5 Things to Consider When Purchasing an Enclosed TrailerSeptember 29, 2022 by Kyle McFarlane
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.