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First long trailer pull

Old 06-11-2019, 04:46 PM
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Default First long trailer pull

I will be making my first long trailer pull (500mi) and was wondering if anyone had any advice as I feel I'm bound to be forgetting something ?

I have already replaced all 4 hubs, Tires and updated the breaks on my trailer + gotten all new tie-down straps.
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Old 06-11-2019, 05:16 PM
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Sounds like you're ahead of the game on your pre-trip maintenance. Several reccomendations would be to check trailer tire pressure rating on the side walks and I usually run my trailer tires closer to the top PSI allowed. Speed is your next concern. What is the speed rating on your tires. Most trailer tires are between 60-65 MPH max so keep that in mind when traile ring. I normally run my camper or boat trailer at less than 65 MPH and I believe that keeps things in check. If you are racing to get there quicker and have a mild break down, all the extra speed you were driving goes right out the window. F you want to get a little more anal, get a cheap heat thermometer gun and stop once in a while and check the hub temps. I have to stop every couple hours to pee and/or fuel up and I check my hubs by touch. Good luck with your trip. I have trailered 500 miles about 15-20 times and never had a break down yet. My friends in the same caravan, not so good luck. Last thing, maybe pickup a replacement hub complete with races, bearings, etc. to add to your tool box. Spare tire or 2 wouldn't hurt either.
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Old 06-11-2019, 05:20 PM
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I trailer 1000 miles each way in July for vacation. I use an infrared gun to measure hub temps at each fuel stop. High temps will warn you of a bearing issue. Anything higher than 15 degrees above ambient temperature would be a cause for concern. Note, however, if you've had a long downhill and braking prior to taking the temps, that could cause them to be higher than normal.
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Old 06-11-2019, 05:27 PM
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Take 2 spares. And a small chain and racket binder in case you lose a bearing or hub and need to chain it up to get to next exit.
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Old 06-11-2019, 05:47 PM
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Check the jack in the driveway, determine where you will place the jack and make sure you can lift the trailer sufficiently to remove the tire.
A battery powered impact driver makes changing tires much easier.
Check that the lug nuts aren't too lose or tight and check the lug nuts after about 30-50 miles.
Replace any tire older than 4 years even if the tread looks great.
Make sure you have straps that will prevent the boat from sliding forward in case of a rapid deacceleration. Don't depend upon the winch stand alone.
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Old 06-11-2019, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by m9000 View Post
Check the jack in the driveway, determine where you will place the jack and make sure you can lift the trailer sufficiently to remove the tire.
A battery powered impact driver makes changing tires much easier.
Check that the lug nuts aren't too lose or tight and check the lug nuts after about 30-50 miles.
Replace any tire older than 4 years even if the tread looks great.
Make sure you have straps that will prevent the boat from sliding forward in case of a rapid deacceleration. Don't depend upon the winch stand alone.
This is all good advice, especially about the tie downs. I've seen boats on the side of highway that obviously "drove up" the winch stand.

Some trailer axles call for torqueing at 10, 25, and 50 miles. That might be excessive, but I'd do it at 25ish and 50ish, and check the hub temperatures at the same time.

Make sure the trailer lights work, and have spares bulbs and fuses for the tow vehicle.
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Old 06-12-2019, 05:37 AM
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at a fuel stops, i check my hubs and tires with an infrared gun. i had to do a tire change on my last tow, which was 350 miles. it didn't blow, but was 160 degrees. i was towing heavy with fuel and the fender was rubbing the tire when i hit bumps.

one thing i haven't seen mentioned is hand cleaner and paper towels.
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Old 06-12-2019, 05:56 AM
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Toss the grease gun in there. Top off the grease before beginning the return trip, if you have "bearing buddies" or something similar. The only good use I have found for a "beach bag" like you get at all office party give-a-ways is to put ther grease gun it for storage and transport.

Good luck
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Old 06-12-2019, 06:15 AM
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https://www.kodiaktrailerbrakes.com/...le_p_1282.html

Just as important as a spare tire. This may not be the exact one for your trailer, but this is the idea. Have a pre-assembled pre-greased hub and bearing kit in your truck. It can really save the day.
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Old 06-12-2019, 06:59 AM
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Had a tire blow out on the Turnpike last year. One of the road rangers pulled up with one of these and it was much less hassle than having to use a jack.

They make plastic ones too.

