Using a trailer is a great way to haul large items such as appliances, lawn care equipment and more. But it is important to know a few things about trailers before you start driving one.
The first step in towing a trailer is to make sure it is properly connected to your vehicle. This is done by attaching safety chains to the trailer’s body and frame. The chains should be in a criss-cross pattern and should not be placed in a position where they would touch the ground. They should also have enough slack to allow turning.
Next, determine the weight of the trailer. This is called the Gross Combined Weight Rating. This is the weight of the trailer, plus the weight of the tow vehicle. This is used by manufacturers to determine the safe limits of their trailers. For example, an enclosed trailer should be no more than 10 percent of the weight of the tow vehicle. The gross axle weight rating of the tow vehicle should also be within the limits.
The length of the trailer should also be considered. If the trailer is longer than the tow vehicle, the tow vehicle will not have as much control over it. For example, if the tow vehicle is a four-wheel-drive SUV, its towing capacity will be less than if it were a two-wheel-drive vehicle.
Also, make sure the weight of the trailer is evenly distributed between the axles. This will help avoid oversteering problems. For example, if the trailer is too heavy up front, it can fishtail. Similarly, too much weight in the rear will cause the trailer to sag. Similarly, uneven road surfaces can unbalance the trailer.
Also, make sure that the trailer is towed at a slow speed. A vehicle that is towing a trailer needs to be pulled slowly into the parking lot and onto the road. Similarly, it is important to change lanes early when pulling into a parking lot. Similarly, trailer drivers should take wide turns.
Finally, make sure that the trailer’s lights are on before driving away. This is especially important if you are using a trailer that has a traction engine. If the trailer is towed by a motorcycle, make sure the tow vehicle is in the center of the road and the bike is not blocking the “oil strip” in the center of the road.
Once you have a good idea of the size and weight of the trailer, you can determine what type of trailer is right for you. There are many different types of trailers available, including step deck trailers, dry van trailers, and travel trailers. Each type has a different feature set, and you will have to find the one that fits your needs.
In addition to the features that are available, make sure that you check the length of the trailer. It should be about 10 feet longer than the vehicle it is towing. Generally, trailers with water tanks in the front handle best when the tanks are full.