Maintenance & General Safety
WHAT KIND OF MAINTENANCE DOES MY TRAILER NEED AND HOW OFTEN?
Your new trailer is just like any other piece of equipment or tool. The best way to know exactly what to do is always refer to the owner’s manual. In most cases, the wheel bearings need to be lubricated periodically. The tire air pressure needs to be checked and corrected at least every season change, the lights need to be checked to make sure all lights are working, and all the hinges and locks need to be checked and lubricated as needed.
WILL MY PICKUP TRUCK PULL A TRAILER, AND IF SO, HOW BIG OF A TRAILER WILL IT PULL?
This question has several answers.
First is this, we cannot tell you how big a trailer your tow vehicle will pull, or if it will pull a trailer at all, there are too many variables. It is easier to first call the manufacturer of the vehicle, (Ford, Chevy, Dodge etc…) or read the owners manual that came with the vehicle, and see if it can and what tow capacity of the vehicle is.
Once this is discovered, it is best to figure out what and how much you plan to put in the trailer. A good way to see how much room is needed is to look through our selection, take a guess on what size you think you may need, and then go to your driveway. Measure out about the same dimensions on the driveway of the trailer you think you may want. Mark these boundaries out.
For example, if you choose a 7 X 12 foot trailer, measure out and make a 7-foot wide, by 12-foot long area, and then place what you plan to put in the trailer, in this space. If it fits and you have a small amount of room left over, you are probably in good shape. If not, you may have to adjust one way or another.
IS DRIVING MY VEHICLE WHEN TOWING DIFFERENT FROM WHEN I AM NOT TOWING THE TRAILER?
There are a few basic logical tips for safe and comfortable towing:
A. The addition of a trailer to your vehicle lengthens the total wheelbase, when turning it is necessary to widen the turning circle to avoid hitting curbs.
B. Remember that the addition of a trailer and its load will increase your stopping distance, so leave more room for braking, as this may take some time to get used to, you may want to find a safe place to just drive around and get used to it.
C. Do not exceed the maximum towing weight for the tow vehicle.
D. Remember when reversing, steer the opposite way to the direction in which you need the trailer to travel, you will find minor changes in turning will sometimes make major changes in direction. This requires a lot of practice to become good.
WHAT IS A BREAKAWAY KIT AND HOW DOES IT WORK?
This is a small device that is attached to the frame of the trailer, along with a small battery. If ever your trailer becomes unhooked from your tow vehicle, this device will go into action.
What happens is a small pin is pulled out of a sensor that tells the system the trailer is no longer hooked up. It will then apply the brakes on the trailer to bring it to a stop as quickly as possible. The trailer must have electric brakes to have this equipment.
HOW DO I CORRECTLY POSITION THE LOAD IN MY TRAILER?
To maintain towing safety it is extremely important that the trailer is loaded correctly and that the towing height of the trailer is correct. When coupling an unloaded trailer, check to see that the front of the trailer is slightly higher than the rear of the trailer. Also, take account of the effect of any possible loads to be added to the tow vehicle when calculating this.
If the trailer nose is too high or too low it is possible that handling difficulties will result. Never try to vary or adapt the trailer tow bar or coupling.
When loading a trailer it is vital that a POSITIVE nose weight is achieved. Loading cars of front-engine design means that the car should be driven up forwards into the trailer until the tow vehicle's suspension just starts to settle. (We recommend that rear engine cars should be driven in reverse onto the trailer.) You might find it tows better.
WHY ARE OIL AND TRANSMISSION COOLERS NECESSARY?
Anytime you tow something, you add additional weight to your vehicle. Heat can and will damage the drive train. We recommend adding the coolers to reduce this heat as much as possible. This will reduce the heat in the engine and transmission. That way you can reduce the overall cost to maintain your tow vehicle. You may also want to look at adding extra cooling fans for the cooling system and/or a large radiator for your vehicle.
WHEN IT IS NOT BEING USED, HOW SHOULD I STORE MY TRAILER?
This question is best answered like this. You made a good investment on this trailer, and you want it to last a long time. We recommend that you do park it somewhere where you can look it over occasionally to insure that it does not need something, like air in a tire, or a tree has not fallen on it.
In addition, a bath occasionally with a light coat of wax will help to maintain the overall appearance and value of the trailer. Also, if your trailer has been sitting a while, check the tires carefully, if they are under inflated, or dry rotted, you may want to correct this concern before you end up on the side of the road changing a tire.
By the way, remember, you only get flat tires, when you have to be somewhere at a certain time and it is raining, or snowing or 100 degrees outside. If you keep that in mind when you are hooking up, you should not have any tire problems. Also, check for bug, and pest or animal infestation. They seem to like to hide in trailers that sit for long periods and they can do a lot of damage in a short time.