How to Straighten a Bent Trailer Axle

Save

Most trailers that are constructed for consumer use have tubular steel axles. They are easily bent during an uncontrolled skid or collision. Fortunately, replacing the axle is not necessary unless it is extensively damaged. With welding skills and attention to detail, axle repair is possible. It is, however, important to weld the axle after straightening it in a step-by-step manner to prevent the axle from warping. Repairing less durable, square-tube axles is not recommended.

Things You'll Need

  • Jack
  • Jack stands
  • 3/8-inch socket set
  • Electric grinder
  • 8-foot level
  • Chalk
  • Hardwood block
  • Heavy shop hammer
  • Wire-feed welder
  • Aerosol black paint
  • Jack up the trailer and support the trailer bed with jack stands. Remove the tires and loosen the U-bolts with a socket wrench. These bolts hold the axle to the shackle springs. Once removed, lower the axle and support it on two additional jack stands.

  • Lay an 8-foot level on the axle and locate the low area where the impact occurred. This indent is the point of stress created during the impact. Rotate the axle, spinning it several times, and take precise readings with the level. Be certain that the point of impact is correct. Place a mark with the chalk on this point.

  • Rotate the axle 180 degrees (opposite) the mark on the impact site. This is the "bulging" side of the bend. With a grinder that has a thin, metal-cutting blade, cut into the bulge, going halfway around the axle. Lay a hardwood block on the cut and use a heavy shop hammer to drive the cut closed. This takes several sharp blows to accomplish. Continually use the level to ensure that the axle is straight.

  • Tack-weld the closed cut in several places with a wire-feed welder. (The axle will not shrink, recreating a bend.) Allow the tack welds to cool. Reconfirm that the axle is straight by using the level on all points around the axle. Make any modifications as needed before welding the cut completely closed.

  • Weld the cut closed when the level readings are good. Finish the weld by grinding the metal smooth. Spray a durable, black paint that will withstand the elements. This step will prevent rust formations on the axle repair.

References

  • Photo Credit blue trailer image by Diana Mastepanova from Fotolia.com
Promoted By Zergnet

Comments

You May Also Like

  • How to Realign Boat Trailer Tires

    Automobile owners who are diligent with maintenance on their cars schedule annual checks at tire specialty stores to check the alignment of...

  • How To Replace Trailer Axles

    The axles on a trailer are designed to hold up a specific amount of weight, depending on the amount of load for...

  • How to Know Where to Put Axle on Trailer

    Improper placement of a trailer axle reduces load capacity, towability and safety. Placing the axle too close to the rear of the...

  • How to Tell a Trailer Axle Size

    If you have a trailer and you are not sure about the axle size, you can measure this yourself with just a...

  • How to Square a Trailer Axle

    Trailer axles sitting out-of-square can cause a trailer to travel at an angle when towed. The travel angle increases the wear rate...

  • How to Straighten Bent Metal Rods

    Restoring bent metal rods to their original form requires little effort when the correct tools are used. Unlike hollow metal tubing, a...

  • How to Align a Boat Trailer

    The tires on a boat trailer are supposed to be perfectly parallel to one another as they travel down the highway. Makers...

  • How to Align Trailer Wheels

    If your trailer pulls to one side or weaves, the wheels may be misaligned. Trailer wheel alignment is crucial for towing your...

  • How to Align a Trailer Tongue to an Axle

    A crucial step in the construction of a homemade trailer is properly aligning the tongue of the trailer --- the point that...

  • Symptoms of a Broken Shaft Axle

    There are several different signs that might pop up to indicate you've bent or broken an axle shaft. A slight wobbling in...

  • How to Straighten a Bent Bicycle Wheel

    Straightening a bent bicycle wheel requires the correct tools and as well as following the correct steps to achieve the desired results....

Related Searches

Check It Out

How To Travel For Free With Reward Points

M
Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!