5 Things to Consider When Purchasing an Enclosed Trailer

 

 5 Things to Consider When Purchasing an Enclosed Trailer

Trying to select among several high-quality enclosed utility trailers is a complex process and one that requires ample thought and planning. Think about the material of the trailer itself, what type of roof you need, access to your trailer door, whether you need a new driver’s license, and how thick you need the outer skin of the covering to be.

1. Should I buy a Steel or Aluminum Trailer?

Steel trailers tend to be less expensive than aluminum trailers, though they do have more upkeep and maintenance costs. Steel trailers usually rust more easily. This risk increases with each scratch of the paint. Steel trailers are also heavier than aluminum, which reduces how much cargo you can carry.

Aluminum trailers allow you to carry more weight and tend to resist rust and corrosion. They are more expensive upfront, however, and can crack and warp if too much weight is applied.

2. Differences of a Flat or Rounded Roof

A good measure of the type of trailer roof you need is the type of weather that you will most often experience. A rounded roof is much more conducive to a snowy climate since the snow will slide off the roof and not create additional weight or risk collapsing the roof. This will be less of a concern if your trailer is parked in a garage or underneath a carport during the winter. If you do not deal with very much snow, a flat roof will serve your purposes well.

A round roof also adds 3″ to 6″ of additional headspace when working inside the trailer. Loading and unloading are much easier this way. Flat roofs are less expensive and generally have just enough headspace inside to move and maneuver large items. Cleaning and maintaining the top can be labour intensive, however.

3. Which is Better For You? A Ramp or Barn Door?

Are you driving equipment up into the trailer? Are you often using a wheelbarrow to load soils, bricks, or construction debris? If so, a ramp will save you time and energy. On the other hand, a ramp could be a nuisance if you need to frequently park in crowded lots at trade shows, fairs, markets, and festivals. Laying down the ramp adds another six feet to your footprint. A barn door usually only adds half of that amount or less.

4. Would I Need to Upgrade My Driver’s License?

It depends on how much weight you are hauling, and the maximum gross vehicle weight rating. Different provinces and jurisdictions have different rules, but if your weight rating is over 4,500 kg you may need to qualify for a new license. Check with your local licensing office to confirm what endorsements you need.

5. What Exterior Thickness and Colour Do I Need?

The standard for manufacturing aluminum covers for enclosed utility trailers used to be 0.40 gauge or 0.50 gauge. Now it is closer to 0.24. The higher the number, the thicker the gauge. Many manufacturers have chosen to save money on gauge thickness while still supplying an adequate product. Thin aluminum siding is inexpensive, but it can produce a wavy appearance.

Think about the colour of your trailer in combination with its thickness. A black, thin aluminum product will likely produce waves as it warps and stretches in the sun. Black absorbs more heat than other colours and shows more imperfections. All of this is cosmetic, however. Aluminum siding will likely not warp or stretch enough to cause structural problems.

Buy Enclosed Utility Trailers from McFarlane

Our trailers are ideal for transporting snowmobiles, ATVs, and small heavy equipment. Warranties we offer range from 1 to 5 years. Reach out to us via our website or give us a call during regular business hours, Monday through Friday.

How to Safely Haul Loads on a Trailer

How to Safely Haul Loads on a Trailer

Safety should be every cargo hauler’s top priority. Knowing your weight limits, having the right security equipment, conducting proper inspections, and using corner protectors will keep your load secure and other motorists safe on the road. A single-axle utility trailer may be your best option for lighter loads. Read more about how to set up your trailer for a safe ride

Know How Much Weight Your Trailer Can Haul 

Every trailer has a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR). This is a combination of the trailer’s empty weight and the weight of the cargo. It is usually not possible to measure a load by itself, so you will need to complete some basic math before you load your trailer. Subtract the weight of the empty trailer from the GVWR, and you will have your maximum load capacity. 

