Category Archives: Helpful Hints and Tips

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How To Hook Up A Trailer

If you’re new around here or around towing in general, you might not know how to hook up a trailer. And that’s ok. What might be intuitive for some, can be a source of uncertainty and anxiety for others (guilty).  

All the more reason to be prepared, right? 

In this article, we’ll go over all the steps to getting it done right so that you can confidently move forward to your destination.

Let’s get right to it!

How to hook up a trailer

How To Hook Up A Trailer

First I’d like to note that you can do this by yourself, especially if your vehicle has a backup camera. If not, it’s always easier if you have that second person standing by to help you. So grab a co-worker, spouse, or neighbor and ask them to be your spotter.

1. Match the ball size to the coupler.

Before you do anything, you need to know that the ball and coupler will fit together. The diameter of the ball is almost always stamped on top with the most common size being 2 inches. Likewise, the coupler on the tongue of your trailer will have the required ball sized stamped into it along with the trailer’s towing capacity.

If these two numbers don’t match, STOP. You cannot tow a trailer with a ball that doesn’t fit. Doing so is dangerous, illegal and downright irresponsible.

Before proceeding, you’ll need to head to your nearest auto parts store and get the right sized ball. If you’re located in West Michigan, stop by Grandville Trailer, where our guys will get you taken care of. They are always happy to answer any questions you may have about how to hook up a trailer.

Tow and Stow Ball Mount
Known to be “The last hitch you’ll ever need,” The Tow n Stow adjustable ball mount comes with 3 different sized balls all in one so that you never need buy and change out your hitch for different trailers. Best of all, it folds under your bumper for easy storing! Available at Grandville Trailer.

2. Raise and Unlock the Coupler

Because you will be positioning your vehicle’s ball mount under the trailer hitch, you need to ensure that the trailer’s coupler is high enough for the ball to fit underneath. Also make sure that the lock on the trailer is flipped up in the unlock position.

Need a visual? Check out this great tutorial from Aluma Trailers!
Side note: we are an Aluma Dealer!

3. Back Into Place

Thankfully, most vehicles now have the backup camera on them. If yours doesn’t, this is the part where it’s nice to have a helper. Have then stand next to your trailer hitch and back up slowly until they tell you to stop. You want to stop when your ball is directly under the coupler. Depending on your vehicle, sometimes you can lean out of your window far enough to actually see your hitch lining up.

If you don’t have a camera, spotter or the ability to see your hitch, you’ll have to perform the old stop and check routine until you have the right position.

4. Lower Coupler and Connect

This is when you’ll lower your trailer hitch until it’s secure over the ball. If it’s lined up correctly, you’ll be able to easily put the lock back down.

Once the coupler is locked onto the ball, there are two very important connections that need to be made.

  • The Safety Pin: Never forget the safety pin! This will go right back into the lock on the coupler to keep it from coming undone on the road.
  • Safety Chains: Cross the chains once under the hitch and then connect them to the receiver. This creates a safety net for your trailer hitch in the unlikely event that it does come undone. There needs to be some slack in the chains but not enough to come close to the ground. If your chains are too long, do not wrap them around the hitch. Shorten them to the proper length.
Here’s another look at how to hook up a trailer by Curt Manufacturing. We also carry Curt products at Grandville Trailer!

5. Electrical

Lastly you need to ensure that your trailer’s electrical is hooked up to your tow vehicle. This is not optional, as it is a Michigan law that your trailer have at lease one working taillight. Before you hit the road, test your running lights, brake lights and turn signals to be sure they are working. The same rule of the safety chains applies to your trailer harness. Make sure there is enough slack to make the turns but do not let it drag on the ground. For a quick fix, you can use a zip tie to connect it to the hitch to hold it off the ground.

Is your tow vehicle wired for towing? Give us a call and we can do that for you!

Once everything is properly hooked up, you’re ready to go! Remember to drive a little slower, allow for longer stopping distances and give yourself more room for turns when possible. Make sure your tires are properly inflated and DON’T EXCEED YOUR WEIGHT LIMITS!

