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Just like a boat comes in different shapes and sizes, the trailers made for them do too. In most cases, you will know before you leave the boat showroom which trailer is the best fit for your boat. So what happens if you buy a used boat without a trailer? You will have to find out which trailers are rated for which boats before you can purchase one to haul your new treasure.
A boat trailer is a trailer that is designed to carry, launch, retrieve, and even store boats when not in use. Boats require trailers that are specially made for that type of boat. If the boat does not fit on the trailer correctly, it could be damaged during transport.
Much like there are different types of trailers to transport cars, there are different trailers to transport boats. Most boat trailers are specific to the type and size of the boat that they are going to be hauling. Proper size and fit can ensure that the boat is not going to be damaged or cause damage while it is being hauled.
Even with the best intentions, sometimes things break, especially when hauling a boat. It is better to be prepared for these types of situations, and them not happen than for them to happen and us not be prepared. You can create your tool kit for your boat trailer to have items on hand should something happen.
Boat trailers come in a variety of shapes and sizes, mainly dependant on the boat they are going to be transporting. The cost can vary based on the size and the accessories on them. Make sure you are purchasing a trailer that is compatible with your watercraft.
There are five types of boat trailers that are common in the watercraft industry. Each type has its own characteristics, making it essential to match the trailer to your boat. If you have a trailer that is not the right size, it can cause damage to your boat or dangerous situations during transport.
A single axle boat trailer is a small trailer with one axle that is typically used to haul boats that are 10’ to 14’ in length. Trailers for these size boats can cost anywhere from $700 to over $1,500 depending on the following factors:
If you are looking for a single axle boat trailer that can accommodate boats up to 25’ long, you could be looking at spending up to $4,000 for a single axle boat trailer that can accommodate the boat.
A tandem axle trailer has two sets of axles that are positioned one right after the other. These types of trailers can help handle more weight and are great for higher speeds and the conditions of the highway. These are ideal for heavier boats and can accommodate boats that are 18’ to 25’ long. The downside is the price of these trailers. Due to their higher weight capacities, they are more expensive. For a tandem axle boat trailer, you can expect to spend $1,500 to $5,000.
For a heavy-duty model of boat transport, the triple axle boat trailers are the best option. The only downside, besides price, is that they have to be pulled by a tow vehicle with high torque and heavy-duty diesel engines. Most private boat owners are not going to have these types of trailers because they prefer compact watercraft, but if you are looking to buy one of these, they can range in price from $5,000 to $8,000 or more.
Personal watercraft, also known as PWC, are things like a Jet Ski. These can be transported on a miniature trailer with a single-axle. These cost between $500 and $2,000 depending on the style you want. These prices are typically factored based on weight capacity, accessories, and size.
These trailers are used to carry smaller watercraft like a kayak or a canoe. They can be purchased for a single carry or multiple boats. Depending on the size, weight capacity, and materials, these could cost anywhere from $600 to $2,000 for a single kayak trailer. If you are looking for a trailer to carry multiples, you could see costs rise to over $5,000 depending on the design and durability.
Different factors determine the pricing of a boat trailer. These factors can be mixed and matched, which will create the pricing of your ideal trailer.
The five types of boat trailers listed can be submersible, also known as float-on trailers, or roll-off in style. Submersible trailers are backed into the water for loading and unloading, whereas the roll-off trailers do not have to be fully submerged to accommodate a boat.
Submersible or float-on trailers have to be almost completely submerged in the water to accommodate a boat adequately. These trailers are put in the water, and the boat is “floated” onto them. On a roll-off trailer, some wheels help move the boat on and off the trailer, so it doesn’t have to be fully submerged. One thing to keep in mind is that it is easy to load a boat wrong onto the trailer. Always make sure the loading and unloading are done correctly on any trailer.
A roll-off trailer is going to cost about 20% more than a fully submersible one. The fully submersible trailers also require more maintenance due to the exposure to water. If you are unloading into saltwater, special care will need to be taken to stop corrosion from occurring.
