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Boat Trailer Safety

Top Tips for Boat Trailer Safety

There are many reasons to love the sport of boating – it can be relaxing, exciting, entertaining and even rejuvenating. But hauling a boat on a trailer and launching it at the busy launch ramp can have its challenges. In fact, it can be downright stressful and dangerous and is often wrought with mishaps.

It’s not too early to start getting your boat trailer in tip-top shape. To help make sure you can haul your boat to its destination and into the water smoothly, check out this basic trailering checklist from

Before you tow your boat trailer, be sure:

  • Coupler, hitch and hitch ball are of the same size
  • Coupler and safety chains are safely secured to the hitch of the tow vehicle
  • All fasteners are properly tightened
  • Boat is securely tied down to trailer (winch line is not a tie down)
  • Wheel lug nuts are properly tightened
  • Wheel bearings are properly adjusted and maintained
  • Load is within maximum load carrying capacity
  • Tires are properly inflated
  • All trailer lighting is working properly
  • Trailer brakes are properly adjusted and working (if trailer is so equipped)
  • Brakes and additional equipment meet all local and state requirements

We want your boating adventures to be enjoyed on the water instead of experienced with frustration on the boat ramp or on the road. Happy hauling!


April Cook

Friday, July 22, 2016 at 12:31pm EDT

We are moving this fall and need to find a way to move out boat, too. I would like to hire a service to do it for us, but if not I’ll make sure to follow these safety tips while I’m towing it. I especially like your tip to make sure the load is within the maximum capacity. I’ll make sure not to use the boat for extra moving storage. Thanks for the tips!


Tuesday, August 2, 2016 at 3:25pm EDT

I am glad to find a short blurb on this subject of boat trailer safety because it can often get overlooked when we are more concerned about the condition and proper use of the boat itself. Some of the points in this list, like tire inflation and brake function, are more important than others, but each part of the trailer should be checked regularly. It is probably a good idea to run a quick check every time you want to take the boat out, just like scuba divers do with their equipment. For the good of everyone around you, it is important to think about safety when you hitch up a large vehicle.

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