How to tow a horse trailer [VIDEO GUIDE]

As part of an initiative with Land Rover, H&H produced a series of instructional videos explaining how to tow a horse trailer. The videos below cover all the things you need to consider before setting out with your horse and trailer. NB: the competition to win an Ifor William horse trailer has closed.

Preparing to tow a horse trailer

There are some checks you should make to your horse trailer and towing vehicle before you set out.

  • Check the oil and water levels on your towing vehicle
  • Look for damage to tyre walls on both the towing vehicle and trailer, including the spare wheel
  • Check the handbreak is applied on the trailer and that there is no damage to the breakaway cable
  • The electrical connector must be clean
  • Check the trailer has the correct numberplate for the towing vehicle

How to hitch up your horse trailer

  • Check the handbreak is securely on, then remove the hitch lock
  • Adjust the height of the hitch by winding up the jockey wheel
  • Reverse back slowly until the towball is below the hitch cup
  • It helps to have someone guide you back, or try leaning a broom against the hitch to you gauge the distance and location of the hitch
  • Attach the breakaway cable securely to the vehicle. Don’t just loop it over the towball.
  • Wind down the hitch until it is securely attached, then release the handbreak (NOT the other way around as suggested in the video!)
  • Wind up the jockey wheel up to its highest position and put the pin in place. Then release the lever, pull the jockey wheel right up and secure it
  • Attach the electrical cable and make sure all the lights are working correctly

How to tow a horse trailer

  • Pull away slowly to allow your horse to find and maintain his balance
  • Look ahead and read the road to avoid unnecessary braking
  • Use your mirrors to check your trailer’s position on the road
  • Position the trailer so the wheels is not too close to the curb/gutter as this will give your horse an uncomfortable ride
  • Approach junctions slowly and position your vehicle to allow room for the trailer to turn
  • Slow down before corners, make a smooth turn allowing room for the trailer, then gently accelerate away
  • Make sure you know the speed limits that apply when towing

Dealing with a breakdown

Dealing with a breakdown when you’ve got horses on board is something we all hope to avoid, but if it does happen the following advice will help keep you and your horses safe.

  • Put your hzard warning lights on and pull over to the side of the road
  • Take care getting out of the vehicle and put on high-visability or other bright clothing
  • Place an emergency triangle approx 50ft behind the trailer
  • Check your horse is comfortable and offer hay/water as necessary
  • Call your breakdown company. NB: standard breakdown will not include rescuing your horse so it’s worth investing in a specialist breakdown policy to know your horse will be taken home in an emergency

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