Until you have had a blowout on your trailer while cruising at 70 miles per hour on the interstate, it’s difficult to have a full appreciation of a proper trailer inspection prior to your trip. Trailer safety awareness is best when managed prior to your trip, as opposed to a ticket because your trailer’s wiring is messed up and your brake lights aren’t working.
Important Trailer Parts to Inspect
Before hitting the road, there are several trailer parts that you need to check. Any broken trailer parts should be repaired or replaced before taking a trip to ensure safety.
It is important to always check your trailer tires before hitting the road. They should be inspected for dry rot, splitting and inflation. If you question their ability to make the trip, you should replace them. Also, make sure that you can remove and replace the lug nuts as well. It can be difficult to change a tire if you can’t move it.
If you haven’t packed the wheel bearings in awhile, or if you don’t know when they were last serviced, this is an ideal time to do that. A locked wheel bearing is similar to a blown tire, maintaining control of a trailer is difficult at speed in these occurrences.
Trailer brakes should also be inspected prior to taking a trip. Trailer brake systems can either be electric or hydraulic. No matter which type your trailer has, the brakes need to be inspected for proper function. This is because it’s important to be able to stop safely without an accident occurring.
Before taking off, it is important to inspect all your trailer lights as well. This can be done by connecting your trailer to the towing vehicle and making sure that your brake lights, turn signals, running lights and other trailer parts are functioning properly. Not only is improper lighting unsafe, it can also be costly if it is not working properly.
Your Tow Vehicle
The vehicle you choose to tow with is just as important as what your are towing. It is important to make sure your tow vehicle has the towing capacity necessary to pull the trailer. You can figure this out by looking in your vehicle’s owner’s manual provided by your trailer parts dealer or from your car’s manufacturer. The trailer hitch should be attached under the vehicle to ensure that it is secure. The ball on the hitch should also be checked to make sure that it is the proper size trailer part for both the tow vehicle and the hitch. The wiring harness on the tow vehicle needs to be inspected as well to make sure it works properly.
The trailer hitch on the trailer should be inspected and any loose bolts should be tightened, and if the parts are rusty, oil them so that they work freely. Again, the ball size on the tow vehicle should be checked to ensure it matches the hitch size of the trailer.
Chain it Down
The chains are important for catching the trailer if the ball hitch fails, so they should be sufficient in size to take the weight, in that event.
A full inspection of your Gooseneck trailer is time well invested prior to loading it up and hitting the road. Not only is your trailer breaking down expensive, it can also be dangerous for you, your passengers and other vehicles around you while on the road. For more information, don’t hesitate to contact Gooseneck Trailers today!