Travel trailers are convenient to have to take on any adventure you want to go on. To get the most out of every trip you take, people are always trying to think of how they can bring more with them to make their trip the most enjoyable. Many people wonder, “How much weight can a travel trailer bumper hold?” because it is crucial to know before you take your first trip.
Most travel trailer bumpers are not made to hold any weight. More often than not, manufacturers do not recommend adding weight to your trailer bumper unless you reinforce it. Many travel trailer bumpers are created to hold the sewer hose or spare tire, but they are not made to have extra weight.
Bringing bikes or generators with you will get added comfort and fun to any trip you take. The problem many people run into is that space is incredibly limited in fifth wheels, travel trailers, and RVs that you have to figure out different ways to carry bikes and generators. Many people resort to using their travel trailer stock bumper to take some of the weight, resulting in a disaster.
In this article, we will cover how to carry your items safely without compromising your trailer, as well as explanations of why it is crucial not to add any extra weight to your trailer bumper.We will also give insights into how to make your travel trailer bumper stronger to hold the excess weight of bikes or generators.
How much weight can a travel trailer bumper hold?
When it comes to the weight a travel trailer bumper can hold, the trailer bumpers you typically see are not created to hold any weight. Most times, trailer bumpers are made out of fragile material that is hollow to hold your sewer hose. They are attached to your trailer, but many have a weak point at the weld that can easily crack or break with any extra or added weight.
If you successfully add something to your trailer bumper and it seems like everything is good to go, you have to remember a few things. One is that while driving down the road, whatever you added, such as a bicycle or generator, will be bouncing up and down. While bouncing up and down, there will be added weight and pressure on your bumper, and it could genuinely result in a disaster.
Another aspect to think about is that if you decide to attach something on your trailer bumper, it will often void any warranty you have on your trailer. Many warranties will talk about the bumper in fine print, so it is recommended to always consult with your manufacturer before adding anything to your bumper.
Lastly, something to always think about is that anytime you add extra weight to the back of the trailer, you can easily throw off your trailer’s weight distribution. Anytime the weight distribution is messed with, it could lead to shaky and bumpy drives. Remember to always use a proper weight distribution hitch.
There are multiple aspects of your travel trailer bumper to consider before attaching anything to the back of your trailer. It is truly not worth the risk to add extra weight to your trailer bumper and compromise your bikes, trailer, and safety of others driving behind you. There are a few ways to safely carry your bikes or generator that will leave your mind at ease and allow you to enjoy your travels.
Simply adding a rear bumper hitch expecting to bumper pull a bike rack or generator rack will most likely lead to disaster.
Some trailers come with a rear trailer hitch installed from the factory. These are great because you CAN add bikes or carriers to them. They will have a weight rating, tongue weight capacity, and a frame to support the weight. This is a great way to take along your accessories.
Some fifth wheels even can tow a boat or another trailer as long as the gross trailer weight is under their recommended rating of the trailer hitch as well as your tow vehicle.
Can I add a bike hitch to my travel trailer bumper?
When you travel with your camper, fifth wheel, or trailer, it is always fun to bring your bikes along for adventures. There are road bike and mountain bike trails all over the country, so having your bikes in tow adds fun to any trip.
While it is not recommended to attach a bike hitch to carry bikes to the stock bumper that comes on many trailers, there are a few options to bring your bikes along with you. Always remember when installing different styles of bike racks, they must be approved for trailer use.
For our full in depth guide on how to carry bikes on your travel trailer, read our article here.
Ladder Mount RV Bike Rack
If your RV, trailer, or fifth wheel comes with a ladder on the back, you can quickly grab a ladder-mounted bike rack. Ladder mounted bike racks are specifically made to attach to your trailer ladder. They can hold two bikes and will keep your bikes safe while you drive down the road.
Reinforced Bumper Mount
There are options to add a bike bumper mount onto your trailer bumper. You must remember that the only way to do so safely is if your bumper is reinforced to hold more weight. Most stock trailer bumpers cannot safely carry the added weight, so looking into reinforced bumpers is essential from the factory.
Another option you have is to install a roof rack on top of your tow vehicle. One positive aspect of a roof mount is you can use it both when you are towing your trailer and when you just want to drive straight to the trailhead. Roof Mounts allow you to carry a variety of bikes, perfect for families.
A hitch-mounted bike rack is a great option to add to your trailer if the hitch comes factory installed because it can be used both while your traveling and simply added to your truck or vehicle. A significant aspect of hitch-mounted racks is you must have a hitch receiver professionally installed before you can add a hitch-mounted bike rack.
Besides bikes, you can also use hitch mounts to add a place to store your generator or to carry extra items safely. A professionally installed hitch mount will allow you to take larger items by installing a hitch rack as well as smaller items such as bikes. A hitch mount is a great universal mount because you can also use the same additions on your vehicle.
Tongue Mount Travel Trailer Bike Rack
A tongue-mounted bike rack allows you to install a bike rack or generator rack at the tongue or front of your trailer. These adapters will allow you to use your tongue bike rack and are specifically created to fit your bikes behind the propane in the front of your trailer. Typically, tongue-mounted bike racks can hold less weight, so it is essential not to overload them.
Tongue Mounts allow you to view your bikes at all times while you drive down the road, which helps you know that everything is safe and working correctly.
How to have a stronger travel trailer bumper?
You have probably seen trailers driving down the road with bikes and generators attached behind their trailer, and there doesn’t seem to be an issue. Thankfully, you can take a couple of steps to create a stronger bumper that will be able to hold more weight.
Reinforce your Bumper
Another option you have is to have an RV repair shop reinforce your bumper. They can do so by adding extra welds in multiple places instead of the small amount they come with.
Remove Stock Bumper and add Receiving Hitch.
A receiving hitch will allow you to attach your bikes or generator to the back of your trailer with ease. It is recommended to get a professional to install your hitch to be confident driving down the road.
No matter how you decide to use your trailer, it is important to take the time to do your research and consult your manufacturer. The last thing you want to happen is to attach your bikes to the back of your trailer without any added reinforcement or different styles of hitch and drive down the road. While driving down the road, the added weight on your stock trailer bumper will likely cause your bumper to crack and can send your bikes flying off of the back. Take your time and learn just how much weight a travel trailer bumper can truly hold to keep your belongings and trailer safe and secure.
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