Why own a trailer?

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  • Why own a trailer?

    I will be adding a hitch to our SUV to haul bikes and I've even considered buying the HF trailer, but even at the bargain price of $550 (I've heard people getting it for half that much), why would I need to buy a trailer? I think I can rent a heavy duty trailer from UHaul for $30/day. I suppose if I had ATVs (which I probably never will), I might need one. Otherwise, why buy instead of rent?

  • #2
    I used to have the HF foldable, flat 4x8 trailer which was great for hauling trash since we didn't have rural trash collection and had to haul to the landfill ourselves. I now own a 12' long x 6' wide x 6.5'high enclosed trailer that cost about $3000 new. I rented them from time to time for about $80 per day for moving kids around in and out of college houses and dorms, doing projects on their houses, carrying stuff I didn't want to get wet in the back of the truck, etc. I eventually bought one for a single simple reason ... convenience, assuming you have a place to store it.

    It was such a pain to go reserve a trailer, pick it up at the appointed time, try to guess how long I'd need it and get it back in time. On a couple of occasions, the rental place didn't have it on Friday night for me to pick up because someone didn't bring it back on time. The worst case it didn't get returned until 10:00 am on Sadturday. The plan was to pick it up at 6:00 PM, load up in about an hour and be in Duluth by 11:00 and start working on my daughter's house first thing Saturday morning. Instead, I picked it up Saturday Morning at 10:30, loaded it and was on the road before noon and didn't get to Duluth until after 3:00 pm. Most of the day was shot.
    An ethical man knows the right thing to do.
    A moral man does it.


    • #3
      Having one on hand sure is handy. I have a 4x8 HF and it is 20 years old and going strong. It probably has 25,000 miles on it and is on its third set of tires. Tires will dry rot or get cracks after 6 - 8 years from aging alone. I have not worn the tires out, but just don't trust them after a certain age.

      That said, I'm with Chris on the size upgrade. If I get another it will be at least 5 ft wide and 10ft long. On numerous occasions, I have wanted carry some sheets of plywood and the 4x8 is too tight.

      I have a 2009 Toyota Camry hybrid and while technically it is not supposed to pull a trailer, I have on numerous occasions done that for 500 and 1000 mile round trips - taking things to my girls. (That is why I keep reasonably fresh tires on the trailer.)
      Hank Lee

      Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!


      • #4
        Time is money! I would rather spend my non working time using a trailer than picking up and dropping off a rental. I know the condition of my tires and bearings. Rental ya take your chances. Then there is the cost of fuel to get and drop off a rental. twistsol gave a great example how a rental can waste lots of time.
        just another brick in the wall...


        • #5
          Everybody needs a trailer. Ever try to pick up a refrigerator in a pickup truck. Some will say just have the store you bought it deliver it…. But that doesn’t always work, sometimes they are backed up for weeks with delivery and your fridge dies. I have a 6’ x 16’ double axle trailer with a large tailgate/ramp and have found it to be one of the most useful thing I’ve ever bought. Some of my neighbors do not have trailers and have their zero turn mower picked up by the dealership for all repairs and service ( don’t even change their own oil or blades). I’d bet that they have paid more pick up/ delivery fees to purchase a small trailer.


          • #6
            I have a neighbor with a trailer and the vehicle to tow it. I get by with roof racks for the sedan for most stuff. As for mower service, most folks with riders in my neighborhood have theirs picked up and returned by the mower service shops. Before I bought mine three years ago, I checked with the shops near me. Transportation ran $50 - $70. Annual maintenance was $225 to $275 for the typical ICE rider. Just another reason why I bought an electric mower.
            Jim Frye
            The Nut in the Cellar.
            ”Sawdust Is Man Glitter”


            • #7
              Late to the party but I have had a HF 4x8 trailer for 15 years now.. It's probably the main reason I haven't bought a truck. I just replaced all the wheel bearings and put in bearing buddy's last summer..
              It has more than paid for itself time and time again.. It's hauled at least a dozen motorcycles, made many trips to the dump, helped us move 3 times, hauled limber home, drywall, sheet goods, couches, washers, dryers, more than a few refrigerators, my new kitchen cabinets rode home on it, my dining room table, trees, bushes, a swing set for the kids, made walls for it and brought home loads of bark mulch for the yard, bikes, kayaks, packed it for tent camping and much more..


              • #8
                My neighbor has 2 trailers, 8' and 16', that I could borrow any time I needed one. With the recent purchase of an RV and golf cart I needed my own. I modified an old 2 axle boat trailer into this to haul the cart behind the RV. Same size and Nick's 8 footer so the only time I need to borrow one is if I need the longer trailer. A lot of stuff can be hauled in the pick up but the lower bed of the trailer is obviously easier to load.

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                Don, aka Pappy,

                Wise men talk because they have something to say,
                Fools because they have to say something.