6 upgrades you NEED if you have a trailer
This purchase is quite a departure from our typical real estate, tool or product purchases; but it's one that we know will benefit our process. Today we are showing you how we took this newest addition and turned it into a unified fleet.
For those who are unfamiliar, a dump trailer is a towing trailer with a built-in hydraulic lift. They come in many sizes and configurations, but they all have a control lift to angle the entire trailer bed upward and drop whatever it is you are hauling. You may see these most frequently used by landscapers hauling brush and dropping mulch or stone.
“Josh has been trying to convince me for a while to buy a dump trailer. And to be honest, I understood the benefits but I didn't want to stare at it in the driveway.”
To that, Josh would always reply, "We'll make it pretty." After multiple dumpsters, trips to the dump and scrap yard (using only our truck bed + brute strength), and hearing the reasoning too many times; we realized how much time, effort, and money we would truly save with this new set up. So we bit the bullet and bought a dump trailer!
This is how we plus'd it up!
If your anything like us, you like to put your own personal touches on your home + vehicles. For us, this dump trailer was no different. It is now part of our "fleet" and while our trailer was in great shape when we bought it, we thought we could plus it up and make it match our truck + personal aesthetic.
First: Before starting any customization, we really wanted to secure our purchase. We bought a couple must-have accessories for anyone with a trailer, specifically a dump trailer. These are not only great for securing your investment but also super functional!
Full List of Accessory Purchases:
1. Rubber wheel chucks ($19.37 + tax)
Give yourself a piece of mind and use these. Very sturdy, heavy duty rubber and won't slip!
2. Trailer Hitch Receiver & Coupler Lock Kit ($25.99 + tax)
We plan to drop off our trailer on location, we wanted to make sure it couldn't be removed or hauled off, these awesome trailer hitch pin locks prevent just that; same goes for the hitch receiver lock, it's much stronger than a pin and can't be removed off the vehicle by anyone unless they have the key.
3. Universal Trailer Hitch Lock ($31.27 + tax)
This hitch locks in and blocks, locks and prevents the trailer from being attached.
4. Magnetic Solar Battery Charger Maintainer ($48.99 +tax)
When we purchased the trailer, the battery was dead. This can be common for a trailer/boat, etc that isn't run regularly. While we plan to keep this in regular rotation, we didn't want to worry about the battery draining. This magnetic solar charger is perfect to maintain a slow charge and attaches magnetically to the metal battery box on the trailer.
5. Plug-in Adapter for Brake Controllers ($13.99 + tax)
6. Brakeman IV Digital Brake Control ($42.99 + tax)
These last two are really more like one, they function together with your trailer and are absolutely necessary if you have a trailer with brakes. This enables functional auto braking while you drive, so there's no bumping, pulling or unwanted stress on the tow vehicle or ride.
Now, that that's out of the way, let's get into...THE PLAN
Since our truck, which will be towing the dump trailer, is silver, chrome, and black;
We wanted to coordinate colors for a cohesive aesthetic.
To do this, we decided to:
Make the wooden slats black
Paint the wheels chrome
Keep the body black and touch up any spots that need attention
Originally, we thought we'd paint the wood but we realized stain would not only absorb better, but it would protect the wood and probably last longer. Luckily, the wood was raw and untouched, perfect to stain. (We live in New England so we have some extreme weather and this will be sitting outside exposed to elements)
It's solid color, it pretty much acts like paint and claims to go on in one coat. We did a second pass to ensure coverage and protection to as many edges as we could. We love how the texture is visible but the color is solid.
Next, we needed to do something about those stock wheels. They were white, basic, and looked pretty much like something you'd see on a golf cart.
Tip: Be sure to give the rims a good cleaning to remove any oil or dirt residue before starting.
We purchased Rust-Oleum Stops Rust Bright Coat Metallic Spray Paint in Chrome and masked off the tires with liquid mask, a short cut which took 4x as long.
A little context here: We tried masking with tape but nothing stuck to the rubber wheels. We had liquid mask and peel, and figured it was worth a try. We do not recommend this at all for applications beyond glass. It bonded way too well with the rubber and did not want to peel off. As you can see in the image above, we had to painstakingly soak the rubber surround with wet sponges and scrap/hand peel all the mask off in a tedious and messy manner. Do yourself a favor, just remove the tires. It will be faster and cleaner in the long run. #fail #donttrythisathome #itriedsoyoudonthaveto #wordsofadvice #diyfail #nailedit (i can do this all day haha)
Once we hosed these down in the chrome, we felt it truly transformed the wheels from basic + drab, to cool + fab. Seriously, these look so much nicer, are easier to clean because they are smooth. Plus, they really match the truck and make the whole trailer look way cooler.
Final Thoughts + Images
Overall, we couldn't be more pleased with our dump trailer. It works great and looks great. It wasn't until we looked back at the before images that we realized what a difference some paint can make.
What are you must-haves for your truck and trailer?
Put it in the comments, we love recommendations!
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