In the long run camper trailer wheel bearings would have to be one of the most common components to fail on a camper, so it pays to put them at the top of your routine maintenance checklist.
Well, how does after every trip sound? It sounds tedious, but when you consider that just one water crossing is enough to mark the beginning of the end for a brand new set of bearings if water gets in the hub, it kinda makes sense, right?
For a quick check, spin each wheel while it’s jacked up and off the ground, and listen for a growling noise, which can indicate a buggered wheel bearing. Also, look for excessive free-play by riggling the wheel top to bottom, and side to side.
Pop the bearing cap off the hub and check the condition of the grease too. If you see any sign of contamination, especially a white residue (indicating water has penetrated the hub), you should repack the bearings with fresh grease at a minimum. This is also the perfect time to ensure the bearings themselves are in good condition along with the axle itself.
The bearings should operate smoothly if you spin the outer race while holding the inner one with your fingers. Any sign of pitting (small indents) on the bearings rollers, plus marks or scuffs is more than enough to warrant the replacement of the bearings altogether.