Towing Safety checklist
A comprehensive list of pre-trip safety “must do’s”.
- It is important that both the tow vehicle & trailer are up to date on any recommended maintenance. Towing puts additional stress on the tow vehicle, making it very important that it is current on maintenance.
- Check & adjust the tire pressure if necessary on both the tow vehicle & trailer. Also check the condition of the tires, being sure to look for cracking & dry rot. Don’t forget the tow vehicle and trailer’s spare tire!
- Make sure the lug nuts/bolts on the wheels of the tow vehicle & trailer are torqued properly.
- Look to see that the grease caps & plugs are in place & not leaking.
- Check that the hitch & coupler that connect the trailer to the tow vehicle are properly secured with safety pins in place. Don’t forget to make sure that the hitch & coupler are made to go together. For example, that the coupler & tow ball are of like sizing – 2″ coupler for a 2″ tow ball.
- Verify that the safety chains are attached properly. They should be criss-crossed & have enough length to allow for turning, but should not be dragging the ground.
- Make sure that the wiring is connected properly with enough length to allow for turning, but not be dragging the ground.
- Ensure that the brakes are operating correctly on the tow vehicle & trailer (if equipped with brakes).
- Verify that the breakaway system is connected properly & working correctly. The breakaway lanyard should be secured to the body of the tow vehicle should the hitch fail.
- Ensure that the trailer jack is raised & locked into place.
- Make sure that the trailer ramps are properly secured (if applicable).
- Verify that the weight of the load does not exceed the manufacturer’s listed towing capacity of the trailer.
- Make sure that all lights are working & meet DOT lighting requirements.
- Check that the license plate is properly secured & illuminated.
- Be sure to bring wheel chocks along with you for the trailer.
- Check that all cargo is properly secured to the trailer.
- Ensure that the weight load is properly distributed. The tow vehicle & trailer should be balanced from front to back as well as side to side.
- Set the mirrors on the tow vehicle so that you have good visibility of the trailer & it’s cargo.
- Check for any restrictions on bridges & tunnels on the routes that you will be traveling.
That's it! Be safe & have fun out there!
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Based in Centreville, Maryland, Centreville Trailer Parts LLC wants to be a leader for all things needed to keep trailers in good working order. We have parts for all kinds of trailers, such as boat trailers, car trailers, enclosed trailers, horse trailers & large tractor trailers. When a part is needed, we WILL get it for you. Centreville Trailer Parts LLC has local Trailer Parts Stores serving customers in Maryland & Virginia, and an Online Trailer Parts store serving customers worldwide.