Winterize Your Trailer
Winter is typically the off-season for trailer use, especially for the Midwest. If your trailer is going into storage for a few months, you may want to follow our recommended checklist for preparing your trailer for winter.
For boat trailers, it is recommended to repack the bearings before storing for winter. This gets any water that might be in the hub replaced with fresh grease. Your trailer can sit all winter with fresh grease versus moisture causing rust to eat into the bearings and races. If your boat trailer has brakes, they can also be inspected for wear. While repacking the axles, you can check the springs, hangers, bolts and frame for any problems.
All trailers that will sit idle for more than a month should have batteries, including small breakaway batteries, removed and stored indoors. During storage it is recommended to trickle charge the batteries in order to keep them powered up. If a trickle charger is not available, then be sure to charge the battery monthly with an appropriately rated battery charger.
Any grease Zerks (grease fittings) on the trailer should be hit with a little grease. You will find grease Zerks mainly on the jacks and the undercarriages of trailers.
Protect the Tires
Tire pressure should be checked prior to storage. The life of your tires can be prolonged by putting the trailer up on stands. Tires that sit for a prolonged period of time can develop flat spots, which causes vibrations while going down the road.
This is the perfect time to make sure all your trailer lights are in working order. Check to make sure the lights are functioning, wiring is secure, the plug is in good shape, and that wires do not have any cuts in the insulation. A little dielectric grease (non-conducting grease) should be applied to the plug to cut down on corrosion. Dielectric grease can also be applied to incandescent bulb sockets.
Following these tips will help keep your trailer in working order, as well as making it easier to get your trailer road ready during the spring. What are your trailer winterizing steps? Let us know about your trailer tips and tricks in the comments below!