Backing A Trailer

This following is a simulator this is from New Zealand where the government is interested in helping you put your boat in the water I guess. Click Here

Anyway this is real good at helping you comprehend the facts of backing.


Go slow
Use your mirrors
Don’t oversteer
Turn toward the mirror where you see the trailer in to straighten it out
You only have to pull forward a little to straighten out a bunch
Don’t oversteer
Use your mirrors
Go Slow

Remember GOAL

G  Get
O  Out
A  And
L  Look


Here’s something you might not know about backing a trailer: a longer, multi-axle trailer is easier to back up than a shorter, single-axle trailer. Why? Short trailers react to steering input much more quickly, and so it’s easier to get them crossed up when backing.

Backing a trailer has a bit of a learning curve. A good way to build your skills before you get to the campground, stables or launch ramp is to practice in an empty parking lot.

The best way to try to back down a ramp or into a camping spot is to begin with the vehicle and trailer generally pointed in the direction you want to go. It’s more difficult to back up when you’re starting from an extreme angle. Eventually you will be able to do that. For now, align the truck and trailer and take it slowly.

The how to:

Once you’re in reverse, the first thing you’ll notice is that getting a trailer to go left means steering to the right. That’s because you’re changing the trailer’s direction with the back of the truck. One neat trick is turning toward the mirror where you see the trailer. Turn gently toward the mirror where you see the trailer, slowly back up, and slowly and it will straighten it up.

So, use your sideview mirrors. Adjust your mirrors so you can see the side of your trailer or at least your trailer tires. If you find yourself weaving an S pattern, stop oversteering. Go slow turn slow. To straighten out pull forward a little. Just a little is all that is needed the truck and trailer will straighten right out. This is often much easier than trying to correct huge mistakes while still backing.

When you are just learning to back a trailer, it’s a good idea to use a spotter. Your spotter can tell you if you’re about to hit something or when you are far enough. Even after you become proficient at backing a trailer, a spotter is a good idea in crowded areas and when you have a blind spot while backing. To avoid arguments it should be the drivers job to drive, and the spotter’s job to tell you to STOP before you hit something.

Clearly, no text document can make you proficient at backing a trailer. As mentioned, it takes practice, but it doesn’t take years to learn. After a short time, you should find the feel for it and be able to back your trailer straight in first time every time.