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How To Choose the Perfect Dump Trailer

Introduction: Understanding the Importance of Choosing the Right Dump Trailer

When it comes to hauling and transporting heavy loads, having the right equipment, that is tough and fit for purpose, is paramount. Selecting the appropriate dump trailer can increase efficiency and reduce long term costs. It directly impacts your ability to handle various types of materials, maximize load capacity, and ensure safe transportation. In this post will explore important aspects you should consider.

Step 1: Consider the Type of Material and Equipment You Will Be Hauling

When it comes to hauling, it is crucial to consider the type of material you will be transporting.

One common type of material for hauling is construction material and debris. This can include materials such as concrete, wood, metal, and other waste generated from construction sites. Due to the nature of these materials, it is important to choose a trailer that can handle heavy loads and provide proper containment to prevent any spillage or damage during transit. Heavier, abrasive materials may require a bed with thicker steel, like 7 gauge and a sturdy lifting mechanism.

Landscaping materials are another category that requires careful consideration. These may include items such as soil, mulch, rocks, or plants. If you are carrying higher volume, lower weight material like mulch or leaves then you may need higher sidewalls, or the ability to add side walls to the trailer.

If you are hauling equipment to and from a jobsite then you will need ramps and to ensure that the bed has the structural support to secure and carry the equipment without damaging the trailer or equipment.

In conclusion, consider the specific type of material you will be transporting. By considering factors such as weight capacity, containment needs, and any special handling requirements related to construction debris, landscaping materials or equipment; you can ensure your trailer is fit for purpose.

Step 2: Determine Your Hauling Capacity Requirements

When it comes to choosing the right size dump trailer, determining your hauling capacity requirements is crucial. Understanding the weight and payload capacity of the trailer will ensure that you can efficiently transport your materials without any issues.

The hauling capacity of a dump trailer refers to its ability to carry a certain weight load. It is essential to consider both the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) and payload capacity when selecting a dump trailer. The GVWR refers to the maximum weight of the trailer itself plus payload it can handle, while the payload capacity refers to the maximum weight that can be carried in addition to the trailer's own weight.

To determine your hauling capacity requirements, you need to assess what type of materials or items you will be transporting and their respective weights. This will help you choose a dump trailer with an appropriate size and hauling capacity.

Choosing a dump trailer with insufficient hauling capacity can lead to overloading, which not only compromises safety but will increase maintenance and repair costs. On the other hand, selecting a larger dump trailer than necessary may result in wasted space and added expenses.

By accurately assessing your hauling needs and considering factors such as material type, volume, and estimated weight, you can make an informed decision on choosing the right size dump trailer for your specific requirements. A cheaper, lower specification trailer may turn out to cost you more in the long run.

Step 3: Assess Your Towing Vehicle's Compatibility with a Dump Trailer

When it comes to towing a dump trailer, it is crucial to assess your towing vehicle's compatibility to ensure a safe and successful hauling experience. Understanding the towing vehicle specifications, towing capacity requirements, and hitch compatibility are key factors in making an informed decision.

Firstly, knowing your towing vehicle's specifications is essential. These specifications will determine the overall capability of your vehicle to handle the additional weight and stress of a dump trailer.

Secondly, you must consider the towing capacity requirements. Each dump trailer has its own weight and payload capacity limits. It is vital to match these limits with your towing vehicle's capabilities, meaning the vehicle itself and the hitch - if your vehicle can tow 12,000lbs but your hitch is rated for 7,000lbs, then you can only tow up to 7,000lbs. Exceeding these limits can result in dangerous situations such as loss of control or damage to both the trailer and the vehicle.

Another factor is that when towing a trailer with a GVWR in excess of 10,000lbs, is that when your Combined Gross Vehicle Weight ratings for the vehicle and trailer are over 26,000lbs your driver will need a Commercial Drivers License. Some customers will ask for heavy duty axles and hubs, while specifying a GVWR of 9990lbs on the title and registration.

