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Old 04-10-2016, 05:18 PM   #1
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Towing Myths Sway Myths

Hensley no Sway Post thought I would share ! Happy Towing !!

Posted on 04.29.13 | Sway Control News, Trailer Sway

When you see this coming, you don’t want to rely on your quick reflexes to avoid trailer sway.
We hear some pretty amazing methods for controlling trailer sway. We’ve had people tell us that they simply turn into the passing trucks in anticipation of the air movement. We had another guy tell us that when he sees a semi-truck coming, he simply opens both front windows and the “bow wave” of air rushes right through. You can’t make this stuff up.

Probably the most common method we hear, though, is the use of the brake controller. The theory is that if you lightly depress the manual button on the brake controller just as the trailer sway begins, you “line up” the truck and trailer again. Then you can go on your merry way.

If it’s a race, Trailer Sway will win
Let me assure you, my friends, that none of us is quick enough to hit the brake controller in a situation where you’re about to lose control of your trailer. I’m sure some folks have actually done this, but I’m equally sure that they’re experiencing very minor sway. In a situation where violent trailer sway sets in, by the time you hit that manual button your trailer will be rolling over and your tow vehicle will probably be going with it.

Using your brake controller to control trailer sway will also result in wear and tear on your trailer brakes as well as your receiver. While brakes can be replaced, a stressed receiver will fail over time and result in an accident. Think about it, your truck is already towing 8,000lbs. or so of trailer. By applying the trailer brakes, you’re increasing the force on your receiver by ten times or more. Chances are you’ll lock up the trailer brakes completely, meaning your truck is now pulling an 8,000lbs. trailer at 60mph while dragging rubber on the road. If you’re lucky, you won’t blow a tire, though I guarantee you’ve greatly reduced the life of those tires.

A Sway Control Hitch
Let me assure you that the only thing the manual button on your brake controller is good for is testing your trailer brakes while coasting out of your driveway at 5mph. If you truly did need it in any emergency situation, it’s unlikely that you’d be quick enough to get any use out of it. In the case of trailer sway, the last thing you want to do is take your eyes off the road or your hands off the steering wheel. The only way to guarantee that you’ll never have an accident due to trailer sway is with a sway elimination hitch (not a sway control hitch).

Every trailer owner we meet will say that safety is their #1 concern. Yet amazingly few will put real thought into the safety devices on their trailer. Only three things hold you on the road: tires, the truck receiver, and the hitch. Most RVers won’t question the tires that came with the trailer, the receiver that came with their truck, or the sway control hitch that their dealer “threw in for free” on the tongue of their trailer. Yet every year there are thousands of trailer sway accidents, any one of which will cost you far more than a quality set of tires, a good receiver, and a sway elimination hitch combined.

We can’t help you with the tires or receiver (though we can make recommendations…we own trailers too), but we can ensure that trailer sway is never, ever a concern for you. Since trailer sway is the #1 cause of trailer accidents, it is simply the best investment you can make for your family’s safety and your peace of mind.

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Old 04-10-2016, 06:14 PM   #2
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Nice advertisement

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Old 04-10-2016, 06:19 PM   #3
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Full of false information. Many a time i reached for the brake controller to fix sway..
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:40 PM   #4
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The andersen WDH hitch has the sway control built in . Never any sway . big rigs no issues can't even tell i just flew by one or Vise Versa, and only a 5th of the cost of a hensley .
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Old 04-10-2016, 06:59 PM   #5
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Many years ago, I was pulling up a wet bridge and hit the metal span at the top and my little pickup truck lost traction and I started jackknifing. I immediately hit the brake control which pulled the truck straight again. Had I not done that I would have jack knifed right there on the top of the bridge. It's the closest I have ever had to having a serious accident.
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Old 04-10-2016, 07:06 PM   #6
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Load your trailer correctly, keep your speed under control, anticipate the pull from passing trucks and everything will be fine. It is not true that hitting the manual trailer brake will not stop the sway problem I have done that when pulling my tractor.
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Old 04-12-2016, 01:22 PM   #7
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The W&P 30WRS we had before our Vengeance was connected with an Equalizer 4 point. Once I studied how to properly set up the hitch and fix the incorrect work my dealer had done, the hitch did a superb job. The tongue on the W&P was quite heavy and I had to put eight washers in the hitch to get the proper angle. That put some serious strain on the bars. But the truck sat level and the tension was tight enough that the sway control worked like a champ. I didn't really care when a tractor-trailer came by.

My dad and a few others I've talked to about sway issues say mash the accelerator to correct a swaying trailer. Sounds like terrible advice to me.
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Old 04-12-2016, 01:36 PM   #8
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I was driving on the outskirts of Duluth MN one time and about every 1/2-3/4 mile there was a stop light. One time the light turned yellow and I had to brake hard to stop. The next light caught me also and when I stepped on the brake pedal I had no brakes. I had a split second to hit the lever on the brake controller to stop us. The car in front of us was stopping also and we stopped a foot or less from it. I still get chills thinking about it.
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Old 04-13-2016, 10:49 AM   #9
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You shouldn't need sway control on a properly designed and loaded trailer. From my observations too many TT's are being built with the axles too far forward. Look for TTs with the axles as far rearward as possible. MFGs are trying to get into the 1/2 ton towable craze and that means low tongue weights. The easiest way to do that is to move the balance point forward. That just makes the TT less stable.
Keep the TT tires aired to the max PSI and load it so you have a 12-15% tongue weight and you shouldn't need sway control.
I wonder how many TT owners have ever towed their TTs without sway control. My guess is hardly any. So when they say I don't have any sway because I'm using brand X sway control, they really don't know if they don't have sway control because of the hitch or because the TT is loaded and designed properly.
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Old 04-14-2016, 05:29 PM   #10
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Don't tow 30 ft trailers with 1/2 tons...
Start there.

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