Avoid These Common Mistakes When Towing a Trailer

Towing a trailer might be needed if you are moving. It is important that you avoid these common mistakes so you don't end up with an accident while on the road.

Not Calculating the Total Weight of the Load

Your vehicle will have a maximum weight capacity, which means that is the absolute heaviest amount of weight it can tow at any given time. While you might have thought ahead to check the capacity, you need to know the total weight of the trailer and what is on the trailer. A common mistake is to only consider the weight of the trailer or only the goods being transported, but failing to check the weight of both of them together. If you fail to do this, you might cause the tongue of the hitch to break off during the move, which results in your belongings falling out of the trailer and possibly a very bad accident on the road. Be aware of your weight at all times when loading up the trailer.

Failing to Inspect the Trailer Before and During the Trip

Make sure you don't just hook up the trailer and assume it will be fine for the entire trip. If you are going a long distance while towing the trailer, check the trailer at each and every stop you make. Make sure the load is still secure, ensure the tires are in good condition, and check that the wiring is still working properly. Check the hitch itself to make sure it is still secure as well. These are also things you will inspect before leaving with the trailer, in addition to the hitch ball and pin.

Leaving Before Testing the Brakes

You should be testing everything after hooking up the trailer and wiring it to your vehicle, but one of the most important things is the brakes. If the brakes on the trailer are not working properly, then it could possibly keep moving forward and hit your vehicle even after your vehicle has come to a complete stop. This could be disastrous for your vehicle, the trailer, and whatever you are transporting. Test the brakes fully beforehand, going slowly around the parking lot and stepping on the brakes at various speeds to make sure the trailer stops with the vehicle.

In addition to these tips, make sure you are also driving slow and steady when towing a trailer, paying close attention to wider turns.