For some, simply camping isn’t the best way to enjoy the great outdoors. There are some who like to add an extra layer of thrills to their outdoor experience. These people probably turn to powersport vehicles like dirt bikes or four-wheelers. These people will also need a way to transport their machines and not everyone likes the idea of tacking on additional towed vehicles. That’s why you might want to consider investing in a toy hauler.
These rigs feature a rear space, known as a garage, that is specifically built to provide an area to store your powersport vehicles while in transit.
While this is convenient, you’ll want to approach loading your machines in just the right way so you can load the garage efficiently and safely. Athens RV has provided a guide to accomplishing this, but if you find you’re still struggling, stop by our dealership and talk to one of our experienced staff about some of their own tips. We proudly serve Tyler, Longview, Lufkin, Nacogdoches, Houston, and Dallas, Texas.
Prepare your Toy Hauler
Start by making sure all the gear you’re working with is in working order. It’s easier to fix a problem or replace supplies before you have to start working around the vehicle that gets loaded. This should include checking tire pressure and quality, for both the toy hauler and the powersport vehicle. Refer to your owner’s manuals for proper tire pressure.
You’ll also want to consider adjusting all your mirrors at this point as well. If your toy hauler is a towable RV, then this should happen after you’ve hitched the rig to the tow vehicle. Finally, test all your lights so you’re visible to other drivers, especially if there were some electrical hookups that needed to happen. This should include headlights, turn signals, and brake lights.
Proper Weight Distribution
As you approach actually loading the toy hauler, you’ll always want to keep weight distribution in mind. Veteran RV owners know to that weight imbalance can make for a dangerous and difficult drive. Your weight should be distributed evenly from side to side, but from front to back you’ll want more weight up front near the front axle, or near the hitch for towable toy haulers. You’ll want to employ the 60/40 rule, which states that 60% of the overall weight is in the front half of the rig and the remaining 40% tapers off the back.
This is particularly important for toy hauler owners. Smaller toy haulers will really struggle against the weight of the powersport vehicle, as it adds a lot of weight to the back, where it makes driving difficult. You’ll need to find ways to compensate with other supplies.
When it’s time to load the vehicle, lower the ramp (whether it’s attached to toy hauler or not) and do your best to minimize the angle. The more power you need to get up the ramp, the more likely you’ll have to slam on the brakes to keep from bumping into the living space. Use a comfortable balance of throttle and brake to roll up the ramp and into the garage. Then turn off the engine. It’s a small space and the fumes from the engine can be toxic.
Secure your Vehicle
The final step is to secure the vehicle once it’s inside the garage. You should be able to see D-ring tie-downs scattered around the interior. These are specifically put in place so you can use ratchet straps to secure the machine. Ratchet straps are the ideal choice because they’re easy to use and press down on the vehicle’s natural suspension to minimize movement. When you think everything is secure, give the tie-downs a tug and try shaking the vehicle so you can see if there’s too much wiggle.
At this point you should be ready to roll out. Odds are, the first time you do this, it won’t be smooth and you probably won’t feel confident. To give yourself some time to experiment without slowing down everyone’s plans for fun, consider practicing this process a few times before the big day. This way, when it’s going to matter most, you can load up and head out relatively quickly. If you’ve decided you’d like your own toy hauler to make your camping trips more interesting, then stop by Athens RV and we’ll show you around the models we have available right now. We welcome all current and future RV owners from Tyler, Longview, Lufkin, Nacogdoches, Houston, and Dallas, Texas.