In the world of trailer upgrades, there are functional choices, and there are flashy choices. Why not choose the best of both worlds, then, and go with improvements that help you tow and look great at the same time? Check out this list of three trailer upgrades that will pimp your hauler without breaking the bank.
1. Winch It Up
There comes a time in almost every trailer owner’s life when they need to load something that simply can’t get up the ramps on its own. Whether you want to load a stalled or broken-down car, a heavy package on a pallet or a boat that you want to slide down gently into the water, a winch can work wonders at giving you control over your cargo. A hand powered winch is a common sight on most boat trailers, but they can be useful on other trailers as well. Electric winches come in all shapes and sizes, but it’s always better to overestimate your rating rather than end up with a winch that can’t handle the load you need it to. Most winches will bolt on to any trailer in about five minutes, making them an easy modification that will pay dividends for years. If you choose an electric winch option, remember it will need power from either from the tow vehicle or a battery.
2. LED Lights All Around
Installing LED lights as one of your trailer upgrades means you’ll never have to deal with a burnt-out bulb ever again. Not only are LED lights longer lasting than their incandescent cousins, but they also draw less power, are brighter and are more compact, which makes them easier to mount on your trailer. They run cooler, too, which means getting them wet at the boat launch or in the rain isn’t going to cause them to fail prematurely. LED spotlights at the front of your trailer will help you see better when loading at night, while LED taillights and side marker lights keep your rig visible in bad weather.
3. Pickup Truck Toolbox
If you own an open trailer, then you know the frustration of not being able to protect tools and other necessities from the elements. Installing a pickup truck toolbox — just like the ones designed to fit into a cargo bed — is one of those trailer upgrades that meshes perfectly with your rig’s existing functionality. A truck toolbox allows you to store your winch and its battery inside, with only the need to cut a small hole at the bottom for the cable. Right beside it, you can put tools, tie-downs, straps and other trailer accessories. The ability to lock it up, plus its strong aluminum construction, means you don’t have to worry about theft.
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Having been bitten by the car bug at a young age, I spent my formative years surrounded by Studebakers at car shows across Quebec and the northeastern United States. Over ten years of racing, restoring, and obsessing over automobiles lead me to balance science writing and automotive journalism full time. I currently contribute as an editor to several online and print automotive publications, and I also write and consult for the pharmaceutical and medical device industry.