How a Bearing Buddy can Destroy Caravan Brakes
Installing bearing buddies on your caravan can have unintended consequences such as destroying your braking system. A correctly adjusted brake drum should stop your rig quickly. However, some circumstances can lead to accidents.
Caravan and Camper owners love to install the latest, time-saving equipment. Owners self install bearing buddies thinking they are using time-saving devices; however, the reverse can be true.
The photo above is a Dexter backing plate that accommodated a 12″ Electric Drum. As you can see, the bearing buddy made quite a mess of the brakes. Excess grease escaped out of the rear bearing seal into the backing plate.
The magnet had been engaging the drum face but not adhering to the drum face effectively. As a result, braking is significantly reduced. Further, there is evidence the magnet surface has inconsistencies that also results in ineffective braking.
Couplemate recommends not installing bearing buddies on electric brakes. This type of equipment is better suited to boat trailers and box trailers that are either disc braked or unbraked.
Bearing Buddys destroy drums brakes of any type, mechanical, hydraulic or electric. Drum brakes fail when misusing bearing protectors.
An overfilled bearing cavity spills grease onto brake shoes and other equipment inside the backing plate.
The most effective way to ensure your wheel bearings are in great shape is a manual inspection.
Alternatively, rubber grommet dust caps can give an insight into carbon black or water contaminated grease buy, removing the rubber grommet. Upon removing the grommet, perform an inspection noting any discolourisation of the grease.
Finally, inspect your bearing buddies immediately. If brake shoe contamination is evident, replace the shoes.
Braking effectiveness is not improved by cleaning the brake shoes because the grease has permeated the entire shoe material.
Purchase replacement dust caps here
- 45.2mm Standard Dust Cap
- 2t – Parallel Gal Australian Dust Cap
- 1.98″ Dexter Dust Cap
- 2.441″ Dexter Dust Cap Suit 2t
Source: Lemon Caravans & RVs in Aus