What’s the best combination of screens, bars, windows, openings for my horse trailer?
Whatever your trailer design, ventilation via windows is a must - even in frigid weather. The style of your trailer will also dictate the design. For example, a two horse straight load typically has a bunch of space between your horse’s nose and the front of the trailer. Windows are usually on the sides. A slant load has your horse’s nose up against the window.
Bars keep his head in, screen helps keep debris out.
My two “rules” about trailer windows are easy:
- Keep the horse IN while you are going down the road.
- Keep the dust, debris, and potential rocks OUT as you are going down the road.
And I know you are saying to yourself OF COURSE keep the horse in. But in the last year alone I have seen two rigs with multiple horses going down the road with horse heads popping out of open windows. Insert cringe and runaway imagination here.
This window system gives you lots of options. You can leave it open with bars, I would do this if the stall was empty to provide more air. You can also put the outer window up, it has a screen. This is better for horses, keeps the wind down while providing ventilation.
What I see more of is windows that are protected only by bars and not screens. Yes I know it would be rare to have a rock hit your horse through such a window. But have you seen what a tiny pebble can do to a windshield that’s turbo engineered with safety measurses and out the wazoo safe? Yes, major cracks and craters.
Get crafty with some screen to covert your stock trailer's openings.
If your rig has bars on the windows, super! Add a screen. If your rig has stock sides, super! Add a screen. This is a super easy thing to do, you can buy screens to fit all sorts of window shapes, or you can get some screen material and sticky backed velcro from the hardware store and make your own.
When a horse is in the slot, the flip down window is up and the smaller window is open and protected by a screen. When the stall is empty, the flip down window can be down and a screen allows max ventilation and minimum dust and debris.
Flip down windows in slant loads are great, if you are on a trip you can check on your horses when parked. This is also a chance for a water break. Some straight load trailers have side doors so you can get inside the rig and check on your horses and offer water.
How do things work in your trailer?