You and your trailer
How to choose the right trailer
Before choosing your trailer you should consider the following
Think about how you will use your trailer. Always overestimate by about 20% the load that you think you will require. Indeed, when you buy a trailer, there are always plenty of uses you would not have thought of initially. Make sure you understand the difference between the payload (i.e. the maximum weight you will be allowed to put on the trailer) and the gross weight (that is the maximum weight, including the weight of the trailer, you are officially authorized to tow on public roads).
Driving Licence and Technical requirements
The Road Safety Authority advise:
Advice and Checks for Trailers
Maintaining your Trailer.
Have an annual maintenance check and have defects which may affect the safe use of your trailer, repaired by a competent person.
By cleaning your trailer regularly, using a Power Hose, you will help to prolong it's life (Agressive detergent could possibly damage the finish of the steel panels). Remember that certain materials like road salt, cement, fertilizers, soil, sand, organic elements, if not cleaned off, could significantly threaten the galvanised protection of the trailer. Store your trailer in a place ideally protected from the rain, hail or wind. Some trailers may be stored vertically. This must be done by at least 2 people wearing protective gloves.
Trailer Road Traffic Regulations
All trailers must meet with Irish Road Traffic Regulations when in use in a public place. These regulations set out the law in relation to weights, lights, brakes, plating, under-run, side-guards, securing of loads, etc.
The three main pieces of regulation that you should familiarise yourself with are:
Road Traffic (Construction and Use of Vehicles) Regulations as amended, which outlines for drivers, there trailers’ maximum permissible weight and dimensions.
Road Traffic (Construction, Equipment and Use of Vehicles) Regulations as amended, which outlines for drivers, the braking requirements for trailers
Road Traffic (Lighting of Vehicles) Regulations as amended, which outlines for drivers, the lighting requirements for trailers.
All this and further information is available at www.rsa.ie.