Towing Tips

NO PASSENGERS IN TRAILERS!
Never allow people in trailers while towing, under any circumstances.

TRAILER LOADING
Proper loading helps prevent sway. Place heavy objects on the floor ahead of the axle. Balance the load side-to-side. Secure it to prevent shifting. Tongue weight should be 10-15 percent of gross weight for most trailers. Too low a percentage of tongue weight can cause sway. NEVER load the trailer rear-heavy. LOAD THE TRAILER HEAVIER IN FRONT.

DRIVING
The additional weight of a trailer affects acceleration, braking and handling. Allow extra time for passing, stopping and changing lanes. Severe bumps can damage your towing vehicle, hitch and trailer. Drive slowly on rough roads. STOP AND MAKE A THOROUGH INSPECTION IF ANY PART OF YOUR TOWING SYSTEM STRIKES THE ROAD. CORRECT ANY PROBLEMS BEFORE RESUMING TRAVEL

CONSULT YOUR VEHICLE OWNERS MANUAL – Be sure that your tow vehicle can tow the weight of the trailer you are wishing to tow. If the information is not available you may also consult with the vehicle manufacturer or dealership.

CONSULT WITH A TOWING PROFESSIONAL. – Here at J&M Camper Sales we have been installing trailer hitches, fifth wheel hitches, sway controls and many other towing systems for over 41 years. We supply hitches by Draw-Tite, Reese, Husky and many more. We are a Draw-Tite Hitch Pro. We can assist you with all of your tow systems needs.

CHECK FOR EXCESSIVE SWAY AND ELIMINATE IT
Excessive sway can lead to loss of control. Sway motion should settle out quickly. Sway tends to increase on a downgrade. Starting slowly, increase speed in gradual steps. If sway occurs, adjust your trailer load and equipment. Repeat until the trailer is stable at highway speed. Do this whenever your trailer loading changes.

IF YOUR TRAILER SUDDENLY STARTS TO SWAY
Turbulence from another vehicle, a wind gust, or a downgrade can cause sudden sway. So can a shift of the trailers load or a trailer tire blowout. IF THE TRAILER SWAYS, IT IS THE DRIVER’S RESPONSIBILITY TO ASSESS THE SITUATION AND TAKE APPROPRIATE ACTION. Below are suggestions that may apply, depending on conditions:

DO
Reduce your speed gradually.
Hold the steering wheel as steady as possible.
If your trailer has electric brakes, apply the trailer brakes alone, without using the tow vehicle’s brakes
DON’T
Don’t hit your brake pedal hard unless absolutely necessary. A “jackknife” can result.
Don’t try to steer out of the sway condition. Sudden or violent steering can make it worse.
Don’t speed up. Sway increases as you go faster.
Don’t continue towing a trailer that tends to sway. You may lose control during an emergency maneuver or if the conditions listed above occur.

J&M Camper & Marine - Augusta, Maine - Your Premier RV & Marine Dealership Since 1967