Nail was removed and appeared to be not leaking.

I have since added Good Sam's Roadside Assistance. Their coverage says no towing mileage limits. Hopefully I don't need it.
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:27 PM   #5
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When I bought my Freedom Elite (second hand) I was not happy that there was no spare. The prior owner insisted that if you had road service it wouldn't be a problem. I live in the suburbs of a major city. When I shopped for a wheel I discovered that the rims for my 2014 Ford E-450 were neither cheap nor easy to find. I finally did find one and it took a week to ship it to me. I was able to track down a matching tire but that too took 4 days to arrive. My Road Service contract with Good Sam only guarantees that they will install an inflated spare. They will not supply one. If you don't mind waiting a week on the side of the road or at the repair shop, it shouldn't be a problem. I don't mind carrying the weight and I enjoy having peace of mind.
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:28 PM   #6
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I have had three tire problems and used two different road side services in 17 years of traveling in an RV. The first thing road side service ask you when you say you have a flat tire is "do you have a serviceable mounted spare tire?" If you do not have a spare, expect a considerable delay while they find a tire that will fit your undamaged rim or refusal to come if it is on a weekend. The cost of the tire will be considerably more than you expect ($400+ for a TL225/75-16 Michelin). If you have damaged the rim, it will probably 3 to 4 days before the have the proper rim and tire. Ford list price for a 6.75X19.5 steel rim is $670.
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:34 PM   #7
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I have 3 different roadside assistance programs and still carry a spare. The e450 Vegas uses 16" van type wheels so I have no issue with Lugs. I also carry a jack, breaker bar and a length of aluminum pipe.

If we are on vacation somewhere peaceful, I would wait for roadside assistance. If we are in nasty area or on a tight schedule, I will change myself. I also carry an air compressor and tire plugs.

Most of my racing pals also carry spares for same reason.
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:58 PM   #8
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I would gladly buy and carry one, if there was someplace to carry it. Thought I found the perfect place, under the MH, but tire guy says there are tanks mounted in the way, no room to mount brackets etc. Meanwhile I keep my coachnet roadside service current. They came through for me, big time, when I needed to have my former 41 foot DP towed to Cummins.
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Old 06-14-2017, 06:52 PM   #9
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I should have clarified - my roadside provides unlimited towing... and my extended service (added option) takes care of the cost of tire replacement. Both are Good Sams.
I could certainly be delayed - but with my house on wheels - I won't be uncomfortable waiting.

The room and weight of spare are issues for me... hitches in use... close enough to max weight for long trips (months).

So the choice I have made is no spare...
If I were making a trip to remote areas (Alaska and like) I might rethink that position.

Again - a personal choice. No right/wrong answer.
But do understand what your options are - what your roadside and insurance covers, etc.
(I was a 25 year AAA member - but even their highest plan had towing limits too short for me...)
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Old 06-14-2017, 06:56 PM   #10
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I added a spare to my Freedom Elite 26 HE for all of the above reasons. I bought a $55 "reconditioned" wheel from the internet and found an orphan Hankook tire at my local tire store for $65. Under $150 mounted and ready to go. Finding a way to carry it was another matter! I ended up with a $500 Roadmaster 195225 which I like very much - despite the cost. It's very well made and has some wonderful features. I do not carry the tools to change the tire on the roadside even though I think it'd be manageable with the 16 inch wheel. I'll let my roadside service plan to the heavy work. Safe travels.
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Old 06-14-2017, 07:24 PM   #11
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Agree there is no correct answer.

I always carry one but my vehicle is light, easy to jack up, and wheel/tire weighs only 75 pounds. Plus it doesn't have dual rear wheels which simplifies a rear change even more.

If I were driving a large and heavy motorhome with 19.5- or 22.5-inch wheels I'd probably feel much different about the need to carry a spare, although I may still do it. In that case my expectation would likely be to get it replaced instead of doing it myself, which is what I'd do presently.
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Old 06-14-2017, 09:24 PM   #12
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I carry a spare but no lug wrench and no jack.
As many have said roadside assistance can put my spare on for me but if I don't have one that adds a whole set of problems that could become very time consuming and expensive.
I also carry a plug kit and a small compressor.
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Old 06-15-2017, 02:52 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by petew View Post
I carry a spare but no lug wrench and no jack.

As many have said roadside assistance can put my spare on for me but if I don't have one that adds a whole set of problems that could become very time consuming and expensive.

I also carry a plug kit and a small compressor.


Hey, I carry those items as well. I suppose it's a bit "belt and suspenders" but a simple nail plug is quicker and easier than wrestling with the spare. Maybe it's Pete thing!
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Old 06-17-2017, 09:59 AM   #14
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THOR #7211
Thanks for the replies. It looks like I'll be doing a couple of trips without a spare, although I would feel better with one. I did find out that my roadside assistance covers $1k in towing, which makes me feel a little better.
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Old 06-17-2017, 04:16 PM   #15
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I am camping next to a guy that says if you get a flat on the front, you can take a tire off a rear dual and put on front. Then drive to a garage. Anyone know if that would work?
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Old 06-17-2017, 04:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtroop View Post
I am camping next to a guy that says if you get a flat on the front, you can take a tire off a rear dual and put on front. Then drive to a garage. Anyone know if that would work?
If they are all the same size and on the same rim, the answer is yes. All the tires are interchangeable. When I had my tires rotated, the tire guy took the two on the right side and put them on the front and took the two front tires and put them on the rear right.
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Old 06-17-2017, 04:48 PM   #17
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Depends on your definition of works. You can drive slowly for a short distance, but you now are on a seriously overloaded rear tire. Not particularly safe.
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Old 06-17-2017, 04:55 PM   #18
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That is true. Like with one of the donut spares, you should only drive slowly to the nearest garage. In addition, jacking up your RV in the rear and taking off one of the two tires and then jacking up the front to take off the front tire and replace it, is not something that I would ever want to do. The chance of damaging your very expensive toy or yourself is just too great - at least for me. Much better and probably cheaper in the long run to call a tire guy and have him come deal with it.
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Old 06-17-2017, 05:08 PM   #19
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Being old school, I will not leave the driveway without a spare. Current setup is everything is in the toad, spare, jack, tools and air compressor.
We have an 2017 Axis 25.2, there is a incredible amount of space in the rear under the slide. I am looking into using this space, lots of ideas, nothing on paper yet.
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Old 06-17-2017, 05:12 PM   #20
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I have a spare (not on a rim), a compressor and a tire plug repair kit, but I rely on AAA to change my tires.
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