1713 Henry G. Lane Street
Maryville, Tennessee 37801
ph. (865) 273-1100
 
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Frequently Asked Questions

 General Questions
 Brakes Questions
 Electrical Questions
 Paint Questions
 Towing Questions
 Wheels and Tires Questions
 General
Q: Why is it important that I supply my V.I.N. when ordering parts?
A: One thing that sets Boatmate Trailers apart is that we customize each of our trailers to suit our individual customer's needs.  To ensure that we are providing you with the correct parts we use the V.I.N. to identify exactly how your trailer was originally built.
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Q: Where can I find my V.I.N. on my trailer?
A: Your V.I.N. will be located on a V.I.N. Label located on the main frame toward the front of the trailer on the starboard side.
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Q: Can I load my boat with ballast loaded in my boat?
A: No.  Though BoatMate Trailers are manufactured to the highest quality and standards ballast is not included in the designed capacity of any BoatMate Trailer.  This is not only due to the uncalculated additional load on the trailer, but in the case of water ballast systems, the shifting load can cause your trailer and /or tow vehicle to become unstable in the event of unexpected maneuvers.  Under no circumstances should your boat be loaded on to your BoatMate Trailer with additional ballast. 
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 Brakes
Q: What are surge brakes?
A: Most of BoatMate's hydraulic trailer brakes operate on the surge principle. The coupler assembly is known as an actuator and contains a master brake cylinder similar to that in an automobile. When the brakes are applied in the tow vehicle, the trailer surges against the tow ball forcing fluid through the trailer hydraulic system, thus applying the trailer brakes.
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Q: Why are my surge brakes locking up when I backup my trailer?
A: When backing if you are locking up the surge brakes on your trailer you most likely have a problem with what we call the reverse solenoid. When you back up, you compress the surge brake system the fluid pressure applies the brakes, not allowing you to back your trailer. The reverse solenoid is energized when the vehicle is put in reverse and opens the fluid flow relieving the pressure. No pressure, no brakes to stop you from going backward. The center pole of the 7 round plug is this wire that goes to the tow vehicle's reverse lights. If you have problems please check the valve, the tow vehicle wiring and wiring to the reverse solednoid to troubleshoot what is wrong. Make sure the vehicle's wire is activated/on.  For more information regarding your trailer's wiring please see our Surge wiring diagram or our check out our Reverse Solenoid Troubleshoot tips.
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Q: I still can't back my trailer after checking the lights
A: Pull forward to release any pre-existing pressure against the brake actuator.  If you are still having problems please Contact Us for further troubleshooting tips.
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Q: What is the clunk noise caused by when I brake and accelerate?
A: Most of our trailers are built with a 'Surge' Brake Actuator. These devices are actuated by the kinetic force of the trailer still wanting to move forward when the tow vehicle starts to slow down quicker than the trailers natural loss of speed. This action of the trailer compresses the actuator's sliding components and actuates the brakes through a hydraulic system similar to a cars. When forward towing, a vehicle exerts a force that pulls on the nose of the trailer and keeps the brakes in their released position. The clunk you hear is the actuator returning to its natural position.  It is possible that the braking system on your trailer needs to be serviced. If the hydraulic system is dry or has air in it, you will have excessive movement in the actuator causing a louder than normal clunking. This condition may effect the braking of your trailer and it may be necessary to have your trailer serviced by a qualified technician.
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Q: How do I bleed my brakes?
A: See Brake Bleeding Procedure
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Q: Do you sell brake lockout keys?
A: Brake Lockout Key
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 Electrical
Q: What is the color code for the wires on my Boatmate Trailer?
A: Please see our wiring diagram for our Surge or Electric brakes for further information.
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Q: Can I replace the incandecent lights with LED?
A: Yes.  Depending on your style of light please see our Grommet Mount LED or Surface Mount LED lighting sections of our parts page.
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Q: Should I disconnect the electrical connector before launching my boat?
A: No. The trailer wiring and lighting system are designed to withstand being submerged with the lights operating.  Additionally, the signal from your reverse lights is required to back the trailer.
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Q: Why does my Boatmate trailer lights not work correctly when I connect it to my Mercedes or other European make vehicle ?
A: The LED lights on your trailer do not draw enough power and makes the vehicle computer think there is a problem. You can install a special adapter C57003 that has load resistors in it that provides additional power draw on the system, which should elimitate the problem. 
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 Paint
Q: Where can I order paint to match my trailer?
A: Due to HAZ-MAT Shipping restrictions, the cost for us to ship paint in small quantities out weighs the cost of the paint itself. If you provide us the V.I.N. of the trailer we will be more than happy to email you a formula that you can take to a Dupont Automotive Paint dealer and have it mixed by them. Some of these dealers may have a method of matching paint exactly from a scan of the trailer frame itself. Our paint formulas will be as the trailer was when it left the factory, it will not count for fade or any repaints of the trailer.
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Q: Where is my closest dupont automotive paint dealer?
A: You can seek out places such as an O'Reilly Auto Parts or Click Here to find your closest Dupont distributor.
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 Towing
Q: What size hitch ball do I need?
A: Most BoatMate trailers require either a 2" or 2-5/16" ball.  The proper ball size will be stamped on the top of the hitch assembly of your trailer.  ALWAYS DOUBLE CHECK TO ENSURE YOU ARE USING THE CORRECT SIZE BALL YOUR TRAILER IS DESIGNED FOR AS WELL AS ENSURE THAT THE RATING FOR YOUR TOW VEHICLE, TOW BALL, HITCH AND RECEIVER ARE AT OR ABOVE THE TRAILER GVWR.
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Q: What is the correct height for my tow ball?
A: Generally, the tow ball on your vehicle should be 18 to 20 off of the ground to the center line of the tow ball.  However, you should set the tow ball height so that the loaded trailer sits level when attached to your vehicle.
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 Wheels and Tires
Q: What is the proper air pressure I should be running in my tires?
A: All trailer tires should be inflated to the recommended PSI listed on Tire Data Label on your trailer. The total weight capacity of the tire, as listed, is based on the tire being inflated to that tire pressure. Please also check the sidewalls of your tires for the MAX PSI rating.  For more information please see our Tire Safety Information.
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Q: How much torque do I tighted my lug nuts with?
A: When tightening your lug nuts on your trailer wheels, the recommended torque for each lug nut is 115  +/- 2 ft/lbs (foot pounds). Tighten your lugs in a criss-cross pattern for best and equal torque distribution. Important:As with all types of wheels it is necessary to re-torque the lug nuts after the first 25 miles and at every 100 mile intervals until the torque remains constant. Failure to do so may lead to the wheel separating from the trailer. Such an incident is not covered by the warranty of your trailer.
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Q: How often should I check my tire pressure?
A: Each time you tow the trailer. Trailer tires lose air at the same rate as car tires, about 1 psi per week minimum.
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Q: Can I get a spare mount and tire for my trailer?
A: Bolt on Universal Spare Mount.  Please include your VIN number when ordering for correct sizing and color matching.
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