There are many different trailers that can be towed by a standard car. However, the most common are box, flatbed or caged trailers. These trailers are most commonly used to move household items and transport rubbish and garden waste, but they can be used for many other things. In Australia all drivers holding a permanent licence may hire and tow small trailers. Many people choose to hire a car trailer to avoid the costs associated with purchasing and maintaining their own trailer. The following is your guide to hiring and using a trailer for virtually any purpose.
Why hiring a trailer makes sense
There are many reasons why hiring a trailer is more sensible than owing your own. Hiring a trailer is definitely more cost effective if you don’t regularly use a trailer or you are meeting a once off need. Maintaining any type of trailer costs money as the structure needs to be maintained and tyres will need to be periodically replaced. Trailers also need to be stored both to protect them from environmental wear and tear as well as theft or vandalism. By hiring a trailer you also avoid yearly registration fees which can be upwards of thirty dollars a year on a standard sized box trailer. Larger trailers attract larger registration fees. It also makes sense to hire a trailer that is best suited to your particular needs. A box trailer, while useful for moving dirt is unsuitable for carrying heavy machinery. By hiring you are able to choose a trailer that is best suited to your needs. Hiring a trailer makes sense as it allows you to have the use of the extra room that a trailer provides without having to invest significant money in its upkeep and security and enable you to get the best trailer for the job at hand.
The most common reasons for using a trailer
There are numerous reasons why people choose to hire a trailer. Some of the most common reasons include:
- Moving- Hiring a removalist or a rental truck can be costly especially if you are not moving very far. For this reason many people choose to hire a small furniture trailer and move their own belongings.
- Transporting large equipment- Often it is necessary to move hired machinery when engaging in renovation, plumbing or electrical projects. A trailer can allow you to do this easily and safely.
- Transporting music equipment- Bands need a lot of equipment when performing. A hire trailer can afford that extra room that is required to transport musical and sound equipment to a venue.
- Garden/landscaping- Trailers make it easy to haul dirt, rocks, sand, plants and other materials that are used in gardening and landscaping.
- Rubbish removal- A trailer allows a person to move large amounts of rubbish to a tip or other facility without paying for the cost of a skip bin or other rubbish removal service.
- Camping- A trailer provides extra room to carry camping equipment and can even be specifically set out with a fold out tent arrangement (these are called camper trailers).
- Long distance travel- Luggage and extra equipment can be stored in a trailer.
- Transporting animals- Horses, dogs, etc.
- Transporting other transportation- Boats, jet skis, trail bikes, canoes, go karts, racing vehicles, etc.
- Business uses- Businesses can use trailer to carry equipment and materials that they need for their business such as a catering trailer. A trailer can be used for hauling and delivering stock or for taking material to promotional opportunities.
The types of trailers available for hire
There are numerous trailer types available for hire within Australia. The most common types of trailers are the box, flatbed and caged trailers. Most businesses that offer trailer hire will have these trailer types. Specialised trailer hire businesses will be able to provide a wider range of trailers including horse floats, car trailers, bike trailers, covered furniture moving trailers, camper trailers, as well as tradesmen trailers with the triangular covers. These providers will also be able to offer you a range of sizes in each type of trailer. The type of trailer that you hire will depend largely on the reason you are hiring a trailer. If you are engaging in small scale garden work then a box trailer will suit your needs. Specialised equipment and animals should be towed in trailers that have been designed for them. Therefore if you need to move your new horse from its previous to a new location it is best to hire a horse float for the job. Hiring the right trailer will save you time and energy and will be safer for yourself and those around you on the road.
Trailer hire locations
Standard trailers such as flatbed, box and caged trailer can be hired very easily from your local service stations, hardware stores and equipment hire businesses. Most medium to large towns will have at least one business that offers cheap trailer hire. Services stations such as Coles Express allow you to hire a trailer on the spot for any time period that is required. It is also possible to book a trailer online for a specific date and time. Many providers also allow interstate travel with their trailers in the event that you are moving a long distance, on the condition that the trailer can be return to a participating depot.