By carefully assessing these factors - towing vehicle specifications, towing capacity requirements, hitch and ball compatibility - you can guarantee a smooth and efficient hauling experience but also prioritize safety for yourself and others on the road.

Step 4: Evaluate Dump Trailer Durability and Construction Quality

When it comes to investing in a dump trailer, durability and construction quality are paramount considerations. After all, you want a trailer that can withstand heavy loads and tough terrain without compromising its structural integrity or failing after 12 months.

A well-constructed dump trailer should have a robust frame that provides stability and support. Look for features such as reinforced cross members and gussets that enhance overall strength. Examples include using dual or single heavy duty I-Beam with 7 gauge steel beds, reinforced bed and sidewalls, and great paint or powder coat. The lifting mechanism must be matched to the material you are carrying.

Similarly, durable axles, leaf springs and wheels with appropriate load capacities ensure reliable performance under challenging conditions.

Remember, investing in a high-quality dump trailer built with durable materials will not only provide peace of mind but also contribute to long-term cost savings by reducing maintenance requirements and prolonging the lifespan of your equipment.

Step 5: Consider Additional Features and Customization Options

A couple of key considerations are the lifting mechanism for the dump bed, sidewall height, is a tarp standard and a charging mechanism for the battery.

When it comes to choosing the best lifting mechanism for dump trailers, there are several options to consider; Scissor lifts, Rams, and Telescopic lifts. The best lifting mechanism for your dump trailer will depend on various factors such as type and weight of load, how the load is distributed in the bed, budget constraints, and personal preference.

Hydraulic rams are widely used for their simplicity and lower cost point. The rams build pressure between the rear of the trailer and the forward part of the dump bed, forcing the bed to hinge at the rear. These systems are usually have the lowest price point, but, due to how the lifting force is generated they tend to struggle with heavy, front loads; so are best suited to lighter materials, or, you need to ensure the load is not centered at the front of the trailer.

Scissor lifts are known for their robust construction and ability to provide a stable lifting platform. They operate by using a series of linked bars that extend and retract in a scissor-like motion. This design offers excellent vertical lifting capabilities allowing them to lift heavy loads evenly and efficiently.

Telescopic lift mechanisms consist of multiple sections that can extend or retract individually. As they are placed at the front of the trailer they provide excellent lifting capacities for heavy front loads, however, they usually cost a little more.

Many people overlook is the importance of having a tarp for their dump trailer. A tarp serves as a protective barrier that shields your load from the elements and prevents any potential hazards on the road. We recommend getting a tarp as a standard feature on your dump trailer - Tarps are standard on every Ironbull trailer.

The standard sidewall height for dump trailer is 24”, however, you can get 36” and 48” side walls. High sidewalls allow you to carry larger amounts of higher volume material, such as mulch, leaves or household trash, but do add weight so can reduce your payload.

The trailer should also have stake pockets, or equivalent, which allow you to add wooden side boards to increase the height when carrying high volume loads.

Every dump trailer will have a battery, which powers the hydraulic pump, and the trailer should have a battery charger as standard, and possibly a solar charger. Ideally the toolbox the battery sits in should be oversized so you can carry tools and tie downs as well.

Finally look at the warranty on the dump trailer, both in length and what it covers. For instance Ironbull trailers offer a 3 year structural, 2 year component, with 2 years roadside assistance - offering great peace of mind.

Conclusion: Make an Informed Decision When Choosing Your Ideal Dump Trailer

With so many options available in the market, you need to consider key factors such as load types, capacity and durability to ensure you get a trailer that meets your needs and will prove to be a good investment. Purchasing a “bargain” trailer with lower specifications and short warranty period may cost you more in the long term in terms of repairs, efficiency and replacement; while a premium trailer may not needed if you are hauling lighter, non abrasive materials.

If you have any questions about which dump trailer you need then please give us a call and we would be happy to help - 703 257 1710. We sell Ironbull Dump Trailers, and believe they build great, durable trailers with a variety of specifications and price points.