Tips for Trailering Safety

 

source: Boating Magazine

  • The first step in safe towing is to make sure the trailer tires are suitable for the size of the boat being towed. This is important to check on your vehicle too because towing an extra load puts a lot more stress and weight relying on your vehicle to safely pull and bring to a stop.
  • Checking the tire pressure is the next step in safe towing. Under-inflated tires can be subject to blowouts and tire failure when a load is placed on the trailer. In addition, it is always important to check the wheel bearings, trailer axels, and wheel hubs for wear and tear.
  • The third step in safe trailering is to make sure when the trailer is hitched to the vehicle that the trailer tongue is correctly locked on to the ball of the hitch. It is always important to hook the trailers safety chains up in a X formation to the vehicle pulling the trailer. Safety chains serve as a form of insurance if the trailer was to come off the ball of the hitch while driving.
  • The final step to safe trailering is to make sure the lights on the trailer, including brake lights and turning signals work correctly. It is important to always do a walk around before driving to make sure the lights work and the boat sits as level as can be with the vehicle. Incorrect weight distribution when towing can cause trailers to loose control and swing all over the road endangering yourself and other drivers.