Elmhurst Self Storage Guide Backing up a Trailer

In our last blog, our Elmhurst U-Stor-It team mentioned the importance of knowing how to back up a trailer so here is an elaboration on the subject matter to ease the process!

Backing up a trailer is often the most dreaded aspect of getting behind the wheel of a vehicle with a hitch. It’s really quite an easy task once you get the hang of it, but for the average driver who may need to do it only once or twice here is the crash course on how to maneuver that trailer backwards.

Things to Avoid                                                                       

There are two things you have to be mindful of at all times throughout the process. One is the obvious, avoiding hitting other cars, walls, or objects. The second thing to stay aware of is jackknifing the vehicle with the trailer ; this is when the trailer gets overturned and ends up in a 90 degree angle with the vehicle, ultimately damaging the vehicle and the trailer (pictured above).

How to do it

  1. Start the process by attempting to be (as much as you can) in a straight line with the trailer. If you are not able to get in a straight line it isn’t a problem, it’ll just take a little extra navigation.
  2. Trailers turn the opposite of how you turn your wheel, so while the vehicle may go right the trailer will go left. Jackknifing occurs when this occurrence becomes too drastic because of a lack of adjustment.
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http://nv0rzs76pw6tzxqv.zippykid.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/trailer-backing.jpg

3. Using primarily the left mirror and window for sight of how the trailer is moving, begin to reverse slowly. If the trailer begins to turn or started in a turned position, turn the wheel in the direction the trailer is headed. This will even it out and get it headed back in a straight direction; the more heavily you turn the wheel, the more turn you get.

Sometimes Mistakes Happen

Especially if it’s your first time, it can be difficult to get it on the first try. Don’t be afraid to put the vehicle back in drive to straighten out. This is highly recommended if you weren’t able to start straight as it helps you guarantee you’re on the right path backwards.

If it ever appears you’re close to jackknifing or hitting something the first step is to pull forward to straighten out your line. If you’re in an awkward position where you can’t straighten out, remember that you can always unhitch the trailer, adjust the vehicle, and re-hitch in a better position to get out.

Elmhurst Self Storage’s Important Tips to Driving a Moving Truck or Trailer

Have you taken on the challenge of renting a moving truck or trailer? It’s more complex than it may seem. Our  Elmhurst U-Stor-It staff has laid out the guidelines to consider before taking the driver’s seat.

Make Sure You’re Plugged in and Chains Aren’t Dragging

One of the most common mistakes when towing a trailer is forgetting or incorrectly attaching the trailer connections. Without the electrical outlet plugged in you risk getting rear-ended since the drivers behind you will have no knowledge of when you are breaking or signaling for a turn.

Chains often are not tight enough and will drag on the ground creating major sparks. It’s important to make sure the chains hang at least 4 inches off the ground to avoid these sparks and to form the safest connection if the trailer happened to pop off the hitch.

https://www.boat-ed.com/images/drawings/crisscross_chains.jpg
https://www.boat-ed.com/images/drawings/crisscross_chains.jpg

Be Prepared to Back up the Truck or Trailer

You may find yourself in a situation where it is necessary to back up and maneuver your way out. If this occurs you want to be prepared! If you have a trailer be sure to read up on how to back it up. With both a truck and trailer it is extremely helpful to have a passenger that can get out and help you with the navigation. Remember to go slow and be aware of all corners of the vehicle and/or trailer.

Drive Cautiously

The number one piece of advice is to make sure you stay safe by driving slowly. It’s easier than you’d think to get to a high speed while towing or driving a large truck; not only does this put you in danger, but it threatens your belongings as well.

Stay at a max of 55 mph or the marked truck/trailer speed limit on all streets and highways. Hopefully you’ll never have to break hard, but if you do you’ll realize how much better of a situation you’re in if you’re going an appropriate speed.

When approaching stop signs or lights ease off of the accelerator early. The easy speed change will help your loaded items avoid shifting around. Gas efficiency will improve, and your breaks will have a much easier time stopping the load.

Carol Stream Advice: The Biggest Mistakes of DIY Moving

Whether you’ve rented a trailer or own a truck, moving furniture from one place to the next can be a hassle; thankfully our Carol Stream Self Storage team has the tips you can’t afford to miss out on before making your move. The moving process puts a lot on your plate, making it easy to forget or not even think about the little details. Here are a few tips to keep in mind to avoid a disastrous situation!

Avoid Nicking Corners And Scratches

It’s easy to assume your big furniture can hold its own in a move, but corners and framing are much more delicate than the piece itself. Placing a simple blanket over each valuable piece of furniture greatly improves the likelihood of its survival. Once a piece has a blanket, you can stack other furniture on top without the risk of the surfaces scratching one another.

http://www.weleski.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Loading-Moving-Trailer.jpg
http://www.weleski.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Loading-Moving-Trailer.jpg

Even Weight Distribution

Why does the wheel keep pulling to the right while driving? If you loaded your trailer unevenly you could be setting yourself up for major consequences. Not only is it dangerous to drive an uneven trailer, but the wear and tear on the vehicle and trailer frame can be costly.

