What lights are required on a trailer?

While towing a trailer, lighting is crucial for safety. There should be sufficient trailer lights on your trailer to ensure visibility for other motorists and pedestrians. For safety reasons, the government has light requirements for different trailers. These requirements vary according to the size of the trailer, so check with the regulatory body for the exact requirements in your state. 

What are the typical trailer lights that are required on a trailer?

Whether it’s of a standard size or a more prominent size, all trailers should have indicators, stop lights, tail lights, and number plate lights. Apart from the typical trailer lights, there are other lights that the regulatory body may require. All these lights help the trailer to stand out at night and make it visible from front and back. The typical trailer lights are essential for safety and compliance on all trailers. Trailers 2000 Parts has trailer parts, including lights made for Australia’s conditions. 


All vehicles, including trailers, should have indicators. The flashing lights alert other drivers when you want to make a turn. Indicators also inform other drivers which direction you’re taking.

Stop lights

Stop lights are red, and you can locate them at the back of the vehicle. They come on whenever you apply the brakes to slow or stop your vehicle. Stop lights signal the drivers behind the trailer to slow down. Driving without stop lights is dangerous and can cause a collision.

Tail lights

A critical aspect of night driving is judging the distance to the vehicle in front of you. Tail lights help drivers to evaluate the distance to the vehicle in front. They always turn on when the vehicle’s headlights are on. Tail lights are not as bright as the brake lights, which allows you to differentiate between the two. 

LED lights are a popular choice amongst drivers because they use less energy than traditional lights and there are no bulbs to change.

Number plate lights

Number plate lights ensure that the registration number is always visible, even in rain or snow. The small light illuminates the reflective number plate so that road users can see it from a distance. Check your state’s regulatory body to determine if you require an independent number plate light or if you are able to use the tail light with the inbuilt number plate light.

How do trailer lights work/connect to the vehicle?

For the trailer lights to work, you have to connect the trailer to your vehicle. Most trailers have a simple wiring system that consists of 5 wires. They are – Yellow (Left Indicator) Brown (Tail Lights) Red (Stop Lights) Green (Right Indicator) and White is Earth.  If your trailer is fitted with electric brakes then there are an extra 2 wires – Blue is for the electric brakes and black is generally unused on a trailer.  Black is an auxiliary wire for items that may require powering for example a caravan which has reversing lights.

The trailer uses a male plug to connect with the vehicle’s base plug. Some towing vehicles come prewired.  There are 4 types of trailer plug, 7 pin flat, 7 pin small round, 7 pin large round and 6 pin small round. The most popular plug is the 7 pin flat as it is easy to plug in and remove. In cases where the plugs do not match, you can use an adapter. Trailers 2000 Parts have a range of  adaptors in stock.

What other lights are available for a trailer, and what purpose do they serve?

The light requirements change according to the the size of the trailer.  As you’d expect, bigger trailers require extra lights to illuminate them and communicate their size to other drivers. These additional lights are all available at Trailers 2000 Parts, and they include the following;

Clearance lights

Clearance lights signal the trailer’s large width and length. This depends on the  trailer width, trailers with an overall width greater than 2100mm require side marker (clearance lights. Trailers with more height than the standard size also need clearance lights. Clearance lights are red and amber, the red half of the light faces the rear of the trailer and the amber half of the light faces forward. 

Marker lights

Marker lights are similar to clearance lights, They are required at the front on all trailers wider than 1800mm overall.  Marker lights are a clear white light. 

What other trailer parts do I need?

If you’re buying lights for your trailer, you can also purchase suitable cable if required.  Trailers 2000 Parts has 5-core and 7-core cables available in stock. 

We’ve said a lot about trailer lights and why you need them. Driving without adequate lights is irresponsible and can endanger other road users. At Trailers 2000 Parts, we have the best parts for a trailer, such as trailer rims, trailer wheels, trailer tyres and more. Our trailers are made in Australia with quality materials to suit harsh Australian conditions. Contact a Trailers 2000 Parts expert and browse our site to buy trailer lights today.

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