Gladiator Tire Failure

jakoenig1

Member
Just thought I would give people a heads up on the Gladiator ST235/85R16 QR25-TS tires that I put on my 2014 Big Country 3650RL after two of the OEM Towmax tires failed. These are 95 PSI load range G tires, rated at 3,960 lbs with 95 psi "at freeway speeds" according to their web site. No speed rating on the side of the tire. I had high hopes for these tires as they are made in China by a plant that is 100 % owned by Bridgestone of China.
The first OEM Towmax failed at 3,000 miles and the second at 8000 miles, both in less than a year. I bought two of the Gladiator tires for replacements. I put two used Michelin LT245/75R16 tires that I removed from my truck on one side. They had 30,000 miles and were three years old when I put them on my Big Country. I put the new Gladiator tires on the other side. Well, two years and 8,000 miles later, guess which failed. The Gladiator. I have a TPMS system on the trailer so I know these tires have never been run under inflated. The TPMS has an audible alarm if the tire pressure is 5 psi under inflated. Anything less than that and the alarm goes off when the temperature drops 30 degree overnight. I carry an air compressor and the trailer doesn't move if the tires are below the recommended pressure.
I ran the Big Country over the scales when it was fully loaded and the rear axle combined weight was 11,240 lbs. About 2810 lbs per tire. How does a tire rated at 3,960 lbs at freeway speeds fail with 2,810 lbs in 2 years and 8,000 miles? Clearly G rated tires are not the answer to tire failures on our fifth wheels. I put the Towmax spare tire on to get me home from Florida. What a mistake. It had about 2,000 miles on it from a previous Towmax failure. It failed after about 400 miles and destroyed the side of my trailer. The spare looked brand new. The good news is that I have carried two spares since the trailer was new. My 2009 trailer also failed four tires in three years.
I bought Goodyear G614 LT 235/85R16 tires and will have them installed tomorrow. I plan to keep one of the Michelin's as a spare. I have more faith in a five year old Michelin made in Alabama than a brand new foreign made tire. I have failed three of the five OEM tires and one aftermarket tire in three years. I was fortunate on the first two because I caught them before they exploded. I changed them in a rest area because they looked like a bicycle tire due to tread separation. They both still had 80 psi when I took them to a dealer for inspection and replacement. I did see that Goodyear now makes an Endurance model trailer tire that is made in the USA. I almost bought them but my wife is tired of watching me change a trailer tire on I75 with traffic going by at 70 mph. She convinced me to spend the extra $100 per tire for the G614's. From what I've read, they are fine if you keep them inflated properly.

Anyone else have a problem with Gladiator Tires?

Has anyone tried the new Goodyear Endurance trailer tire? Is it made in the US?
 

danemayer

Moderator
Staff member
Hi Jakoenig1,

Welcome to the Heartland Owners Forum and thanks for sharing your experience with Gladiator tires.

The Goodyear G614s should serve you well. They have steel belts running from bead to bead to help protect the tire if you ever rub against a curb and generally have a good reputation. They're rated for 75 mph and if inflated to 110 psi in the morning, before driving, and not in the sun, the load rating of 3,750 lbs should provide you with good load margin.

Several of us have had G614 failures at around 4 years of age. Ours failed at 4 years / 40,000 miles. The tread unzipped on one tire, causing body damage. Interestingly, the tire didn't lose air. I noticed a change in pressure, but the TPMS didn't alarm. We probably drove 100 miles on the steel belts without knowing there was a problem. Just saying you might want to plan on replacing the tires at 4 years.
 

JohnD

Moved on to the next thing...
I bought two of the Gladiator tires for replacements. I put two used Michelin LT245/75R16 tires that I removed from my truck on one side. They had 30,000 miles and were three years old when I put them on my Big Country. I put the new Gladiator tires on the other side. Well, two years and 8,000 miles later, guess which failed. The Gladiator.

I think you may have been better off to put the same two tires on the same axle than to put one brand on one side and the other tire brand on the other side.

I'll bet those tires brands had different diameters, which could have caused them to fail early.

I just recently went through this . . .

Just replaced a 'D' range tire on our Prowler with the exact same tire . . . only an 'E' range tire.

The guy at the tire shop assured me that the 'D' and the 'E' were the same diameter, and since I plan to replace the other four tires soon with 'E' range tires, he suggested that I go ahead and get the 'e' tire for this replacement.

Well, as I was looking at the tires, the new one looked a little taller.

I busted out one of my trusty tape measures and low and behold . . . the 'E' range tire is one inch taller, which is making that axle ride high on that side.
 

BigGuy82

Well-known member
To each his own. You've mixed and matched quite a bit so to me, it's not surprising you've had a raft of issues with tires that may not have been compatible. Having four skins of the same brand should help you a lot.


