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Boat trailer axle seal leaking question

#1
Question I have is how bad of an idea is it to use a boat trailer where it looks like the rear seals are leaking grease? It does have bearing buddies so I can keep topping it off if that may help... This is an old boat that belongs to a buddy who hasn’t used it in about 4 years. I got it cleaned up and got the engine going (needed to replace the impeller as it had dry rotted and nothing was coming out the pee-hole). The plan is to take it to the Lake of the Ozarks in a couple weeks. About a 330 mile one-way trip. I could take a grease tube and stop and see if the hubs are heating up every so often. What say you guys? Would you chance it? I don’t feel like pissing around with this old thing much more since it ain’t mine and I already got several hours and $$$ in cleaning it up and fixing the engine.
 

5Cent

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#5
No hard at all, watch some YouTube videos to help get the gist of it.

I would highly recommend you change before you go on your trip. Think about how many revolutions your tire does, that grease spins/works it way out quickly. No lube, bearings get hot and self-destruct quickly.

It is common for RV'rs to grease/inspect/change every 2 years. Now think about those getting dipped in water multiple times a summer. It's not uncommon for guys up here to do bearings each year before the season starts when making sure all lights and tires are good.
 
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jagermeister

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#6
For staying close to home, I wouldn’t worry too much about it. As long as you’re keeping it greased the pressure created by the bearing buddy will keep any water/debris out. But, going on a 300 mile trip, I would definitely repair it. I would actually go through and repack bearings prior to a trip like that regardless of whether the inner seal is leaking or not. As the others eluded to, it’s an easy job and it’s simply not worth the risk to ignore it. If you changed an impeller on an outboard you can handle doing trailer bearings no problem.
 
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"J"

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#8
  • "J"

    "J"

When in doubt, pull it apart. Do it in a controlled environment or on the side of the road. Your call..... I ran bearing buddies for 3 decades On all of my trailers. Never an issue, bu t have seen and heard of the horror stories of others. Also, like Giles said, check out those tires with a fine tooth comb.....
 
#13
It’s not a difficult task, just a little messy.... Ask your buddy too give you a hand and each take a side....
My buddy would be completely worthless if he ‘helped’. Would be more in the way if anything.

So for the seals/bearing kits. Are they pretty much standard? Don’t want to buy the wrong thing. Tires look to be in good shape.

577AD59F-6846-43C4-8DA6-34DB8713A340.jpeg
 

"J"

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#14
  • "J"

    "J"

My buddy would be completely worthless if he ‘helped’. Would be more in the way if anything.

So for the seals/bearing kits. Are they pretty much standard? Don’t want to buy the wrong thing. Tires look to be in good shape.

View attachment 104345
Take them apart and inspect them for any corrosion. Replace what is. Replace the grease seals. Single axle trailer should make quick work of it. My last 3 boat trailers were tandem axles 😂