Before loading, assess all of the items that you want to fit in the trailer. Load the heaviest items towards the front of the trailer (the opposite side of the door) and pay attention that both the right and left side are approximately equal in weight. This will assure a much safer trip than otherwise.

Strap Loose Items

Unless the trailer is completely full and all items are secure, it is absolutely necessary to run rope or straps across to avoid items from fumbling around. Test this by pushing a loaded item—if it moves you need to tighten your straps again.

Don’t Try To Do It All On Your Own

Lastly, you may be confident in your strength or the ability of the new dolly you purchased, but moving completely on your own is a surefire way of risking injury or damage to your belongings. Ask a buddy or significant other for assistance—after all, what are friends for?

http://192.252.215.220/~goodstuffmoving/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/photodune-10857722-young-couple-carrying-couch-xs.jpg?w=150
http://192.252.215.220/~goodstuffmoving/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/photodune-10857722-young-couple-carrying-couch-xs.jpg?w=150

U-Stor-It Donates $2000 to Monarch School for Homeless Children

For Immediate Release

February 14, 2017
U-Stor-It Donates $2000 to Monarch School for Homeless Children
By Barron Lutes
San Diego, CA – Last December, after matching a Talonvest donation of $1000, members of the Lincoln Park U-Stor-It team were invited to see firsthand the behind the scenes magic of Monarch School.

The Lincoln Park team got to tour the entire camous, and learn all about the culture of the school as well as the difficulties homeless children face daily.

The staff was impressed to find classes are very project and skill oriented. For instance, geometry is paired with woodworking class to stress the application to the real world. This dynamic helps students prepare for life outside of school by both creating a fun and growth-oriented educational experience, and allowing students to explore various career pathways along the way.

“It’s great to know that the money donated is going to such an amazing cause!” – Blake, U-Stor-It Marketing Manager

Monarch School needs your help too! Their annual fundraiser is approaching fast. The school will provide hors d’oeurves, craft beer, wine, a live auction, and student performances. The event is $150 per person all going directly towards the school’s education objectives.

For further information contact Katie Bradel at (619) 652-4100 or kbradel@monarchschools.org or visit the Monarch website at http://monarchschools.org/

WHERE: Monarch School, 1625 Newton Ave, San Diego, CA 92113

WHEN: April 27th, 2017 from 5:30PM – 7:30PM

About U-Stor-It Self Storage

U-Stor-It Self Storage, in conjunction with U-Stor-It Managers, their management team, are developers and operators who have entitled, developed, and managed north of 50 properties in the Chicagoland and Southern California regions. Having been in business for 28+ years, they continually seek to improve and enhance the communities in which they serve.

About Monarch School

Monarch School provides schooling K-12 for homeless children of the San Diego area. Located in Barrio Logan, the school handles up to 350 students daily. Monarch’s approach is different than that of most schools; they understand that creating a hands-on and applied learning environment fairs extremely well for students.

Contact

Blake Johnston, Marketing

blake@ustorit.com

Melrose Park’s Guide to Winter Car Storage

Do you have a summer hobby car, or a two-wheel drive you know has no way of safely navigating the icy roads of winter? It sounds like you’ve stumbled upon adding car storage to your winter prep.

Don’t worry! Thankfully there are multiple ways to safely store your vehicle for the snowy season. Here are the Top 3 options for winter vehicle storage provided by our Melrose Park staff:

  1. Outside Storage

Sometimes we just have to tackle the environment head on, and show it who’s boss. Here’s how to do it.

  • First, and often extremely overlooked, you must find a safe and legal place to store the car. You don’t want any snow plows demolishing the side of your car!
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Source: http://northiowatoday.com/2013/03/18/snowplow-sideswipes-parked-cars/
  • Top up your fluids. Your oil should be fresh and clean to prevent corrosion within the engine, and the fuel tank should be just about as full as possible to avoid air build up and expansion from the frigid temperature.
  • To prevent the tires from freezing to the ground, roll them onto a sheet of plywood, carpet, or plastic. Also make sure the tires are at their max PSI so no flat spots develop on the rubber.
  • Purchase a tarp that can cover the entire vehicle, and secure it as tightly as possible. Make sure all crevices are as covered as they can be (you don’t want anything making a home of your car).
  1. Garage Storage

If you’re lucky enough to have an available garage, make sure you don’t stop there! It’s easy to assume your car is safe within your own confines, but there are still measures to be taken.

      • While a tarp is no longer necessary, it is still of major importance to fill holes and crevices to avoid critters from seeking shelter. Put steel wool in the exhaust pipe, and consider mothballs to surround the undercarriage as a secondary line of defense.

– U-Stor-It Melrose Park

  1. Consider a Storage Facility

The winter storage process can be a hassle, why not take the load off and enjoy the luxury of convenience and safety! Many facilities offer ground-floor climate controlled storage units as well as safe and camera monitored outdoor parking.

Melrose-park-u-stor-it-ustorit
Source: https://www.selfstorage.com/self-storage/illinois/melrose-park/u-stor-it-melrose-park-200962/