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jakoenig1

Member
To each his own. You've mixed and matched quite a bit so to me, it's not surprising you've had a raft of issues with tires that may not have been compatible. Having four skins of the same brand should help you a lot.


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I had four skins on the same brand. Didn't work out too well. Two failures in 8,000 miles. Although the 235/85 's are 1.25 inch bigger in diameter than the LT245's, the tires show very even wear. No sign of wear on the inside of the bigger tire. I wish my dodge 2500 was that good.

What brand tire do you like?
 

BigGuy82

Well-known member
I had four skins on the same brand. Didn't work out too well. Two failures in 8,000 miles. Although the 235/85 's are 1.25 inch bigger in diameter than the LT245's, the tires show very even wear. No sign of wear on the inside of the bigger tire. I wish my dodge 2500 was that good.

What brand tire do you like?
I have Sailuns on my Bighorn, from the factory. About 12k on them without issue. They are a high pressure tire that run on high pressure rims at 110 psi cold. Much less expensive than Goodyear and as far as I know, there is a high level of satisfaction with owners. Max speed 75 mph. Barring any unexpected issues, I'll replace wth the same brand when these wear out.
 

TravelTiger

Founding Texas-West Chapter Leaders-Retired
It makes me wonder, are you towing level? Are the tires balanced before install? Have you had alignment checked? Do the axles still have their proper upward arch in the middle?

Not placing any blame, just curious if there are any other contributing factors to the premature tire issues.




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travelin2

Pennsylvania Chapter Leaders-retired
Replaced my Goodyears with Gladiators in Montana after a GY failure. Tire tech guy said 90 lbs was adequate so that's what I went with. Tires were balanced. Held pressure well. Put 10k miles on them before we traded for a different floor plan. Still looked like new. Just saying


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jakoenig1

Member
Replaced my Goodyears with Gladiators in Montana after a GY failure. Tire tech guy said 90 lbs was adequate so that's what I went with. Tires were balanced. Held pressure well. Put 10k miles on them before we traded for a different floor plan. Still looked like new. Just saying


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Were they the QR-25 or QR-35. Apparently Gladiator makes two Load Range G tires, the -35 is a steel carcass like the G614''s. Maybe a better tire than the -25. I would argue that any load range G tire shouldn't fail with 2,810 pounds on it. I thought switching to a G rated tire would cure my problem. One thing I did learn with LT's on one side and ST LRG on the other is that the Michelin LT's ran 15 degree cooler than the ST tires. Maybe the stiffer sidewall on the ST tires make them run hotter and fail quicker. The ST's ran 140 to 145 and the LT's ran 130 to 135 Deg F.
 

jakoenig1

Member
I think you may have been better off to put the same two tires on the same axle than to put one brand on one side and the other tire brand on the other side.

I'll bet those tires brands had different diameters, which could have caused them to fail early.

I just recently went through this . . .

Just replaced a 'D' range tire on our Prowler with the exact same tire . . . only an 'E' range tire.

The guy at the tire shop assured me that the 'D' and the 'E' were the same diameter, and since I plan to replace the other four tires soon with 'E' range tires, he suggested that I go ahead and get the 'e' tire for this replacement.

Well, as I was looking at the tires, the new one looked a little taller.

I busted out one of my trusty tape measures and low and behold . . . the 'E' range tire is one inch taller, which is making that axle ride high on that side.


Did you use the larger E range tire? Any problems? You sure one wasn't a 235/85 tire instead of a /75 or /80 tire? This would make them about 1 inch taller. Tire size should be the same on D and E range tires. Why do you think different diameters will make them fail early? I agree it affects the alignment but if you do the math, it work our to about .5 degree camber. Most cars are +/- .5 degree from the factory. I would be surprised if trailers are less than + or - 1 degree from the factory. Tire alignment always shows up as uneven tread wear. The tires showed no uneven tread wear.
 

travelin2

Pennsylvania Chapter Leaders-retired
They were steel belts. Came with very good local recommendations. Tire dealer said the local ranchers run these on their stock trailers no balancing gravel roads overloaded etc. with very few failures.
Kept the spare so I have 2 G rated spares.
d5c88e61b8602753cd918ae13f03c30f.jpg
66bde46278855a902c0f7dc4bd516924.jpg



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danemayer

Moderator
Staff member
The Gladiator ST235/85R16 QR25-TS tires are rated on some websites as 14 ply equivalent, but the Gladiator spec sheet shows it as 12 ply equivalent. And interestingly, the load capacity of 3,960 exceeds the load capacity of their all-steel QR35 14 ply equivalent, which shows 3,750. A typical load capacity for LR G tires is 3,750 and the typical ply equivalent is 14.

So let me speculate that the QR35 is their load range G tire and the QR25 is really a load range F, despite the way it's listed on retailer websites. Also, I'd guess that although the QR35 is labeled ST, it's probably certified as an LT tire which means the stated load capacity has to have a significant margin. And I'd also guess the QR25 is not certified as an LT tire.

