How to tell if your trailer suspension needs extra support
Most boat trailers, utility trailers, and enclosed trailers come equipped with leaf spring suspensions ranging anywhere from light-duty (400 – 1500 GVWR) and medium-duty (2000 – 9000 GVWR) up to heavy-duty trailers (10,000 – 30,000 GVWR).
No matter how big or small your trailer might be, it’s important to keep a weather eye on your suspension to maintain optimal performance and avoid any future problems. We’ll discuss these topics and more by answering the following questions:
- How do you inspect a trailer suspension?
- How can you tell if your trailer suspension is overloaded?
- When should you replace your trailer suspension?
- What can you do to upgrade your trailer suspension?
- What are the best & most reliable trailer suspension upgrades available?
How do you inspect a trailer suspension?
Most light and medium-duty trailers come with a leaf spring suspension. There are basically five components that you need to inspect on your leaf spring suspension to confirm they are in good shape:
- Equalizer If you have a tandem (two-axle setup) suspension, both leaf spring suspensions are connected with an equalizer.
- Wet bolts If your equalizer has wet bolts, make sure they are well-lubricated.
- U-bolts Check the bolts that wrap around the spring stack connecting them to the axle.
- Leaf springs There could be between 1 and 5 leaves on your leaf spring suspension
- Axle beams If you have a single or tandem axle suspension, check each axle for proper flex.
Your trailer suspension should be inspected once a year to ensure optimal performance.
How can I tell if my trailer suspension is overloaded?
The first thing you can do is check the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) and GCWR (Gross Combined Weight Rating) in your tow vehicle’s manual. Find out the maximum weight your vehicle can handle, including itself and its passengers. Also, check the trailer’s GVWR which can be found either in the user manual or printed inside the trailer.
Next, take your tow vehicle and trailer to a weighing station like a CAT (Certified Automated Truck scale) found at most truck stops. As an alternative, contact places like local Agricultural Co-ops, Moving & Storage, or gravel pits to get permission to use their scales.
When should I replace my trailer suspension?
The best time to replace your trailer suspension is before you find yourself in a crisis. No one wants to be stranded miles from home with a broken-down trailer suspension. Here are some things you can look for that will warn you of a looming catastrophe:
- Cracked or separated leaf springs
- Rusted components
- Squeaky sounds while your trailer is in motion
- Sagging on one side
- Poor handling
- Constant bottoming out
If you find that one side of your trailer is compromised and needs to be replaced, it’s best to replace both sides to avoid any future mishaps.
What can I do to upgrade my trailer suspension?
Upgrading the individual components of your trailer’s suspension – common leaf springs as well as coil springs and shock absorbers – can help to increase its load-carrying performance. *
There are other performance-enhancement products that can be added to your trailer’s suspension. Some include metal add-ons, airbags, and hollow rubber helpers such as Timbren SES suspension upgrades. *
*Please Note: Upgrading or adding individual components does not increase the GVWR of your trailer.
What are the best & most reliable trailer suspension upgrade kits available?
There are a lot of factors to consider when deciding which upgrade kit is best. The deciding factor we’re going to focus on today is value. In other words, you need to ask yourself “which product gives you the biggest bang for your buck?”
Also, you should consider which product is the most reliable. In other words, ask yourself “which one is the most dependable?”
At the top of the list for ‘best value’ and ‘most reliable’ are Timbren SES suspension upgrades. Below are a few reasons why Timbren SES kits are the correct choice for your trailer:
- Easy to install
- Stronger than steel
- More reliable than air
- Very low maintenance
- No BS Lifetime Warranty
- 100-day Satisfaction Guarantee
Axle-Less and Silent Ride Trailer Suspension Upgrades
In addition to Timbren SES suspension kits, there are also two proprietary and unique trailer suspensions you should know about:
For more info on these two trailer suspensions, check out these two videos:
And for more info on Timbren SES suspension upgrades visit www.timbren.com
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