Towing a trailer loaded with horses is a delicate dance -- you must do all that you can to avoid sudden stops, turns that are too tight and even especially large bumps in the road to keep your horses as calm as possible. The only thing that separates them from the asphalt at 60 plus miles per hour is a thin metal trailer skin, so caution is key. But there’s more to it than just being careful, you need the right equipment for towing a bumper pull horse trailer, like a weight distribution hitch.
Weight Distribution Hitches
To save fuel, more and more horse owners are switching to smaller vehicles to do their towing. Although it’s environmentally friendly, these smaller trucks and SUVs aren’t always designed with pulling horse trailers in mind. They often have suspensions that simply aren’t rated for the kind of weight that your horse trailer creates, causing the point where trailer and truck meet to slouch or dive.
Weight distribution hitches correct this problem by providing additional hitch points to spread out the load. These spring bars help transfer excess weight directly to the axles of your tow vehicle, eliminating the dive point between the trailer and truck. This is more than an aesthetic choice, it’s all about horse comfort and safety. A trailer that remains level without exerting too much force against the truck provides a smoother ride for your horses, and in turn, they ride better time and again.
How a Weight Distribution Hitch Improves Safety
A truck hauling a poorly distributed load is an accident waiting to happen -- in fact, this is one of the main reasons that bumper pull horse trailers get such a bad rap for safety. By its very nature, the bulk of the weight of a horse trailer, namely live horses, is a difficult load to haul. Your horses shift around as you drive and they’re really kind of built upside down for proper loading. Since most of their weight is high up off the floor of the trailer, it’s important that your trailer not sway or do anything too unpredictable in order to avoid injuries.
Poorly distributed trailer weight like this makes it harder to know that you’ll be able to stop suddenly when you must. Too much dive between the truck and trailer can create an unsafe situation -- braking can be nearly impossible because the front wheels come up off the ground slightly due to the force on the back of the vehicle.
Bumper pull horse trailers for sale can be an excellent value, but nothing’s cheap enough to put your horses at risk. Before you leave with your next custom horse trailer, spend a little extra to ensure that your horses get a safe ride wherever you might take them. After all, the small cost of a weight distribution hitch is nothing compared to the cost of veterinarian bills, vehicle repair and replacement of a severely damaged trailer when you finally do have an accident.