Trailer Aid Trailer Aid

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Old 06-12-2019, 07:51 AM
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Lots of good advice here. Just got back from the Keys. Pulled 1800 miles. Not one problem. Checked everything. Used my new infrared gun, and only squirted 2 pumps of grease, once each way. Best of luck.
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Old 06-12-2019, 07:58 AM
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The OP didn’t describe his hubs. If they are lubed and in good shape, they shouldn’t require servicing during a 1,000 mile round trip. Don’t add grease unless grease is needed or risk overfilling and blowing out the seals.
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:20 AM
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I travel Baja a lot, one of the things I do is make sure to adjust the rear view mirrors so that you can see the trailer tires on both sides.That way you can see exactly where the tires are tracking! I also place a extra winch strap over the the hull and strap it directly to the trailer, so that in the event of an emergency the boat will stay on the trailer. I would also tie a big red flag onto the outdrive to draw attention to driver behind you. Good luck, safe travels!
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:31 AM
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Allow more room for stopping when driving in traffic!
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Old 06-12-2019, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Inlander View Post
The OP didn’t describe his hubs. If they are lubed and in good shape, they shouldn’t require servicing during a 1,000 mile round trip. Don’t add grease unless grease is needed or risk overfilling and blowing out the seals.
The hubs are brand new as are the breaks.

Thanks everyone for the good advice!
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Old 06-12-2019, 06:01 PM
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I tow from Baltimore to key west 2-3 times a year. Everyone above has a few great ideas and here’s 2 of mine. Amazon sells a cheap tpms system. 4 valve stem caps that check pressure and temp. Aside from checking the hubs by hand I use it to tell me if I should be worried. Yes I know it’s air pressure temp but a hot bearing would heat it enough to stand out on the display screen. The other thing that has been said before is good tires and I always keep a spare with me
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:33 PM
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Forget the jack. All you need is a 4x4 block of wood. Which ever side has a blown tire, pull the good tire up on the block. Done it many times no problem.

All you gotta do is hook on and go. You already have your hubs and tires done. If anything is gonna happen it's gonna happen out on the interstate
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Old 06-13-2019, 12:06 AM
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All the above are good suggestions. If you are prepared, you typically don't need all of the spare parts. Go unprepared, and everyrhing bad will happen. Do not exceed the weight or speed capacities of the tires. 4-5 year old tires max. A good breaker bar for lug nuts is helpful. A can of penetrating oil could be helpful.

I trailer about 3k miles a year. I carry 2 spare tires and hub assemblies. I check tire pressure, hubs, brakes before we leave. Check hub and tire temps at every stop. I keep a tool kit in the truck. I just bought a tpms system for the trailer but have yet to use it.
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Old 06-13-2019, 12:52 AM
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Sounds like you will be ready for the road... I saw you mentioned new tiedown traps, I personally recommend getting some 2in ratchet straps instead of the standard boat tie down straps, you will be able to secure your boat to the trailer better and it will be a safer ride overall.... Something else I would suggest is using 1 strap from the bow eye pulling straight down or at least in a downward direction to take the bounce out of the bow... I also use an additional strap thru the bow eye pulling back towards the rear of the trailer, this keep the pressure off of your front post in case of a heavy breaking incident...

As far as straps go, I would suggest getting some with the flat snap hooks, I am not sure if you have an aluminum trailer or not but the flat J hooks work great for I beam and C channel trailers but the snap hooks can work as well... I attached some pics of what they look like...

You don't have to do it the way I mention but after many years of boat transport this is the way that I have found to best secure the load and have safe handling...

As others have mentioned, at every stop feel the tires and hubs to make certain there is no excessive heat from either... I carry 2 spares, several blocks of wood to lift an axle off the ground, a jack in case I have more than 1 tire blow on the same side, I carry an electric 1/2 impact wrench along with a breaker bar, a general assortment of tools etc... Prepare for the worse and hope for the best...

Oh, as far as your boat is concerned I prefer motors down at least up against the trim cylinders or a block of wood in between to provide support, I prefer not to have the added stress on the transom with motors up and bouncing... Make sure all of your electronics covers are stowed or taped in place (I prefer stowed), remove any canvass or isenglass/ acrylic enclosures (they don't hold up well at highway speeds), assume anything not screwed down or strapped down can and usually will find a way to blow out during transport...

Good luck, safe haulin' if you have any routing questions anywhere in the country feel free to call, text, PM or email me and I will offer my advice (not sure where you are headed or or what boat you are hauling)....






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Old 06-13-2019, 04:09 AM
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Originally Posted by onejackerr View Post
Toss the grease gun in there. Top off the grease before beginning the return trip, if you have "bearing buddies" or something similar. The only good use I have found for a "beach bag" like you get at all office party give-a-ways is to put ther grease gun it for storage and transport.

Good luck
Put an old towel in your transom well and a pair of gloves with grease gun. Give' em a shot every time you refuel.
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