What to Know About Cargo Trailers

If you need to know what to know about cargo trailers, we’ll give you some professional insights right here. First of all, cargo trailers go by a few different names, depending on who you are talking to, so what to know about cargo trailers is really important. Some people call them enclosed or box trailers, some may even incorrectly call them a utility trailer. However, the common name used by manufacturers in the trailer industry is cargo trailer. These are not to be confused with the bigger trailers used to haul commercial cargo and pulled with a big diesel tractor and commonly called an 18 wheeler. Cargo trailers come in several standard widths and lengths. These trailers can be customized into food service concession trailers, camper trailers, race car haulers or motorcycle trailers and a lot more. Cargo trailers are made as what are called bumper pull models and also goose-neck models and we will explain the difference. A bumper pull trailer is generally built with an A-frame tongue, has a particular size ball type hitch coupler to fit mainly a 2″ or 2-5/16″ hitch ball, and attaches directly to the rear bumper area of your tow vehicle on a weight rated trailer hitch. It is not recommended and it is not safe to attach a bumper pull trailer to the bumper itself on a vehicle. A goose-neck trailer has an extended “neck” area on the front of the main storage area of the trailer. This neck area is also used for overhead storage but its main purpose is to extend the trailer over into the center area of the rear of the tow vehicle. The goose-neck type coupler attaches to a goose-neck hitch ball installed in the bed or deck of the tow vehicle. A goose-neck model cargo trailer usually is the widest and longest models and can be either two or three axles. You can buy¬† a standard bumper pull cargo trailer as small as a 4 x 6 and as big as a 8.5 x 34. Standard goose-neck cargo trailers are available up to a 8.5 x 52. Standard cargo trailer widths are 4′, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 8.5 feet measured from outside wall to outside wall. Finding a factory to build you a custom width model would not be easy do and would be real expensive even if they would build it for you. The exterior of these type trailers is usually made of aluminum and available in a bunch of color choices. The standard metal thickness is usually .024 but many factories offer upgrades to .030 or .040 and some even .050 thick metal. Some colors are only available in the .030 thick metal. A few manufacturers offer cargo trailers with a steel exterior, however these are much heavier duty, more expensive and only needed for extreme rough use, like an industrial requirement. Interiors are mainly plywood with 3/4″ floors and 3/8″ inch walls but with upgrades to thicker plywood also available from most reputable factories. Roofs are mainly made from a metal called Galvalume which is a trademarked galvanized aluminum product invented in 1972 by Bethlehem Steel. Galvalume is made of steel coated with 45% zinc and 55% aluminum and is very corrosion and heat resistant. However, roofs made of all aluminum are available as an upgrade from most manufacturers, but is certainly not needed or used on most cargo trailers sold today. The main frame on cargo trailers is usually made of steel tubing fro 3″ to 8″ depending on the length of the trailer, although some manufacturers will use an I-beam on larger models, but this adds extra weight and is argued whether it adds any significant extra strength benefit. The better quality models have side walls braced using square tubing posts of at least 1″ x 1-1/2″ and are placed on no more than 16″ on center. Less expensive models may place the side wall posts on 24″ centers on small models. A few factories use a steel product called “Z-bar” for side wall posts and while it works fine, many in the industry believe it is inferior and won’t use it in their cargo trailers. Side doors are standard on 6′ wide models and large. A side door or what some people call a man door or walk through door can also be added to a 5′ wide model as an option and some factories may even include a 24″ side door on their 5′ wide models. Rear load doors today are mainly what’s called a ramp door and should always be spring assisted. A ramp door is the type that raises and lowers by being hinged at the bottom and the user can roll or drive wheeled items up and down the load ramp. However, some users require double barn style swing open doors because they need to load using a fork lift to drop in pallet loads from the rear and ramp doors are not strong enough to hold the weight of a forklift. Others like barn doors because they can swing them all the way open and back the trailer up firmly against an opening or dock for hand loading. Cargo trailers are built mostly with either one single leaf spring axle or two (tandem) leaf spring axles, using 3500 lb axles with 5 lug hubs. Heavier duty 5200 lb 6 lug axles are available as are 6000 lb or 7000 lb 8 lug axles, depending on the size trailer and the capacity application the trailer will be used for on a daily basis. Torsion type axles that have no leaf springs but have a torsion action in the wheel hub are also available as an upgrade. Electric brakes are not standard on single axle models but are required by the DOT on all wheels any tandem axle trailer or any single axle trailer rated over 3,000 GVWR on the VIN plate or registration. Any trailer with brakes also requires something called a breakaway kit, which is a safety item that will auto apply the brakes on the trailer if it becomes disconnected from the tow vehicle during transport. What to know about cargo trailers is really important when it comes to axles that carry the load. Since single axle standard models do not have brakes, manufacturers only rate single 5 lug 3500 lb axle models at a GVWR of 2990 lbs. Lastly, warranties offered by cargo manufacturers vary, from one year on the less expensive models up to five years on better quality models. The factory warranty generally covers the material and workmanship on the main structure of the trailer. Moving and electrical parts are usually warrantied for only one year by all manufacturers. Axles carry a warranty issued by the axle manufacturer and are mostly 5 years on leaf spring type axles and 10 years on torsion type axles. Top axle brands used by quality manufacturers today are Dexter, Rockwell, Lippert and SureTrac, although there may be others that are just as good. If your looking for a cargo trailer, what to know about cargo trailers is real important before you start shopping and maybe this bit of information will help you in your search. https://trailers2go4less.com/best-new-cargo-trailer-prices-nationwide/