Trailer wheel bearing troubleshooting is critical

Your trailer wheel bearings are more likely to cause a break down and accident than any other component on your trailer.  There are three main reasons trailer wheel bearing replacement and trailer wheel bearing repacks are the number one trailer repair service in the industry. 

Contact Torklift Central today for a trailer wheel bearing repack service.

Here are the top three reasons your trailer wheel bearings can fail and the easy solutions to prevent it:

1.  Active use

Trailer wheel bearings require annual and semi-annual servicing depending on activity level

Simply put, your trailer wheel bearings are designed to allow your trailer wheels to rotate freely. 


To function properly they require plenty of fresh grease to allow the moving components in the wheel bearing housing to operate in close contact with each other without generating excessive friction and damaging heat.

When you travel with your trailer the wheel bearings heat up.  Over extended periods of travel this heat breaks down the consistency of the grease packs in the wheel bearing housings, not unlike how a vehicle’s engine consumes oil.  

The solution:

As your car requires semi-annual oil changes it’s recommended that a trailer wheel bearing repack service be performed at least annually to pack fresh grease into your wheel bearings. 

Neglecting to perform this simple, quick and affordable service can cause your trailer wheels to make unnatural noises, seize up and even come off entirely.

2.  Storage

Trailer wheel bearing failure is accelerated in storage

Many trailers are left in storage between boating season, travel season and infrequent utility needs.  When a trailer sits, the wheels don’t turn; no heat is generated from travel, which allows condensation (moisture) to enter the wheel bearing housing. 

Once moisture makes its way in, rust and grease breakdown is soon to follow.  Too many people hit the road with their trailer after leaving it in storage without inspecting their wheel bearings.  During travel the bearings heat up and need fresh grease to function properly.  If the grease in your bearings are compromised from inactivity, breakdowns and accidents are much more common.  

The solution:

Trailers should always have a bearing pack inspection before travel after extended periods of storage.  A trailer bearing repack service is often necessary to ensure the trailer is ready for your next trip. 

3.  Exposure to water 

Boat trailer wheel bearings face unique challenges

Boat trailers require a unique set of maintenance and repair procedures to ensure their safe functionality.  The water that boat trailers are dunked in at boat launches compounds a number of issues that moisture causes with trailer wheel bearings. 

When you show up to a boat launch your trailer wheel bearings are heated from the friction they experience during the trip.  Upon being dunked in the water the hot wheel bearings draw water into the wheel bearing housing as they cool rapidly which can lead to rust, corrosion and grease breakdown. 

Afterwards when the boat trailer is put back into storage the moisture that made its way into the wheel bearing housing is able to inflame the same rust and corrosion issues that can occur even if the trailer is not dunked in water.  

Let your boat trailer wheel bearings cool before dunking them in water.

The Solution: 

Allow your boat trailer wheel bearings to cool before entering the water at a boat launch.  The cooler your bearings are the harder it is for them to draw water into the wheel bearing housing. 

Most modern boat trailers are equipped with bearing protectors designed to hold the bearing grease under pressure.  They also do a good job of not allowing water to enter the hubs, especially on boat trailers.  If your boat trailer is not equipped with bearings protectors it’s well worth your time and money to have them installed.

No matter what the cause of trailer wheel bearing failure, the most effective, affordable and easiest solution is to perform a trailer wheel bearing repack at least annually.  This preventative maintenance is the number one way you can avoid the most common reason trailers wind up broken down on the side of the road.

Contact Torklift Central today to see how you can Get Out And Go trailering your way.

Torklift Central

315 Central Ave N 
Kent, Wash. 98032

[email protected]