Edic.: 130
Autor: El Trailero Magazine
Date: 5/2018

Tips to properly slide the fifth wheel

This procedure can be very simple and every trucker must be familiar with it, because if they don´t know how to move the fifth wheel of their truck, they could unintentionally harm it while maneuvering in reduced places.

Following, we will list you some advice on how to slide the 5th wheel:

  • The landing gear needs to be lowered in a way that facilitates taking away from the 5th wheel and its mechanism, pressure and weight. To do so, the truck brakes must be locked.
  • When the landing gear is in its new position, the pins need to be popped on the slider by flipping the switch of the slider on the truck’s dash. Air pressure will push the pins so the fifth wheel is released.
  • After that, truckers must visually verify that both pins have been released properly.
  • Make sure that the pins are lubricated at all times, if they get stuck, releasing them might be very complicated. Use spray for a proper sliding

But, what happen if one pin does not slide?

  • Try to sway the tractor back and forth, gently, to pressure the pin so it releases and, finally, slides.
  • If the pin continues without releasing, wait and try to listen for an air leak. With air pressure you can release the pins out. With an air leak is possible that you do not have enough pressure to allow pins to pop.
  • After having the two pins out, you should cautiously and, bit by bit, move the tractor back or forward. The direction will depend on where the weight needs to be moved.

Don’t forget to:

Monitor the distance between the back of the tractor and the front face of the trailer. Otherwise, if they are too close they may hit while you take a corner.

In case you are a produce carrier you need to exercise caution during the process of loading cargo at the produce docks because it’s very common having a steep deep before the loading dock. And not having this in mind can provoke an accidental collision of the truck and trailer while backing the vehicle.