The essential guide to snowmobile trailers

December 17, 2014

Discover the most popular designs, important safety features, and questions you should ask when it comes time to purchase your snowmobile trailer.

The essential guide to snowmobile trailers

You've bought your brand new snowmobile. It's perfect! You're so excited to hit the trails, when all of a sudden you realize you have no way to transport your new sled.

Enter the snowmobile trailer. A snowmobile trailer is easily just as important as the snowmobile itself. You'll probably own the trailer for much longer than your sled. Not to mention that your snowmobile trailer will be carrying some pretty precious cargo — your snowmobile.

Trailers come in five popular designs:

  • Tilt: Drive your sled on and then drag it off. It's the most common type of trailer and your least expensive option.
  • Tilt with ramp-off: Drive your sled on and then drive it off. The ramp often doubles as a salt-shield to protect your snowmobile.
  • Sled bed: A hydraulic system lifts your sled up and into the back of your pickup bed. It’s open so your sled won’t be protected from the weather, but it will be safe from road debris and salt.
  • Enclosed trailers: Lots of room for you and your snowmobile. Keeps your sled completely dry and protected from the road and weather. This is the most expensive option.
  • Enclosure trailers: Similar to enclosed trailers, but shorter in design so they can be awkward to manoeuvre. Less expensive than enclosed.

Don’t be surprised if you are asked if you want to upgrade to a V-nose front (so your trailer is more aerodynamic), a built-in ramp (to save you time detaching it), and in-line models (also to make the trailer more aerodynamic). These upgrades can make your life much easier, but can also dramatically affect the cost of the trailer.

Other points to consider

Beyond just deciding the best design and price tag for your snowmobile trailer, there are a couple important safety things you should factor in.

  • Your maximum towing capacity for your tow vehicle (i.e. your truck) and the maximum load capacity of the snowmobile trailer itself. Make sure to add the weight of the snowmobile, any cargo you will also be carrying, and any people you will be transporting. It’s a good idea to check your Highway Traffic Act to see if there are any specific weight limits for the trailer.
  • Your maximum tongue weight. The hitch of your vehicle has what's called a maximum tongue weight (the amount of weight it can support). You can find this information listed in your driver's manual. An excessive tongue weight could damage your rear suspension or cause the hitch to break altogether, which could cause damage to your trailer or sled.
  • The axle rating of your trailer. This will dictate whether your trailer will need a braking system, which could dramatically increase the cost of your snowmobile trailer.

You should also look over the trailer to make sure it is in good shape. The trailer deck should be made of high quality marine grade plywood. Look for rubber torsion bar suspension. Get covered tires, or upgrade the tires altogether.

Lastly, once you have purchased a snowmobile trailer, make sure it is properly plated and registered with the Ministry of Transportation.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
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