While essentially unpowered, a utility trailer can serve you well in many occasions. Whether you’re camping out of town or moving to a new city, your utility trailer can save you the need for professional towers. It is therefore crucial to keep your trailer in good shape, and whenever you will need towing, have it checked for faulty parts at least a couple of weeks in advance to avoid possible accidents or interruptions down the road.
The required maintenance may differ for each type and condition of trailer. Cargo, landscape, and flatbed trailers, for instance, may need professional inspection, as they are commonly used for heavy-duty towing. Regardless of the size and function of your trailer, however, there are common maintenance tasks that must be carried out regularly. Stephanie Flood gives some helpful tips on utility trailer maintenance in one of her articles:
Look for rusted parts when your trailer is fully dry. Sand away these patches with sandpaper or steel wool. Touch up these areas with rustproof paint. Wait for the paint to dry. Then apply a healthy coat of wax on your trailer’s freshly painted metal parts. Keep your trailer waxed on a regular basis after that. Doing this will protect the metal parts of it from the elements and will prevent rusting.
Keep up with your trailer’s mechanical parts by greasing up the joints and axles. Do some greasing, especially before taking it back onto the road. Dirt is your trailer’s biggest enemy, as it causes friction and breakdown. Lubricate features like the winch, ball hitch, springs and tongue jack. One of the most important parts to grease are the wheel bearings, the cylindrical rings that connect the wheel to the axle and allow the trailer wheel to freely rotate.
Well-lubricated utility trailer parts aside, it’s still necessary to inspect the trailer for wear and installation errors. For instance, the safety chains must be free of severe wear and stretch to prevent breakage during travel, and they have to cross only once under the receiver. You also have to ensure that the tail, turn, and towing lights are all working properly; otherwise, it may cause a pileup on the road when following vehicles fail to notice the trailer.
If you’ve left your trailer unmaintained for months, chances are some of its parts are already faulty. Instead of taking the risk of keeping the parts as is for one more use, consider replacing them with new and more durable pieces. You can purchase utility trailer kits from reliable distributors like Champion Trailers. You can even request their experienced technicians to check and repair your utility trailer and save more by purchasing only what you actually need.
(Source: Utility Trailer Maintenance, eHow.com)