This summer the roads are full of people hauling recreational vehicles, boats, motorbikes, or other big toys that we Americans love to bring with us when we go up to the lake or to any campground. But what’s the safest way to do this?
We see this from time to time, people purchase a truck or SUV for their family, a few years go by and they now want a 5th wheeler or camper to take their family camping. Sometimes the truck or SUV isn’t rated to haul the size of that camper. You’ll need to look at the limits of the vehicle you currently have before you go shopping for the latest, greatest camper. Otherwise, you’ll be shelling out big bucks on the highway, if your engine is ruined by pulling too much weight, not to mention you’ll need to replace that truck.
Before you go.
One thing we recommend is after you purchase your camper, be sure you take it to an empty parking lot to practice some basics you’ll need to know in the real world. Remember, any vehicle hauling a trailer isn’t able to turn on a dime, and the rule is almost always is swing wide when turning. Be sure to practice backing up here, if you take your hand on the bottom of your steering, the direction you move your hand in the direction the butt end of the trailer will go as you back up.
Before you hit the road, be sure to call your insurance agent about your camper purchase, you’ll want to protect yourself and your passengers – although, in most states, passengers aren’t allowed to ride in a camper of a 5th wheel or pull behind a camper – unless there are some strict rules or regulations that are followed.
Be sure you know how to hitch up wisely. Make sure you have the correct size tongue weight, and that it’s not just a bumper hitch, but actually connects up to the frame of your vehicle. There are gooseneck, 5th wheels, and trailers all have different connections, be sure you have the right connection, and that it fits – before you hit the road.
Check your views.
If you start hauling something longer than your vehicle, no matter how much you adjust your rearview mirrors, your blind spot won’t disappear. Pick up some extended side-viewing mirrors that clip on or get the option to have them permanently installed.
If you are hauling something behind you, that adds weight – and time – for you to be able to stop. Your goal is to get there safe, and happy – even if you have to meet a few disgruntled drivers on the way there. It’s also a really good idea to stay in the right lane, and let those speedy cars get there before you. You’re probably not going to the same place anyway.
The less you bring, the less you’ll have to haul, so try not to bring everything but the kitchen sink – although there is usually one of those already in your RV. If you do have things attached to the outside of the back of your RV – like bikes or a kayak, be sure they are well secured – use non-stretchable straps that can carry your extras for the long haul.
Read all the manufacturer’s warnings, before heading out in your RV or camping trailer. It’ll help you arrive alive and maybe you won’t need to call us when you are on the road. If you do find yourself in an accident or have issues with hauling your camper – we’ll be glad to help you out. Contact Us today to schedule your pick-up. You can also call us at 847-844-1400 to inquire about our other services.