Towing Equipment and Accessories

Towing equipment varies by the size of your trailer, how much load you are towing, and where you are towing.

■ Hitches

The hitch must be of an approved type and properly bolted to the underbody.

■ Safety chains

Always use safety chains when you tow a trailer. Leave enough slack to allow the trailer to turn corners easily, but do not allow the chains to drag on the ground.

■ Trailer brakes

There are two common types of trailer brakes: surge and electric. Surge brakes are common for boat trailers, since the brakes will get wet. If you choose electric brakes, be sure they are electronically actuated. Do not attempt to attach trailer brakes to your vehicle's hydraulic system, as it will lower braking effectiveness and create a potential hazard.

■ Additional towing equipment

Many states and provinces/territories require special outside mirrors when towing a trailer. Even if mirrors are not required in your locale, you should install special mirrors if visibility is restricted in any way.

■ Trailer light

Trailer lights and equipment must comply with federal, state, province/territory, and local regulations. Check with your local trailer sales or rental agency for the requirements in the area where you plan to tow.

Make sure that all equipment is properly installed and maintained, and that it meets federal, state, province/ territory, and local regulations.

Consult your trailer sales or rental agency if any other items are recommended or required for your towing situation.

The lighting and wiring of trailers can vary by type and brand. If a connector is required, it should only be installed by a qualified technician.

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