Q: Do I need a special tow bar to tow my caravan?
A: Most definitely! Lightweight tow bars are suitable for small jobs such as taking the occasional trailer load to the dump or a light load of soil etc., but not serious towing. We recommend Hayman Reese hitches because they are a quality product, tested and stamped with their towing capacities.
Q: Where do I get some advice on what I need for my towing?
A: For personal service, why not call in and see the friendly and professional staff at Maitland Auto Parts? They will set you on the right path for safe and efficient towing.
Q. What is ball weight?
A. Ball weight is the load imposed on the towing vehicle’s tow ball when the caravan or trailer is connected to the tow vehicle.
Q. What is ATM/GTM/TARE MASS?
A. ATM – Aggregate Trailer Mass is the total laden weight of the trailer that includes the payload (e.g. water, gas, clothes, cutlery, crockery etc.). The ATM is specified by the manufacturer and must not be exceeded.
GTM – Gross Trailer Mass is the total allowable mass including whatever you add as the payload that can be supported by the wheels.
TARE MASS – The unladen mass of the caravan or trailer.
Q. Which towing equipment do I need?
A. Towing mirrors, electric brake controller and load levelling equipment are essential. It is important to match the equipment with your towing combination, and it is important to buy quality products.
Q. What are the laws regarding caravan or trailer towing?
A. The laws vary from state to state. Most caravans and trailers have a manufacturing plate outlining TARE/ATM/GTM weights that legally you must follow. Vehicle manufacturers give a towing capability that must also be adhered to. If you have a classic van or a vehicle that does not have a manufacturer’s recommended towing capacity, as a rule of thumb the vehicle may tow up to one and a half times its unladen mass provided the caravan or trailer has brakes. You should check with the RTA to be sure and be safe!