Pulling a trailer behind another vehicle requires skills that you probably didn’t learn in Driver’s Ed. Towing shouldn’t be taken lightly.
As the weather warms up, you might be considering hauling a boat, camper, or horse trailer for weekend recreation. In this article, we’re sharing tips to help you get ready for safe towing.
Maintenance & Tires
Is your towing vehicle ready for the adventure ahead? Make sure it has recently had an oil and filter change. Check that the brake pads are in good working order and ensure that all fluids are at the proper levels. If your trailer has brakes, consider having them checked and adjusted before hitting the road.
Inspect your trailer tires, both for the correct pressure and to make sure that they don’t show signs of dry rot and cracking. If you store your trailer outdoors and haven’t used it in months, it’s especially important to make sure that the tires are ready for the long haul. Make sure the wheel lug nuts on both your trailer and tow vehicle are tightened to the torque recommended in the owner’s manual.
You’ll also want to make sure that you have a spare tire for your trailer, and that it’s in good condition. Bring along a lug nut wrench and a jack in case you find yourself needing to change a flat tire.
Incorrectly sized hitch balls are a common cause of trailer accidents. Check to make sure that the ball on your tow hitch is the same size as the coupler on your trailer.
If your vehicle didn’t come with a tow hitch, it’s important to find the correct hitch for your towing needs. Contact a towing expert and explain what you plan to tow to find the right hitch for your vehicle.
Use safety chains that hook your trailer to the hitch. Cross the chains to prevent your trailer from falling into the pavement if the trailer becomes disconnected from the tow vehicle. Allow enough slack for sharp turns, but not so much slack that the chains drag on the road.
Make sure your trailer’s electrical writing system is connected to the tow vehicle correctly. Ask a partner to confirm that the running lights, brake lights, hazard lights, and turn signals are all working with the tow vehicle.
Use wheel chocks in front of and behind your trailer tires when unhooking from the tow vehicle. This prevents your trailer from rolling away or over anyone near the trailer.
If you or a loved one has been injured, contact the Schuerman Law office today. Schuerman Law has been working with personal injury claims for over 40 years. John Schuerman will compassionately advocate for injured individuals as well as their families while fighting for full compensation of their claims. Schuerman Law offers evening and weekend appointments in addition to home and hospital visits. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 1-800-274-0045.