When it comes to trailer axle maintenance, there are a few things you should know in order to keep your rig on the road. Ensuring that your trailer axles are in tip-top shape is essential for a safe and smooth journey – after all, they bear the brunt of the weight and stress while you’re on the move.
In this article, we’ll cover the basics of trailer axle maintenance, from how to check tyre pressure to lubricating your bearings. So whether you’re a seasoned pro or a complete novice, read on for all the info!
1. Check the bearings regularly
The bearings are what allow the wheels to rotate smoothly, so it’s important to keep them in good condition. You should check them at least once a month (more often if you’re doing a lot of driving).
What you can do is remove the hub cap (if there is one) and then use a socket wrench to loosen the nut that holds the axle in place. Next, use your hand to wiggle the wheel back and forth – if there is any play, then the bearings need to be adjusted or replaced.
Putting the hub cap back on if everything is secure and there is no movement is the next step.
2. Check tyre pressure
Another important part of trailer axle maintenance is checking the tyre pressure. This should be done at least once a week, and more often if you’re doing a lot of driving.
To check the tyre pressure, use a tyre pressure gauge to measure the amount of air in each tyre. You can find the recommended pressure for your tyres in the owner’s manual or on the placard that is usually located on the driver’s side door.
If the pressure is too low, add air until it reaches the correct level. If it’s too high, let some air out until it’s at the right level.
3. Lubricate the bearings
Once you’ve checked and adjusted the bearings, it’s time to lubricate them. This will help to keep them in good condition and prevent any premature wear.
To lubricate the bearings, first, remove the hub cap (if there is one). Next, use a grease gun to apply a generous amount of grease to the zerk fittings on each side of the axle. Once you’ve done this, replace the hub cap and you’re all set!
4. Check the brakes
If your trailer has brakes, then you’ll need to check them on a regular basis to ensure they are in good working order. This should be done at least once a month, and more often if you’re doing a lot of driving.
To do this, make sure the trailer is properly connected to the tow vehicle. Next, engage the parking brake and then try to move the trailer forward – if it doesn’t move, then the brakes are in good working order.
Brakes need to be checked out by a trained specialist if the trailer does not move at all.
5. Inspect the tyres
In addition to checking the tyre pressure, you should also inspect the tyres on a regular basis for any signs of wear or damage. This should be done at least once a month, and more often if you’re doing a lot of driving.
To perform this, look for any cracks, bald spots, or other signs of wear. Also, check to see if the tread depth is below the minimum level. If you find any issues, then the tyre will need to be replaced.
Following these simple steps will help to keep your trailer axles in good condition and ensure a smooth journey. So be sure to add them to your maintenance routine – your future self will thank you for it!