Vehicle maintenance tips before towing

Places to go, things to see, stuff to haul—we get it—but you want to get there safely. Before you hook up a trailer, check out the following tips to ensure a great and safe experience. And of course, if you have a lot of traveling coming up and you want a second set of eyes on your truck, give us a call. Easily located in Irving, in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, we can get you scheduled for routine maintenance or for a good once-over before you load her up and haul. American Auto Masters is here for all of your vehicle needs.

 

Safety Tips for Towing

Before you start

  • Keep in mind that towing requires additional time for starting/stopping. Drive accordingly.
  • Make sure to level your trailer during attaching, for safety.
  • Make sure the ball and shank fit correctly.
  • Check lights, tires, and pressure before driving.
  • Properly secure cargo, and get someone to double check.
  • Proper towing mirrors are a necessity for an adequate line of sight.
  • Practice backing up if you’ve never towed before. It’s well worth the extra time to practice.

Safety Checklist

  1. Brakes- heavier, longer load means brakes are even more important. Remember to slow your speed, especially driving downhill, and make sure the brakes are in excellent condition.
  2. Cooling System- heavier load means more work. You don’t want to overheat. Check radiator, water pump, thermostat, and cooling fan.
  3. Hitching device- check the hitch ball for snugness, and double check the weight of the load and towing capacity of trailer/truck.
  4. Safety chains- it’s a backup, but a required one. In the event the trailer comes unhitched, your chains need to be able to keep everything together.
  5. Springs and shocks- Is your vehicle’s suspension up to the task you are about to ask for it? Upgrade if necessary.
  6. Tires-don’t forget to check the trailer’s tires! Look for wear and tear, dry rot, and aging. Older tires need additional inspection.
  7. Mirrors- get that visibility in check with extended towing mirrors. It’s worth the upgrade to ensure you can see around you.
  8. Fluids- fluids, including oil have to be replaced more often when you are towing regularly.

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