Loading Your Trailer

Proper loading is just as important as correctly hooking up your trailer. Weight distribution is key to having a safe drive to your destination. Take a look at this excerpt from an article on the topic:

“A quick YouTube search on improperly loaded trailers can have you cringing and second guessing your ability. With too much tongue weight or negative tongue weight, a trailer is prone to swaying until it loses control. This results in the trailer jackknifing or flipping, sometimes flipping the tow vehicle too.

Too much tongue weight will weigh down the back tires of your vehicle and push your vehicle around, making it harder to steer and brake. On the contrary, when the the load is placed too far back, the tongue weight will be too light. Then the trailer is likely to start swaying on the highway.”

If you have any questions about how to hook up a trailer, give us a call! Our guys are always happy to help. We also have a great selection of trailer parts and accessories, including weight distribution hitches, tongue weight scales and so much more. We hope to see you soon!

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At Grandville Trailer, we’re pullin’ for ya!
-Ally Mollenkamp




DIY: Repack Wheel Bearings

Repack Wheel BearingsIt’s one of those “adulting is hard” chores that just has to get done whether or not you feel like it.

And hey, if you don’t want to do it, bring it in! Our guys can repack wheel bearings like it’s their job. Well, I suppose technically it is their job.

Anyways.

If you’re here, then you’d probably rather DIY and save some money. That’s great! We put together this quick step by step tutorial to help you along the way.

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Why you NEED to Repack Wheel Bearings

The wheel bearings need to stay well lubricated to work properly while bearing the weight of your trailer. Unfortunately, over time the grease breaks down, especially if water works its way inside the bearings. Therefore, it’s important to repack wheel bearings with grease on a regular basis.

It is recommended to do so every year or 10,000 miles. We are more than happy to do this for you at our shop; we take pride in providing the best trailer service in west Michigan. But we’re also happy to help out the DIYers at home!

5 Steps to Repack Wheel Bearings

Before you begin, you will want to have all your materials out and ready to go. Here is a complete list of everything you might want to use.

Materials Neededwheel-bearings
-Hammer
-Needle-nose pliers
-2 Jack stands
-Large flat head screwdriver
-Large adjustable wrench
-Wrench for lug nuts
-Solvent
-New cotter pin
-Bearing grease
-Gloves, clean rags and small pan

Some of these things can be substituted with a different tool, however having all these things on hand will help you do get the job done in a quick and somewhat* clean manner. Once you have these things it’s time to get in and get your hands dirty!12StepsBearing

Step 1: Removal

With the axle raised on a jack, remove the wheel and then the dustcap. The flat head screwdriver will work to take off the dustcap. Next, remove the cotter pin by unbending it and pulling it our with your needle nose pliers.  And finally remove the rear bearing.

Step 2: Cleaning 

Now it is time to take the seal out of the bearing. There are several ways to do this but we recommend simply prying it out with your flat head screw driver. Once that is out, you can remove the inner bearing as well. Use solvent to clean all the old grease off of the bearings, races, seal and hub surfaces. It’s important that you clean all parts thoroughly!

Step 3: Repacking

Once everything is out and clean, you can do the actual repacking. Do this by putting a glob of fresh grease on your palm and begin working it into the bearing. Make sure that it is fully packed and no gaps remain. It’s also ideal to add another layer of grease around the rollers, on the bearing race surfaces on the hub and the bearing’s faces. Basically, anywhere you can put new grease; do it.

Grease= good.

Step 4: Replacing

Once you’re done playing in the grease, tap in a new seal, ensuring that is is even and snug.

Step 5: Assembly

Really, the only thing left is to just put it all back together. Place the drum back on the axle (maybe add yet another glob of grease to it’s face). After the careful placement of the thrust washer and spindle nut, the drum should easily spin on the axle. Insert the new cotter pin and cover with the dustcap. After putting the wheel back in place, you’re done!

Well… with that one wheel, anyways.

