Spring Maintenance Checklist for Horse Trailers

Spring Maintenance Checklist for Horse Trailers

Whenever you’re faced with the need to travel with your horses, it’s vital that your trailer is ready for the job. It must be safe for your horses, and mechanically sound so that it doesn’t break down along the way. Indeed, the best way to ensure that is with a routine horse trailer inspection and maintenance plan. The horse trailer should be inspected before each trip, but an in depth annual inspection will ensure the trailer’s safe for your precious equestrian load.

Spring is a great time of the year to perform annual horse trailer inspections. The weather’s nice and you’ll be using them more often in the coming months. Use this handy, ten-point spring maintenance checklist to make sure you don’t miss anything important.

Clean and Sweep

Before you begin your inspection, give the trailer a good washing and clean out the interior. Also, make sure you get the roof and the frame. It’ll make your inspection much easier and help you identify issues quicker.

Look Under the Trailer

Inspect the frame and cross members, looking for cracks or breaks. If you have torsion axles, inspect them for tightness at the attachment point. For spring axles, look for signs of wear or tightness in the hanger and shackles.

Inspect Your Tires

Your horse trailer’s tires must be able to keep you rolling down the road without incident. Check each of your tires for wear and other signs of damage. Replace tires that are worn and make sure that all your tires are filled with the proper amount of air pressure.

Mind the Bearings

It’s also important that the bearings on your horse trailer’s wheels are in good condition. While you’re already looking at the tires, take a moment to inspect the bearings too. Check the bearings for tightness and make sure that they’re lubricated properly.

Move to the Front

Inspect the coupler and look for any indication of wear. Test the coupler to make sure that it is functioning properly. Lubricate all the moving parts as well as the ball socket. Check the safety chains for wear, making sure the links and hook are in good condition.

Inspect the Doors

Open and close each of the doors, making sure they operate properly, don’t catch, or squeak. Make sure that the latches all function properly. Finally, lubricate the door hinges so the doors move freely and quietly.

Climb on the Roof

The roof of your horse trailer is easily overlooked for a quick daily inspection, but it should be thoroughly inspected each spring. Climb up on top and make sure there are no cracks or holes that will allow water in. Then, repair any damage you find with a good sealer to prevent damage.

Inspect the Interior

A rotten floor inside a horse trailer is incredibly dangerous for your horses and it’s vital that you keep yours well maintained. During your annual inspection, check for loose boards, rotting spots, and other potential hazards and make the necessary repairs immediately.

Safety System Check

The lights on your horse trailer are required when it comes to safety out on the road. Connect the power and turn on all the lights to make sure they’re all working. Test the turn signals to be sure the lights work. Replace faulty bulbs and lights as needed.

Perform a Brake Check

Before you can trust your horse trailer to haul your horses down the road, you must make sure it can stop. Check the brake function and adjust ensure that it’s a smooth braking action. Also, check the emergency brake away system and test the battery for charge.

Benefits of Horse Trailer Maintenance

Whether you use your horse trailers on a frequent basis or just infrequently, it’s important that they’re well maintained. There are several benefits to performing annual horse trailer maintenance.

  • Increases Horse Trailer Life – Well-maintained equipment will always perform better and longer than equipment that’s been neglected. Performing annual inspections and repairs can increase the lifespan of your trailer by years.
  • Reduces Repair Bills – Unexpected repair bills can leave a big dent in your wallet, especially if your trailer breaks down along the road. While you can’t always foresee a problem, regular maintenance will ensure those unexpected issues are few and far between.
  • Increases Resale Value – Horse trailers are pretty costly, and they also hold their value quite well on the resale market. This is especially true of you to perform annual spring inspections and take care of the necessary repairs and maintenance tasks.

Learn More About Maintenance for Your Horse Trailer

Caring for your horse trailer is essential, not only for your horses but also for everyone else on the road. A disabled or broken down horse trailer is a hazard for its occupants and other motorists. Don’t allow this scenario to happen to you. Protect your assets by performing thorough, annual horse trailer inspections each spring.

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