Videos are provided As a guide only. Refer To manufacturer
installation instructions And specs For complete information.
Draw-Tite Max-Frame Trailer Hitch Receiver - Custom Fit - Class III - 2"
Fully welded vehicle trailer hitch is strong and durable. Draw-Tite's Tested Tough guarantee ensures that this hitch exceeds industry standards. The combination of an e-coat base and a powder coat finish provides excellent rust protection.
Draw-Tite's Tested Tough program provides testing standards far superior to those outlined by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), the go-to source for engineering professionals.
Each Draw-Tite trailer hitch receiver undergoes extensive fatigue testing and static testing with the ball mount that is either supplied or recommended for use with that particular hitch, thus ensuring results that are applicable to real life use. Fatigue testing is also conducted on hitches rated for use with weight-distribution systems.
In addition, Draw-Tite performs static testing on a simulated automobile, as opposed to the rigid fixture used for SAE testing, resulting in a more true-to-life scenario.
At etrailer.com we're committed to the products we sell, and to our customers. Our experienced and knowledgeable staff are available via both phone and email to address your questions and concerns for the lifetime of your hitch. The technicians at etrailer perform hitch installations on a daily basis, making them a valuable resource for do-it-yourselfers. The one-on-one, personal service you'll receive comes straight from an expert in the towing and automotive field. We've installed it, we've wired it and we've towed with it, so whatever your question, we can answer it.
2010 - 2017 Subaru Legacy All Models
2013 - 2017 Subaru Outback Wagon All Models
2010 - 2012 Subaru Outback Wagon excluding Sport
Video of Draw-Tite Max-Frame Trailer Hitch Receiver - Custom Fit - Class III - 2"
Videos are provided As a guide only. Refer To manufacturer
installation instructions And specs For complete information.
Today on our 2016 Subaru Legacy we'll be installing the Draw-Tite Max-Frame Trailer Hitch Receiver, Class 3 2" receiver, part number 75673. As you can see, it's a very clean look, very minimal amount is showing. You don't have any crossbars coming down that supports the frame really, you just have the main two body of the hitch and the actual 2" receiver itself. As you can see, our hitch as two holes on it. The larger one is for the 5/8" diameter pin, the smaller hole is for our J-Pin device, and that is a device that is inserted to help reduce the rattle and shake in the receiver tube for your accessory that's inside of it that's provided if your accessory doesn't already have its own anti-rattle device built into it Now, this 2" Class 3 receiver hitch has a 4,000 pound max trailer weight rating and it has a 600 pound max tongue weight rating. Obviously, you'll want to consult with the owner's manual of your vehicle and go by whichever one's lower before you decide to use a cargo carrier or tow a trailer, that way you don't exceed the limits of the hitch or the vehicle.
This hitch is not compatible with weight distribution setups. Now for a couple of measurements to help you choosing any hitch-mounted accessories you may need, such as ball mounts, bike carriers or cargo carriers, you're looking at a total of around 10 1/2" from the ground to the top of the 2" received, as well as about 6" from the center of the 5/8" diameter hitch pin hole to the back of our bumper. First thing we want to do in order to install our hitch is temporarily lower the exhaust down, spray the hangers with some lubricant to help make them slide off slightly easier. There's two on either side of the vehicle just above the mufflers and there's a third one just in front of the rear axle and we can pry them off with a pry bar, just like that. For the rear hangers, we'll do the same thing and pry against the hook right there. Now there's two more in front of the muffler on either side, so we'll spray those down as well.
Now, we need to remove our heat shields above both of our mufflers. To do that, there's four 10mm bolts. Make sure we set our bolts to the side because we will be re-installing them later. We'll do the same on the other side. Now, there's four rubber plugs and some holes in the frame rail. We're just going to pop them out.
There's one on each side in front of where the muffler was and one towards the back of it. With those removed, we can set them down. We will not be re-installing them, but we can always keep them in case we decide to take our hitch off at some point. We'll do the same on the other side. And now we'll measure back from our existing hole to mark the location that we're going to drill for our new hole.
