Just imagine the consequences of driving a tow vehicle that is attached with an unleveled trailer carrying a bulky load. Sounds terrifying, right?
It is crucial to level a trailer to ensure towing is safe while driving on the road. A level trailer is a safe one. Without exception, levelling is highly recommended to reduce trailer-related accidents. While safety is the main reason to keep a trailer level when towing, there are some other reasons as well.
Let us jump right into the content and explore some of the general reasons to level a trailer effectively.
Why should you level your travel trailer?
You may wonder why it is essential to level a travel trailer perfectly while towing. Well, here are some of the best reasons levelling is necessary:
1. To maintain stability or prevent trailer sway
One of the main reasons you should level a travel trailer is to prevent fishtailing by keeping the balance of your vehicle. Towing an unlevel trailer can be risky as swaying can occur at any moment, making the vehicle unbalanced.
When the trailer is overloaded or improperly loaded, this could result in rocking violently on the road. Thus, it is recommended not to put a heavyweight in the rear and lesser weight at the front, to keep the balance.
In short, keeping your trailer level can diminish excessive swaying.
Trailer manufacturers design trailers bearing in mind they will be towed with different types of vehicles and thus ensure that trailers are aerodynamic and stable enough while towing. However, towing an unlevel trailer can make it less aerodynamic and result in slower speeds and reductions in gas mileage for the tow vehicle.
The front of the trailer is more vulnerable to lose in aerodynamics due to problems such as strong winds creating turbulent conditions and throwing the trailer off balance. As a result, this makes the trailer unstable and can affect vehicle performance.
A level trailer is more aerodynamic than an unlevel one and will get the best mileage by allowing the air to glide smoothly over the top of it.
3. Ground clearance
Ground clearance is a vital consideration for a travel trailer if you want to avoid damage. A lever trailer will provide you with the best setup in terms of ground clearance. With an unlevel trailer, you will face some hurdles like losing your sewer dump pipe or having a bent jack bent bumper underneath the trailer.
Therefore, if you are concurrently encountering significant dips in the road when venturing off-road with your trailer, then there is no alternative.
4. To enhance braking performance
Improper weight distribution could be the result of an unlevel trailer, which makes the tires contact the road surface more and with different pressure; this decreases the performance of your brakes. Say for example, when the front side of the trailer is too high, the front tires may not get good contact with the ground. As a result, this can cause skidding and won’t provide any stopping power while the backside does not get sufficient braking force to stop the trailer when you hit the brakes.
5. Minimising tire wear and blowout
When there is overload due to an unlevel trailer with more heavyweight on one particular axle and less weight on the other axles, this can cause excessive tire wear. The continuous wear will cause those tires to get more heat and finally creates a flat tire on the road.
Nobody likes a blowout in the middle of the road, as it brings hassles changing the tire, so levelling your trailer is crucial to avoid this problem; even if it may not seem to be a big problem. Additionally, check air pressure regularly, and remember to check your spare.
6. Axle ratings
Another significant factor to keeping your travel trailer level is axle ratings. Knowing the axle rating of your trailer can help you level them effectively. These ratings will help you level your trailer for towing, for instance, by putting the same amount of loads on both rear and front axles.
So while choosing a travel trailer, try to get one with high axle rating, thus ensuring extra safety and large carrying capacity.
Do I need a hitch to level a travel trailer?
Many experts recommend that your travel trailer should not exceed 1 inch off level and you have to level it off to keep an accurate measurement.
If cutting off the level becomes hard for you, think of buying an appropriate hitch that can help make your level while towing it with the vehicle. However, before doing so, find the correct rise or drop number that is needed to level your trailer.
The following are some ways to find the right trailer hitch, knowing the right measurement:
First, measure your receiver weight. This can be done by finding the width from the ground to the top of the receiver tube.
Secondly, measure the coupling height by levelling your trailer on the hand jack and then measure the coupler from the ground to the top.
Finally, subtract your receiver height from the weight of the coupler.
After you have the number, find a trailer hitch corresponding to your needs. If you have any queries about different types, find a reliable dealer and contact them to choose the right travel or caravan trailer hitch, or caravan tow hitch for you. Also, remember that you will need different rises and drops when towing multiple trailers. An adjustable hitch could be your solution, as it will give you the flexibility to raise or lower accordingly for your needs.
To know more details when you are going to select the trailer hitch for your vehicle you can read my previously posted article here, this might be helpful information for you.
Now know why it is essential to level a travel trailer. Apart from ensuring safety for yourself and others, it also makes the towing process easier. So what are you waiting for? Invest your time in choosing the best trailer hitch for your vehicle and make your towing experience more efficient.