You can also look for the data plate on your trailer. It is usually located near the tongue. Under “axle capacity” you should see a number that lists the weight capacity of your trailer. This corresponds to the diameter of your axle and how much weight it can hold. For example, a 1.5″ axle diameter can hold up to 1,000 pounds, whereas a 5″ axle diameter can hold up to 10,000 pounds. 

Have the Right Safety Equipment

Straps, ratchets, tie-downs, nets, and blankets all may be required, depending on the load. Plan ahead to make sure you have everything you need before you haul. Protect your safety equipment against excess sun, rain, wind, and road salt to ensure they last as long as possible. 

Ratchet Strap Tie-downs

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration states that you need one ratchet strap for every five feet of cargo length and every 1,000 pounds of cargo weight. You simply cannot overdo it when tying down your cargo. Always err on the side of caution. Inspect each strap for frays and damage. Make sure the ratchets are operating under their breaking strength and working load limit. 

Moving Blankets

Heavy-duty blankets will keep your cargo from jostling and bumping into the sides of the trailer and other pieces in the load. Cargo will inevitably shift, so it’s a good proactive strategy to cover valuables to avoid dents, dings, cracks, and scratches. 

Cargo Nets

Install these with bungees on the corners, between large items that may slide or tip while the vehicle is in motion. You can also use these to create safe partitions or barriers between different sections of the trailer.

Install Corner Protectors

As ratchet straps are tightened, they often dig into the sharp corners of a metal trailer, causing cuts and weak points. Corner protectors solve this problem by using tough, durable plastic, rubber, or steel that fits snugly against the sides and edges of your trailer bed. Thread the strap against the guiding gulleys of the corner protector to help your straps last longer.

Corner protectors are versatile in length and design. They are relatively inexpensive and come in bulk quantities. Find the size and shape configuration that meets your needs. 

Buy a Single Axle Utility Trailer from McFarlane

We have dozens of utility trailers for sale, whether you’re looking for aluminum, steel, used, or new. Many of our trailers come with a three-year warranty. Our brands include Enbeck, Millroad, One Sixteen, and Rescraft. 

Take advantage of our personalized customizations as well. We can retrofit any trailer to your specs, including: 

  • Custom brake controllers
  • Interior accessorizing 
  • Plug-and-play vehicle wiring
  • Drawbars and trailer hitches
  • Mags and tires 

Give us a call today or visit our website. We treat each trailer like our own and go the extra mile to make sure you are satisfied with your purchase. 

How McFarlanes Helps Find You the Right Trailer

How McFarlanes Helps Find You the Right Trailer

Why Choose McFarlane Trailer Sales for Your Next Trailer

In recent years, finding an affordable trailer and one to suit your specific needs seemed difficult. The average consumer struggled to find the help they needed from retailers and often abandoned the purchase or postponed buying. Maybe the problem stemmed from seeking help from the wrong business. Searching for new or used trailers for sale can seem overwhelming, but with the proper support and selection, every consumer should find what they need.

At McFarlane Trailer Sales, the customer always comes first. As an established trailer deal, the company built a reputation on stellar customer service and a versatile carrier of trailer brands, types, and parts. The company has a large inventory, ensuring customers can always get what they came for. In the rare circumstance in which something is not in stock, the retailer will go above and beyond to satisfy customer needs as fast as possible.

How McFarlane Trailer Sales Can Help You

McFarlane specializes in all things trailers, meaning it is a one-stop shop for all your hitching and hauling needs. The sales representatives are knowledgeable and eager to help you find the right trailer option.

Primary Trailer Choices

Whether you are looking for a trailer to connect to your SUV or Truck, McFarlane is the retailer for you. From goosenecks to conventional trailers, the company has all the best options. You will find a variety of available trailers, but for the new customer, there are a few types to familiarize yourself with.

  • Conventional Trailers: These trailer options typically serve recreational purposes and use a ball-type hitch. Conventional options are best as camper or boat trailers.
  • Utility Trailers: These trailers often get confused with conventional trailers because of the ball-type hitch. However, because these trailers transport cargo and equipment, they are usually smaller with different handling requirements.
  • Gooseneck Trailers: These trailers are larger and designed for heavier loads. The name comes from their tall and long trailer tongues, which connect to pickup beds.
  • Fifth-Wheel Trailers: These trailers are similar to gooseneck options, but the mount and hitch plate are different. The hitch coupling is more like a semi-truck.

