How to Attach a Kid Trailer to a Bike

How to Attach a Kid Trailer to a Bike
Attaching a child's bike trailer to a bicycle is a straight-forward process with most modern models. There are many options to choose from when selecting a bike trailer, but popular manufacturers include Burley, Chariot, InStep and Wike. Several different hitches also exist for attaching trailers to bicycles, but the two most popular in use today are a frame hitch and an axle hitch. Axel hitches are quickly becoming the most commonly used type.
 

Instructions

Difficulty: Easy

Frame Hitch

Things You’ll Need:
  • Bicycle
  • Child trailer with frame or axle hitch
 
Step 1
Check that the hitch type on your trailer matches your bicycle model. Some mountain bike frame angles are too narrow to accommodate frame hitches.
Step 2
Line up your trailer hitch with the appropriate attachment point on the bicycle. Loosen the hitch connector to provide maximum play.
Step 3
Fit the hitch clamp to the bicycle frame where the chain stay meets the seat stay.
Step 4
Tighten the hitch clamp.
Step 5
Fasten your trailer's safety strap. Wrap the strap around the bike frame twice, passing beneath the chain stay, and connect with the safety clip to the hitch D ring on the trailer arm.

Axle Hitch

Step 1
Remove the quick release lever assembly from the rear axle of the bicycle. Insert the quick release assembly through the hitch.
Step 2
Thread the quick release assembly into the rear axle.
Step 3
Fit the receiving end of the trailer arm into the hitch mount. Open the retaining pin and insert it through the hitch hole.
Step 4
Close the spring clip and secure the quick release levers on the bicycle.
Step 5
Fasten your trailer's safety strap. Wrap the strap around the bike frame twice, passing beneath the chain stay, and connect with the safety clip to the hitch D ring on the trailer arm.
 

Tips & Warnings

 
When using a frame hitch, consider heel clearance. Make sure you can pedal freely with the trailer attached.
 
If you plan to use the same trailer with more than one bicycle, make sure that the hitch option on your trailer will work with both bike types. Some trailers can be fitted with more than one hitch type if necessary.
 
Always use a type of hitch that allows the child trailer to remain upright even when the bicycle falls over. This type of mount should be standard on most modern bike trailer models.

Article Written By Liz Veloz

Liz Veloz is a writer, scientist and college teacher living in Madison, Wis. Her science, travel and adventure writing has appeared in numerous literary journals and other publications. Veloz holds a doctorate in the biological sciences and a Master of Arts in English from the University of California, Davis.

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