ATTENTION: The Cargo Trailer Industry is experiencing a shortage in materials which is causing the normal build time to be pushed back several weeks. Trailers that state they are in stock may or may not be in stock. Call to check availability.

Tips for Loading an Enclosed Cargo Trailer

If you are in the hauling business or you simply need to haul items for business or personal use, you want to be sure you have properly loaded your cargo trailer. We have created these tips for loading an enclosed cargo trailer to help you learn some of the basics and important steps.

Choosing the Right Size Cargo Trailer

If your intention is to haul cargo, then you should have an idea of the amount of cargo you will be hauling, this will help you in determining the size trailer you will need. There are many different sizes available. 

Knowing what you will be hauling is very important. If the trailer is too small, then of course you may not have enough room, if your trailer is too big, then there could be empty space inside the trailer that could cause hauling issues. However, it is better to have a slightly bigger trailer than one too small. You can always distribute the weight of your items throughout the trailer.

What Kind of Trailer Do You Need 

There are enclosed cargo trailers and open trailers, such as equipment trailers. Many will opt to choose the enclosed cargo trailer because the content inside is protected. If you are hauling lawn equipment though, you may choose an open trailer. In this article, we are going to talk more about enclosed cargo trailers.

loading an enclosed cargo trailer

Know Your Payload Capacity

When you know your payload capacity, then you will know exactly how much you can haul. When you are looking to purchase a trailer, you can see the payload capacity on the specs. If you own a trailer, then you should already know it. If you are unsure how to calculate your maximum payload capacity, here is the formula. 

GVWR (minus) empty trailer weight = trailer payload. 

This will allow you to determine how much weight you can haul inside the trailer. 

What is Your Tongue Weight

If you are having issues with a swaying trailer, then you may want to check your tongue weight. Swaying could be caused because you do not have enough trailer tongue weight. The average tongue weight is 10%-15%. 

Can I Haul More With a Spread Axle Trailer

Have a spread axle trailer? Read our Spread Axle FAQ.

Loading Your Trailer: Park Your Trailer on a Level Surface

This one should be a given. If at all possible, park your trailer on a level surface. If you park on an incline, the trailer may shift or tip once loading has begun. If the trailer is not already hitched to your vehicle, make sure you leave plenty of room to do so.

Chock Your Wheels

It is a great idea to stabilize the trailer by using chocks. This is an additional step you can take to make sure the trailer will not move.

Use Tie Downs

When possible, you can utilize tie downs for those items that need extra stability.

Light Weight Items

The lightest items can be placed around and on top of the heavier items as long as they are secure and it is safe for them to be placed there. Then finish packing the trailer with the lighter items toward the front.

Take One Last Look

Look inside to ensure all items are packed tight and properly secured to prevent shifting and items falling. Once you have done that, close and secure the doors.

Simple Steps = A Successful Haul

Following these simple steps can help you have a safer drive without a lot of swaying and ensure your items do not fall or slide around. One of the most important tips is to use all the room you have in the trailer. If possible don’t leave open spaces without using tie downs. That may mean a bit of planning and rearranging to ensure the cargo trailer is loaded properly and the items are distributed correctly.

As always if you have any questions about the right cargo trailer, give us a call. 912-422-7092