Archived Trailer Guys Questions
The Trailer Boat Experts
A guy at the boat ramp watched me pull my boat out last year and offered this advice which I haven't followed up on. He said I should have tie downs on either side of the axle (I have a single axle trailer). Is this a rule that I haven't heard about? T. Lootens, Houston TX
Answered on: 6/2005
GEORGE: There is no DOT (Department of Transportation) rule about this. However, if your boat is light and wind can get under it when on the highway, a tie down is going to be needed. Where it goes on the trailer isn't as important as long as the boat is secured at the winch and at the stern. I think having a tie down on either side of the axle is over doing it but believe me, there's nothing wrong with overdoing it to be safe. MIKE: This is not a rule that I am familiar with. If you would be more comfortable with the additional strap then go for it, they are not that expensive (under $20). On my single axle trailer I use one strap that goes across the boat and fastens to the trailer behind the axle. I have not had any problems with this set up. The alternative is to use two transom tie downs, if you have the eyes on your transom. In addition you should also use a tie down strap or chain connecting the bow eye of the boat to the winch stand of the trailer.
The Trailer Boat Expert: Mike and George