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Purchasing a trailer is no small decision. It’s important to consider several factors so that you are not only getting a great price, but you’re also getting a great trailer for that price.

Not all side dumps are created equal. That’s why we’ve created a blog series to highlight a few key criteria you should use to evaluate which side dump trailer is right for your needs, even if it’s not a SmithCo Side Dump.

When making a sizable investment in your equipment, you want to be able to use it where you want, when you want. Each state has its own rules about what you can haul and where. Asking the right questions about your haul and bridge law can maximize productivity and minimize risk of fines.

Here are a few things to keep in mind:

Accurate Information is Key

Make sure you ask the trailer manufacturer to provide you with a bridge law drawing that shows the trailer you are considering AND the tractor you will be using. It’s imperative that you get accurate information on what you can legally haul with the trailer you are considering.

And while inner and outer bridge weights are easy to calculate, are you being provided accurate proposed ground weights on individual axle groupings? Double check to make sure.

    Keep Transfer Weight in Mind

    Ask your dealer: Is the trailer built to take into account the correct transfer of weight to the drives and steer tires of the truck? If the trailer design doesn’t take into account the length and axle locations of the truck, the tires on the trailer and/or truck could see ground weights that go against DOT laws in a particular state.

    Some manufacturers don’t have the ability to position the tub on the frame in order to move the weight forward or rearward on the trailer to maximize the ground load capacities allowed by the DOT. SmithCo, on the other hand, can pretty much put the tub anywhere on the frame.

    Here’s a more in-depth look at why DOT bridge laws are so important.

    More in our Look Beyond Price series:

      If you want more information on what sets SmithCo side dump trailers apart, please contact us at 800-779-8099 or sales@sidedump.com.

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