JTI Inc. Cleveland

Trailers, Hitches, & Maintenance

JTI, Cleveland trailer experts

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Hitched Up and Ready to Roll in Cleveland 2016-2017

So another year is rolling by. We serviced and sold a lot of trailers, but that’s been true for 80+ years. What’s new?

In the trailer and hitch business, what’s new is technology. Automotive technology has become so familiar we find that our mechanical skills are even more rare than they were 5 years ago. As of today, trailers don’t come with indicator lights telling you your tire pressure is low or your battery’s about to die – but that may not be too far off in the future.

At this year’s NATDA show, trailer technology was on full display. While we have been in the business for more than 80 years, we don’t “just’ rely on our experience. We are constantly incorporating new techniques in our shop, keeping our technicians on their toes with training and new tools, and always working with our vendors to give our customers the best value for their money.

We know a trailer is an investment in your business – and it’s our business to keep you rolling!

Old Trailer? New Trailer? Ohio, We Can Fix That

Locally, we’re finding more of our customers want to customize their trailers to fit their needs and work even harder for them and their businesses. Whether you need to reinforce your ramp door or customize an enclosed trailer to meet your specifications, give us a call. We’ve #beenthere and #donethat as they say on Twitter.

Cleveland Predictions for 2017?

We’ll go out on a limb and say we might have predicted 2016’s Cavaliers would win the NBA Championship. We could say we knew how excited we’d be, but frankly, it was even better than we’d thought it would be. That Tribe/White Sox series was AMAZING and gave a whole new meaning to “wait til next year!”

(If there’s one thing Terry Francona knows about, it’s teamwork.)

Cleveland Browns Still Make Us Wonder

Cleveland Browns: Always something to talk about

We’re not ready to do any fortune-telling regarding the Browns…

What About Snow in Cleveland this Year?

We can absolutely, positively promise you, we’re going to get some snow! How much no one knows but all sources say it’ll be a lot more than last season. What we can promise: we’ll be here, six days a week, working on all makes and models of plows.

Trailer, hitch and road-tested tips on Twitter

What was new in your business in 2016? We’re incorporating more technology to serve our customers better.

Looking for predictions for Cleveland business in 2017? We really can’t claim to be fortune tellers.

Need trailer and hitch experts? That’s us. Give us a call at 440.232.4311 or contact us at JTIinc.com.

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So You Wanna Buy a Trailer: Getting the Right Trailer for the Job

Whether you’re new to hauling or looking to add a new trailer to your business fleet, the first thing to consider is not, what trailer should I buy? Rather, the question is, what do you need the trailer for?

Open Trailers, Construction Trailers, Utility Trailers

While open trailers can be lighter weight than enclosed trailers of the same size (and therefore less expensive) they also offer little protection for your cargo – from the elements and from theft.

Another consideration when shopping for an open trailer: they’re not all flat! Car haulers, deckover trailers and flatbeds come in different configurations, frame styles and with a variety of ramp options. The best way to make sure you’re getting what you need is to take a look at the trailer, live and in person, before you buy. 

Enclosed Trailers

Most landscaping contractors, home remodelers, and other businesses that need to protect expensive tools, equipment and supplies prefer enclosed trailers. There are many options on enclosed trailers that need to be carefully considered before purchase.

Doors are a major feature that can make or break trailer usefulness. Cargo doors, barn doors, and ramp doors are among the most common options. In many cases, trailers RackEmmanufacturers offer a side door or “man door” option, which is particularly popular with landscaping trailers.

After you buy an enclosed trailer, you may find that accessories and customizations make it even more useful.

Specialty Trailers, Custom Trailers

Boat trailers, car haulers and tow dollies are among the most-requested types of specialty trailers. Refer or refrigerated trailers are also in high demand, especially for food truck service businesses. Obviously, you need make sure your trailer is right for your job and your needs, it pays to remember that they’re trailers first, and you’ll want to keep it in good working order as long as possible to get the most out of your investment.

Work with a local business that knows trailers, hauling, and has a good relationship with a number of vendors and manufacturers. Cleveland RTA custom trailer

With specialty and customized trailers, in particular, experience in the trailer industry really matters. For example, here’s a custom trailer we outfitted to handle the very specific needs of a municipal agency. Read more about how we customized this enclosed trailer.



Trailer Details that Matter (Hint: They all matter!)

Trailer tongue length affects steering and stability. Taillights (are a critical safety component! and) need to be projected from the elements to remain in good working condition. Your trailer’s weight and intended use will typically dictate what type of braking system you’ll need. From axles and brakes to frame length, construction and Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR), myriad details about your trailer affect its performance, handling and reliability.

Trailer Service and Routine Maintenance

While regular service will help keep you and your trailer rolling and working hard, if you use your trailer, eventually, something’s going to break. We’ve been in the trailer business since 1935. In Cleveland, and throughout Ohio, Pennsylvania and Michigan, people who depend on their trailers depend on JTI.


