Get the right trailer to suit you | Motoring | Small Business Connect

For peace of mind, get covered and ensure that your vehicle is either covered by a service plan, maintenance plan or an extended warranty.

Trailers are a good way to grow or extend whatever you are doing economically.

Some businesses are even completely trailer-based. Like Kleen-Bin, for example, or those that use mobile workshops like clear-bars.

Pop-up shops and vending are other businesses that provide opportunities for the use of trailers.

There really is a trailer for almost every business.

I know a carpenter who uses a 1.8 m Venter trailer as a mobile toolbox.

Instead of buying another bakkie he bought himself a trailer. It really works for him and his business’s needs.

Most larger towns or cities have trailer rental places. They have various sizes and types to suit most short-term needs.

Below are some things you might have to consider before making the decision on whether growing your business by buying a trailer is the best route to take.

Towing tips

Your vehicle is rated to pull a certain size and type of trailer. There are two types of trailers: braked and un-braked. We are talking about run-in or over braking brakes here.

Trailers with run-in brakes are activated when the momentum of the trailer against a braking car pushes a plunger mechanism on the tow-bar attachment.

This action activates the brakes in the same way that a brake pedal would.

The more the car brakes the more the trailer pushes against it, the more the trailer brakes are activated. It can be mechanical or hydraulic.

Light trailers under one ton are usually not braked. Large trailers over 3.5 tons must have full brakes.

Those between one ton and 3.5 tons must have run-in brakes. Your dealer can tell you what mass your vehicle is certified to tow. The handbook accompanying the vehicle also contains the tow rating.

In general the heavier the towing vehicle, the heavier the trailer that may be towed.

You can find vehicle load and towing specs at

Remember that the additional mass of the trailer and its load will affect the performance of your brakes.

Trailer pointers

Trailers must be registered and licensed. It is also important to ensure that your driver has the correct licence.

Never overload a trailer. This not only could break the axles, but may also overwhelm your vehicle’s brakes.

Insure your trailer, just like any other vehicle, and check the tyres and brakes (if fitted) before any long trip.

If you are going off tar or good gravel roads get an off-road trailer. Normal trailers do not do well in the bundu.

Make sure your trailer has all the required reflective strips and reflectors.

Stainless steel and aluminium trailers are generally worth the extra cost.

Carefully consider the size you will need. Getting a trailer that is too big means extra fuel consumption, more space to park it when not in use and very importantly it is more unwieldy than a smaller one.

Get the right trailer for your use. All reputable manufacturers have a variety of designs tailor made for specific industries or uses.