Grandville Trailer Mechanic

Here is an additional list of tips to help you get the job done perfectly.
-If your trailer has been in storage for some time, it still needs this service done. Grease will break down on a parked trailer, too.
-Don’t torque the spindle nut when you are re-assembling. It will crush the bearings. Just make sure it is snug.
-Always replace the cotter pin.
-And just in case you happen to be “that guy” stranded on the highway, we think it’s a good idea to carry an extra set of seals and bearings, all which you can find in our store.


Trailer Service at Grandville Trailer

This simple task should take you about an hour to complete and is something that most people can do on their own at home. However, if you can’t find the time or space to do it yourself, need to bring your trailer in for another reason anyways, or are just having a bad Tuesday, we are more than happy to do this for you!

That’s what we’re here for!

Do you have an extra set of seals and bearings stored in your truck or trailer? If you don’t, you might consider swinging by and grabbing some. If you want to tackle this project at home, we are more than happy to answer any questions you have while you are here!

At Grandville Trailer, we’re pullin’ for ya! 

-Ally Mollenkamp
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LEAF SPRING vs. TORSION AXLE

“What’s the difference between a leaf spring and torsion axle?”

This is a very common question that our customers have when purchasing a trailer. Leaf spring vs. torsion axle; which one is better? We’d like to take a moment to educate YOU, the buyer on each of the two suspension types.  Consider it a quick crash course in trailer suspension.  We want to save you from getting ‘wrapped around the axle’,  and give you the confidence to make the right decision when buying a trailer.

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Leaf Spring vs. Torsion

Leaf Spring Axle

Leaf Spring Axles are the most commonly used suspension systems in the trailer industry and come standard on almost every type of trailer. They are made up of a series of curved stacked springs (leaves) that are attached under or over the trailer’s axle.  This is commonly called over-slung or under-slung.

Overslung 1

Over-slung

Under-slung

Under-slung

Leaf Spring Pro’s: 

  • Even weight distribution due to the built-in weight equalizer
  • Even tire wear for multi axle trailers
  • More affordable (up front)
  • Durable
  • Cheap and easy to repair

Leaf Spring Con’s: 

  • Repairs are needed more frequently
  • Bouncy ride on uneven or rough roads
  • Metal on metal design typically leads to faster wear

TORSION AXLE:

The stiff competitor of the Leaf Spring Axle, is known as the Torsion Axle. Torsion axles mount directly to the trailer’s frame and are made up of thick rubber cords concealed inside the axle’s tubing.  These cords are created to resist torsion and create suspension. Trailers don’t generally come stock with the torsion axle, but it is an available upgrade in many models.

Torsion Axle Pro’s:

  • Dependable
  • Quiet/Smoother ride
  • No metal on metal contact
  • Offers trailer rigidity as axle is bolted to the trailer
  • Increases handling control in crosswinds/rough roads
  • Maintenance free (except wheel bearing lubrication)

Torsion Axle Con’s

  • Not repairable
  • Costs more to replace
  • Severely bent axle can damage trailer frame
  • No impact distribution (ie: hitting a curb) full impact on one wheel or set of wheels
  • Rubber cords become stiffer in colder weather

Not everyone agrees on which axle type is better and it really depends on your preferences. Where you live, how often you use your trailer and what you’re carrying will play a big role in deciding which axle is right for you. If you have any more questions, please give us a call at 616-538-2290 or stop by. Also, keep in mind that we do have a full service garage and we are happy to assist you with any upgrades or maintenance that you need!

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We’re pullin’ for ya!

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How do you Know You are Hauling at the right Tongue Height? Here’s the Steps to Make Sure that you Are

So last month on the Grandville Trailer blog we posted about the Weigh Safe Hitch that has tons of adjustable features, including, adjustable height. Now you may be asking yourself, ” How do I know the right tongue height for the trailer I am towing?” You may also be asking yourself, “What’s wrong with towing something with the trailer not level?” Well, I’m here to answer those questions for you.

