Tire wear can be a good source of information about the condition of the other parts of your trailer. Irregular tire wear patterns are often caused by the need for a little maintenance. Trailer tires should be inspected regularly, even when the trailer is out of service for extended periods. As a matter of fact, one of the worst things you can do to a bias ply tire is let it sit in one spot and get low on air pressure. This can cause the plies to seperate internally, or cause a crack in the sidewall. Then not long after you fully inflate the tire and put it back into service, you notice a big bubble on the sidewall or experience a blowout. (Caused by the seperation of the plies) Paying attention to the early warning signs of trouble can prevent wear that shortens tire life or indicates the need for having other parts of the trailer serviced.
This type of wear results from consistent trailer tire pressure under inflation. When a trailer tire is under inflated, there is too much contact with the road by the outer treads, which wear prematurely. Trailer tire pressure should be checked often, and always kept at the pressure indicated on the sidewall of the tire.
Excessive wear at the center of the tread indicates that the air pressure in the trailer tire is consistently too high. The trailer tire is riding on the center of the tread and wearing it prematurely. Trailer tire pressure should be checked often, and always kept at the pressure indicated on the sidewall of the tire.
When the inside rib wears faster than the rest of the trailer tire, this usually indicates a bent axle due to overloading. When the outer rib wears faster than than the rest of the tire, this usually indicates too much camber in the axle. This is very common with round trailer axles, not so much with square or rectangle axles.
Cups or scalloped dips around the edge of the tread on one side or the other, usually indicates bent suspension parts. Any worn or bent component that connects the wheel to the trailer (wheel bearings, springs, bushings, etc.) can cause this to happen. Worn or bent components should be replaced with new ones.
Feathering is a condition when the edge of each tread rib develops a slightly rounded edge on one side and a sharp edge on the other. By running your hand over the trailer tire, you can usually feel the sharper edges before you'll be able to see them. The most common cause of feathering is a misaligned axle.