On any moderate-length drive during the summer months, you'll often encounter a boat trailer parked at the side of the road, obviously suffering from some issue that makes it unable to continue to be towed. When you're an avid boater, the last thing you want to do is be sidelined on the edge of the highway with a trailer problem that prevents you from enjoying the water that day. The best way to avoid running into preventable problems with your boat trailer is to take it to a boating center for an annual service — ideally, before the start of the boating season so that any potential issues can be addressed without cutting into your boating time. Here are some areas to ask about.
Failed electronics in a boat trailer could result in a rear-end accident or even a citation from the police. It's a good idea to ask for a thorough inspection of your trailer's electronics when you take it in for a service. This will involve more than just checking that the brake lights and turn signals work; the technician will also check the condition of the wiring hookup and the wires themselves. Pests such as mice may have sought shelter in your boat and trailer over the winter, and they can often chew through the wires. The service appointment will catch any such issues.
While a flat tire can force you to pull over on your way to the lake, worn-out wheel bearings can keep you on the sidelines longer than it takes to mount your spare tire. Because boat trailer tires are smaller than your vehicle's tires, they spin much faster — and are prone to wearing out quickly. The service technician will check the health of the bearings, lubricate them if necessary and recommend that they be changed if they look close to failing.
If your boat trailer is old, it's possible that the hitch can get damaged or worn out. When this is the case, the hitch will not grip the hitch ball properly, and a bumpy road could cause the trailer to bounce off the hitch. The technician will inspect the inside of the hitch, check the locking mechanism and make sure there are no signs of wear that could compromise the hitch's performance. If this is the case, the technician will likely recommend that the hitch is changed for safety reasons.
Contact a business, such as AB Trailers, for more information.