Let’s start with learning what the right ball mount height is needed for the trailer you are towing. It’s no secret that both trailers and vehicles have different heights. The goal, when determining the height of the ball mount, is trying to keep the trailer as level as possible when driving down the road. First, you need to determine if you need our ball mount to have a rise or a drop. If the trailer coupler (the spot that rests on the ball mount), is taller than the receiving tube (the opening that the ball mount goes into on your vehicle), than you need your ball mount in the rise position. If the opposite is true than you need your ball mount in the drop position.

coupler height                                                             Hitch-Height-300x300

Now you are asking, “How much rise or drop do I need?” Well you can figure this out with a level and a measuring tape. First, make sure that your trailer is level, then measure from the ground to the bottom of the coupler. Next measure from the ground to the top of the receiving tube on your vehicle. The difference is the amount of drop or rise that you need.

Check out this video for a nice visual to walk you through the steps.

 

Now to answer the question about why the height of your trailer is important. The short answer is that it is easier to tow something at the right height. The longer answer is, if the tongue of the trailer is low, it puts stress on the suspension of the vehicle, along with making it more likely that you will feel the trailer sway. If the tongue of the trailer is too high, then it also puts stress on the  suspension. I’ve heard that the trick is to have the tongue of the trailer slightly higher when it is empty so that it sits level when it is loaded.

I hope that this answers all the questions that you have about ball height!

 

4 Steps To Overcome A Disastrous Tire Blowout

4848731851_e365acc65c_bWe all know that scary, unexpected things can happen on the highway. It can become a place of disaster and tragedy in a matter of seconds. Sometimes, disaster can strike in the form of a failed tire. I came to the realization that I have never given much thought to tire blowouts. Sure, I’ve had a flat tire, but never the tire explosion that sends your car out of control while leaving a rubber trail. I see the leftover rubber just about every time I’m on the highway, but I’ve never actually seen a tire blowout, let alone been in the car when it happened.

So, naturally, I went to YouTube in search of a video. I was shocked at how many cringe-worthy videos there are of this happening! Here’s one:

His reaction is not what you would expect!

There are dozens more videos, many that result in more rolling, spinning and hitting other cars. I have to say, this freaked me out a bit. After all, it is a pretty common occurrence and one that typically comes without warning. After seeing the effects of drivers not responding in the best way, I decided that I needed to learn how to respond in case this ever happens to me!

If like me, you are just now realizing that you don’t know how to handle a tire blowout, please keep reading! This could be the very information that someday saves you from a terrible wreck. But first, let’s touch up on the risk factors that could lead to a blowout.

  • Under Inflation- This is, without a doubt, the most common cause of tire failure. An under inflated tire creates friction between the rubber and pavement. In this case, it’s only a matter of time until you’re on the shoulder of the highway.
  • Potholes- Hear, hear, o people of Michigan! This is bad news for us. Other than doing your best to avoid them, there is one thing you can do. If you’re in the Grand Rapids area, you can report them by calling 311!
  • Worn Tread- Along with checking your tire pressure every month (when the tires are cold) be sure to check the actual treads. If they are 4/32″ or deeper, they are still good. But if the tread is 2/32″ or less, it’s time to replace your tires.

It’s also important to remember not to overload your vehicle or trailer. And while I’m on the subject of trailers, (imagine that) you can read 10 Tactical Tips For Trailer Tires In Grand Rapids to get some new ideas on caring for your tires.

Even if you remember to take perfect care of your tires, the truth is, they can still have a blowout. Especially in Michigan, the weather can change quickly and potholes can be big enough to home a family of raccoons. Some risk factors are out of our control, which is why it is necessary to be prepared for tire failure.

4 Steps To Overcome A Disastrous Tire Blowout

1. Accelerate

If you don’t know anything about recovering from a tire blowout, then this might have surprised you. After all, it goes against the natural urge to hit the brakes and get to the shoulder as soon as possible. When you have a blown out tire creating drag, stepping on the accelerator a little harder will not actually speed up your vehicle. But it will stabilize your vehicle in your lane and help you to regain control. 

Do not: Step on the brake.

2. Counter Steer

This is easy enough. The important thing to remember is not to over react. When you try steering a vehicle with a failed tire at high speeds, you’ll end up like the guys in the video above. What I mean by counter steering is to gently guide the vehicle straight down your lane. If your vehicle is pulling to the left, carefully push towards the right just enough to keep it from veering.

