Cars, boats, motorcycle trailers, and RVs are just some of the things you may see being pulled behind a vehicle. If you do not know how to secure them or handle them on the road, they are hazards. This is also true if a driver does not know how to properly pull a trailer behind a vehicle as well. Not just anyone is ready to jump in their vehicle and tow something. First, you will need to do some preparation and common sense before hitting the road.
How-to Safely Tow a Trailer Behind a Vehicle (AACC-A)
To start, you need to make sure you have the proper equipment to pull a a vehicle behind a trailer. You will need a vehicle that is capable of towing things. The type of vehicle you will need will depend on what you are towing. For example, towing a heavier, larger trailer will require more power and force than towing a lighter trailer. Be sure to check your vehicle’s towing capacity against what you want to tow before you hit the road.
You will need to make sure your vehicle is powerful and also has a tow hitch. There are several parts you will need with this. They are a trailer hitch receiver, ball mount, pin and clip, and trailer hitch ball. Also, you will need to have a wiring harness. These give power to the signals and lights on the trailer. It is a law that your trailer must have power to its lights.
Adjust Your Driving
When you tow a trailer behind a vehicle, you will need to adjust your driving habits. When your load is heavy, your vehicle will take a longer time to stop when you brake. Make sure to give more space when you are following another vehicle. You will need to allow more time and space when turning your vehicle with a trailer behind it. Also, do not forget to allow for your extra length when you change lanes.
Driving, turning, braking, and even backing up will be different than you are used to with just your normal vehicle. Make sure to practice doing these things before you head out on a long trip. Find a big empty parking lot to practice these things in. Do not commit to taking it on the road without being comfortable with the setup. It is not worth the risk of putting your safety or the safety of others at risk until you are comfortable and have prepared to pull a trailer.