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Safely Hooking Up Your Travel Trailer

When hooking up a travel trailer to a tow vehicle, your safety should be a top priority. If you miss a step, you might end up destroying the travel trailer. That’s why you should ensure that you’ve safely hooked the vehicle and trailer before you hit the road. If you have no idea how to hitch a travel trailer, check out this guide to learn how to do it.

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Hooking up a travel trailer can seem daunting, especially if it’s your first time doing it. The good news is that it’s a simple process. All you have to do is get the required trailer’s hitching and connection supplies ready. We’ll share a few suggestions. Here are the steps to follow when hooking up a travel trailer.

Try a Dry Run Before Hitting the Road

If it’s going to be your first time to tow a travel trailer, you should try a few dry runs before setting out for an open road. Get an experienced RVer to guide you through the entire process. After that, you can hit the road to  a nearby parking lot to set up a “camp.” Practice parking the travel trailer and releasing it from the tow vehicle.

Trailer Connection & Hitching Supplies

Before hooking up the travel trailer, get all the supplies that you might need. Here are some of the accessories you should have for a smooth process.

  • Rubber Blocks: Provide traction between the ground and trailer jack to prevent the travel trailer from slipping the blocks while unhitching. You can also use the rubber blocks with the stabilizers.
  • Proper Lubricants: You need to keep the travel trailer’s moving parts lubricated for effective functioning. You can oil the ball receiver and hitch ball using a high-friction grease and a spray lubricant for the jack on the trailer’s front.
  • Duct Tape: You’ll use the duct tape to mark the hitching tools supplies and the chain links on your trailer’s sway control arms. Look for strong duct tape that can withstand grease and moisture.
  • Towel or Apron: Since you will be handling lubricants when hooking up a travel trailer, you need something to wipe off your hands and protect your clothes. An apron and towel can help you with that.

Once you have all the supplies ready, start the connection process by getting the hitch on your tow vehicle. You need to gently slide it into the hitch receiver and insert a hitch locking pin to secure the trailer. Ensure that the hitch ball is greased before proceeding.

After getting the hitch on a tow vehicle and prepping and raising the trailer, you need to connect the two. Lower the trailer into position and turn off the engine. You should also engage the safety breaks to prevent it from moving during the next steps.

Here are the next steps:

  • Attach the weight distribution bars to spread the weight across the trailer and tow vehicle evenly
  • Lower the travel trailer until the hitch ball gets fully inside the ball receiver, then lock the ball in place
  • Connect the trailer lights to the tow vehicle. Also, hook up the trailer brakes and test them to ensure the brake controller dials nicely
  • Connect the tow vehicle and trailer with a safety chain as the last line of defense 

Next Steps After Connection

After successfully hooking up the travel trailer, remove the wheel chocks to improve mobility. Check if the brakes, running lights, and turn signals are working correctly. If the lights aren’t working, check if the brake and light connectors are well-plugged.

Pro Tip: When doing a final check around your trailer, ensure that you didn’t miss any open latches or windows. Make sure you don’t forget any camping gear out of the RV.

Hooking Up Your Travel Trailer for Safe Camping

Now that you’ve learned how hooking up a travel trailer is simple, you can safely hook up your RV and set out for a nearby RV park. Choose a camping ground with a fresh water hookup. Go and have an adventurous trip without worrying about your RV.

Connect with us to learn how to unhook your travel trailer seamlessly.