Why certify a tire as LT and label it ST? Apparently there are tariffs that can be avoided to keep the price lower. Sailun has been doing that. And the Goodyear G614 is an LT tire, even though it's marketed for trailer applications.

I also noticed that you can buy 4
Gladiator ST235/85R16 QR25-TS tires for less than $400. Most people are paying 2 times that much for Sailun S637s and 3-4 times that much for Goodyear G614s.

Soooo, if looking at Gladiator tires, I'd stick to the QR35.


Gladiator specs.jpg
 

jakoenig1

Member
The Gladiator ST235/85R16 QR25-TS tires are rated on some websites as 14 ply equivalent, but the Gladiator spec sheet shows it as 12 ply equivalent. And interestingly, the load capacity of 3,960 exceeds the load capacity of their all-steel QR35 14 ply equivalent, which shows 3,750. A typical load capacity for LR G tires is 3,750 and the typical ply equivalent is 14.

So let me speculate that the QR35 is their load range G tire and the QR25 is really a load range F, despite the way it's listed on retailer websites. Also, I'd guess that although the QR35 is labeled ST, it's probably certified as an LT tire which means the stated load capacity has to have a significant margin. And I'd also guess the QR25 is not certified as an LT tire.

Why certify a tire as LT and label it ST? Apparently there are tariffs that can be avoided to keep the price lower. Sailun has been doing that. And the Goodyear G614 is an LT tire, even though it's marketed for trailer applications.

I also noticed that you can buy 4
Gladiator ST235/85R16 QR25-TS tires for less than $400. Most people are paying 2 times that much for Sailun S637s and 3-4 times that much for Goodyear G614s.

Soooo, if looking at Gladiator tires, I'd stick to the QR35.


View attachment 51818




Great info. Even I was confused. I looked at my tire and it shows 14 ply rating with a load of 4080. Even the QR35 has two 14 ply rating tires with different load capacities. 3750 and 4080? Makes life tough as a consumer to market the same tire name, load rating, and ply rating with two different load indexes? Is N the speed rating? If so, it is 87 MPH. Pretty good for a trailer tire.
 

JohnD

Moved on to the next thing...
Did you use the larger E range tire? Any problems? You sure one wasn't a 235/85 tire instead of a /75 or /80 tire? This would make them about 1 inch taller. Tire size should be the same on D and E range tires. Why do you think different diameters will make them fail early? I agree it affects the alignment but if you do the math, it work our to about .5 degree camber. Most cars are +/- .5 degree from the factory. I would be surprised if trailers are less than + or - 1 degree from the factory. Tire alignment always shows up as uneven tread wear. The tires showed no uneven tread wear.

Nope . . . both the 'D' and 'E' tires are 225/75/15 . . . but the 'E' range tire is 1-inch taller than the rest.

We put about 1000 miles on the trailer on our recent trip and didn't notice any uneven wear on the 'E' tire.
 

travelin2

Pennsylvania Chapter Leaders-retired
Tough to see but here are the specs from the sidewall....
d357e573c74cb12ce4a5ed85c6e5a55f.jpg

Just saying, Not sure how much of a weight difference the steel wheel adds vs aluminum, I'm sure someone will comment, but as a comparison without weighing, this Gladiator sure seems heavier than the Sailun I had one off last week for a patch after picking up a nail somewhere.


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JohnDar

Prolifically Gabby Member
And maybe there are reasons these Gladiator tires are less than $100 each. Quality might not be one of them.


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RandyDeb

Active Member
Good information. Good question about being leave. That sure could cause some problems. Anyone had any experience with Hankook trailer tires? I have Dynapro ATMs on my 08 F350 DRW and wouldn't dream of anything else. The Dynapro HT has a 5 star rating with over 24,000 reviews at tirerack.com and won't put a guy in the poor house. I'm afraid to say that I have Freestar G rated tires on my 09 BH 3670 that are not showing any signs of ware and they are OME. No idea how many miles are on them. Do I really need to R & R these tires because of age?:confused: Going to Alaska this year, so planning on 8k to 10k miles if not more.
 

JohnD

Moved on to the next thing...
Good information. Good question about being leave. That sure could cause some problems. Anyone had any experience with Hankook trailer tires? I have Dynapro ATMs on my 08 F350 DRW and wouldn't dream of anything else. The Dynapro HT has a 5 star rating with over 24,000 reviews at tirerack.com and won't put a guy in the poor house. I'm afraid to say that I have Freestar G rated tires on my 09 BH 3670 that are not showing any signs of ware and they are OME. No idea how many miles are on them. Do I really need to R & R these tires because of age?:confused: Going to Alaska this year, so planning on 8k to 10k miles if not more.

I think you are going to hear from many that it is time to get new tires due to age of the tires.
 
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