As always, when drilling into metal, I highly recommend wearing safety glasses and gloves to protect you from metal shavings. Now that we've enlarged our hole to the 1 1/8" diameter, our placer plates slide in nicely. We repeat the process on the other side. Now we take our fish wire here, put it through the forward hole, bring it down to the access hole we drilled, take our 3" long spacer block, put it on the wire, push it up inside the frame rail, thread our carriage bolt onto the fish wire, push it up inside, pull it on down. Now we'll do the same thing on our rear hole, but using the 2" long spacer bar. Pull it down. We'll repeat the same process on the other side. Now that we have all our bolts fish wired to the frame of our vehicle, we need to prep the hitch for installation. Now, there's a flat washer here that goes on the forward bolt hole. But here's a little tech tip, so you don't have to worry about holding the washer in place, put a piece of tape on it like so and tape it into position on our hitch, wrap it around and you can poke a hole in it and our bolt will go through nice and easy. We'll do that to the other side of the hitch as well. Now, when you get ready to install the hitch, just make sure that you have your exhaust lowered. If you have to lower it a little bit further, you have it supported by a strap so it doesn't cause any damage further up in the system. Now with the help of an assistant, we'll raise the hitch into position and we'll install our conical tooth washers facing the hitch with the teeth and then we'll use our nuts to secure it and do the same on the back side, just like so. Little tech tip here, if we re-install our exhaust heat shield bolts in the holes, just loosely for right now, we can easily align the hitch properly before we tighten it down. That way the hitch won't cover up any of the bolt holes and we'll be able to install our heat shields real easily. With our heat shield bolts temporarily in place, we can snug down our hitch using 11/16" socket. Now with our heat shields, we need to trim them a little bit so our bolt heads for our hitch sit flush against the heat shield and our heat shield won't rattle. Just going to trim out this section here on the right-hand side, for the left hand side we'll do the same thing, slightly different. So we use a pair of tin snips and cut this out. We'll do the same thing with the other head shield. With our head shield trimmed, we can remove our bolts that we loosely put into it, we'll slide over the exhaust hanger there. We install one of our bolts. We'll add the other three. With our four bolt loosely installed, we can snug them down and we can repeat the process for the other side. With our hitch up, torque our bolts down to the manufacturers' specification, which you can find in the instruction manual and repeat the process for the other three bolts. Now we can raise our exhaust back into position. Now we can reinstall our exhaust hangers, push it on the stud, maneuver the muffler into place. We have that one done. Now we have four more to do. Perfect. With that done, we have all our exhaust hangers reinstalled. Make sure to remove our strap belt that we used to help support the exhaust and that completes the installation of our Draw-Tite Max-Frame Receiver Class 3 with 2" Receiver, part number 75673 on our 2016 Subaru Legacy.
Average Customer Rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars (375 Customer Reviews)Fully welded vehicle trailer hitch is strong and durable. Draw-Tite's Tested Tough guarantee ensures that this hitch exceeds industry standards. The combination of an e-coat base and a powder coat finish provides excellent rust protection.
