One of the main differences between trailers is their weight. Steel trailers weigh more compared to aluminum. Thus, it is an important factor to consider when buying a trailer. The weight of your trailer varies the amount of the load that you can carry. Haul weight is equivalent to your trailer minus your axle load bearing capacity.
Aluminum trailers weigh 10 to 15 percent less than steel trailers on average meaning that you can haul more with them. Aluminum trailers are great especially if you haul your own machinery, motorcycles, cars or other property from one point to another. The downside of the aluminum trailer is lightness. When you’re not hauling, your trailer is prone to be blown down around the highway or when there is bad weather. But lightness of the trailer is also an advantage because compared to heavier steel trailers, the strain on your towing vehicle transmission and gasoline consumption are reduced.
If you are living in a place that has severe weather conditions like wind, snow, ice, etc. you might consider getting a steel trailer instead of a galvanized finished for greater rust resistance. This added protection will keep your trailer rust free until the skin is breached or scratched. Galvanized finish is created with a zinc protected layer that helps prevent steel from rusting. This process is more expensive compared to a non-galvanized trailer but the trailer resistance to weather conditions is higher; it is recommended to protect your assets and save money. Also, you don’t have to worry as much when traveling with a light load because your trailer is much more stable with the extra weight when dealing with uncertain weather conditions.
In the end, the person who will be using the trailer has the final decision. It is important to know the planned usage of the trailer and determine the weather conditions you might face when traveling. If you won’t be hauling much empty weight around, go with aluminum trailers. If you have severe weather conditions and you will be towing often, steel trailer might be the best choice and the safest trailer for you.