Do not: Jerk the steering wheel.

3. Slow Down

At this point you should have decent control of your vehicle. Without stepping on the brake, slowly pull your foot off the gas to let your vehicle slow down on it’s own. With the dragging tire, slowing down won’t take long at all.

Do not: Abruptly take your foot off the gas.

4. Pull Over

When your vehicle has slowed to around 30 MPH, and you feel that it is safe, very slowly steer your vehicle to the shoulder of the highway. There you can bring your car or truck to a complete stop and let out a sigh of relief.

Do not: Pull over too quickly.


I really hope that none of us find ourselves in the position where we will have to recall this information. But I am glad that I do know what to do now if this happens to me. The most important thing to remember is to keep your forward momentum and avoid hard steering. Please share this post with your friends and family- you never know if it will help someone avoid a wreck!

And stay cool guys, stay cool.

At Grandville Trailer, we’re pullin for ya.

This post was brought to you by Ally Mollenkamp

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Is Your Cell Phone Affecting Your Driving?

cell-phone-car_edited-1Hello friends! I hope you are all doing well, enjoying the outdoors and summertime. I guess I’m on a safety kick here. I’m piggybacking this post off of the last one I did: 6 Effortless Ways To Ruin Your Utility Trailer.

I know this topic has already been drilled into you, but I suppose that’s because the problem will unfortunately, probably never resolve. We have a story from a customer to share with you today. But before I get to that, I’d like to break the ice with some alarming statistics that I pulled from EdgarSnyder.com. (I should also mention that these coincided with all the facts I read on other websites as well.)

  • The National Safety Council reports that cell phone use while driving leads to 1.6 million crashes each year.
  • 1 out of every 4 car accidents in the United States is caused by texting and driving.
  • Nearly 330,000 injuries occur each year from accidents caused by texting while driving.
  • Texting while driving is 6x more likely to cause an accident than driving drunk.
    ~Edgar Snyder and Associates 

texting-while-drivingScary stuff, huh? Some of it is hard to believe. It’s crazy to me how something that seems second nature to us can be so deadly. It’s so easy to fall into the trap of thinking you can manage your phone and your driving simultaneously. You may think: “Oh I’ll just glance at this text real quick and send a reply at the next red light.” Or: “I just have to find this contact and get the call going and I will be good to go.” (By the way, I just thought this photo on the right was funny.)

Here’s the thing.

No one using their phone thinks they’re about to crash.

Everyone thinks they have it under control just like everyone seems to think they are a good driver. We don’t anticipate for these accidents to happen. You don’t know when someone is going to stop in front of you or swerve towards you. And the scariest part is that it only takes one time. Just 3 seconds of having your eyes off the road is enough to seal your fate.

The whole reason I am bringing this up today is because of an accident a customer was in. It was an accident that didn’t have to happen and it could have been a LOT worse.

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Our customer was on the highway, pulling this horse trailer.

Did that make you cringe a little?

I know it made me uneasy. But, THANKFULLY, there were no horses in this trailer. **Big sigh of  relief**

Anyways, as he we was driving, he was side swiped by another vehicle.

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The other driver was an expecting mom. And that’s where I cringed again. THANKFULLY, her and the baby are presumed to be just fine. Unfortunately, this woman was texting as she was driving. Her recoil from hitting the horse trailer sent her crashing hard into the ditch and the damage to the trailer was pretty extensive. Unable to keep moving, our customer had to find other means of transporting his trailer. That’s when he got it onto a flatbed tow truck and brought it to us.

unnamed (1)The impact on the trailer ripped off the heavy duty fender as you can see in the left two pictures. It also broke the axle spindle off and tore up the wheel. Unfortunately, it also destroyed the second axle to the point where it couldn’t be repaired. Once again, I was so relieved to hear that the trailer was empty and that everyone involved were okay. This accident could have been so much worse on so many levels. Lives could have been lost and more vehicles could have ended up in the mix.

