Just because you drive a vehicle does not make you a mechanic. The same is true for individuals who drive a big rig for a living. Fortunately, there are some more common problems with trailers that can either be fixed or avoided. By having the right handful of tools at your disposal during your trips, you can limit or fix a number of problems without the assistance of a mechanic.
The first and most important item a big rig driver could have is a big hammer such as a mini-sledge hammer. Keep in mind, a traditional carpenter hammer is not ideal or powerful enough. You may find yourself in a situation where your door handles need a little push to work, your brakes have frozen up, or the floor of your trailer just needs to be pounded back into place. A mini-sledge hammer is enough to resolve any of these problems.
Brake Line Anti-Freeze
As the temperatures start to drop, it is crucial to have brake line anti-freeze tucked away in your big rig. Putting a little bit of this on your brake lines when the temperatures start dropping will make it more difficult for the air release valves to freeze shut. This, in turn, will prevent any ice from accumulating on the air lines.
Bungee cords are a great substitute for keeping the trailer doors closed when the chain that normally holds them closed breaks or goes missing. Bungee cords also provide an easy way to strap the air lines to your tractor deck should they become loose.
Over time, the pins that lock the tandems of your trailer are going to get rusty, which makes them harder to release. A little WD-40 on the pins is all that is needed to keep them from rusting and making it easy for them to continue to release.
While WD-40 works, grease is a reliable alternative for the same problem. Furthermore, grease can stand up to pressure a little better than WD-40, making it slightly more ideal for the job.
A Basic Toolkit
While there is no specific problem a basic toolkit is intended for, it is never a bad idea to have one. The last thing you want is to be stuck on the road wishing you had a wrench or a pair of pliers to tighten something that came loose so you can be on your way.
Naturally, there will be times where trailer repair needs are out of your hands and require an expert. However, having the right tools inside of your big rig can make some problems easier to deal with.