Single-horse trailers are a necessary component of horse ownership. Horses are large animals and can be difficult to move without proper transportation. Single-horse trailers are ideal for horses that do not travel well in company or who do not like partitions. Single-horse trailers are available in an array of sizes, styles, and models. They can be made from various materials, including steel and fibreglass. The trailer is designed to attach to the owner's vehicle. So, the low height of a single-horse trailer allows it to be towed by an ordinary car.
Single-horse trailers vary greatly in price. Those on a budget should consider buying a used single-horse trailer as many can be found in like new condition at a fraction of their original cost. When purchasing a single-horse trailer at retailers such as eBay, buyers should familiarise themselves with the various components of trailers and learn how to inspect a used model.
Factors to Consider When Buying a Used Single-Horse Trailer
There are many factors that should be considered when searching for a single-horse trailer. These factors help to determine the horse's level of comfort and help to transport the horse safely.
Width of a Used Single-Horse Trailer
When searching for a single-horse trailer, buyers should consider the trailer's width. Larger trailers provide greater levels of comfort for the horse. However, they may be difficult to manoeuvre while driving. 1.8 or 2.1 metre wide trailers are recommended for drivers less experienced with towing a trailer as they allow for greater visibility. If searching for a wider trailer, buyers should consider investing in large trailer mirrors for their car for better visibility of both the trailer and the road.
Materials for a Used Single-Horse Trailer
Single-horse trailers are usually made of a combination of steel, aluminium, and fibreglass. Aluminium trailers have steel axle subframes as well as steel gooseneck frames. Most steel framed trailers have an aluminium skin. In general, aluminium gooseneck trailers are lighter than those made of steel.
The material of the roof should also be taken into account when buying a used single-horse trailer. Fibreglass roofs are usually 10 to 20 degrees Celsius cooler than those made of aluminium or steel. When purchasing a used single-horse trailer, buyers should always inspect the roof for any signs of leakage.
Hitch for a Used Single-Horse Trailer
Single-horse trailers can be towed by a vehicle in various ways. Bumper-pull trailers are towed from the car's rear bumper or receiver hitch. These trailers are typically less expensive than gooseneck trailers. In addition, bumper-pull trailers allow buyers with pickup trucks to use their truck bed to carry hay and other necessary supplies. On the other hand, gooseneck trailers are anchored to a hitch in the truck bed, which makes these trailers place a greater amount of force on the vehicle. This can cause the vehicle to sway, although a good weight distributing hitch can help to increase stability.
Gooseneck trailers also use more fuel and take up more room in the truck bed. Despite these disadvantages, gooseneck trailers are often preferred because they have less effect on the movement of the vehicle, allowing drivers more control when steering and reversing. Gooseneck trailers also have a tighter turning radius.
Stall Configuration of a Used Single-Horse Trailer
Single-horse trailer stalls are configured in various ways including: slant loads, reverse slant loads, and straight loads. Buyers should consider which stall configuration best suits their horse. Slant loads take up less room in the trailer's length, while reverse slant loads allow the horse to brace his hindquarters rather than his shoulders when the driver brakes. Although reverse slant loads take up more trailer space, horses often prefer to face the rear at an angle. Straight loads are less expensive and ideal entry-level trailers.
Vehicle Size for a Used Single-Horse Trailer
When buying a single-horse trailer, buyers should ensure that their vehicle is reliable enough to handle the trailer weight when loaded. Most single-horse trailers are small enough to be towed by various vehicle types, including ordinary cars, although trucks are the most feasible option. Buyers should consider investing in a towing package for their vehicle for safe travelling.
Inspecting a Used Single-Horse Trailer
When purchasing a used single-horse trailer, buyers should ensure that the trailer is in good condition. It is important to inspect the trailer for any signs of wear and tear that may compromise the horse's safety or the safety of the driver.
Latches and Hitch for a Used Single-Horse Trailer
Buyers should examine the used single-horse trailer's latches and hitch. They should function as intended and should not have any missing or broken components, including safety chains. If the hitch is missing any hardware, then the trailer has the risk of becoming unhitched from the vehicle. Similarly, all doors must latch securely. Windows should also be examined. They should open and close easily and should not have any cracks or chips.
Tyres for a Used Single-Horse Trailer
It is important to inspect the condition of the tyres of a used single-horse trailer. They should be in good condition, with no damage to the sidewalls and no odd patterns of wear in the tread. Buyers should ensure that the tyres have the proper weight rating for the size of load that they are going to carry. If new tyres are needed, buyers should factor this into the total cost.
Mechanics for a Used Single-Horse Trailer
Buyers should inspect the bearing caps of the used single-horse trailer for signs of fresh lubrication. The trailer should not make any noise when rolling. All suspension components should be mechanically sound. It is also a good idea to inspect the brakes of the trailer. All wiring and lights should be in proper working order. Any sign of split or frayed wires can indicate a larger mechanical fault.
Corrosion for a Used Single-Horse Trailer
When purchasing a used single-horse trailer, buyers should examine critical areas carefully, such as flooring, for signs of corrosion. If not maintained properly, horse urine can lead to rotting of the trailer's floorboards. This can be expensive to repair. When examining aluminium floors, buyers should lift up all rubber floor mats and examine the areas underneath for signs of corrosion and damage, especially in the corners. Buyers should check trailers with wooden floors for signs of split floorboards, dry rot, and cracking. Rubber is also used for some horse trailer floors, but this material is impervious to water and usually not susceptible to damage.
Fresh Water System for a Used Single-Horse Trailer
Some used single-horse trailers have an onboard fresh water system. This system often requires a water holding tank, an electric pump, and a water heater. All of the system's components should be in proper working order.
Cost of a Used Single-Horse Trailer
In addition to the price of the used single-horse trailer, buyers also need to pay for extra license plates for the trailer, as well as any fees to transfer the title documents. This should be taken into account when calculating the final cost.
Buying a used single-horse trailer can be daunting, in a similar way to buying any pre-owned vehicle. However, many can be found in like new condition for a fraction of the price of a new model. Although not all horses participate in shows and races, they may still need to make the occasional journey to the vet. Loading a horse into a single-horse trailer should not be a complex process, although some horses may be unfamiliar with travelling this way.
When searching for a used single-horse trailer, buyers should consider their horse. The horse should fit comfortably and safely in the trailer. The width of the trailer, as well as the stall configuration, should accommodate the horse's needs. Buyers should consider how they can connect the trailer to their vehicle. Bumper-pull trailers are less expensive than gooseneck trailers. Bumper-pull trailers put all of their weight on the vehicle's rear bumper, while gooseneck trailers put all of their weight over the rear axle.
In addition, buyers should consider the safety of the single-horse trailer when buying a used model. It is important to examine the trailer carefully for signs of wear and tear, electrical damage, and compromised mechanics, either in person, or by asking the seller questions and looking at photographs. Once equipped with the proper knowledge, buyers are sure to find the perfect used single-horse trailer on eBay to fit their needs and the needs of their horse.