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What Are The Different Types of Trailers?

22 February 2023

Road trailers are manufactured to perform specific tasks. Different types of trailers can be attached to Heavy Goods Vehicles, tractors and domestic cars. 

Because different types of trailers serve different purposes, it’s important to know which type of trailer you need. This is true whether you’re in the transportation business or need a car trailer to ferry specialist equipment. 

Let’s start with the different types of trailers used in the transportation industry. These are best used for transporting goods and materials in bulk. 

  • Curtain Side Trailer. Are the most popular type of trailer used in the haulage industry. They provide easy access to the trailer bed from the sides so loading and unloading cargo is easier.
  • Tarpaulin Trailer. Are similar to curtain trailers but provide better weather-proofing. The sides of the trailers are made of aluminium which makes it easier to secure goods.
  • Box Trailer. Are among the most common type of trailers. These are typically used by road transport companies to carry high-value cargo or garments. You can also get box trailers with built-in refrigerators for transporting food and flowers. 

This type of trailer is also ideal for businesses that want to optimise the load volume of their truck. The enclosed trailer is ideal for installing a customised van racking system with appropriate van shelving ideas

Specialised Types of Trailers 

Some trailers are designed with industry-specific features. They are more rugged, durable and often fitted with machinery to help with loading and unloading. 

Open Car Transporter Trailer 

Open car transporters are used to transport new and old cars. The smaller trailers used by breakdown services typically have twin axles and car transportation trailers have triple-axle car trailers. 

Enclosed Car Transporter Trailer 

Ideal for transporting high value that needs protecting from the elements. Enclosed car trailers are usually used for Formula One racing cars, rally cars and high-end sports cars.

Tipper Trailer 

Tipper trailers are mostly used in construction and agriculture. As the name suggests, the trailer is fitted with hydraulics that tips out the contents. Modern Tipper trailers come with a range of features including a click and clamp system to prevent rattles, optional side extensions and auto-adjusting posts.

Flatbed Trailers 

Flatbed trailers are advantageous for transporting boxes or Euro pallets. Because the wheel arches do not intrude into cargo space sliding cargo in with ramps and straps makes loading and offloading easier. 

Flatbed trailers are highly versatile and can hold up to 48,000 lbs. They don’t have any sides so can be accessed from the sides. You will often see flatbed trailers carry materials such as metal or lumber. 

Lowbed Trailers

Lowbed trailers are designed with a drop deck behind the gooseneck. This means the trailer sits close to the ground and makes it easier to ship construction equipment such as bulldozers and excavators.

Different Types of Trailers for Cars

The different types of car trailers are also designed to suit a specific purpose. Also bear in mind the size and horsepower of your car when buying a car trailer. 

Utility Trailer 

Utility trailers are generally hired to move a small amount of personal possession. If you’re moving house or leaving for University, a utility trailer is useful. 

Horse Trailer 

Horse trailers are naturally used to transport horses. They come in various sizes if you are transporting more than one horse at the same time. Horse trailers are not particularly heavy and can be towed by an SUV or pickup but can restrict visibility in smaller cars.

Boat or Glider Trailer 

Extreme sports enthusiasts and boat enthusiasts need specialized trailers to transport gliders and speed boats. Unlike flatbed types of trailers which can be used as all-purpose transporters, boat and glider trailers are specifically designed to cradle the hull of a boat or clamp to the frame of a glider.

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