Nothing is worse than packing up and getting ready to go to the lake only to find out that your jet ski trailer has a problem. Whether it’s a broken tail light, a locked up wheel hub bearing, a jack stuck in the down position, or some other broken jet ski trailer part it’s all bad and can ruin a perfectly planned event. The best way to avoid such a tragedy is to routinely perform jet ski trailer inspections and maintenance. The Watercraft Superstore offers a complete line of jet ski trailer parts.
Proper Jet Ski Trailer Maintenance Guidelines
1) Wash your trailer after each use, especially if it was in saltwater. Do this every time! Rinse every part of the trailer with fresh water, especially the suspension and behind the wheels. The sure things in life are: death, taxes and jet ski trailer corrosion. Rinsing will greatly prolong your jet ski trailer’s life.
2) Protect your jet ski trailer parts and hardware with a protective spray such as Corrosion X. Spray the nuts, bolts, leaf-springs, winch gears and all other hardware items.
3) Use jet ski tie down straps. These inexpensive ratchet-type straps help secure your boat to the trailer. Every jet ski should be secured with several PWC tie down straps. Your winch strap is not a PWC tie down strap so use one on the bow also. You regularly see boats that have fallen off their trailers and onto the freeway. It’s amazing.
4) Grease bearings. Do this every couple of weeks. Remove the hub cover. Locate the “Zirc” grease fitting–it’s the “nipple” that fits into the female end of a grease gun. Squeeze grease from the gun until trailer bearing are full (but not too full). We recommended using heavy duty DISC BRAKE grease on the jet ski trailer. Others have suggested using heavy duty marine grease. It’s important that the grease doesn’t degrade in water.
5) Feel your hubs for excess heat when traveling. They should not feel any hotter than a cup of coffee. Use Bearing Buddies or other such bearing-saving devices. Milky grease is a sign that it has been compromised by water. If this happens, repack all bearings. Repack wheel bearings every six month as part of scheduled maintenance. They can be repacked annually if you use a bearing saving device.
6) Lubricate your lug nuts/posts so that you will be able to loosen them to change tires on your jet ski trailer. This is especially important if you are fixing a flat by the side of the road. Lug nuts tend to rust easily. Use “Never Seize” grease, Boeshield T-9 or frequent applications of WD-40, penetrating oil or silicone spray. Replace steel lug nuts with stainless steel.
7) Check your tire pressure. Trailer tires are different from car/truck tires. Check the tire sidewall for correct pressure (usually 50-65 psi.)
8) Check your tire tread. Use the penny test by inserting a penny into the tread. The tread should touch the top of Abe Lincoln’s head.
10) Check fasteners and all jet ski trailer hardware to make sure they’re tight.
11) Use safety chains correctly on the jet ski trailer. Chris-cross the chains below the tongue. Position the hooks to your tow vehicle in such a way that they won’t easily fall off Even better, use a closed-end fastener.
12) Do not put too much weight on the jet ski trailer. Gear can add a lot of weight – even if your jet ski can handle all of the gear, look at the weight rating on your trailer and do not exceed the maximum weight.
13) If you are storing your jet ski be sure to block and cover your jet ski trailer tires. Remember rubber degrades when exposed to sunlight and also rots when exposed to the ground. You may wish to shade your tires. Moving your jet ski trailer periodically or jacking your trailer off the ground will help reduce dry rotting of your tires.
14) As you do with your car, carry emergency equipment for your jet ski trailer. Make a jet ski trailer emergency kit that contains jet ski trailer parts such as a spare wheel and tire, lug wrench, wheel chocks, bearing grease, extra hub assembly, extra line (for the winch and jet ski tie-down straps), replacement light bulbs, wheel bearings and road flares/markers.