Hardware stores such as Bunnings also offer trailer hire for use over two hours. There trailer sizes and prices are clearly listed on their webpage. If you purchase large items at Bunnings that you need to transport home, Bunnings offer two hour complimentary trailer use at no cost. This could be a very cost effective way to secure a trailer if you only need one short term. Local hardware stores may also offer similar arrangements in your local area.
Equipment hire companies such as Tru Blue, Kennards, RENTCO are also good places to contact when looking to hire a trailer. These businesses are likely to have a larger range to select from and should be able to give you advice on the type of trailer that will best suit your needs. You may also be able to hire other equipment that can help you achieve your task.
Trailer and truck hire facilities such as U-haul, Move yourself and other local companies are your best bet if you need a specific type of trailer or you need to hire one long term. These companies specialise in one way trailer hire and will have all the expertise and advice that you need if you are towing a trailer for the first time.
Finding the cheapest trailer hire
Getting the best deal on your car trailer hire is just as important as hiring the correct trailer for the job. One way to ensure that you get a great deal is to do your research! Most businesses and companies that hire trailers will be happy to answer your questions about cost. Websites are also a great place to find out hire cost and compare the best deals. Mid week is likely to be cheaper as there is less demand for trailers during that time. If you are able hire your trailer on a Tuesday or Wednesday rather than a Saturday you may find that you save yourself some cash. Booking in advance is also a great way to get a good deal. Companies often offer discounts if you book your trailer rather than hiring it out on the spot. Always check the weekly specials that are being offered on trailer hire, you might just find yourself saving up to 20% on your costs. If you are able to be flexible with the time and date continually check the specials until you find one that suits your needs is worth the hassle. Hiring your trailer for a longer term may also reduce your overall cost. Of course borrowing a trailer from a friend or using a complimentary trailer from a hardware store is going to be the most cost effective method.
Towing a rental trailer
If you are going to hire a trailer the first thing that you will need is a car with a tow ball and an electrical socket. Make sure that the car you are using has enough towing capacity to pull the trailer you are hiring. If the car is not powerful enough you could potentially damage the engine. Prior to towing your rental trailer away you will need to make sure that it secured correctly and that the electrics are connected. Check that all the lights work on the trailer before towing the trailer away from the hire facility. When driving with a trailer it is important to know that you need more time/distance to stop and more room for turning and changing lanes. Travelling at high speeds can also cause the trailer to sway. If this occurs do not brake heavily, instead you should slowly reduce your speed until the trailer ceases to sway. Familiarise yourself with the movement of the trailer prior to loading it. When loading the trailer make sure that the load is equally distributed and any overhanging material is clearly marked. Do not overload the trailer as this will cause stress to the towing vehicle and the trailer. It is extremely important to secure your load so that your items remain stable in the trailer. Any damage to the rental trailer will be your responsibility so use it wisely. Remember when hiring a trailer a security deposit and personal identification will be required prior to towing the trailer away.
Other things you need to know
Every state and territory has slightly different road rules in regards to towing a trailer of any size. It is always best to check your state or territory’s road rules in relation to towing a trailer before hiring one. Some common laws that apply to all states and territory’s include:
- You cannot tow more than one trailer at a time
- No one is allow to ride in a trailer whilst it is moving (this includes caravans)
- Learner and Provisional drivers are not allowed to tow a trailer
- Extra mirrors are required to be fitted if towing a large trailer or horse float.
- Any equipment or material over hanging the edge of a trailer by 1.2 meters must be clearly marked by tying a red flag to the end.
Hiring a car trailer is a great way to transport household goods or rubbish, along with many other uses. In most situations it works out to be much cheaper than owning your own trailer. By negotiating the price you can be sure you will save even more money. Why not consider a trailer for your next transport needs!