by: Jim H.05/15/2014
I finished the hitch install on my 2014 Subaru Outback today. It went without a "hitch" so to speak. I did the job alone (age 69) and managed it well because of some hints from previous writers. First, I drilled access holes from inside the trunk area as suggested. Remove the black adhesive dots over each hole and drill them out to 1 1/8" using a step drill (see photos 1.jpg, 2.jpg, 3.jpg). I didn't have a vacuum cleaner handy so I used a small magnet to collect all the metal cuttings. (see photo 4.jpg) I then raised the rear of the car with ramps to get easier access underneath. I took off the muffler which was not too difficult once the rubber shock-absorbers were liberally doused with WD-40. Getting it back on later was another story. That thing is heavy and it took quite a few "bench-presses" to get it up and slid onto the outboard rubber shock-absorber. After that, the inner one and the final bolt-down was a lot easier. I also removed and drilled out the heat shield to clear the hitch bolt. The step-drill was perfect for this as well. I removed the small rubber plugs from the four hitch holes under the car. The holes could then be clearly seen from above so guiding the bolts and plates into the holes using the included guide-wires turned out to be extremely easy. I used my 3 ton hydraulic jack to suspend and position the hitch. I clamped it to the jack pad using two small c-clamps. Once in position an raised up, I could easily finger-tighten the rear nuts (rear of the hitch/front of the car). Then I took off the c-clamps in order to push the front of the hitch up into place with the jack. Tightening everything down to 50 ft/lbs. finished the job. I also found some plastic snap-in covers that perfectly fit the drilled holes in the trunk. I used these to seal the holes from dirt and to give it a finished appearance. (see photo 5.jpg). Next was the wiring harness. That turned out to be a bit tricky. I searched the wheel well housing on the drivers side but couldn't feel any wires. Then I found a YouTube video from a 2011 Outback that made it clear that the carpeting behind the rear seats had to be removed as well as the long foam strip adjacent to it. It is held down with three snaps...one in the front (fixed) and two loose plugs in the back. Once this was removed I was able to find and pull out the connector. The rest was easy. Plug in the connector, thread the wire back a bit, hide the black box under the wheel well housing and continue the wire around the outside edge of the trunk and into the spare-tire area. Everything went back together nicely. I brought the hitch cable up into the foam tray where it would be easier to get when needed. I plan to run it out the tailgate and I don't at all think it will be damaged by the rubber weatherseal. 130920
by: Brett H.05/25/2013
I was a little intimidated by the prospect of installing this hitch, but it turned out very well in the end. Many thanks to the excellent videos at etrailer and the comments from my awesome fellow-customers. Looks great, works great, and total install time was only about 2 hours. I'm reasonably good with tools in general, but little to no auto mechanic experience. Here are a few tips I found very helpful (many of them from the other reviews). Some would have helped me decide sooner to take the plunge: 1) The hitch actually installs on four bolt holes already provided in the frame by Subaru for installing a trailer hitch. The only reason the instructions have you drilling new holes under the car is to provide a way to fish the bolts through from the top, which takes us to our next point... 2) I highly recommend drilling down from the trunk area, rather than drilling up from under the car (thanks to the other reviews for this tip!). It's not only easier, but also means your holes aren't exposed to the weather. In fact, your new holes will be entirely covered by the snap-in panels in the trunk. Other reviewers have talked about removing the bumper -- in that case you don't have to drill any holes and I'm sure it's the best approach if you're comfortable doing that. 3) You must fully remove the rubber bumper hanger that is closest to the rear of the car. It wasn't clear to me initially, and I just took the bumper off the hanger, leaving the rubber hanger attached to the car. The hitch won't fit over the rubber hanger, and you'll be in no position to deal with it once you start trying to lift the hitch into place. 4) As others have said, removing the muffler entirely is probably the best way to go. I was a little concerned about doing that, but it was easy to get off and back on. If your car is very old, it might be tougher. 5) I had a second person assist me in lifting the hitch assembly into place, and cannot imagine trying to do that by myself. Definitely get a helper! 81947
by: Joseph C04/16/2016