JTI, Cleveland trailer expertsFinancing a Trailer?  Naturally, there’s the trailer you want, the trailer you need, and the trailer you can afford. At JTI, we offer several financing options, so our customers find they can get pretty close to satisfying all three of those things. www.JTIinc.com

Call us at 440.232.4311 or stop in our showroom Monday – Saturday to discuss your needs and find out how you can get rolling with the right trailer for you.



Econoline 18' tandem axle trailer

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Why We Love Econoline Trailers

Econoline trailers are design for rugged commercial use and come in a range of small 5 to 6 ton trailers all the way to the big 20+ ton market segment that require air brakes.  Whatever the heavy commercial need is,  Econoline offers a trailer that fills it.

And if you need a solid, dependable trailer, Econoline trailers are certainly worth your consideration.

Well-Constructed Trailers That Last 20-30 Years

Each Econoline trailer is welded by hand in a jig.  Econoline craftsman take pride in their work – each weld is a complete weld, to insure weld strength and longevity.

The steel used in Econoline trailers is an above average strength steel. Detractors are quick to mention that adds weight to the trailer. They’re right:  Generally speaking, an Econoline trailer weighs about 500 pounds more than a similarly-sized trailer of similar size. Here’s the payoff: Econolines last.

Econoline 18' tandem axle trailerEconoline heavy construction model typically provide 20-30 years of service, and remain in use long after other trailers have quit.

Heavy Equipment Trailers Don’t Use Lightweight Axles

Rockwell axles come standard on Econoline’s heavy equipment trailers. Rockwell makes well-built axles that are also affordable.

Quality On Deck

The decking of every Econoline is not “just” hard wood; it’s Oak. Oak has excellent strength and handles weather well. When treated with a weather proofing agent, Oak is just about the best wood for performance and service life.

While few trailer owners actually weather proof their decks (although it is recommended), Oak is a wood that can withstand not being properly maintain longer than most hard wood decks.

JTI’s last word 

Our production manager, Chris, is a big fan of Econoline, saying, “I am convinced that Econoline is a super company with a great product.”  Stop in or call to learn more about Econoline and to find out more about heavy duty trailers.


JTI, Cleveland trailer experts

Get the equipment you need! We’re here in Oakwood Village, just off I-271. Stop in, call 440.232.4311 or connect with us on Twitter or Facebook.

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Tiny Houses and Trailers

The tiny houses “movement” is well-established, and has been covered intiny house on flatbed trailer recent months locally on Cleveland’s 90.3 The Sound of Ideas as well as on many national news outlets. While we don’t have much to add ourselves, we’d love to hear from you if you’re knowledgable about the trend. Or even if you’re not – and like us, are just interested in the concept.

What kind of tiny house would serve you well? A “mobile” tiny house, built on a trailer? A tiny houseboat?

If the whole idea is new to you, here are some links you might want to follow to find out more:

Tiny Houses vs. Campers and Trailers: Which is better? A survey by Tree Hugger

Tiny House that FloatsTiny House Trailer: A DIYer’s Story

The Sound of Ideas 90.3: Living Large in Tiny Houses

Obviously, if your home sits upon a trailer, every spec is critical. From axles to GVWR, tire load ratings, support beams, fenders…it all matters.

Have you lived on your trailer in NE Ohio? Tell us! We’d love to feature you on our blog! 

tiny house on tandem trailer_________________________________________________________________________________

JTI, Cleveland trailer experts


Even if they don’t live on their trailers, people who depend on their trailers and hitches depend on us. Stop in to find us here, 6 days a week, or call 440.232.4311. We’re open in Oakwood Village Mon-Fri 8am-5pm, and Sat 8am-2pm.

2-axle open landscape trailer

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How to Protect Your Trailer Tires from Dry Rot

Tire Dry Rot

Dry rot? Yuck! And it’s not just ugly; it’s expensive.

How to Protect Your Trailer Tires and Avoid Dry Rot

Dry Rot Trailer TireTires, generally speaking, will only last for about 6 years (under ideal conditions). So, even (or especially) if you’re not using your trailer often, your tires won’t last indefinitely.

What causes dry rot? Sunlight is the main culprit. Protecting your tires from the sun is the most important thing you can do to avoid tire dry rot. Some tips to keep you rolling safely:

  • Apply liquid protectorate (like Murphy’s Oil Soap or Armor All) according to directions. BUT, understand these liquids are like SPF for your tires – they only protect from the sun for a short time.
  • Use canvas wheel covers! They are cheap (and effective) insurance.  We sell several sizes and styles for $18 – $23.
  • Reposition the trailer at least once a month, so as to rotate the tires.
  • If the trailer is going to sit for longer than a month, jack it up to so pressure isn’t constant on just one spot the tires.

Can Tire Dry Rot be Repaired?

