Regardless of how if your trailer is heavy or light, hauling anything behind you can be tricky. The staff here at Kate’s Kars and Trailers Sales knows this, and we want you to be prepared before you begin hauling. Safety is one of our top priorities for our customers, so we’ve written this article about best practices for hauling light or heavy loads.
Use the proper trailer
First and foremost, finding the right trailer is so important to a successful haul. Luckily, our extensive inventory of trailers is ready to be shopped by you! We have enclosed trailers, open trailers, and even pick-up trucks for the lightest of loads. Depending on what and how much you’re hauling, you’ll need different axles and configuration types. You’ll also need a basic knowledge of heavy and light hauling so you can purchase the right trailer.
Not sure where to start? Contact us and we’ll be more than happy to assist you along the way in finding a trailer.
Secure the cargo
Before you hit the road, make sure the load is evenly distributed across the trailer. This will help combat trailer sway and will make the ride smoother. Having a smooth ride might seem trivial, but until you’ve ridden in a truck or SUV with a poorly packed trailer in tow, you’ll never know its importance! Having an uneven load also increases the risk of tipping and makes it hard for the driver to stay in control of the trailer.
Once the load is safely distributed, make sure everything is tied down or packed in securely if you have a larger load. If you have a smaller load, it makes more sense to use tie-downs so your items aren’t being rearranged in your trailer. If it’s a heavier load, you can use tie-downs, or you can pack everything really snug so nothing has a chance to move.
Use your blinker!
Blinkers are there for a reason – use them! You should, of course, use them all the time, but it’s even more critical when you’re hauling. Turning on your blinker gives the driver behind you enough time to give you space to slow down and turn, especially if he’s following too close behind you.
If you have an oversized load, you can ride with your flashers or warning lights on. Doing so will give other drivers on the road a warning to steer clear in case a piece of cargo falls out of your trailer.
Map out your route ahead of time
While it may not be possible to run the whole route in just your towing vehicle first, it’s a good idea to map out which roads you’ll be taking and avoiding ahead of time. Try to avoid any heavy-trafficked roads, toll roads, roads under construction and even rush hour.
It’s so tempting to go just above the speed limit, but what good is that really doing? Speeding with a heavy (or even light) load only increases the risk even more of having an accident. So, we recommend going a tad under the speed limit to safely transport you and the load. Staying in the right lane also can reduce the risk of an accident by avoiding speeders.
Adjust your mirrors
Before heading out, make sure your mirrors are adjusted so you can see to the end of the trailer. You’ll need to adjust them so you can back up like a pro, and so you can keep an eye on things as you travel.
Check your taillights
The lights on your trailer are rather important as they help signal what you’re doing to other drivers. Larger trailers may hide the lights on your tow vehicle, so it’s a great idea to ensure your trailer lights are working properly. If they aren’t working, it will be difficult for other drivers to see your moves, especially after dark. To check, have a friend stand behind the trailer while it’s in park to watch the turn signals, tail lights and brake lights.
Check your tires
Again, this is an important step regardless of the weight of the load. Once you check the trailer tires, don’t forget to check the tow vehicle. Incorrectly inflated tires mean your engine works harder which burns more fuel and could even cause a blowout. Check out your owner’s manual for both your tow vehicle and trailer to ensure you inflate your tires to the right amount of pressure.
That’s a wrap for our best tips on how to haul it all! We hope this helps, and don’t hesitate to reach out should you have questions on choosing the right trailer or any general question about hauling. Happy towing!