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Enclosed Trailers: Three Things To Check Before Each Trip

by Ian Howard

Whether you're planning a short trip, or long-distance travel, checking that your trailer is properly maintained will save you from the hassle of experiencing trouble while on the road and it will help keep you safe. One of the best ways to keep your trailer maintained and save time down the line, is to create a checklist. Before each trip, go over your checklist thoroughly. To get started, here are three things to check before heading out on the open road.

Check Breakaway Switch

The breakaway switch is an emergency mechanism used when the trailer separates from your tow vehicle. It basically acts as an emergency brake, whereby the lanyard pin ejects from the breakaway switch, which automatically shuts off the circuit from the brakes to the trailer battery. This action activates the brakes. First make sure the breakaway battery is fully charged, then unplug the trailer connector from the to vehicle. Next manually pull the pin out of the breakaway switch to activate the system. It takes quite a bit of force to remove the pin, so you'll need to pull hard. If the breakaway system is working properly, the brakes will be applied and you won't be able to pull the trailer with your tow vehicle. If the wheels begin to roll, that means it's time to have your breakaway system serviced.

Check Tire Pressure

Just like other vehicles, the tires on your enclosed trailer are essential to performance. You wouldn't want to experience a tire problem during a haul, that's why before each trip it's necessary to check tire pressure. Good tire pressure ensures stability and maximum load carrying capacity. A tire pressure gauge is a must among your supplies. If you don't have one, it's best to purchase one from a trusted manufacturer. It's also best to check tire pressure cold, which is either before, or several hours after you've driven.

Test Trailer Lights

Enclosed cargo trailers have four or more LED lights that keep you and others safe on the road and prevent hazards. It's crucial to make sure all of your lights are working before a trip. Otherwise you could get pulled over, or worse, cause an accident. Activate the trailer's light controls and make sure that they're operating correctly. For the lights to work, you must have good connectivity where the ball and trailer come together. If the lights aren't working, you'll need to do some troubleshooting. Sometimes it's as easy as disconnecting the trailer, cleaning off the ball and reconnecting.