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30 March 2022

NEWS & INSIGHTSChoosing a ball coupler for your trailer

The coupler forms a crucial part of your towing equipment as it connects your towing vehicle to the trailer. The majority of trailers on our South African roads are fitted with a 50mm ball socket coupler.

All couplers used in South Africa must conform to the SANS20055 or the ECE Regulation 55.

The “weakest link” rule applies. Your towing system’s maximum weight rating is always equal to the lowest rated item in the system. Therefore, should you e.g., have a 750kg GVM trailer you cannot upgrade the towing capacity by using a 3000kg rated coupler. Your towing capacity will remain 750kg.

It is important to choose the correct coupler for your system. The two most pertinent questions to ask are:

Braked or Unbraked?

What is the GVM of your trailer? Regulations state that a trailer with a GVM below 750kg can be unbraked, or braked if so preferred, whereas all trailers above 750kg have to be braked. For a trailer below 750kg, a coupler without brakes will be in order, and here your choice will be determined by the mounting requirements.

A trailer with a GVM above 750kg is required to be fitted with a braked coupler. The Burquip product range of braked couplers offers options for a towing capacity of 1100-3500kg.


The towing capacity of your coupler will again be determined by your trailer’s GVM. Choose a coupler with a towing capacity as close to the GVM as possible. As an example: A trailer with a GVM of 1800kg should not be fitted with a coupler with a towing capacity of 3500kg as it will decrease brake performance. In this instance, an option between the 1100-2000kg or 1600-2700kg product range options will be more suitable.

Ask for advice

You are always welcome to contact your closest Burquip branch for assistance in this or any other trailer-related queries. We are happy to assist.

Have a look at our Eye and Ball Couplers



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