New or Pre-Owned: What to Consider When Looking to Purchase a Trailer


You are hoping to purchase a new or used trailer but aren’t sure what to look for. The following will help you ask the right questions and make the right decisions regarding this purchase.

Think About Purpose

An important question to ask yourself is what you’ll need this trailer for. The precision of your answer should ensure that you get the trailer that fits your needs.

For example, if you know that most of your cargo is oddly shaped and usually oversized, then you are going to be looking for flatbed trailers for sale. If you are going to be focusing on landscaping, then you need a slightly custom utility trailer. You may notice v-crimped steels sides, and sometimes, you might see a tailgate. Ask the right questions so that you get the right trailer.

Customizing if Needed

One perk of buying new is that you can customize the trailer. This does not mean you can’t find a custom-made used trailer, but you’ll probably have to purchase from someone who is in your line of work.

There are a lot of things you might need that don’t necessarily come preinstalled, like awning sides that you can modify as needed, a ventilation system, or you might need electricity if you are going to be working from the trailer. Some people need fortified ramps, just in case you need heavy machinery to load and unload items. You can always customize the trailer the more you learn about your needs but customizing afterward can be costly.

Consider Added Braking

Some trailers don’t have added braking power and some do. You need to decide whether this is necessary or not. If you are purchasing a used trailer and need braking power, then make sure it’s working. Have it inspected for issues and normal wear and tear so that you can repair it before using it.

If you are going to be using the trailer to transport heavy items or liquid, then you’ll probably need that extra braking power. Using your vehicle’s brakes when hauling heavy loads is not only dangerous but could also degrade your brakes prematurely. You don’t want to force yourself to deal with braking problems constantly when this could have been avoided.

Get the Paperwork

You are going to need important paperwork when you purchase your used or your new trailer. Depending on which one you are purchasing, you’ll need different things, so if you are getting a new trailer, you’ll need the warranty. Make sure you go over the warranty carefully and find out what is covered.

More importantly, find out what could invalidate coverage so that you don’t accidentally do any of the listed actions. If you are purchasing a used trailer, then you are going to need to make sure you aren’t only getting the repair history or the maintenance history. Of course, you should consider hiring a trailer specialist unless you have a friend who might give you a discount to help you inspect the trailer before you make the purchase.

Yes, taking all of these steps is going to make your search feel much longer and overwhelming, but these steps are necessary if you don’t want to make a mistake. It’s best if you start the process a long time before you need the trailer, that way you don’t feel the pressure, and you could make this decision with a level head.


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