Check the Frame
Inspect the horse trailer frame annually
The first and most important thing we do when preforming an annual service on a trailer is to inspect the frame. The trailer is jacked up and every bit of the frame and axles are completely inspected. Even “all aluminum” trailers have steel axles and axle carriage. We see several trailers every year that are aluminum or aluminum skin that look beautiful when they drive in but upon inspection are not roadworthy. Owners were putting their horses in these trailers and going down the road with no idea that they were courting disaster.
A qualified trailer mechanic will know the difference between surface rust and a safety concern. We inspect the entire frame from the back of the trailer to and including the coupler for corrosion and stress cracks. All components of the axle attachments are inspected. A potential source of problems in an aluminum trailer can be where the axle carriage bolts to the trailer, we closely inspect the bolts for corrosion and replace all that are compromised.
Below are pictures of trailers that are not roadworthy. They were currently being used to haul horses when the owners brought them in for service having no idea they were courting disaster. The importance of having the frame checked by an expert can not be over emphasized.
Examples of frames that are not roadworthy:
The axle bracket is rotted and the axle is no longer attached to the trailer.
The main frame has rotted and the crossmember that holds up the floor in no longer attached.
The hardware that attaches the axle carriage to the trailer has rotted and needs to be replaced.
The axle carriage on an aluminum trailer has rotted.
The main frame is completely rotted and the axle is not secure.
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