Based upon reports from several RV manufacturers that aluminum wheels have come loose from axles, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has begun a preliminary investigation.
According to the National Association of Trailer Manufacturers, the initial focus remains on two or three RV manufacturers. However, NATM says that NHTSA may be expanding its investigation to include other large aluminum-wheel purchasers in the RV and trailer industries.
Causes of aluminum-wheel separation are not known at this point. However, the NATM Technical Committee will review the Association’s Guidelines for Recommended Minimum Manufacturing Practices for Trailers Under 26, 000 lbs. GVWR to make sure it adequately covers the subject of proper torquing procedures and consumer communication.
The association is advising companies to follow their wheel and axle suppliers’ recommended procedures, including paint removal and torquing practices, and to provide customers with clear, comprehensive torque-checking and retorquing instructions.