Flatbed trailers are the perfect solution for moving heavy loads, whether it’s a highboy, a lowboy, a bumper pull, or a gooseneck, you can move almost anything with a flatbed trailer.
Flatbeds are perfect for when you have to shift something that is too big, too wide, too heavy or too unusual a shape for a van. You can move plant machinery, vehicles, wood, building materials, even tractors. The only disadvantage to a flatbed is the lack of protection offered by an enclosed truck or van, something you need to take into consideration when transporting loads through adverse weather conditions.
What To Remember When Renting A Flatbed Trailer
You need to make sure you are renting the right type of trailer for the load you are moving, some are more expensive than others and some require different licences or equipment. This includes making sure you have the right size trailer for your load. Too large and you will make your trip unnecessarily complicated, too small and you risk an unsafe load. You must also check you have the correct licence and paperwork required to tow it.
Check the trailer for safety, does it have the right safety features, including safety straps, hooks, and latches and check their condition. Check the condition of the trailer before you rent it, especially the underside. The last thing you want is for the thing to break under the weight of whatever you are moving while you’re towing it, and if the trailer has a tipping motor, check it works.
The Types Of Flatbed Trailer You Can Rent
Air-tow level loading trailers rise and lower to make loading and loading super simple, car hauler trailers do exactly what they say on the tin and you can also get tip trailers, perfect for unloading difficult loads with ease.
Depending on the weight of the load you wish to move, you can use either a highboy trailer, which sit above the wheels, or a lowboy trailer, which sit below the wheels. The lowboy style is more useful for heavier loads. If you have a truck cab, you can always rent a truck deck to attach on your chassis, for the really big items.
A gooseneck trailer has an arched front hitch, which means that instead of attaching to the back of the towing vehicle, and instead are attached to the bed of a pickup truck. This means that not only is it a very strong hitch, it is also able to perform much tighter turns than other trailer and tow combinations.
A bumper pull trailer is the more traditional hitch, which connects to the tow-bar on the back of a vehicle. The advantage of a bumper pull trailer is that you often do not need to buy or rent a new vehicle, with many 4x4s or vans already having a tow-bar attached, or are easily retrofitted. Another advantage of renting a bumper pull flatbed trailer is that the combined weight is less likely to exceed 10,001 pounds, which is when it becomes “commercial” and requires a specific licence.
Because a flatbed trailer has no sides, compared to a van or a truck, you can load it from all sides, meaning you can use a forklift from all angles, and you are not as restricted by width or length.
Loading Your Flatbed Trailer
Whatever you are transporting, you need to make sure your load is safe and secure on your flatbed trailer. The weight needs to be evenly distributed and central on the trailer. It needs to be securely fastened and if you are transporting a vehicle, you need to make sure the handbrake is on, the car is left in gear and the wheels are chocked.
Driving While Towing A Flatbed Trailer
Chances are when you’re towing a flatbed trailer; you will be carrying a heavy load, so it will take you longer to stop. Take this into consideration and drive at a slower speed and brake earlier. You will also find that the vehicle behaves differently while cornering; you need to take corners slower and give yourself more time to complete the manoeuvre. Try and drive smoothly, it’s better to arrive late than never.
So whether you need to move a tractor or some large sandbags, a flatbed trailer could be what you need, but make sure you use a safe trailer, keep your load secure and drive carefully.