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You have to wonder what this expectant mom felt after this accident. I’m not here to pass judgement or condemn texting drivers. I just want everyone to REALIZE what a couple innocent glances at a phone can really do. Being safe on the roads isn’t just about getting from one place to the next in one piece. Most of us encounter hundreds of other vehicles every day. Putting down the phone is about their safety too.

Don’t wait until you get in a wreck to stop using your phone while behind the wheel. Please be smart and give your driving your undivided attention. We have all heard stories of lives lost and we’ve all seen pictures of distorted faces after a car crash that could have been prevented. I guarantee that not a single one of those text messages or phone calls was worth the consequences.

Have you or a friend ever been in a car crash that resulted from a text message? Comment on this link on our Facebook Page and share this post! If this post makes just one person decide to stop using their phone on the roads, I will be happy with that. 🙂NATDA_ProudMember15_transB

This post was brought to you by Ally Mollenkamp. 

At Grandville Trailer, we’re pullin’ for ya!

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Six Effortless Ways to Ruin Your Utility Trailer

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Trailers are fun to buy and most of us have money to buy as many as we want, right? So it doesn’t really matter how well we take care of them. In fact, the quicker they need a replacement, the better. That means that you can just go buy another one. So let me help you out and tell you the 6 most common (and accidental) ways to destroy a trailer.

6 Ways to Wreck A Utility Trailer

1. Overload Your Utility Trailer

This is by far the quickest way to ruin a trailer. Every trailer has a weight capacity and it often gets overlooked. More importantly, your tow vehicle has a limit to be considerate of. Exceeding your vehicle’s weight limits can result in dangerous consequences like tire blowouts, busted suspensions and even brake and transmission failure. For those of you who do want to keep your vehicle and trailer in tact, you can learn how to find your vehicle’s weight ratings here.

Overloading your trailer can be a double whammy. You’ll be back at Grandville Trailer to purchase a trailer and we will send you over to D&L Auto Sales for your new tow vehicle! And while we’re on the subject of overloads, check out our rental trailer video which displays several overloaded vehicles. Enjoy!

2. Don’t Repack Your Bearings

It’s not important anyways, right? Rusty trailer wheel bearings aren’t a big deal. And if they do fail while you’re on the highway, it will just be a fun experience for everyone! There’s lots of nice people that will be happy to pull over and help. Let’s be honest, skipping this little step will definitely help you to achieve that “roadside experience.” But if you would rather be one of those people who don’t break down, you can read 5 Steps to Repacking Your Trailer Bearings. Better yet, bring it in and have us do it for you. Our service guys are the best bearing re-packers in West Michigan!

3. Don’t Check Tire PressureTyre Inflation

Here’s another opportunity to break down on the highway! All you have to do to blowout your tires is make sure they are a bit under-inflated. It also helps if they are worn out and if you drive fast. It’s really just that simple. However I have heard that some people do like to take care of their trailer tires. If that’s you, you can read 10 Tactical Tips for Trailer Tires in Grand Rapids.

4. Load Unevenly

They say to load your cargo evenly throughout your trailer with about 60 percent of the weight in front on the axle. Weight in the front keeps pressure on the hitch, helping the tow vehicle and trailer to stay connected and maneuvering smoothly. So theoretically, for rough and dangerous towing, all you have to do is put a bunch of really heavy stuff in the back. Easy enough.

download5. Ignoring Those Rust Spots

It just adds character, right? To step it up a notch, you can avoid washing your trailer all together, especially in the winter. After driving through the slushy roads, the salt will eat your trailer right up. Not rinsing it off will cause it to corrode faster. It’s really pretty easy to take care of rust spots, but it’s even easier to just leave them alone and let them spread!

6. Drive Recklessly

This is the most obvious way to ruin your trailer. And this is where I’ll stop joking around. Everybody knows that driving fast with a big, heavy trailer attached to your truck is just not good common sense. Yet somehow, it still happens all the time. It baffles my mind when I see a truck and trailer flying by, weaving in and out of lanes. I know we all have important places to be, but putting other’s safety in jeopardy will never be worth any extra time you may make up for on the  highway.


