While trailers certainly aren’t as complex as a vehicle, they still require regular care to stay in good working order. Failing to provide consistent maintenance on your trailer can lead to deterioration of vital parts, resulting in expensive repairs. There are a few parts that must be maintained to avoid costly trailer repair. Here are a few maintenance tips to keep these parts – and your trailer – working properly.
Proper maintenance of tires is a no-brainer. Tires should be properly inflated to extend the life of your tires and ensure more even tire wear. Check the tire pressure regularly, preferably before driving, as this will increase tire pressure and not give you a true reading. Also, inspect your trailer tires regularly, looking for cracks or feathering in the sidewalls and checking for uneven wear, which could be a sign of poor inflation or undercarriage issues.
Your trailer’s electrical components also need to be maintained. Much of this relies on simple visual inspection. If you notice a light not working, check the electrical plug to ensure that it is clear of dirt and other debris that could result in a poor connection. Bulbs or wiring could be another issue, as these will wear out over time. Check the wiring and the rubber grommets to ensure they are intact and not corroded, and repair or replace them if needed.
If your trailer has wood flooring, you should also be taking steps to maintain it. Wood that has been exposed to moisture will begin to weaken and rot over the years, so if possible, keep your trailer in a dry place. Use a broom and compressed air to clean it, rather than a pressure washer. Once a year, test the wood by poking it with a sharp knife. If the flooring is in good shape, the knife will not penetrate the wood. However, if the knife goes into the wood, it may be time to replace the flooring.
It should come as no great surprise that maintaining your trailer’s brakes are a must as well. Brake pads, drums and disks should all be checked periodically, but depending on your comfort level and skill in working with brakes, this may require the assistance of a service professional.