There are a couple of necessary checks you should carry out every time you decide to have automobile towing – Be it a caravan or a horsebox with a car – to ensure you are towing safely and legally. Note that you can be fined hefty fees, be banned from driving and get penalty points for using a car in a dangerous condition.
For tow ball and connections, check that the trailer is correctly coupled to the tow ball or pin by following the manufacturer’s advice. Ensure that the coupling height is correct and that the 7 or 13 core cable and plug are not damaged.
Use a breakaway cable or secondary coupling. This engages the trailer’s brakes or stops the trailer if it becomes detached from the car. Ensure that the cable is not worn or damaged and that there is enough slack in the cable to avoid unnecessary braking.
For wheels and tires, check both tires of the car and the trailer. Ensure that they don’t have any cuts or bulges. Inflate the tire as per the manufacturer’s specification for the load being carried. Each tire should have a tread depth of at least 1.6mm.
For lights and indicators, check that there is no damage to the lights and that they are working correctly. For load and weight limit, make sure the trailer isn’t overloaded and that the load is evenly distributed. The load should also be secure.
When driving, you should not drive faster than the speed limit for the type of road. In the event the trailer starts to snake or swerve, ease off the accelerator and reduce your speed gently. Snaking can be an indicator that you are moving too fast or the trailer is loaded incorrectly. While approaching a bend, don’t break harshly as this makes the trailer unstable. Reduce your speed in plenty of time while approaching any hazard.