Straightforward install on a 2016 3.6R Outback Wagon. Total install time start to finish for me doing this alone was 3 hours with plenty of time for thinking, checking, and rechecking. Like several others, I came at the bolt install through the cargo area (from the top), which seems to allow us to cut a hole through a much thinner piece of metal. I used a standard 12V rechargeable drill with a 1" hole saw. No issues threading bolts into their appropriate holes. Completely straightforward. Shavings were easy to vacuum up. I can make note of three things that might provide others with a bit more insight from my install experience. 1) The rear, 'inboard' rubber muffler hangers must be completely removed so that the hitch unit can be mated to the bolts/frame. This wasn't obvious until I got the unit up and in place and found that there was room for the anchor, but not for anchor with hanger attached. The 3 other rubber hangers can remain attached to one anchor or the other. Take things apart carefully and reconfigure #1. 2) With the hitch unit hanging loosely from its 4 mounting bolts, the inboard/rear holes for the heat shield didn't match up. The 2 outboard holes were good on each side; the inboard/front holes weren't perfect, but I could get the bolt started. On both sides, I had to use a prybar between the frame and the hitch unit to add some tension (toward the vehicle centerline) in order to get that inboard/rear heat shield bolt screwed in. I was able to tighten down all remaining bolts after this. There's enough play in the hitch unit to allow for this to happen. Take things apart carefully and reconfigure #2. 3) Those inboard muffler hangers again. I found the reinstall was more challenging as my hands became slippery with blood. I suggest thin workgloves for this part. There are plenty of place to bust knuckles. The hangers are tight, there's not a lot of space to work with, and there's not a lot of play in the second muffler once the first is hung. I got it done using elbow grease and blood, but If I were doing it all again, I'd work it like this: a) hang the centerline hanger, b) work on one inboard hanger and then the other by installing them on the muffler anchor first and then slipping them over the frame anchor second. I had to wedge and lever the muffler up and over to get everything lined up nicely - lube helped a lot and a long, thin prybar was necessary, c) sort out the outboard, rear hangers last where there's more room to see and get your hands up there. Very happy with the results of a nice morning of work. Thanks. 245596
by: Richard Oja03/31/2015
I needed a hitch for my wife 2012 Subaru Outback for hauling sport bikes to track days and occasional utility hauling. A google search brought me to the etrailer site. The biggest advantage of the trailer site is the access of instructional videos and the additional resources from their previous customers experiences and advise; I found this to be most useful for installing the hitch. The quality of the products is good, the hitch had numerous chips in the paint which may be problematic for corrosion in the future, but for the price I have no complaint. The hitch appears to be the same one offered by Uhaul. The overall costs when a complete package is ordered are about the same. Regardless of the price I would and will purchase all my future trailer need from etrailer, and will recommend etrailer to future customers. Regarding installation; (read all the the customer reviews) I would recommend drilling four holes from inside the trunk area instead of two holes from the bottom up. Additionally I recommend a $10.00 hole saw instead of the $50.00 conical shaped "step drill". The hole saw worked well, even without a pilot bit. It took about 5 minutes to drill the four holes. If you have access to floor jack, use it, it made positioning the hitch into place a one person job. Use liberal amounts of lubricant to remove the three rubber muffler mounts and remove them completely from the vehicle, it makes reinstallation easier. 182060
It took me about 2.5 hours to install this hitch on my 2011 Legacy and I'm very good at working on vehicles. This time included the prep time to gather tools, tape down the washers on the hitch itself and jack up the car and place it on jack stands. I used the rear differential to jack up the entire back end and place jack stands near the rear wheels on the proper crimp joist. I drilled in from the rear of the vehicle because it would be easier for one person to "fish" the wires and see them right in front of me rather than push them into the trunk area and have gravity pull them back down as I tried to feed the metal plate and lag bolt. I really am not concerned with an extra hole in the bottom the car that is blocked by the hitch even though I did put a small piece of HVAC foil tape to keep out moisture. It did get hot to drill that 1 1/8" hole in the frame. I put a piece of cardboard on my torso to block my arm from the metal shavings. As for the muffler I probably should have dropped it lower than I did but I have clasps running up and down the pipe connecting it to the heat shield to stop any rattles which drive me crazy when I drive. Rather than take them all off I chose to work in a cramped spot. This made it a little challenging to get one of the screws off of the heat shield because it's been on there for almost 6 years an the screw head broke so it took me about 25 minutes just to get the one screw off since I was trying not to break it and the metal weld it connects to was previously damaged. Nonetheless this has