JTI Inc. Cleveland

Trailers, Hitches, & Maintenance


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Loading a Motorcycle in a Trailer

Wow, it’s been a busy spring and summer. Hope you’re having fun! We’ve spent some good times at Quaker Steak & Lube locations hosting Bike Nights in the past couple of months, talking to NE Ohio dirt bike, motocross, streetbike, chopper owners and motorheads, and we’ve been giving out a lot of advice. (And a few prizes.)

Before Loading Your Motorcycle in a Trailer

Some of these tips fall under the “well-duh” category, but they’re still  worth mentioning!

  • ALWAYS load when the trailer is hooked up!
  • Check for weight balance BEFORE loading your bike (or anything)
  • If you’re loading in an enclosed trailer, check door height before loading your bike!
  • PUT YOUR KICKSTAND UP AFTER LOADING, unless you’d like a hole in the trailer floor. (No kidding. We see these kind of things in for trailer repair all the time. File under, Don’t Be That Guy!)
  • CHECK FOR GREASE on the trailer floor. Missing a slick spot = unhappy surprise landings and unscheduled repairs – to you, your bike and your trailer.
  • Check air pressure and lug nuts and make sure your coupler and ball match.

Securing Your Motorcycle in a Trailer

The first most important thing to have, if at all possible, is someone to help you! You can load a motorcycle into a trailer by yourself, but it’s much better – for you, your bike, and your trailer – if you do it with someone else.

Basically, we recommend a four-point tie-down system, and one that does not compress the suspension too much.  (A lot depends on your bike, your trailer, and how you’re tying it down – call us if you’d like a demonstration: 440.232.4311)

Improper loading can result in broken springs, broken brackets, snapped cables on doors, and worse. (Good news – we can fix just about anything on a motorcycle trailer. Bad news – it usually means you’ll miss some good riding.)

A couple of good videos can be found online, and of course, you can always contact us, the trailer and hitch (and motorcycle-loading) experts, at JTI440.232.4311

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We’ll be at Quaker Steak & Lube in Valley View for Bike Night on July 19 and August 2 and at the Sheffield location for Bike Night on July 27 and August 17. Stop by, say hi, and enter to win some cool and helpful accessories for your bike. 


Did you know we have a couple of motorcycle trailers for rent? 

Sure do! Call to reserve – they’re often booked well in advance: 440.232.4311


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Buying or Just Bought a Trailer? 5 Tips for the New Owner

Just bought a new trailer? Planning to buy soon? We know that feeling! Getting a new (or used) trailer on the road for the first time is exciting. But that thrilling, new-trailer smell is no excuse to overlook the basics. 

5 Tips for New Trailer Owners

  • IT’S NICE TO HAVE A SPARE! Tire, that is. On the day of your trailer purchase, you can get 20% off the cost of a spare and mount, and we will mount it on your trailer for free.
  • In Ohio, trailers must have license plates. To get yours, take your Certificate of Origin to a Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) office to get your plates. (You do not need to go to the Title Bureau.)
  • Know your trailer’s load capacity and stay under the limit. Exceeding load capacity is one of the quickest ways to damage your trailer’s axles.
  • Always check to be sure your lights are working properly and that the battery to your breakaway cable is charged.
  • Plan to repack your bearings in the next 12-14 months. Don’t want to do it yourself? We can do it for you; call or stop in to schedule.

A trailer is an investment. We share these tips to help you get the most out of it. As with any vehicle, safe operation of your trailer is paramount. If you’re new to hauling (or are adding a new driver to your business) you might want to review this list of safety tips from some of our vendors and other towing and trailer experts: 5 Must-Reads on Safe Towing


JTI, Cleveland trailer expertsPeople who depend on their trailers depend on JTI. Since 1935, we’ve been Cleveland’s Trailer & Hitch experts. So, yeah, we get really excited about new trailers! We also take pride in keeping trailers on the road, working safely as long as possible, to maximize their owners’ investment. Need trailer repair, service work, parts, or something else? Call or stop by to see why our customers have stuck with us for 80 years.   www.JTIinc.com   440.232.4311

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.

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JTI, Cleveland trailer experts

440.232.4311

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.

www.JTIinc.com