It’s summertime, peak trailer-travel season for trail riders! If you trailer often, you know how quickly your trailer can get dirty and how hard it can be to keep it clean. But keeping your trailer free of urine, dirt, debris, bugs, and road-treatment chemicals is key to on-the-road safety. A dirty trailer will corrode faster than a clean one, and urine fumes can damage your horse’s lungs.
Here, I’ll tell you about two ways to help you keep your trailer safe and clean inside and out. First, I’ll explain a new type of trailer flooring that helps control urine and keeps corrosion at bay. Then I’ll tell you about a space-age exterior-care product line.
Those hundred-pound rubber mats take all the fun out of cleaning your trailer floor. You know the drill: drag them out, drag them in, drag them out, drag them back in. With all your other chores, and your limited time, it’s tempting to skip a cleaning or two.
But if you don’t keep your trailer floors clean, the ammonia from your horse’s urine can damage his lungs. Plus, it can corrode your trailer floor, rendering it unsafe and lessening your trailer’s resale value. Heavy rubber mats help protect the trailer floor and cushion your horse’s hooves, but urine does get through. Any urine that ends up on the trailer floor can become trapped. Once it pools, it’s harder for it to evaporate.
If you’re happy with your trailer, then be sure to keep it clean.
However, if you’re in the market for a new trailer, take a look at the models from Logan Coach Horse Trailers (800/742-7047; http://logancoach.com). All of Logan’s steel framing is galvanized, then coated with Vortex rubber, which acts as an armor and a noise dampener.
The company’s “Wiz Proof” flooring is made from slotted aluminum floor planks that let drain ammoniated urine from the trailer. Gaps in the planks are angled so road water doesn’t splash back in. Rubber mats are molded to channel urine to the rear of the trailer. To clean, simply use a garden hose and muck fork.
Space-Age Exterior Care
In this economy, you want to make your trailer last longer and certainly not look its age. This makes maintenance more important. You want to stay ahead of the black streaks and corrosion. Keeping your trailer clean can make it look like new longer and preserve its value.
The Metalwax product line from JMT Distribution (770/475-9295; http://jmt
distribution.com) will help keep your trailer healthy. This space-age line is used by Boeing and NASA, and is certified by Aircraft Management Solutions for aircraft use.
The owners of JMT Distribution are horse owners who travel extensively to compete in distance riding. They know the work involved in cleaning and shining up a trailer after long road trips, so distribute only high-quality, effective products.
The new enemy from the road is magnesium chloride. In many areas, this liquid has replaced salt rock and sand as a de-icer on winter roads. Although aluminum doesn’t rust, it does corrode and oxidize. You can combat mag chloride (and other road chemicals) with the Metalwax HP Metal Cleaner.
I’ve used the company’s cleaner, wax, and polish on my entire rig. I was amazed how well it cleaned and polished everything, especially my trailer’s stainless-steel nose and my truck’s diamond-deck plate.
H. Kent Sundling (a.k.a. Mr. Truck; www.mrtruck.com) is a well-known automotive journalist, reviewing trucks, trailers, and accessories for magazines and websites. He travels the country test-driving new trucks, towing trailers, and reviewing horse-trailer manufacturing facilities.