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Getting around with your snowmobile and other vehicles like ATVs isn’t possible without a trailer, but with so many trailers out there made for specific purposes, you might be wondering if you can mix and match. If you need to transport a side by side and only have a snowmobile trailer, you might wonder if you can use that trailer for your UTV.
You can put a side by side in a snowmobile trailer if it fits on the trailer properly. You can usually fit three UTVs of 700S in a snowmobile trailer of 8.5 X 12 feet (2.59 X 3.65 meters) snowmobile trailer. Put two of them at the front and the remaining one across to fit them in the trailer.
In this article, I will teach you how you can safely put a UTV on a snowmobile trailer. I’ll also talk about how safe it is to put your side by side on a snowmobile trailer and give you instructions for loading and unloading a UTV so you can take your vehicles with you wherever you go!
How Do You Put a Side by Side on a Snowmobile Trailer?
Here’s how you put a side by side on a snowmobile trailer:
- Select the right size snowmobile trailer.
- Use a loading ramp to put the UTV on the trailer.
- Drive the side by side up the ramp.
- Secure the side by side.
Here are the steps to follow when putting your side by side in a snowmobile trailer
1. Select the Right Size Snowmobile Trailer
Before you start trying to fit your side by side in a snowmobile trailer, first confirm that this trailer is right-sized.
An 8.5 x 12 ft (2.59 x 3.65 m) will fit three 700s UTVs. Therefore, if your trailer is smaller than this, confirm whether it will accommodate the number of UTVs you want to transport.
If you are not sure of the size of your snowmobile trailer, you can measure it to confirm. For accuracy, measure from the outer part of one wheel to the outer part of the other.
The snowmobile trailer should be big enough to fit the number of UTVs you want to transport and leave enough space for strapping. On the other hand, it should not leave too much space, especially on the sides after loading the UTVs and strapping.
Too much space can result in drags in highway speed, thus using a lot of gas. It also makes it more likely that your UTV will move around as you drive, increasing the chances of falling off.
2. Use a Loading Ramp To Put the UTV on the Trailer
Ramps are a must-have when loading a side by side in any trailer. Now that you are using the snowmobile trailer, you can use snowmobile trailer ramps to load the side by side.
The ideal ramp will be at least 60’’x54″ (152.4×137.16cm) wide. A ramp of this size can comfortably hold the UTV. If you don’t have reliable loading ramps, you can buy better ones in your local hardware store or online.
When choosing the ramp, consider the ramp incline. Although the short loading ramps may be cheaper and more convenient to carry, they have a steep slope. The steeper the angle, the riskier it is to load side-by-side. Therefore, go for a long ramp of about 7.5 ft (2.286 m) since this one will have a good incline.
When looking for reliable snowmobile trailer ramps online, I recommend the Rage Powersports Heavy Duty Curb Ramp Straight from Amazon.com. These can carry a weight of up to 5 tons (10,000 lb) and have a 20-degrees incline for a smooth transition. These ramps also have an easy fold for convenient storage.
There are other DIY loading ramps that you can use to load the UTVs.
However, unless you are 100% sure of how to go about making the ramps, avoid DIY ramps for safety. Additionally, after loading the side by side, don’t forget to put the ramps in the trailer since doing so will save you the stress of reaching your destination only to find that you left the ramps at home.
3. Drive the Side by Side Up the Ramp
After you set the ramp up on the trailer, it is time to drive the side by side into the trailer. Before moving, ensure that the trailer is in parking mode.
When driving, maintain a slow and steady speed. Accelerating in the middle of the ramps could cause the UTV to flip over and start going backward. This process needs utmost care and attention to avoid any regrets. After the side by side gets into the trailer, set it to parking gear.
Repeat the process for the other UTVs if you have more than one.
When arranging the UTVs in the trailer, observe the 60/40 rule. This rule states that 60% of the weight is at the front and 40% at the back. This rule helps ensure that the trailer is balanced.
You can pack more UTVs at the front and fewer at the back to keep up with this rule. In addition, if you only have one side by side, park it with the front wheels just barely over the trailer’s wheel axle. That’ll focus most of the weight towards your car, keeping with the 60/40 rule.
4. Secure the Side by Side
Tying the UTVs to the trailer is another crucial step that needs attention to avoid having them heaving around or devastating spills.
Unfortunately, the snowmobile trailer can have inadequate tie-down points, especially if you are carrying more than one side by side. Thankfully, you can create more tie-downs using D-rings or U-bolts.
