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Pre-Towing Checklist for Heavy Cargo

Pre-Towing Checklist for Heavy Cargo

Reducing the Risks with Safe Towing

Towing heavy cargo can come with some high risks, so it’s important to ensure your towing “ducks” are in a row before hitting the road. A pre-towing checklist is one way to turn your day-to-day operations into a seamless, stress-free endeavor with no mistakes.

How a Checklist can Help

Let’s face it, mistakes happen even when you’re being careful. Add in the idea of towing thousands of pounds of cargo behind your vehicle, and the odds of a potential problem significantly increase. A pre-tow checklist helps to organize all the items that need to be done when asking the fundamental question, “Am I properly set up to tow within the capacities of my truck, trailer and hitch?”

Checklist Ideas

Every checklist will be different based on your trailer and cargo type. However, some items will remain the same no matter the situation. Take a look at a basic pre-tow checklist.

  • Verify that your latched and locked (specifically, is the coupler fully seated on your towball, is the latch locked with the suitable hitch pin lock)
  • Confirm that your chains are connected (crisscrossed) and have enough slack to permit sharp turns but are not dragging on the road
  • Inspect all wiring by hand to verify that power cables are connected
  • Make sure to position your load appropriately by placing heavier items ahead of the trailer axle. The goal is to have 60% of your cargo’s mass ahead of the trailer axle and 40% behind.
  • Verify that the weight is distributed evenly on the left and right of the trailer
  • Make sure the cargo is adequately loaded and secured
  • Visually inspect to make sure your truck and trailer are level with the ground
  • Inspect the lowest point of your hitch in regards to the ground and determine adequate clearance
  • Inspect the truck and trailer tires are in good condition and air pressure is correct based on manufacturer recommendations
  • Check to make sure the trailer lights are working properly (running lights, brake lights, turn signals and hazard lights)
  • Adjust trailer brakes as needed based on the trailer’s weight
  • Verify that the runaway cable is attached
  • Adjust mirrors as needed to provide a clear view that extends to the end of the trailer
  • Check routes and restrictions based on the weight and height of the trailer

Pro-Line Trailers

Pro-Line Trailers is your one-stop location for all your trailer needs. As one of the leading sellers of trailers in the United States, we are proud to carry a wide selection of new and pre-owned trailers. From enclosed trailers to utility trailers and everything in between, our friendly and knowledgeable staff will assist you on your trailing purchasing journey.

Conveniently headquartered in Rocky Mount, Virginia, we also provide ongoing maintenance services, carry a wide variety of trailer parts and can work with you to create a customized trailer that meets your towing needs. With factory pick-up in Georgia, Indiana and Florida, we provide our excellent services across the entire East Coast.

For more information, take a look at our website at or fill out our online contact form. Also, feel free to call us at (540) 334-4182.

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