McFarlane carries standard trailer types and more. The list of available trailers includes:

  • Dump trailers
  • Cargo trailers
  • Equipment trailers
  • Flatbed trailers
  • Single-axle trailers
  • Tilt-bed trailers
  • Utility trailers

Additionally, McFarlane carries the brands consumers know and trust. Some of the most popular brands the retailer has to include:

  • Frontier Aluminum Trailers
  • Enbeck
  • K-Trail
  • One Sixteen
  • Millroad
  • Pace American
  • Wells Cargo
  • Mission Trailers

Let McFarlane Trailer Sales Guide You Through the Selection Process

Choosing the right trailer for your need can be challenging, especially if you have never purchased one. You may struggle with measurements, weight limits, load restrictions, hitch requirements, etc.

McFarlane associates know trailers. They understand how to find the right trailer for your hauling and towing needs and are happy to teach and help you learn the selection process.

At McFarlane, customers are crucial to the business. The staff knows that success depends on consumer interactions; therefore, customers should not be afraid to ask questions. Lean on the expertise of the team so that you can be happy and satisfied with your trailer purchase.

You will find a large selection of new and used trailers at McFarlane. Rest assured that all used trailers undergo a thorough safety inspection to ensure usability. At McFarlane, customer safety is paramount.

McFarlane built a reputation for dependability and customer satisfaction. The company is one of the prime retailers for trailers in Canada. Are you ready to buy a trailer, or are you just looking? In either case, visit McFarlane Trailer Sales to receive quality assistance and gain access to high-quality merchandise. You can’t go wrong with McFarlane.

FAQ’s Answered About Trailer Hitches

FAQ's Answered About Trailer Hitches

Quality trailer service and repair start with knowing the right questions to ask. McFarlane Trailer Sales receives questions about trailer hitches often, so let us help you with some answers to common questions about them.

What Size Ballmount Do I Need for My Trailer Hitch?

This will depend on the overall weight rating of your trailer. Trailer hitches are tested and rated for specific ball mount sizes. The receiver size will be anywhere from 1 1/4″ to  3″ within the five classes of weight ratings. The heavier the weight rating, the larger the ball mount. The weights are then broken down into the following categories:

  • Class I: 2,000 lbs
  • Class II: 3,500 lbs
  • Class III: 6,000 lbs
  • Class IV: 12,000 lbs
  • Class V: 14,000 lbs 

What Is a Brake Control?

Electric brake control takes power from the tow vehicle and supplies it to the trailer’s brakes. A small control box is installed underneath the driver’s side dashboard. When the driver depresses the brake pedal for the tow vehicle, the electronic box sends an electrical current to the trailer brakes.

Proportional Brake Controls 

Proportional or inertia brake controls get a read on how quickly the tow vehicle is stopping and send the same amount of force to the trailer brakes. A brake pedal switch is activated by a pendulum circuit that applies the correct amount of voltage to each brake.

Time-based Brake Controls

This method requires the user to set a predetermined amount of power in the brake box. When the driver hits the brake pedal, there is a time delay before the trailer brakes are engaged. You can be traveling at any speed, and the trailer brakes will engage in the same way every time.

Are Safety Chains Required When Towing?

Yes. Laws require you to use chains or cables when towing. In the rare event that the trailer becomes disconnected from the ball (on a bumpy road), the chains will keep the trailer connected to your truck. Otherwise, your trailer will be loose on the road, creating an extreme safety hazard. Avoid costly trailer service and repair by using safety chains.

What Is Trailer Sway?

Trailer sway happens when the tongue is not heavy enough to create a downward force on the hitch ball. If the weight in your trailer is distributed unevenly, you may experience the trailer bobbing and weaving behind your tow vehicle.