Before tying down, check tie-down points to ensure they are in good working condition. You will be checking for webbing, deformations, or warped and stretched chain links. These issues may seem simple at first glance, but they affect the integrity of the tie-down points.
After confirming that all the tie-down points are okay, get the straps. These can range from old-fashioned chains and ropes to the more designated clamping straps. Whichever straps you are using, ensure they are wide enough as wide straps have more load-bearing strength.
Nevertheless, it is best to use the designated straps since they are reliable and strong enough to hold your UTV.
If you don’t have any suitable clamps or tie-downs, I recommend the Vehiclex Heavy Duty Ratchet Strap from Amazon.com. These have a break strength of 4400 lb (1995.8 kg), keeping your side by side safe. Additionally, they have a lockable spring-load to ensure that they never accidentally open.
When tying the side by side on the trailer, attach them horizontally. Going forward and backward could leave some space left and right, which is risky.
Furthermore, tie the straps on the tires and not on the frame to ensure that they are properly anchored down. Binding on the wheels also helps ensure that the side by side does not move around when transporting.
Here is a YouTube video showing how you can strap down the side by side like a pro:
Now, you are ready to transport or store your side by side in the snowmobile trailer. If transporting it, drive carefully and have stopping distances. Avoid the bumpy roads to help the UTV remain in position.
Safety Precautions To Remember When Loading the Side by Side
Here are the most crucial safety tips that you should keep in mind when loading your side by side in a trailer:
- You should ensure that you are on a flat surface. A flat surface will enable you to keep the side by side as level as possible. Avoid loading the side by side if one of the snowmobile trailer tires is not touching the ground since it could result in injuries.
- You should test electrical connections and car harnesses. Do this when the trailer is empty. Avoid loading the UTV in case there is a problem with the electrical contacts or the safety harness of the trailer.
- Be cautious when tying. Take your time to ensure that all straps are secure on the tie-down points of the snowmobile trailer. It is paramount to use quality straps and correctly connect the side by side to the trailer.
How Do You Safely Unload the Side by Side From the Snowmobile Trailer?
To safely unload the side by side from the snowmobile trailer, set the snowmobile trailer to parking gear. Next, pull down your loading ramp and carefully drive the UTV down the ramp. Use cover brakes if you are on a steep incline.
Unloading the side by side is not as complicated as loading it. However, you still need to be careful and efficient to avoid mistakes.
First, ensure that the ramps are securely set. Avoid unloading your UTV on steep ground to make unloading safer. If you are on a steep decline, use cover brakes for security.
Here is a YouTube video showing how you unload the side by side:
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are answers to some of the questions you may have about loading a side by side on a snowmobile trailer:
- Does the snowmobile trailer get too heavy after loading the side by side? A snowmobile trailer does not get too heavy even after loading the side by side. Since UTVs are no heavier than snowmobiles, you can use your snowmobile-trailering rig to transport a UTV.
- What is the advantage of transporting your UTV in a snowmobile trailer? The main advantage of transporting your side by side in a snowmobile trailer is that it is enclosed. The enclosed space helps keep your UTV safe when transporting it and protects it from harsh weather conditions.
- How do you prepare the snowmobile trailer to transport side by side? To get the snowmobile trailer ready to move the side by side, remove all the stuff in the trailer to make room for the side-by-side. However, you can add other materials and tools back onto the trailer after loading your UTV as long as you secure them with some bungee cables or ratchet straps.
Loading and transporting a side by side in a snowmobile trailer is safe and straightforward. If it fits, you can haul it.
However, before you go on a trip with your UTV, learn how to correctly load and tie the side by side in the trailer to avoid accidents and frustrations.
- RZR Forums: Towing RZR’s with a Sled Trailer?
- ATV Connection: Anyone use a twin snowmobile trailer to haul two ATV’s? Opinions? Experiences?
- Rampfest Hudson: How much weight can a 2 place snowmobile trailer hold?
- Doo Talk: Snowmobile/utv trailer
- Utv Ride: How to Load a UTV (or ATV) on a Trailer and How to Strap It Down
- Polaris Off Road: How to properly load and haul your UTV
- Home First Agency: How to safely load and haul your UTV/ATV
- HSE UK: Safe driving: loading & unloading
- National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council: NATIONAL TRAILER SAFETY WEEK – FROM POLARIS – CHOOSING THE CORRECT LOADING RAMP FOR YOUR ATV OR UTV
- YouTube: TFLoffroad: How To Strap Down a Side-By-Side Like a Pro!
- YouTube: 361 Ross: Unloading a side by side off a 1/2/ton F150
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