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Towing A Motorcycle Trailer With A Car? [Weight, Safety]

can i tow a motorcycle trailer with my car

Yes you can tow a motorcycle trailer with your car. Most average size cars can handle the weight without any issues. A better way to haul your motorcycle might be with a dolly depending on your situation.

A dolly might be a good solution:

Consider A hitch instead of a trailer:

If this is your first time and you don’t know where to begin, here are some guidelines to help you get started. You won’t become an expert by following these tips, but knowing how to do it correctly can help.

The Basics of Towing

Motorcycles can be heavy, so moving can be a real headache if you don’t have the proper equipment or experience. Luckily, there are many options available to help you move your motorcycle. They can range from very affordable to very expensive. It’s also important to know what you’re getting into before you begin packing and transporting your motorcycle.

Generally, if you have to tow a motorcycle trailer, you need to have the proper equipment. This includes a trailer that can carry your motorcycle and a car capable of pulling the said trailer. 

The trailer will have a coupling that connects the vehicle’s tow bar, and the tow bar will be equipped with a winch that will be used to tow the trailer. You will need a few tools to be able to attach the trailer to your car. 

The DIY Approach

At first glance, the DIY approach appears to be the best option. While there are some benefits to doing everything yourself, there are also some disadvantages you may not have considered. Transporting a motorcycle means being able to deliver it to a new location unscathed and under controlled cost.


  • Controlled budget 
  • You handle your own bike with care.
  • You manage your own shipping schedule.


  • Equipment is expensive.
  • The DIY route is not that easy.
  • You need a trailer or a tow dolly, straps, and other equipment.
  • You need at least 4 straps for one bike.

What Are the Things You Need to Understand Before You Begin? 

1. Tongue Weight

The tongue weight is the amount of pressure applied to your vehicle by the hitch. This means that the tongue weight will be higher if there is more weight and if there is more weight in front of the trailer. This tongue weight contributes to the overall stability of the trailer and car.

2. Payload

The weight of the vehicle’s occupant and any cargo loaded on the car is referred to as the payload. A bike loaded on the back of a truck is an example of this. You must ensure that the payload weight does not exceed the weight of your vehicle.

Checklist before towing a motorcycle-loaded trailer:

  • Make sure that you have everything you need
  • Practice attaching your trailer
  • Practice backing up a trailer
  • Make sure your tires are OK
  • Practice making wide turns
  • Use the mirrors
  • Mind your weight
  • Securing the trailer
  • Check the lights out
  • Make sure your car can tow
  • Take some trips to see how the vehicle handles with a trailer
  • Drive slowly
  • Give yourself a place to stop

Loading the Motorcycle Onto the Trailer

If you’re towing a trailer, you must ensure that the load is secure. If you fail to do this, the motorcycle may shift its weight, losing balance and damaging the bike. More importantly, an imbalance in the weight can cause the trailer to sway. 

Correcting it could be tricky if you do not know how to fix a swaying trailer. This is a dangerous situation because you might lose control of the vehicle. Here are some things on how to ensure that your motorcycle is secured:

  • Take the gas out of the bike.
  • Use chains and straps to hold the bike down.
  • Make sure your anchor points are firm and stable.
  • Make sure that the trailer’s weight is in the front (60 percent).
  • Make sure the tires are tied down so they don’t move around.

Can You Pull the Trailer with Your Car?

Not all cars are equipped with a towing hitch, but yes, if your vehicle has one and can carry the weight. The hitch is a part of the vehicle that allows you to tow a trailer.

It’s not easy to pull a trailer with a motorcycle on it. You need to consider the additional weight and the towing capacity of your car. Here, it’s recommended to use a lightweight trailer

What About a Tow Dolly?

A tow dolly is another way to tow your motorcycle. If you can set it upright, then it will work best. Plus, it’s lighter compared to a trailer. A tow dolly lifts your motorcycle’s front wheel while keeping the rear wheel on the ground.

One advantage of the tow dolly is that 75% of the motorcycle’s weight is carried by the rear tire, which means a lighter load on your car. However, a word of caution ensures that you know how to properly strap a motorcycle. Otherwise, you might end up with damage and cause an accident to someone following you on the road. 

Towing Services

If all this is complicated and costly for you, one alternative is to simply get a towing service to take care of it for you. Sure, it’s an added cost, but if you’re just doing it one time, it’s certainly more cost-effective than buying a trailer, straps, and other items required to tow a trailer. Less headache, less hassle. 

If you’re having the bike pulled within a 10-mile radius, the cost will be $50 to $150. It will be more expensive if it’s farther as the charge will be roughly $2 to $4 per mile, on top of a flat rate. Note that this is just an estimate, and it will be better if you can negotiate a flat rate. 

Tips for Securing Your Bike on a Trailer

Many people think that securing your motorcycle on a trailer is difficult, but there are many ways to do it. The key is to have four tie-down points at the front and back. An excellent way to secure the bike is to have two tie-down points at the front and two at the back. To ensure everything is secured, you should use an X pattern, which gives the best stability.

Use the bike’s kickstand to keep it upright as you begin to attach the tie-downs. You’ll pull the bike vertical once one side is tightened, but the stand will keep it from getting away while you ratchet everything down. Consider the overall weight of your motorcycle and the rating of your equipment.

You need to be aware of the specs of your bike, including its frame size, tire width, suspension, and weight capacity. It’s also important to read the owner’s manual for any available safety features.


Before you attempt to load your motorcycle onto a trailer, you should be familiar with the process. Using a trailer with a built-in motorcycle lift is the best option out of all of them. Equally important is to ensure that you get the best motorcycle trailer you can afford.

Suppose you’re looking for the best motorcycle trailer. In that case, it’s vital to get a trailer that is designed specifically for your bike. As a last resort, you should hire an expert who can secure your bike to a trailer for you.