In a word, no. Once dry rot has obviously set in, that tire  – and therefore your trailer’s load – is riding on borrowed time. If the area with dry rot is very small, and the cracks aren’t deep, you may be able to get a few more miles out of it by keeping the tire well-lubricated with a product like Armor All, but any dry rot spells doom for your tire, and can be a significant risk on the road.

What Does Tire Dry Rot Look Like?

Learn more by watching a short informative video, or find out what Popular Mechanics says about knowing when it’s time to replace your trailer tires.


JTI, Cleveland trailer experts


Got questions about your trailer’s condition or maintenance? We’re here to help. Request a service appointment or stop in to see us. We’re just off I-271 at the Forbes/Broadway exit in Oakwood Village, Ohio.


galvanized trailer

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Karavan Trailers – Galavanized or Polyester Powder Coat – How to Decide?

We’re excited to have Karavan Trailers back on our lot. Many customers have requested that we stock them and we listened!

Karavan Galvanized

Why Karavan?

Karavan utility trailers are popular general duty trailers, and they’re great for hauling ATVs, golf carts, and lawn equipment. The ones we’ve recently received feature ramps and tie-down stake pockets, making it easy to load and secure your equipment or vehicle. They’re also lighter than many similar sized trailers, making them more energy efficient (and a good choice if you have a smaller tow vehicle).

Back in Black?

Shiny silver boat trailers are what many people think of first when they hear the Karavan name. The galvanized finish lasts as long as aluminum and is about twice as strong. But Karavan makes more than boat trailers, and silver isn’t the only color choice. Many of the Karavans we’ve recently received feature black, textured paint with a rugged look. But Karavan’s black finish is more than a fashion basic.

Polyester Powder Coat vs. Galvanized Finish

The black Karavan trailers on our lot have a polyester powder coat, which is also long-lasting and strong. Karavan’s polyester powder coat is a baked-on finish that it is superior to a liquid spray-on finish, and known in particular for its impact and UV resistance. (This is an obvious advantage for boat trailers, as well as many others.) So which is better, a galvanized or polyester power coat? That’s not a simple question to answer. To select the best finish for you, think about how you plan to use the trailer. Karavan offers some good advice on its website:

  • Either an aluminum or a galvanized trailer would be a good choice if you boat in salt water.
  • A painted trailer works best in fresh water.
  • Remember, brackish conditions exist even in fresh water, and road salt and other elements in the environment can work against a painted finish.

So how can you keep your Karavan trailer – either galvanized or poly power-coated – looking good for the long haul?  Karavan suggests:

  • Always rinse your trailer off in fresh water after loading to prevent rust corrosion and lengthen the life of your trailer.
  • Wash and wax your trailer periodically to extend the paint life on your trailer, as with any vehicle.
  • Clean and touch up any nicks or scratches immediately to prevent rusting.

How’s That for a Fabulous Finish?

Galvanized and polyester powder coat are just two types of fabulous trailer finishes. Yes, we do get a little carried away when we talk about trailers. Hey, that’s our job.

Come see why we’re excited about these Karavan trailers! You may get excited about them too.

Find warranty info and maintenance tips on Karavan’s website.


JTI, Cleveland trailer experts


Buying your first trailer? Own a fleet? Doesn’t matter – we’re here to help. Stop in or call us, 6 days a week, at 440.232.4311.

More helpful tips & some bad jokes on Twitter and Facebook, 24/7.

yellow landscape trailer

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This Just In: Parker Performance Trailers

We just received a new load of Parker Performance Trailers – and they’re ready to roll!Parker-Yellow-RP7716

Best Time to Buy a Trailer in Cleveland

The best time to buy a trailer – in Cleveland or anywhere – is when you need it. That said, timing is a tricky thing. Like a lot of things, trailer sales follow a seasonal cycle in Cleveland. While we receive more new trailers in the spring than any other time of the years, many of the trailers we receive in early in the year are special orders or pre-sold, as  landscapers, roofers and other contractors order new equipment in the off season.

Parker SA6610 Red  Wood floor

Which brings us to now – which us a great time to shop for a trailer! That’s because the majority of trailers on our lot are for sale, not already sold. So come see what we have! Now’s a good time to take a good look at several different models and manufacturers, to consider the differences between a Performance Trailer and an Econoline or CarryOn, for example, or to decide whether you’d rather have a mesh floor (with a liner, maybe) or a wood deck. We have many trailers in inventory now, so it’s a great time to educate yourself and see trailers from many different manufacturers side by side.

Looking for a used trailer? Here’s how to evaluate a trailer before you buy.

Open 6 Days a Week

We’re open Monday – Friday from 8am-5pm and Saturday 8am-2pm. Our website is updated with our latest inventory, and you can catch up with us anytime on Twitter and Facebook.


JTI, Cleveland trailer experts


We rent trailers too! Need a dump trailer for the weekend or a carhauler for a week or more?  Now you know who to call. 440.232.4311