Regularly Checking ( Maintaining ) your trailer is the least expensive thing you can do to get years of good service from your trailer.

Trailer Running Gear Tips

Maintaining your trailer is very important and something you should do on a regular basis. You did not buy a trailer to set at home, you bought a trailer to get out and do the things you need to do, if you bought it for business, or the things you love to do, if you bought it for recreation. In either case being ‘broken down’ is never fun, having a problem a long way from home is worse. Review these 32 Trailer Running Gear Tips to see how you can help yourself enjoy using your trailer.

Tip #1:  Always make sure the tires on your trailer are inflated to the proper air pressure as specified by the tire manufacturer.

Tip #2:  Check wheel fastener torque frequently. Each time a wheel is removed and re-mounted, the lug nuts should be checked and re-tightened after ten (10) miles, twenty five (25) miles and fifty (50) miles and periodically thereafter.

Tip #3:  Use the proper wheel fastener and torque range as specified by the wheel manufacturer. Excessive torque can permanently damage the wheel while insufficient torque can result in stud failure.

Tip #4:  Remember to inspect and service wheel bearings regularly as stated in your Operation & Maintenance Service Manual.

Tip #5:  Use the proper bearing adjustment method as stated in your Operation & Maintenance Service Manual to assure reliable, long life performance.

Tip #6:  Wheels and tires must be properly matched to each other to ensure safe, reliable performance.

Tip #7:  Do not exceed the capacity of your trailer’s running gear. Overloading can seriously degrade the life of the various components, result in unsafe braking and may lead to catastrophic failure.

Tip #8:  When using after-market wheels, make sure that they fit properly and that the wheel studs are long enough to ensure proper thread engagement.

Tip #9:  Remember to have your tires rotated and balanced according to the tire manufacturer’s recommendations.

Tip #10:  Check your brakes before every use to make sure they are functioning properly.

Tip #11:  It is very important to pull your trailer so that it is running level. If the hitch is too high or too low, the trailer axle(s) may be unevenly loaded and can result in either a tire or axle failure.

Tip #12:  Inspect your emergency breakaway devices to make sure they are in good working order before each use.

Tip #13:  When loading your trailer, make sure enough weight is being carried on the hitch to ensure proper weight distribution and good handling.

Tip #14:  Never fix an air leak in your wheel by putting a tube in the tire. The only safe solution for a leaky wheel is to replace it.

Tip #15:  Support the back of the trailer at the ramps when loading up equipment or vehicles to prevent overloading the rear axle.

Tip #16:  Remember to use recommended safety tools, personal protection, and procedures when servicing your trailer.

Tip #17:  Follow the trailer manufacturer’s guidelines for lifting and supporting trailer when servicing running gear. Never use the axle or suspension as a jack point to lift the trailer.

Tip #18:  Use caution when servicing brakes since, some lining materials can contain asbestos.

Tip #19:  Remember to lubricate the moving parts in your brake per the manufacturer’s recommendations. Proper maintenance will prevent them from seizing up. Do not allow grease or oil to contaminate the linings, magnet, or drum surfaces.

Tip #20:  The Gross Axle Weight Rating (GAWR) of your running gear is determined by the lowest rated component in the assembly. The capacity of the wheel, tire, axle, brake, springs/rubber and hub are all considered.

Tip #21:  The location of the load on a trailer will affect the ride characteristics. Too little load on the hitch can cause the trailer to wander or sway. Too much hitch load can overload your towing vehicle’s suspension.

Tip #22:  If you experience uneven tire wear, it is important to note the type and nature of the wear pattern in order to determine the cause. Contact your tire dealer to assist in troubleshooting the problem.

Tip #23:  Spread axle mounting will lend support to frame structure but will result in more tire wear from side scrubbing when negotiating sharp turns or corners.

Tip #24:  Axles should be spaced far enough apart to allow a minimum of 1″ clearance between the tires. More space would be required if tire chains are to be used.

Tip #25:  Widest possible track and axle mounting provides the best design for stability, especially when hauling high center of gravity loads.

Tip #26:  Bump clearance is the distance from the top of a leaf spring mounted axle to the bottom of the frame. If this distance is too small the axle may come in contact with the frame and result in damage to axle. If the space is too large, you could prematurely break your spring.

Tip #27:  Make sure there is enough clearance around the sides and top of the tires to prevent the tire from rubbing on the frame or other trailer structure.

Tip #28:  Oil lubricated bearings are best suited for trailers that are used continuously. Grease will provide better protection for bearings during long periods of storage.

Tip #29:  Axles fitted with Dual wheels should never be operated with only one wheel in place or with one of the two tires flat. Doing so can seriously overstress the wheel bearings and result in bearing failure.

Tip #30:  Mixing aluminum wheels and steel dual wheels will result in galvanic corrosion between the two dissimilar metals. This corrosion can cause wheels to loosen and possibly result in stud failure and wheel run-off.

Tip #31:  Replace brake shoes if the linings have been contaminated with oil or grease, are less that 1/16″ thick, or are abnormally scored or gouged. Minor cracks in linings are not detrimental unless chunks of the linings are missing.

Tip #32:  Remember that your new brake shoes need to be burnished or “seated in”. This process may take quite a few stops to get the shoes fully worn in before maximum brake performance can be achieved.

For questions or concerns, call Jason 419-298-0777 or email him at: jdietsch7@yahoo.com

Trailer Running Gear Tips

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OUR THANKS TO DEXTER AXLE

FOR THESE GREAT RUNNING GEAR TIPS

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