7 trailer tips to make your life easier
1. Look for durability
When fences need repairs or gardens need attention, the last thing you want to be fixing is your trailer. Purchasing a trailer of good quality can reduce maintenance, says Clint Lancaster, technical director of the National Association of Trailer Manufacturers (NATM). He offers a few examples of quality indicators in trailers.
Look for the NATM decal, often placed above the trailer's tongue. NATM's voluntary compliance program tests the manufacturing processes of trailers to ensure the trailers meet federal safety regulations and accepted industry standards. Trailer companies who pass this test can display an NATM decal as proof of their certification.
Lancaster says the width between the cross members can also indicate a trailer's quality. If the cross members are more than 24 inches apart, the trailer bed may be unable to support a large amount of weight. If you are hauling heavy-duty materials, consider a trailer with cross members 12 to 16 inches apart.
An examination of the paint job on a trailer can also give you a clue about its quality. A high-quality trailer is usually primed before it's painted, while a lower-quality one is often painted directly on the metal, says Lancaster.
A steel trailer will rust in areas that get a lot of snow and, subsequently, have salted roads. If you live in a snowy region, consider aluminum trailers or galvanized steel that is protected against rust.
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