Winter Trailer Storage TipsDec 13, 2016
Last Updated on October 10, 2022 by allprotrailersuperstore
Trailers are an investment you want to last as long as possible. One of the things that decreases a trailer’s lifespan and durability is improper winter storage. Winter weather takes its toll on everything, but you don’t want it to cause your trailer to develop rust or leaks. The best way to prevent this is by preparing your trailer for winter storage during the fall season.
Following these winter trailer storage tips will help you maintain your trailer’s condition while storing it over winter.
Why Protect Your Trailer For Winter
An essential aspect of trailer care and maintenance is protecting your trailer in winter. The cold temperatures and harsh weather elements cause damage and weathering. Trailers made for storing or transporting equipment during winter are still vulnerable to harsh winter weather and temperature drops. Protecting your trailer maintains its condition and durability.
How to Protect Your Trailer in the Winter
To prepare your trailer for winter, you need to clean, inspect, prep and cover it.
1. Clean It
Before you begin any detailing or prepping job, make sure your trailer is completely cleaned out. Cleaning out your trailer means removing any debris, automobiles, and anything else you have in your trailer. If you are winterizing your horse trailer, be sure to remove any and all bedding, mats, hay, and feed. Once you have removed all of the items inside, begin to wash down the walls and floors and clean between any cracks and crevices.
2. Inspect It
Once you’ve cleaned out the inside, begin checking for rust, corrosion and potential leaks. Chipped paint and scratches can lead to rust if left untouched or untreated over the winter. Pay close attention to this with steel trailers. Exposed steel that is left to the elements is more prone to rusting and corroding, causing considerable damage to trailers as time goes on. You can remove rust spots by sanding or wire brushing and going over them with rust inhibitor paint. Be sure to check spots that are mostly prone to rust like framework, axles and the undercarriage.
3. Prep It
Prepping your trailer involves caring for your tires, preparing the plumbing, greasing moving parts, removing the battery and choosing the right place. Your tires need to be winterized. Leaving them exposed to the extreme cold or the sun can cause tires to go bad. If you can, cover your tires or try putting a rubber protectant on them. The best option, if possible, is to move your trailer every so often to prevent them from flattening and rotting. You can even opt for setting the trailer on blocks so that the icy conditions don’t cause further damage to the rubber of the tire.
If your trailer has a plumbing or septic system, you must prepare it so it doesn’t freeze. Frozen pipes can lead to cracks and other problems during the spring. Hire a professional to prepare your plumbing system if you don’t know how to do it yourself.
Greasing moving parts, such as hinges, axle bearings, suspension and hitch, prevents them from rusting or locking up due to non-use.
When batteries are left idle for prolonged periods, they may develop excess deposits that cause shorts or dead batteries. You prevent this by removing the battery and storing it safely elsewhere. The battery can be replaced after winter, prolonging its life.
You need a space that can accommodate your trailer’s size, especially if it’s customized. Knowing your trailer’s dimensions helps you choose an appropriately sized deck or structure to store it in.
4. Cover It
Storing a trailer inside is the best way to protect it from winter, but not everyone has the necessary interior storage space. If you keep your trailer outside, you must cover it to protect it from the elements and prevent damage and fading. The cover needs to cloak the trailer, but it does not need to be custom-fitted. As long as the trailer is entirely covered with a weatherproof covering, it is likely fine.
If your trailer has a ramp, don’t forget to consider it when selecting a cover.
Protect Your Investment With Help from All Pro Trailer
Finding a nice parking spot and detaching your trailer for the season can be tempting, but this can damage it. Properly storing your trailer over winter can prevent rust, rotted wood and damaged seals or tires. The money you spend on trailer maintenance and storage now will save you money on future repairs. It also prolongs the life of your trailer by keeping it in good condition.
All Pro Trailer Superstore offers trailer inspections in Pennsylvania. A professional trailer inspection will help prepare your trailer for winter by checking:
- Tire pressure, tires and wheels
- Brakes and brake magnets, lines, cylinders, lining and wiring
- Grease fittings
- Lug nuts
- Breakaway system
- The lights system
- Hub or drum
If you have any questions about our trailer inspections, call us at (717) 795-9116.