Car trailer

Car trailer

The car is too small, the cargo too bulky, too heavy or too dirty? At least now the thoughts revolve around a car trailer. Similarly, the idyllic family holiday with the caravan can be crucial to deal with the issue of car trailers. Whatever your reason, before their first drive with an appendix on the car, should be informed on the subject. Not every trailer is approved for each vehicle and also determines the driver's license, to which a trailer weight must be performed.

First, there are many legal rules and regulations, on the other hand includes a bit of practice to maneuver safely and securely with a trailer. We can offer no practical exercises, but provide general knowledge for the operation of a car with a trailer.

Contents: car trailer

  • Types of trailers
  • Types of trailers
  • Braking systems on trailers
  • Driving licenses and regulations
  • Speed ​​limits for car trailers
  • Insurance, taxes and TÜV

Types of trailers

Axle trailer 

This type of trailer is probably the most common among car fans. The construction consists of a frame on which the shaft, and the axes of which are rigidly attached. Small pendants usually have only one axis, more than two closely spaced axles. Exceed the axes is not the distance of one meter, the trailer still applies under German law as a single axis, and as tandem trailer designated. The steering behavior is similar in tandem trailers as in the single-axle, of course, by the rigid axles of the tire wear is significantly higher on tight bends.

Multi-axle trailers with steered front axle 

Multi-axle trailers are the exception in the field of car trailers. They are usually used in the field of trucks as they for larger cargo weight are suitable. In general, they have two or more axes, wherein the front axle is steerable and can be rotated by a turntable.


What was once the trucks (tractor-trailers) reserved, there are now also in the car sector. Especially in vans and pickups these trailers variant is used more often and is called Mini-semitrailer in this case. For the use of a special vehicle body as a tractor is needed. This is mainly created for it to use the trailer or semi-trailer. Also for the towing vehicle is a special receptacle, through which the semitrailer is partially supported and partially pulled. The trailer requires therefore no front axle can be made longer and is easier than a multi-axle trailers are ranked.

Types of trailers

Car trailerCar trailer with tarpaulin

Meanwhile, there are many different types of car trailers on the market. The most common and most universal form of Flatbed or box trailers, can be up to a certain height loaded. In addition, a corresponding frame may be mounted on a flatbed trailer in order to tension a tarpaulin over it.

Of the luggage tags is constructed similarly to the box trailers, but it has a closed structure with doors or a ramp.

In addition to the standard types there are also Special versions such as vehicle transporters, horse trailers, caravans, catering trailer or trailers.

Braking systems on trailers

Small trailer up 750kg total mass require highway legislation no separate brake and only braked by the brake of the car.

Exceeds the total weight of the trailer 750kg, a brake is necessary. Most trailers are equipped with so-called overrun brakes fitted. Slows the car off the trailer runs on to the vehicle and exerts a force on the pole from. the power is then transmitted mechanically via lever to the brake of the trailer on the drawbar. The braking force is proportional to the deceleration of the car. When reversing the car also presses against the pole and the brake would normally trigger. This problem is avoided with an automatic reversing lock, which is compulsory since 1991 and deactivates the brake.

Trailer weighing over 3500kg need a compressed air braking system, but falls more rarely in the passenger vehicle sector.

Driving licenses and regulations

A car with a trailer must each carry that over the Driving license features. It should however be noted that the trailer may only have a maximum total weight of 750 kg. In addition, the total weight of the vehicle combination does not exceed 3500 kg and the trailer is not heavy as the tractor itself.

If the trailer exceeds the permissible total weight of 750 kg or the total weight of the combination over 3500 kg, and is less than 4250 kg is the Driving license 96 needed.

If the total mass of the combination, the brand of 3500kg, it is the License class BE needed to be able to lead the team. Here, the trailer may but must exceed the total mass of 750kg remain below 3500 kg.

Speed ​​limits for car trailers

Car trailerTrailers with a speed 100 km / h approval

Generally for a trailer towing a maximum speed limit of 80 km / h, which is regulated in § 18 of the Highway Code. With exceptions, however, the pace of 100 km / h approval 5 No. 3 of the Road Traffic Regulations. May 18, paragraph according to §. Access. To certain guidelines to the towing vehicle and trailer are necessary. These are in the 9th exception ordinance for road traffic regulations of 15 October 1998 (Federal Law Gazette I, p. 3171) described and can be found at the Federal Mini Terium of Justice and Consumer Protection.

This exception requires an examination and an identification. Many supporters who meet the requirements are already sold with a corresponding label. An extra loss is therefore not necessary.

Insurance, taxes and TÜV

Like all other vehicles participating in the road, also needs a trailer TUV, a liability insurance and taxes must be paid for. These are considerably below the cost of a car, but should be considered. Who uses a trailer only twice a year, is probably cheaper with a loaner.

the ride is the case of trailers up to 3.5 t every two years TÜV necessary. Heavier trailer looks forward to strengthened inspection every year. is tested mainly the lighting, if necessary, the brake, the hitch and the tires. Since this is not as complicated for a normal car trailer, an own control can previously be appropriate and avoid unnecessary costs. The regulated TÜV-cost start with 26,50 € and get to the total weight category. Current prices can be found at TÜV: TÜV-fees

While driving, the automotive occursLiability insurance for damage caused to other vehicles one. Nevertheless, the trailer must have its own liability insurance. This occurs when it causes damage not arising during operation. This can happen if the trailer is dissolved or turned off and is not properly secured. While insurance costs from 15 € to 100 € arise which depend on the use, gross vehicle weight and coverage. If necessary, a comprehensive insurance protection is also possible for a trailer.

The state wants in the form of Control have his share. These are based on the gross vehicle weight and amounted to 2015 per section of 200 kg total weight 7.46 € and are limited to a maximum of 373.24 €. Wherein at Starrdeichsel- or center (semi-trailers), the possible vertical load can be removed.

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