Tips from Land Rover

Land Rover’s Daniel Rogers re­cently shared these tips on safely tow­ing a car­a­van or trailer.

NZ4WD - - TOWING -

Even ahead of set­ting off, you can pack your be­long­ings to re­duce the risk of your trailer or car­a­van weav­ing, yaw­ing and snaking by load­ing the trailer or car­a­van in a spe­cific way that dis­trib­utes weight ef­fi­ciently. The cen­tre of gravity of the load needs to be about 10-20 cm in front of the trailer or car­a­van’s wheels, which can be achieved by load­ing slightly more weight in the front half of the trailer or car­a­van than in the rear, ensuring that you don’t ex­ceed the rec­om­mended tow­ing weight for your ve­hi­cle, of course. You should never load a trailer so that it is lower at the rear. It should be ei­ther level, or ide­ally, slightly nose down. Any load should be se­cured to the trailer tie-downs where avail­able and you’re good to go. Re­mem­ber it is a le­gal re­quire­ment to use ex­tended mir­rors when tow­ing. This en­sures you have full vis­i­bil­ity around the ve­hi­cle for safety pur­poses.

On the road

The key thing to re­mem­ber when driv­ing with a trailer or car­a­van, is that you need to al­low more time and room for ev­ery­thing. Make sure you al­low a gap of at least four sec­onds to the ve­hi­cle in front, an­tic­i­pate junc­tions and stops to al­low you time to brake early and al­low ex­tra room for turn­ing and ma­noeu­vring. When­ever you start your jour­ney, take time to test the brakes when it is safe and con­sid­er­ate to do so, to un­der­stand how that par­tic­u­lar load will af­fect stop­ping when re­quired. To avoid a trailer or car­a­van weav­ing [ mov­ing from side to side], there are a few sim­ple steps you can take. • Ad­just the trailer contents to move the

cen­tre of gravity for­ward • Avoid over-pack­ing the trailer and en­sure the max­i­mum trailer weight is not ex­ceeded • In­crease the trailer and ve­hi­cle tyre pres­sures ac­cord­ing to the man­u­fac­turer’s spec­i­fi­ca­tion • Re­duce driv­ing speed

Park­ing

Re­vers­ing with a trailer or car­a­van is a gen­tle, slow and steady art. You should start re­vers­ing with the ve­hi­cle and trailer in a straight line, be­fore slowly turn­ing the ve­hi­cle in the op­po­site direc­tion to the one in which you wish the trailer to travel. Do not con­tinue too far as the ve­hi­cle and trailer may ‘ jack-knife’. Once the trailer is mov­ing in the cor­rect direc­tion, re­verse the steer­ing of the ve­hi­cle and fol­low the trailer into the turn, straight­en­ing up when you reach the cor­rect direc­tion. Says Daniel: “It is vi­tal that no matter how of­ten you tow a trailer, you take the time to pre­pare prop­erly and don’t rush your jour­ney. There is a lot to get used to and many prob­lems which can eas­ily arise. “Even with the wide range of tech­nol­ogy avail­able – such as our Ad­vanced Tow As­sist sys­tem which al­lows you to park your trailer with­out even touch­ing the steer­ing wheel – it is still vi­tal that any­one look­ing to tow has a good un­der­stand­ing of the physics and the­ory be­hind it. “We hope these tips help those con­tem­plat­ing tow­ing a trailer or car­a­van tune-up their skills and re­duce the risk of in­ci­dent.” For fur­ther in­for­ma­tion on tow­ing, please visit www.lan­drover.co.uk/ own­er­ship/ guides-and-man­u­als/ off-road- driv­ing.html

Range Rover Ve­lar ready for work!

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