By attaching a Trailer to your bike, you can make your bike a multi-purpose vehicle to carry out your groceries, food, and home supplies. It can also be utilized as a wagon for riding with your little one.
This article gives you a comprehensive yet easy-to-follow guide to show you how to attach bike trailer.
Bike Trailer and Bike Compatibility
Before jumping into the step-by-step installation process and learning how to connect bike trailer to bike, it is crucial for you to know what type of axle your bike has and whether a trailer is compatible to your bike after all.
Your bike will wither have a quick release axle or thru axle. Between the two, a quick release bike is a no hassle case when it comes to attaching bike trailers.
However, if your quick release bike comprises of hooded dropout, you would require an additional spacer to create clearance before you mount the trailer.
If the bike is designed with thru axle, are often found to be incompatible and attaching a trailer to them becomes a struggle. In that case, for a thru axle of standard size, you would need to additional adaptor. These adaptors vary in size, similar to the variation in axe diameter, thread pitch and the axle length.
How to Attach Bike Trailer
Attaching a bike trailer to your bike is easy, and can be done by just a couple of steps. Follow the guide on how to hook up a bike trailer thoroughly so you can attach the bike trailer without bother.
Remove the Rear Seat from the Bike
On some bikes, there is a rear seat which is installed on the rear wheel. These seats are attached to the axle of the back wheel where you’ll be installing the bike trailer. So, to start, you need to detach the nuts for making sure you can affix the trailer securely to the back of your bike.
For that, simply take a wrench and open the axle nuts which hold the back seat in place. You need to do this for both sides of the bike where the seat is attached to.
After removing both sides of the nuts, you’ll also have to remove the washers placed in. Following which, the metal guards that hold in the seat can be pulled back, while you can remove the seat from the back.
Remove the Nuts from the Rear Axle
On most Mountain and Street bikes, you will find that on the rear wheels of the bike, there are bolts and washers attached to keep the tires in place. You would first need to disconnect the nuts to install the bike trailer to the bike.
At first, take a wrench and align a flat site of the nut with the wrench. Then tighten the wrench so that it grabs the nuts tightly. After that put some pressure and rotate the nuts until they open.
After you opened the nuts, you’ll notice a washer behind the nuts. You need to pull that out too. You have to do this for both sides of your bike if the trailer you bought requires two-sided support for its installment.
At this time, if you’ve removed both sides of the nuts, you need to make sure your bike is in a steady place where it cannot move because the rear tires are now detached from the bike. You don’t have to take out the rear tires, they can be at their place because it won’t interfere with the installment of the bike trailer.
Attach Coupler Plate
On the Bike trailer kit, you will find a Coupler plate. This plate will be attached to the axle of your rear bikes. This is also the part that attaches the trailer to your bike. Knowing how to install bike trailers has become much easier now and can be done with just a few steps.
After you’ve taken out the Coupler Plate, you will have to attach it to the rear axle of the bike. To do this, you’ll use the washers and the nuts that you previously opened from the rear wheels.
Now, take the coupler plate and insert it into the rear axle. Also, make sure the tires are aligned perfectly as removing the nuts from the axle will lead you to detach the whole tire from the back panel.
After aligning everything perfectly, take the washers and insert them after you’ve inserted the couplers. Now if you have a rear seat and want to keep it there, then you can put the metal support for the rear set after you’ve inserted the coupler plates.
Finally, you can put in the washer and the nuts. Follow it up by tightening up the nuts in place for both sides and you’re good to go.
Attach the Metal Support
The next step is to attach the metal bar that comes in with the bike trailer for attaching it to the coupler and the trailer itself. If you’re learning how to hook up a bike trailer, you may want to know that this is the core part which holds the trailer in place. So, you need to be extra cautious while attaching it as this is what supports the whole trailer with the back of your bike.
To attach it, first, get the nuts and bolts which are provided with the trailer for installation. You will see holes on the coupler. In those holes, you’ll be able to insert the metal support and tighten it with a bolt or a nut which are included.
Make sure you also use a washer if it is using a nut to further improve the stability and so that the metal support doesn’t wiggle around.
For more safety measures of the support, on some trailers, you’ll find a detachable clip with the trailer. You can then attach the metal support with the main body of the bike so that just in case if anything goes wrong with the support, it can still hold up using that clip.
This is just a safety measurement to further secure the trailer to the bike and to ensure proper safety.
Attach the Metal Support with the Trailer
After you’ve ensured that the metal support is strongly in place and is attached to the bike, you can now attach the main trailer with it.
To attach the Metal support, you will find a bracket or a slot underneath the trailer in which you’ll be able to attach it.
If you’re having trouble finding the bracket, then look at the manual for further guidance. After you’ve located the slot, you simply just need to put it inside the slot and fixate it with the nuts and bolts provided. You need to make sure you’re attaching everything as tightly as you can.
If you see any wiggle and fixation issues with the trailer, you need to detach them again and try to attach them again. Because, sometimes the nuts don’t go in straight hindering the strong fit of the attachment. Also, make sure to put washers before any nuts you screw in because that ensures a proper fit on the attachment.
Attach the Trailer without Couplers
As the final step of our guide to how to connect bike trailers to bike, let’s try to attach the trailer without couplers. Some trailers are directly attached to the bike without any coupler plates. They’re also fixated to both sides of the rear axle of the bike. This is sometimes considered to be safer to some people but both of the methods work just fine and will have no issues. Now, we’ll be guiding you on how to install bike trailer without coupler plates.
So, for you to do that, after you’ve detached the nuts and washers from both the sides of the rear axle, you need to get the metal support. You will have to directly attach the supports without any couplers so you may find it a little harder to do so.
Now when you detach the nuts, the rear wheels of the bike will loosen up as well. So, make sure you’re somewhere steady and the bike isn’t being moved at all or the alignment of the wheels with the bike will be hindered. Then, take two washers and put them into the rear axles.
Then put in the metal supports and insert them on both the sides of the rear axles. After that insert another pair of washers into the axles after the metal supports are inserted. Then take the nuts of your bike’s rear axle and put them into place. Tightly fixate them with the rear wheel aligned and you’re done.
A trailer can make your bike multi-purpose and can help you to do more things while you’re out and about. If you’re doing a camping trip, you’ll be able to hold all your camping essentials inside the trailer. It can also be a trailer for riding with your little one and giving them more time with yourself.
We hope this guide about how to attach a bike trailer was helpful to you and you would be able to do it with ease.