Test this by loading a trailer and gradually increasing your speed on the open road. Watch the behaviour of your trailer closely. If it rocks from side to side or has trouble staying in the lane, park and adjust the cargo so its heaviest part is closer to the tongue. If this doesn’t work, consider buying a weight distribution system for your trailer.

How Do I Measure My Trailer Ball?

Four important measurements include ball diameter, shank length, shank diameter, and the trailer hitch ball load rating. Start with the diameter of the ball, using a tape measure or ruler. Then measure the ball shank size from the bottom of the base to the end of the threads. Finally, measure the thickness of the base. Make sure this all matches up with the weight rating.

Comprehensive Trailer Service and Repair at McFarlane

When you book a service appointment with us, you avail yourself of our many areas of expertise which include:

  • Axle repair and replacement
  • Brake drums and backing plates 
  • Trailer lighting and wiring
  • Tires and rims 
  • Wheel hitch installations

We will fully inspect your trailer for any areas for improvement, and recommend the highest-need repairs. If you come for a specific service, we will give you a quote that clarifies exactly how we will get the job done. Contact our team to get started.

3 Simple Utility Trailer Upgrades You Can Make

Simple Utility Trailer Upgrades You Can Make

A proactive way to get more value and performance out of your tandem axle utility trailer is to customize it with upgrades that add convenience, safety, efficiency, and peace of mind. LED taillights, ramps, and spare tire carriers offer many benefits to your daily workflow and hauling needs. Read more below to consider how to improve your trailer. Then explore our website further to learn about the vetted brands and versatile selection of trailer types we offer. 

1. LED Taillights

The factory-installed safety lights on your single axle utility trailer are usually incandescent bulbs, meaning that they are likely to blow out quickly and need to be replaced fairly often. The filament inside an incandescent bulb is very susceptible to disconnecting due to vibration and the normal bounce and stress of road travel. LED lights last quite a bit longer and are not as prone to breakage. They can usually be spliced into your existing wiring system. Moreover, they are usually encased in plastic or fiberglass, reducing their exposure to elements such as water, airborne debris, and road salt. 

2. Ramps 

Most utility trailers operate perfectly well for hauling raw materials, lumber, soils, and scrap metal from construction sites. One easy customization, however, is to add a ramp kit that allows your utility trailer to become an equipment hauler when necessary. ATVs and small machines can then be hauled without the need for a flatbed or tilt trailer.

A simple wooden ramp kit can also allow you to use a wheelbarrow to dump your materials into the trailer, rather than having to lift everything manually or use a shovel. This can be fairly inexpensive and time-efficient customization. Simply install bolted hinges to the edge of your trailer bed, and attach a sturdy wooden or aluminum platform that can be folded up into the bed of the trailer when not in use. 

3. Spare Tire Carriers 

While all residential and commercial vehicles come with a special compartment for stowing spare tires, trailers do not usually have this feature. This results in you having to keep your spare tire in the trailer bed itself, which takes up an awkward amount of space when loading the trailer. It also means that if your trailer is fully loaded and you get a flat, you have to undo all of your hard work to unearth the spare tire, then reload the whole trailer again once the flat is fixed. 

A spare tire carrier avoids all of this hassle and stress. It can usually be mounted parallel to the rails of your single axle utility trailer, for easy unbolting without having to rearrange any of your cargo. Install it on the outside or inside of the trailer wall. Secure it with a u-lock or other fastener, and you can hit the road with fewer worries.

Buy a Tandem Axle Utility Trailer from McFarlane

The benefit of a tandem axle trailer is that you can take on a lot more weight with a similar level of fuel efficiency when compared to a single axle utility trailer. We have dozens of options to choose from, including small 5 X 10s all the way up to larger 7 X 20s. We stand apart by offering you warranties of one to five years, and following extensive delivery protocols before we hand it over to you, 

Our other product selections include car trailers, deckover trailers, hydraulic dump trailers, flatbeds, and tilt beds. We offer an extensive catalogue of trailer parts for quick repairs. Contact us today to learn about our financing options and get a custom quote that meets your needs.