Towing Safety

Toyota Interior/Exterior Care

Towing Do's and Don'ts


In order to understand proper towing safety, follow along on the do's and don'ts when you're towing something behind your truck.           

Towing Do's

  • Assert the towing capacity of your towing vehicle by checking your vehicle manufacturer's owners manual.   
  • Perform a thorough and precise safety inspection prior to towing anything.   
  • Verify that every trailer component is intact and properly secured.   
  • Install a trailer hitch that is specifically made for your vehicle.   
  • Become familiar with the maximum loaded weight and your towing vehicle's tow rating and stay inside of those recommended specifications.   
  • Validate that your trailer lights are engaging and illuminating properly.   
  • Use working brake, turn signal and tail lights that properly synch up with your towing vehicle.   
  • Load the heaviest items first, tie them down and distribute the weight.   
  • Use towing mirrors when they are necessary.  
  • Make sure that your trailer tires are the correct type, size and construction and that they match the load range, size and type specified in your trailer owner's manual.   
  • When loading your trailer, evenly distribute cargo weight along the length of the trailer to maintain balance.   
  • When you back up, the trailer will go in the opposite direction of the vehicle you are driving. If you want your trailer to go right, turn your wheel towards the left.   
  • Avoid sharp turns - sharp turns can cause damage to your towing components, towing vehicle, trailer and can even compromise the safety of you and your passengers.

Towing Don'ts

  • Don't tow too much weight.   
  • Don't unevenly distribute the weight of your load or unevenly pack your trailer.   
  • Don't neglect using side-view towing mirrors.   
  • Don't create a high center of gravity in your trailer.   
  • Don't attempt to tow a load with tires that are not well-inflated.    
  • Don't forget to check your lug nuts. It is best to make sure they are secure during your initial safety check.   
  • Don't drive without practicing towing your trailer.   
  • Don't forget to check your tire pressure as you go.   
  • Don't brake heavily when driving.   
  • Don't tailgate or speed.   
  • Don't forget to pack a carjack that can lift the weight of your trailer.   
  • Don't improperly install the necessary wiring required to indicate and tow safely.   
  • Don't exceed your recommended towing capacity which is based on the weight of your towing vehicle.   

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