If you are unsure what trailer you want to get, or you just haven’t found the right one for your boat, you can still hire a professional boat transport company to transport your boat for you. Using an expert service allows you to move your watercraft quickly and safely. A-1 Auto Transport has been in the transport industry for over 20 years, moving personal watercraft from marinas to homes, and storage locations. If you are looking for a company to move your boat, call A-1 Auto Transport for a free boat shipping quote today.
Joe Webster began his journey in the auto transport field by attending the University of Southern California (USC), where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Marketing.
After college, he started his career in the auto transport industry from the bottom up and has done virtually every job there is to do at A-1 Auto Transport, including but not limited to: Truck Driver, Dispatch, Sales, PR, Bookkeeping, Transport Planner, Transport Manager, International Transport Manager, Brokering, Customer Service, and Marketing. Working with his mentor Tony Taylor, Joe Webster has learned the ins and outs of this industry which is largely misunderstood.
With over 30 years experience in the industry, we've been helping people ship their vehicles, motorcycles, RV's, heavy equipment, household goods and more across the country or overseas without a hitch. Ask us anything.
Due to the nature of my work, I must relocate every couple of years to where my company needs me. Because of this, I’ve tested several moving and auto transport companies over the years.
And my choice in terms of auto transport has to be A1 Auto Transport. It’s in the name, but also in the quality with which they do their jobs. I’ve never had a problem with this company.
The only time my shipment was delayed was during winter when a snowstorm closed down all the major roads. And they still found an alternative and got my car delivered before roads got unstuck.
When I moved to West Virginia, they picked up my car the very day I called them. I like to think they take special care of me considering all the business I’ve sent them. I’ll continue to support A1 Auto Transport. It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.
I considered selling my car when I moved to Washington. It was old and rusty, but I grew attached to it. So, I called a couple companies to transport it to my new home, but they both fell through.
The first one couldn’t decide on a schedule. He would constantly change the pickup date till I got frustrated and canceled. The second was insufferable, very rude on the phone, even worse in person.
They started picking a part my car asking me why I still have it. If that’s their opinion of my vehicle, how can I trust they’ll take care of it? If something happened midway, why wouldn’t they just blame it on the car instead of paying up?
So, I cancelled this company as well and turned to A1 Auto Transport. From the get go, they were very different from my past options. Their website was very professional and up to date, full of useful information. I requested a quote using their online form, and I got an email response within an hour. Surprisingly fast!
If I didn’t know any better, I would’ve thought they were lacking customers, but the email spoke for itself. In just one email, everything I needed to know was there, including a contact number I could use to get more information or confirm the transport.
I called and got things rolling. I was very pleased with the driver. He followed standard procedure and represented his company well. Can’t remember his name, but props to him!
The car arrived in Washington 6 days later in excellent condition. From what I understand, the transport was delayed a bit by a storm, but since the time window was 4-6 days from the beginning, I don’t really care. You have my full support and recommendation!
There are a lot of options for auto transport these days, which surprisingly makes it harder to find a good company. I received more than 10 offers to ship my car, but I couldn’t decide on any of them.
After doing some research, I got even more worried reading about all the scams and accidents that can happen. But, I have work to do and couldn’t afford to drive my newly purchased Mini Cooper all the way to Virginia.
Fortunately, I made the right choice with A1 Auto Transport. They are very good at their jobs. I spent more than an hour drilling Joe with various questions, and he never once lost his patience. He saw I was interested, so he bore with me until I was satisfied. The driver was also very courteous and my car was intact on arrival. I couldn’t have asked for more.
By the way, the price we first agreed on stayed the same. There were no delays or unexpected “surprises.” I can safely say this is a legit company that will get the job done.
We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10! We chose them to move our car from California to Vermont, since we needed professionals.
We were abroad during the transport, so the transport was a bit tricky. The driver had to pick it up from storage on short notice and get it to its destination within at most 10 days. I was happy to note it arrived sooner. We got it 3 days early, right when we got home to pick it up. It made getting around way easier. Awesome service!
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