I certainly hope that none of our readers fall under these categories. And if so, I hope you will reconsider and take better care of your trailer and tow vehicle. Taking proper care of your truck and trailer will aid in keeping yourself and others safe on the road.

Besides driving off a cliff or using a sledge hammer, can you think of any other ways to ruin your utility trailer? What did I miss? You can comment on this link on our Facebook Page. Thank you and have a great week!

At Grandville Trailer, we’re pullin’ for ya!

This post was brought to you by Ally Mollenkamp.

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3 Annoying Things About Your Jack That No One Talks About- And How To Fix Them With The Dropleg Insert

“I just love cranking my trailer jack all the way down to unhitch and all the way back up to tow!”

Said no one, ever. JF1005HZ

Let’s be honest. Turning that Jack a hundred times every time you need to hitch or unhitch is not exactly fun. It’s one of the biggest nuisances of towing a trailer. That’s why Redneck Trailer Supplies came up with the perfect product to take the frustration out of the job. It is called the Dropleg Insert and it’s designed to fit inside the inner tube of an A-frame jack.

Here are 3 annoying problems that your jack may be causing that the Dropleg Insert works to alleviate.

1. Wasted Time

There’s no denying it: Cranking the jack can be downright time consuming. And the more you use your trailer, the more time you will see slip away into the thousands of turns of minuscule movements. The Dropleg Insert allows you to quickly set the Jack at the correct height and move on to the things that matter.

2. Back Pain

Did you know that back pain is the leading cause of disability in the United States? Most people experience some form of back pain throughout their adult life. It’s pretty common for me to hear about those dealing with trailers to feel back pain when cranking the jack on a trailer. If cranking the jack isn’t the cause of your pain, it can defiantly be the culprit of that existing pain flaring up again. With the insert, you can avoid an uncomfortable position with uncomfortable movements. It’s much easier on your back and might help you to not feel quite as old they say you are.

3. Blocks of Wood

How many of you have blocks of wood hitching a ride -pun intended- in your truck bed or trailer? You never know what terrain or slope you might have to park your trailer on, especially those of you working in construction or towing a camping RV. Blocks of wood have become a standard towing accessory (there’s a sales idea) until now! The Dropleg insert provides an extra 8 inches of lift so you can ditch those blocks of wood. Use them for something else or burn them in your campfire. There is much less hassle with this new accessory.


The insert is so easy to install and it fits most 2K-5K A-Frame Jacks. We now have these available in our store for just $15.95. Do us a favor- next time you’re cranking that jack, time yourself and see how long it takes! We’re wondering what the average time is. Let us know by commenting on our Facebook.

Don’t forget to share our post so that your friends can see this cool new product too. Thank you!

At Grandville Trailer, we’re pullin’ for ya!

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5 Tips For Winter Haulin’

I’m sure most of you, if not all of you, have heard about the massive car pile up last week on I-94. Our prayers are going out to the hundreds of people involved as well as the family of the man who’s life was lost.

Winter driving can be scary stuff. I’m one of those people who would much rather stay home and wait a day or two for the roads to clear up before resuming my normal activities. However, that’s not all that practical and not possible for many of you. Despite the snow, we still have responsibilities and places to go. And for those of you hauling trailers around, there is an added threat on the icy roads.

Which brings us to today’s topic:

5 Tips for Winter Haulin’

I have compiled a short list of things to remember when towing your trailer throughout West Michigan’s notorious blizzards.

1.Use the Proper Tires:

Your tires are the only thing on your vehicle that are in contact with the ice, so good tires are a first priority. And if your truck or SUV loses control, your trailer will follow suit. So if you don’t have the means to place winter tires on both your vehicle and trailer, choose your vehicle first. For more information on tires (including the tires that we carry) read Ten Tactical Tips for Trailer Tires in Grand Rapids.

2. Drive Like Your Grandma:

Plan ahead and allow yourself plenty of extra time to arrive to your destination. Travel at a slow and manageable pace. Keep a good distance between yourself and the vehicle ahead of you and give yourself a lot of stopping distance. Keep your turns slow and steady and try to avoid any rapid adjustments.

