First-time Dolly Trailer Buyers: Instructions to Help You Get Through

Posted on: 4 January 2019

A dolly trailer refers to an unpowered type of trailer designed for connection to a truck, prime mover or tractor unit. Dolly trailers come in handy in rescue and other operations. The trailer attaches to the powered wheel of the automobile. Rear-wheel vehicles will host the dolly trailer on the hind axle while front-wheel vehicles affix it on the front wheels. If you are using a dolly trailer for the first time, it is possible to make a few mistakes that can cost you. The following guide will help you get it right when dealing with dolly trailers for the first time.

Mount Properly to Prevent Whipping

Uncontrollable whipping is one of the biggest challenges when towing dolly trailers. It refers to a side-to-side movement of the trailer, which poses great danger to other road users. If you want to prevent this, always load the vehicle-in-tow facing the dolly trailer. This means that the front wheels of the vehicle you are towing should face the dolly trailer. If you load the vehicle-in-tow facing away from the dolly trailer, the combination you are towing will begin to whip violently. This can make you lose control and cause an accident.

Proper Loading is Key 

Loading is also an important element when it comes to dolly trailers. You must be aware of the weight limitations of the tow vehicle so that you don't overload the axles. Normally, the safe working range is a 350-kilogramme variance between the tow vehicle and the vehicle-in-tow. The tow vehicle must be heavier. If your vehicle-in-tow is one thousand kilogrammes, then the tow vehicle should be at least 1,350 kilogrammes. Remove any necessary cargo from the vehicle-in-tow to stay within load limitations and keep the vehicle-in-tow from whipping. 

Drive Cautiously

You will need to make some changes to the way you drive when towing a dolly trailer. Due to the added weight on the vehicle, you might notice slight swaying when you exceed a certain speed. In such cases, take your foot off the accelerator and stay within safe speeds. You will also have to drive defensively. Anticipate stops on the road, always brake early and don't follow other vehicles very closely. To add on that, do not rely on brakes alone when going downhill. Shift the transmission into the lower gears so that the tow vehicle slows down before braking. Lastly, make sure that you adhere to all the speed limits on the road for optimal safety.