Use the right equipment for the type of trailer you are going to tow, and make sure that all of the towing equipment is properly attached to your vehicle. To assist in obtaining good handling with the car/trailer combination, it is important that the trailer tongue load be maintained at approximately 10-15% of the loaded trailer weight. Make sure to securely tie down the load so that it does not shift and change the weight on the hitch.
CONNECTING THE SAFETY CHAINS
Always attach the trailer's safety chains to your vehicle. They will help protect your trailer if the hitch breaks. Follow the manufacturer's directions for installing the safety chains. When connecting the safety chains, cross the chains under the trailer's tongue and attach them to the vehicle's frame or hook retainers. NEVER attach the safety chains to the vehicle's bumper. The bumper is not designed to handle that kind of weight. Make sure that you leave enough slack in the chains to allow you to turn corners.
CONNECTING THE TRAILER'S BRAKES
Electric brakes and manual, automatic, or surge-type brakes are safe if you install them properly and adjust them according to the manufacturer's instructions. Always follow the manufacturer's instructions and make sure that the brakes you are using meet local and federal regulations.
CONNECTING THE TRAILER'S LIGHTS
Do not connect your trailer's lighting system wiring directly to that of your vehicle. Be sure you use the correct equipment and that you follow the manufacturer's directions carefully. If you do not install the lighting system properly, the warning lights on your vehicle's instrument panel may not function.