3. Escape the Jack-knife:

In most slippery situations, if you drive smart and carefully, you should be just fine on the roads. Unfortunately, there are moments when a sudden application of the brakes is necessary. In these moments, you may feel your trailer beginning to slide around. Don’t panic. Ease up on the brakes and steer into the slide to regain control.

4. Use a Brake Control:

We highly, highly recommend making the small investment on a quality brake control. Specifically, the Curt Triflex Brake Control. It’s automatic calibration and sensitivity adjustments make towing so much easier. It decreases your stopping distance which can make a world of difference these next couple months. Seriously guys, you won’t be disappointed if you add this accessory to your vehicle. The extra safety it provides is so worth it. If you’d like to know more, read 4 Key Benefits of The Curt Triflex Brake Control.

5. Rinse Off The Salt:

Okay, so this one doesn’t really have anything to do with safety, but it’s still an important winter maintenance tip! Hopefully you already know that salt can be damaging to your vehicle if it’s left on too long. Whenever the temperatures are somewhere above the arctic grip of death, it’s a good idea to get your vehicle washed or at least rinsed off. The same goes for your trailer. After a trip through the salty, slushy roads, give that baby a good rinse off to keep the salt from corroding it.


 

Well there you have it: our top 5 winter haulin’ tips. We just really want all our friends (and everyone, for that matter) to stay safe on the roads. Please, please be smart out there!

Do you have any tips to add? Please share them with us! You can comment on the link shared on our social media pages or send us an email and we will post it and give you the credit! 

At Grandville Trailer, we’re pullin’ for ya!

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How to Load an Inline Snowmobile Trailer

If you have been keeping up with us at all, then you probably know we have a whole stockpile of snowmobile trailers for sale on our lot. We are loving all the trailers we got from NEO and I wanted to share a bit more with you about the inlines that we have. Specifically, how to load them.

But first, here are some of the major advantages of purchasing a 7′ wide trailer vs. a 8.5′ wide trailer.

  • Inline trailers are built more narrow with a lower overall height, resulting in easier towing and less wind resistance.
  • The deck does not sit over the tires so they have a lower loading ramp angle.
  • Because snowmobiles are loaded in a staggering fashion, you are able to carry more sleds in less square footage.

showimagervThe NEO NAS All Sport

When you’re heading up north or out west with the guys for a snowmobile trip, it’s nice to have a trailer that can comfortably fit all your sleds. And having an easy trailer to pull is great for your peace of mind and your wallet. There have been a lot of questions as to how to load these trailers though. A common myth is that sleds are loaded in a diagonal manor. This is not true, and we are here to tell you how it’s properly done. 

1. The Front Spring Assist Ramp Doorshowimagerv (4)

This is the door that you will use to load your snowmobiles. (Notice that super low ramp angle!) This is the curbside of the trailer. Simply bring your sled in and place it all the way in the back on the roadside of the trailer with the front skis touching the back ramp door.

2. Start The Stagger

Sled number two will go in front first as well, but on the curbside of the trailer. The front of its skis should be just touching the back of the first sled’s skis.

3. Fill It Up

Keep going with staggering sleds and switching sides. Depending on the size of your snowmobiles, these trailers can hold 3, 4 or 5 sleds. Here is what a loaded inline trailer will look like.
4place1   4place2

4. Drive Out

One of the best things about these trailers is the “Drive in, Drive out” feature. It makes it so easy to load and unload when you don’t need to back up the snowmobiles. And if you want to make your trailer even more awesome, you can deck yours out in some of our accessories from Caliber. (Accessories that, by the way, will make incredible Christmas gifts for someone who already has a snowmobile trailer.)


Hopefully those pictures clear up any confusion on how to load these trailers. We are stocking NEO inlines and we also have NEO deck-overs available to order. Once again, here is our full listing of snowmobile trailers for sale, including some from Sport Haven too.

Is anyone planning a snowmobile trip before Christmas or in January? Don’t forget to check your tires to avoid problems on the road. Take a moment to read Ten Tactical Tips for Trailer Tires in Grand Rapids.

At Grandville Trailer, we’re pullin’ for ya!

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