What Is a Heavy Equipment Trailer?

Dan Cavallari
Dan Cavallari
Flatbed trucks are a type of heavy equipment trailer.
Flatbed trucks are a type of heavy equipment trailer.

A heavy equipment trailer is a non-powered vehicle that is towed behind a powered vehicle with the intent of transporting large pieces of heavy equipment. Such trailers are usually quite large and may require special towing equipment that allows a user to attach the trailer to the towing vehicle. The specific design of the heavy equipment trailer can vary depending on what it is designed to haul; car haulers, for example, are designed to transport several automobiles at once, so the trailer features movable ramps and other components that allow the user to drive cars onto the trailer and secure them in place.

Other heavy equipment trailer models may feature ramps that allow a vehicle to be driven onto a flat bed. The ramps will then fold up onto the trailer itself when not in use. Another design may allow a vehicle to be driven up onto the flatbed without ramps. The heavy equipment trailer in this instance will feature a hydraulic lift that will tilt the entire bed of the trailer until it makes contact with the ground. The vehicle can then be driven forward onto the trailer and lifted into place. Sometimes a winch system is necessary to make the transition between the ground and the trailer possible.

It is very likely that the trailer will feature two or more axles and several wheels in order to adequately support the weight of the equipment being transported. A heavy equipment trailer is specifically designed for larger loads, which means the bed may be wider; consequently, the axles may be wider as well. Each axle is likely to feature four wheels rather than two for added stability. The trailer's frame is likely to be made from high-grade steel that is strong enough to resist damage from the equipment's weight.

Connecting the trailer to a towing vehicle can be done in a few different ways, depending on the type of towing vehicle being used. Smaller trailers usually attach to the towing vehicle using a tow hitch and receiver system; larger trailers may require a special gooseneck connection system. The towing vehicle will need to have special components mounted on it, usually in a truck bed, to accept the gooseneck style trailer. The largest heavy equipment trailer models are meant for use with large diesel tractors, such as the ones commonly seen on highways hauling box trailers. In this case, the trailer will need to be designed to work with the type of hitch system used on the large diesel trailer.

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    • Flatbed trucks are a type of heavy equipment trailer.
      By: Bikeworldtravel
      Flatbed trucks are a type of heavy equipment trailer.