Trailer lights never seem to work right: the bulbs die on a daily basis, the wires corrode away at a frantic pace, and the plugs regularly fail. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Use these five tips, and your trailer lights will keep shining month after month, and year after year.
1. Add heat-shrink tube protection to all of the connections. Then double-seal the heat-shrink tubes on either end with liquid electric tape, just to be sure they’re water-tight.
2. Always unplug your lights and let them cool for a few minutes, between trailering and launching. Otherwise, if cool water hits the hot bulb… pop!
3. Change those bulbs to LEDs. If you have a large trailer with lots of lights this won’t be cheap, but LEDs can take regular saltwater dunkings a lot better than bulbs can.
4. Spray a corrosion-inhibitor like Boeshield T-9 or CorrosionX into your plug, and on the male connector. Stay away from WD-40. It’s a solvent so it will make the connection great in the short term, but will speed corrosion in the long term.
5. If your trailer gets grounded via the hitch, add a dedicated ground wire. Hitch connections never work well, for long.