nothing to do with the hitch itself but rather letting people know that it's much easier to do this on a new car rather than a 6 year old car. I did not use my tin snips on the heat shield to cut away but instead cut a hole with the 1 1/8" bit to allow the screw to travel through. My torque wrench would not fit in the drivers side near the muffler so I hand tightened what I felt was necessary on the bolt. Realistically it is not going anywhere nor am I concerned it will "unscrew". I would have preferred a lock bolt with a nylon inside to ensure that but I'm happy with the product. It is heavy so beware to those attempting to install on their own laying upside down on the ground. It was NOT easy to hoist up there so I would recommend getting another pair of hands to help you. eTrailer made it very easy if you just follow the directions in the video. 276404
by: John A04/11/2014
First of all, let it be said that nothing trumps good engineering. My hitch and wiring harness harness arrived 2-3 days after I ordered it. Unlike others here, my shipping container was completely intact. Like others, the etrailer.com decal was crooked, wrinkled and looked silly. I removed it. The installation of the wiring harness was just as simple and the video suggests. In spite of the fact that the Molex connector was right where it was supposed to be, I could not find it right away. I used a bathroom mirror reflecting up and behind the trim panel to find it. There are some sharp edges and this may have saved a cut or two to my hand by not having to dig around for it. The hitch was also no more difficult to install that the video suggested. I strongly advise that you use a lubricant to remove the muffler hangers as they slide right off (and on again) with ease. Unlike some others, I had no problem drilling the access holes in the frame. Be sure your bits are sharp and good quality. I did however buy two plastic plugs to cap the holes and sprayed the bare metal with auto primer. One nice surprise was that the parts bag included 4 of the wire fish tapes. I planned to have to create these myself. They were absolutely perfect. I entered through my access hole and the lead end popped right through the other hole with almost no effort each time. I left the wires attached until after I positioned the hitch to the bolts. I made it easier to line the four up, install the spacer washers in the front and I also didn't risk pushing the unattached bolts up and into the frame. One word of advice: don't torque the hitch until you reattach the heat shield. Two of the heat shield screws need to pass through the hitch. If it's tight to the frame and the holes don't line up you need to loosen the hitch and reposition it. Total install time, including the wiring harness was about 2-1/2 hours. I didn't have an extra set of hands or it would have taken about 15 minutes less. It can be done alone, but it's awkward. The hitch looks great in that it's barely noticeable (and nicely recessed) under my bumper. I can't say enough good things about this product and etrailer. I saved hundreds of dollars and have the knowledge that nobody boogered up the undercarriage of my beloved Subie. 124715
by: Kevin K.09/22/2016
Overall, I am very pleased with the entire purchasing and installation process, as well as the finished product. What makes this website great, is the depth of information in pictures, videos, and reviews of the different hitch options. I felt that all of this helped lead me to the choice of hitch that best fit my needs and expectations. This particular hitch is great if you don't want the installed product to protrude out too visibly, or extend out to where you would accidentally strike your shin/knee against it. The hitch tucks away nicely underneath the bumper. In theory, this could limit some choices in accessories, but the aesthetic gains more than compensate for that in my opinion. I chose to remove the bumper cover for installation, so that no drilling or wire-fishing would be necessary. I can see why the sellers don't recommend this option, as it requires reasonable amounts of finesse with the various bumper fasteners and cover. However, if you consider yourself a technical and mechanically inclined person, this is rather simple process that is fairly well described by others online. When the bumper cover is off, the hitch hanging bolts can be fed in through the "frame tubes" that are covered by the bumper. For a one person install, the most difficult thing for me was actually holding the hitch in place as I threaded the fasteners on to fasten it. Having someone supply an extra set of hands for this part would make it very simple and easy. Although we don't plan to do much actual towing, it is nice to have the option with this class of hitch, considering the respectable weight ratings. This was purchased with accessories (bike racks, etc.) in mind, but is a good value considering what the lighter hitches cost. And, it is reasonably inconspicuous when installed. 297517
