GWRRA Minnesota Chapter Q

Gold Wing Road Riders Association, America's Heartland (Region E)


Trailer and Bike Care Hints – Some Odds and Ends
James Rivord | 5/25/2019

Trailer Lights not working – flickering? Most problems stem from improper or lost ground.  Run a test ground wire from vehicle directly to the light.  Still doesn’t work?  Check bulbs, check connector coupling for broken wire.  Never allow the connector to drag on the ground.

Batteries:  Never jump a dead battery from a running vehicle.  It may cause serious problems with the bike’s electrical system.  Use a battery charger/tender if you leave the bike stored for 30 days or more.  Wonder if your battery is getting old and losing its charge?  If you have a GPS system on your bike you can check it as follows:  With the bike running and GPS system operational turn the key to ACC.  The engine should stop but the GPS system will stay on.  Then turn the key to ON and start the engine. If the GPS goes off when the engine starts this means the battery does not have enough power to run the GPS while it is being drained to start the engine.  This mean you should be looking at a new battery.  The GPS should stay on when you start the engine.

Tires:  Key an eye on proper trailer tire pressure.  Check the tire manufacture’s recommendations.  Do not over or under inflate these tires.  If you have trouble remembering the proper tire pressures, use a label maker and place this information on the inside of the trunk lid of your bike.  Front tire – rear tire – trailer tires, etc.

Loading the Trailer:  The most common rule for loading any trailer is use a 60/40 ratio.  That is 60% of your cargo should be forward of the axle, 40% behind the axle.  Too much weight either way will affect the handling of the bike and trailer.  Your trailer should follow directly behind your bike; if it wobbles or fishtails even the slightest try redistributing the load.  Do not exceed the manufacturer’s recommended load limit.

Safety Chains: Use the proper sized chains for your bike.  When connecting chains to the bike cross them left to right, right to left.  If the trailer becomes disconnected from the bike, the crossed chains will catch the trailer tongue and you can safely pull over to the side of the road.  The chains should have enough slack enabling you to make sharp turns.  Too much slack, like when the chains are almost or touching the ground, will most likely negate their effectiveness.

Bob F.