How To Back A Trailer Up A Driveway

Backing up driveway

Towing a trailer isn’t something all drivers can do. Whether you’re towing a camper, boat trailer, or something else, it takes special skills to get the job done.

Your car or truck comes with a set of mirrors that give you great peripheral vision. Yet, they’re not built for backing up large loads. There’s no way to see what’s directly behind your trailer when you’re backing it into your driveway or garage.

If you’re not sure how to back a trailer up a driveway or over your rolled curb, we can help with that. Here are some useful tips on getting the job done right.

Tips On Backing Up A Trailer

Image Credit: Michelle Mitchell

As long as you follow the tips listed below, you’ll have a much easier time backing up your trailer into a driveway or garage.

1. Practice

The best way to get the hang of backing up a trailer is by practicing in an open lot or driveway. Don’t wait until you’re in a stressful situation to back up a trailer. If you can, have a friend stand outside and direct you and/or give you feedback.

2. Hold The Steering Wheel In The Six O’ Clock Position

Forget what they taught you in driver’s ed about keeping your hands in the ten o’ clock and two o’ clock positions. This may be useful advice while you’re driving down the road, but not when you’re backing up a trailer.

Keeping your hand in the six o’ clock position makes it easier to steer the trailer. When your hand is at six o’clock, all you have to do is move your hand in the direction you want the back of the trailer to go. This simplifies steering, which can be confusing when looking at the mirrors, the backup camera, and also over your shoulder.

3. Back Up Slow

Don’t gun it while backing up a trailer. Backing up slowly ensures that you don’t hit anything behind the trailer and gives you plenty of time to avoid obstacles, such as cars or trees.

This may be hard to do when you’ve got a rolled curb, which requires some momentum to go over. If you’re in this situation, consider investing in a curb ramp. More on this later.

4. Make Sure You Know What’s Behind The Trailer At All Times

You can’t rely on your rear view mirror and side mirrors. These may be useful tools, but they don’t give you the full picture of what’s behind the trailer. If you can, look over your shoulder, roll down your windows to get a better look, and/or use a friend to direct you.

5. Use The Edges Of The Driveway As Visual Guides

While backing up, keep an eye on the edges of the driveway. It’s a good way to ensure that your trailer is straight and in the center. The center line of the driveway also helps indicate how far back you are.

A Curb Ramp Will Make It Much Easier To Back Your Trailer Up A Driveway

If there’s anything that makes the daunting task of backing a trailer up a driveway much easier, it’s a curb ramp. A good quality curb ramp (like a BRIDJIT curb ramp) will bridge the gap between the road and the curb at the end of your driveway. There are good reasons why all trailer owners should consider getting a curb ramp. Let’s discuss the biggest reasons:

  • Trailers generally have poor suspension systems. Many don’t even come with shock absorbers. So rolled curbs and other types of raised curbs can really bounce your trailer around. Having a good curb ramp in place will significantly reduce wear and tear on your trailer.
  • A curb ramp makes it so much easier to back a trailer up a driveway. Rolled curbs are made for car and truck tires. Many trailer tires are smaller than that. So that means you need more momentum to get your trailer over a rolled curb. A curb ramp reduces the amount of effort you have to put in when backing up your trailer.

A curb ramp is an investment that can save you money. Every time you use your trailer, it will get beat up by the rolled curb at the end of your driveway. A good quality curb ramp will make sure this happens less often, which means you’ll be doing less repairs on your trailer.

As far as curb ramps go, you can’t go wrong with BRIDJIT. All BRIDJIT curb ramps are designed to make driving over a rolled curb easier than ever.  Find out if BRIDJIT curb ramps are a good fit for your driveway.