Superb service and delivery. 100% recommendation for this web business. I also saved $100 over the prices of my local retailers! The installation videos are excellent. Be sure to watch the wiring harness video too; at the -4:18 mark note the 1" round black cover between the two white clip fasteners along the side of the cargo space.. There are actually two black covers on each side of the cargo space. They cover holes that give you access from above to the frame holes for the trailer hitch underneath the car. I enlarged the access holes a little with a jig saw and later pulled the mounting bolts through from the top. (the steel guide wires provided work like a champ---no risk of losing parts in the frame! ) Since I used the holes above I did not have to drill the 1 1/8" holes in the side of the frame underneath. I did my install with the vehicle on the ground. I used one jack stand in front of the driver side rear tire and had easy access to the exhaust hangers. The hitch is fairly large and heavy so I started from inside the car and ran a length of threaded rod down throug the frame holes and through the holes in the hitch. I tightned nuts up the threaded rods from below about 3" at a time and thus incremntally lifted the hitch up the rods until the it was up against the frame. That process added about 30 minutes to the install time, but it was safe and no way could I fit under the car and then bring the hitch in and lift it up. Once the hitch was up against the frame it was just a matter of replacing the threaded rods, one at atime, with the included mounting bolts. 231328
Completely satisfied with this hitch. Looks great, not very noticeable, and is of quality construction. Details of my experience: 1) ordering/shipping - placed order at 11pm, had an email an hour later saying product shipped. Well, that seemed highly unlikely, but by next morning I had the tracking number. Package arrived in 5 business days. Box was a bit roughed up and hitch had some scuff marks, but it was going under my car so didn't make much matter. 2) installation - the video was a huge help. I mounted this hitch by myself and did it without using a lift or jacking the car up. Space was tight, and I had to use some creativity to support the hitch up on wooden blocks in order to get the bolts in place, so all that made the install take longer than it should have (about 2 hours total). You'll find that even though the muffler was lowered, it still gets in the way for drilling holes. I was skeptical about how easy the little guide wires would work for feeding the bolts into the car frame. I found it does work just like you see in the video -- I was completely impressed. One key step, which is mentioned in the instructions, is to thread the heat shield bolts part way in before torqueing down the nuts on the hitch frame. I found that the front heat shield bolt on the driver side did not line up perfectly no matter how much manual positioning of the hitch -- so I had to use a small board to pry the frame open a bit, leveraging off the spare tire well, in order to get that bolt started. Had I not done that before torqueing the nuts, never would have got the bolt in. Also had a frustrating moment when my 5/8" hitch pin would not go into the receiver hole -- thought the hole was undersized. Turned out a small metal "ear" was sticking out from where the hole was punched through. A few strokes of a file took care of that. My wife is completely happy with this hitch -- she uses it for a bike carrier and can now take her bike wherever she want to go. and, if the wife is happy, I'm happy. 20309
by: Aaron T.06/08/2013
This hitch was installed on my 2011 Subaru Outback 2.5i. I received the hitch with a few paint chips where it poked through the box. No big deal. Since I'm OCD, I had a can of hi-temp flat black paint and started touching up spots and before I knew it, the entire hitch was painted flat black, which actually looks great. As far as the install goes, I definitely recommend increasing the hole size of the 4-holes in the trunk. They are covered with black circular tape. I took a 1-1/4" hole saw and took about 10 minutes to increase all 4 hole sizes. This is a far better alternative than removing the bumper. (Why anyone would want to do that is beyond me, or increase the hole size in their frame for that matter). I took some gray Rust-Oleum paint and painted around all of the increased holes and used black duct tape to cover all of the holes after that. Overkill on this part, but what's done is done. I used a Rino ramp to help me keep the hitch off the ground so I could install it myself. This method worked great. I ordered the wiring harness and installed it as well. All in all, the videos and reviews on this hitch were invaluable. I can't recommend etrailer enough, and I plan to order more accessories for my hitch as soon as I decide on the gear I want to haul. 83846
by: Kevin K.06/29/2016
