I know from experience this is something that often goes unnoticed or unchecked by most drivers when trailering. I had a close call recently and so did one of our friends so I thought it was worth sharing. The above photo was a close call I had as the nut and bolt on my trailer ball had worked its way loose and was very close to falling off. It was only a matter of time if I did not catch this that my trailer would have either come loose, or if the trailer was not attached the nut and ball would have fallen out and become a flying projectile that could have caused some serious damage to another vehicle, someone’s property, or a person. This is an instance where something we would never think would happen could happen and it would cause some serious damage that very well exceeds your auto liability limits. Scary situations like this that may never happen, but could happen are another good reason to carry umbrella insurance.
Above is another example of someone we know who their trailer ball just snapped off, but thankfully they were smart and wrapped their safety chain around the trailer which saved them from further damage to the trailer or causing a dangerous situation for other motorists.
Next time before you hit the road with your trailer take some time and:
1) Check that your trailer lights. Make sure they are working properly including your brakes, hazards, and signals.
2) Check your tires. This goes for both your tow vehicle and your trailer. Tires that are not properly inflated can negatively affect your handling.
3) Check your brakes. Whether your trailer is equipped with surge brakes or electric brakes, make sure the emergency “breakaway” cable/chain is properly attached to your tow vehicle.
4) Check that your trailer is loaded properly. It is important to first make sure that you are staying within the trailer’s maximum load capacity, but also that your cargo is positioned properly. Roughly 60% of the trailer’s load should be placed on the front half of the trailer and evenly distributed on both the left and right side.
5) Check and adjust your mirrors. Double check and make sure your side view mirrors give you a clear view all the way back to the end of the trailer.
6) Check the trailer in general. Do a walk around the trailer and look for any loose straps, bolts, equipment, etc., or anything out of the ordinary that might cause concern before starting out on your trip.
Lastly always stay within your limits and make sure you have reviewed your vehicle and trailer’s towing capacity.
If you have any questions about your trailer insurance, umbrella insurance, or your insurance coverage in general do not hesitate to contact us today at (425)212-3505