Why Do Trailer Wheel Bearings Fail?

If you're a boat owner or an avid traveller who loves towing your RV or trailer, you know that taking proper care of your equipment is crucial. After all, you'll want to ensure the safety of both you and your cargo during transport. However, the wheel bearings are one of the most pressing problems for trailer owners. When these small yet mighty components are in tip-top condition, they ensure that your trailer's wheels spin efficiently, avoid overheating and prevent the risk of wheel-end breakdowns on the road. But why do trailer wheel bearings fail in the first place?


Before going on a haul, it's essential to note your trailer's payload capacity and ensure that your cargo does not surpass its weight limit. Overloading a trailer puts a strain on the wheel bearings, which causes them to heat up and generate friction, resulting in premature wear and tear.

Lack of Grease

Moisture, dirt and road debris are formidable enemies. With inadequate lubrication methods, contamination can penetrate the bearings, causing corrosion and a decrease in performance. That's why it's necessary to ensure regular greasing and check the grease seals on your trailer wheels after every use.

Poor Installation

When wheel bearings are not accurately installed, it causes misalignment of the components, causing friction and heat. This is why it's recommended to have a professional technician handle the replacement or adjustment of your trailer bearings.

Poor Maintenance

When not in use, be sure to keep the trailer in a protected space and invest in proper inspection services. Poor maintenance habits deprive your trailer wheel bearings of the attention they need, and failing to show them some TLC can result in abrupt failure.


Over time, the bearings will eventually wear down due to age and natural wear and tear. Replacing worn-out bearings before they fail completely is vital to avoid costly repairs.

What to Remember

Your trailer wheel bearings may be small but they play a huge role in keeping your trailer safely on the road. By understanding the reasons why they fail, you can properly maintain them to ensure longevity and safe transport of your cargo. Remember to always balance your load and check your bearings regularly, and don't forget to service them as recommended by the manufacturer or professional technicians. And if you suspect any issues whatsoever, make sure that you take the trailer to an experienced mechanic for immediate repair.

Contact a trailer repair service near you to learn more.