I found that the packaging for the hitch itself, as well as the instructions and video, were well done. I was careful and spent far more than an hour (or two hours) installing it, however, on a Subaru Outback 2011. Two hopefullly helpful installation tips to add to what others have already posted: 1. If you have a Subaru Outback 2011, take off the rear most rubber exhaust hanger entirely before mounting the hitch. You'll have to anyway - it won't fit through the hole that's provided. Much easier before (rather than after) you already have the hitch up into position. Then put it on when you're finally ready to put the exhaust back on -- but not before. Much easier to slide the exhaust hanger onto both at once than just to reattach it early and fit those annoying rubber pieces. 2. Instead of cutting off a portion of the heat shield, use the same drill bit to put one hole in the heat shield that will fit nicely over the newly installed bolt and nut holding the hitch up on the driver's rear side. Much cleaner looking (not that anyone will look under there, but whatever). Like many others, I also went in via the cargo compartment instead of drilling up through the bottom, figuring there would be less corrosion that way. Even a 7/8" hole with an extra 1/4" hole next to it will easily fish the plates and bolts in. I did use a "grabber" and help from a friend to get the fishing done to put the bolts in place. Removing the fishing attached to the bolts prior to putting the hitch in place was a bit painful - you really don't want to knock one of the loose bolts back up into the frame of the car. I propped the hitch up inch by inch by myself until it was ready to go. This is a nice looking hitch that will more than do the job. I've installed this same brand of hitch before on a Rav4 and a Nissan Xterra - both of these together were easier than on a Subaru Outback, but the final product looks good. For a Subaru Outback, I think this is about the best hitch you can consider. 266516
by: Evan S.01/11/2014
First, I'd like to reiterate how great the customer service was from etrailer.com - honestly one of the best online shopping experiences I've had. On to the install...mine wasn't quite as trivial as some others, but it was nobody's fault but my own. I installed the hitch without jacking up the car which, while possible, made for very tight working quarters. I also forgot to re-install the heat shield, so had to remove the hitch completely. Typical me. All in all the install took me a couple hours. Thanks to the suggestions from others, I also went through the trunk to gain access rather than drilling a hole in the frame, which I really didn't want to do. It wasn't hard to go through the trunk, I used a step bit (also thanks to someone's suggestion) and enlarged one of the existing holes in the body. It did add some time though. It was trivial to thread the front hardware through, a little more challenging to fish it through to the back ones. I also removed the muffler, definitely made things a lot easier, especially since I didn't jack the car up. I did use my jack to lift the hitch into place, but it was still extremely nice to have a second set of hands to keep everything balanced and aligned. I'm extremely pleased with the result - the hitch is tucked away nicely under the bumper and looks great. Thanks etrailer.com! 112558
by: Alex H08/12/2014
I'll echo most of the reviews for etrailer.com and say that the install guides were thorough and the ordering process was easy. Kudos to etrailer.com for providing such great information including the videos and reviews from previous installers (they helped immensely). I fed the bolts in from the trunk (as suggested by others) and found it quite easy. Do the rearmost cables first - I had to use another cable guide to meet the first and guide it through to both holes. I fed the first cable through the bottom until I could see it through the hole in the trunk, then I could hook it with the curly end of the second cable and bring it up through the trunk hole. The forward holes are easy. BTW, I drove my rear wheels on some 4x wood to give me some extra clearance while working under the car - I highly recommend this for comfort's sake. I'll also echo that if you can remove your muffler, you should. I couldn't remove mine, and while it didn't make things impossible, it just made everything on that side harder, especially dealing with the heat shield bolts. Which leads me to... I had only one issue with the product itself, which was mentioned in passing in other reviews - I had to flex the hitch to match up the heat shield hole. It was off by quite a bit and required me to flex it with tools. I couldn't bend it enough by hand even with all the other bolts left loose. Having my muffler in the way didn't help with this task either. I'll echo others to say that you should leave the hitch bolts only hand tight until you get the heat shield back in place for this reason. I also found that the hitch was thick enough that I had to get a slightly longer heat shield screw. Because of this trip to the local hardware store and the heat shield screw alignment issue, the install took me 3 hours instead of the 2 that others have been reporting. Now that it's in, I'm happy. It looks like it should and does what I need it to do. 146200
by: Tim S.08/26/2016
Just installed this hitch on my 2017 Outback Limited 3.6. Just like the other 4 previous hitches I've purchased from eTrailer and installed myself in my driveway - it was exactly as advertised and fit perfectly. Thank you eTrailer for the install video and thank you to other reviewers for the install tips! Unless you have a lift (I don't), definitely drill the access hole from above inside the rear hatch. You only need to drill one hole, midway between the holes from the factory to fish the wires & fasteners through. I cleaned up the shavings with a shop vac and a magnet, then sprayed rust inhibiting primer on the bare edges of the drilled hole. The only bug in the install was getting the head shield holes to line up exactly right & it was an easy fix. Suggest lining the heat shield holes up as closely as possible BEFORE tightening all the hitch mounting bolts. Then put the heat shield mount screws in partway. Leave one side or the other of the hitch mount flanges loose, then you may have to press one of the forward mounting points toward the center to get all the heat shield screws started. Once all these screws are started, then go back and tighten the hitch mounting nuts to hold this alignment. Then remove the screws and remount the heat shields. Trim them exactly as in the install video - no need to trim any more than that. The 3.6 with dual exhaust obviously has two heat shields, but they are mirror images so trim them in the same spot to clear the rear hitch mounting bolt. Spray the rubber muffler isolators liberally with WD40 to ease removal and reinstall. The finished install is very clean and my new 1up double rack looks great and is rock steady. Not worried at all about any slight loss of departure angle with the 2" receiver as this car will NEVER go anywhere without the bike rack on it! 288090
I couldn't be happier with the hitch and the ease of installation. I read over the reviews and honestly, almost every review helped, and of course the video was very well done. For those who are little tweaked, I chose to mount the hitch without drilling a hole. All you need to do is remove styrofoam compartments in the truck section, locate the 4 black adhesive caps and remove. The forward holes, one left, one right, now need to be reemed out to a little over an inch. Using an round one inch rock grinding bit I enlarged each hole, took about 30 seconds for both holes. Next, using about 18 inches of somewhat medium gauge wire I went from the bottom mounting hole, underneath the car, to the access hole I earlier made larger. From there I taped the medium gauge wire to the fish wire with tape and proceeded to pull down the mounting spacer and carriage bolt. Without drilling a hole the hitch was mounted. The customer support was excellent, I don't do reviews, but felt compelled to do so after being treated with great service and a quality product. Patrick is a very good employee! 73900
Great quality and install went as smooth on my 2013 Outback. It took me about 90 minutes to do the install. I have dual Exhaust/mufflers and I took them both off, and I think that helped (and two heat shields needed to be cut). As an FYI the mufflers may have a gasket that could be broken in the removal process so it may be good to double check to make sure; or at least see your local parts dealer to see if they have them in stock. I used my impact drill/driver to remove the bolts on the heat shield and it went really fast. The only minor issue (my fault) is that I torqued the mounting bolts before I installed the heat shields. I had to loosen the mounting bolts up again and move the hitch slightly to get the holes to line up (which is in the directions anyhow). I was able to do the install with the car on the ground but it was a little tricky getting the hitch in place. I was able to get some help (and lip) from my teenage son and it wasn't a major chore lifting it in position and getting the nuts started, doing it myself with it on the ground would likely have been a challenge. I used undercoat spray, $5 at the local auto parts store to cover the access holes. Some said they used plugs in other reviews, but the holes are covered by the hitch and I think plugs could keep the hitch from lying flat on the frame. I am VERY happy with the looks and the functionality. As a side note, since the hitch is back from the bumper, make sure accessories (like a carrier/rack) have enough clearance from the bumper to the hitch, or order an extension etc. I am sure the folks here at etrailer wont steer you wrong if you tell them what the setback is when you order accessories. 151773
by: Jim L.07/15/2015
On June 19, 2015, I ordered a Hidden Hitch Trailer Hitch, wiring harness, receiver, a 2" hitch ball, and a receiver lock for our 2014 Subaru Outback Wagon. I received the shipment three business days later. The printed instructions were to the point, and the video was helpful as a summary of the installation process. It was quite worthwhile to read reviews with suggestions from previous customers. I followed several of these suggestions: 1. I backed the car rear tires up onto two pieces lumber, 18" long 2 x 12's in my case, so I had a little bit more head room under the car. 2. I enlarged the four access holes in the floor of the wheel well from the top, using a 1 1/8" hole cutter. 3. Instead of lowering the muffler and tailpipe combination, I unbolted the muffler from the tailpipe, then used WD-40 on the rubber muffler hangers to make them slip off easily. I found that the muffler alone wasn't too heavy, and was relatively easy to handle. 4. I placed some 4 x 4's, 2 x 4's, and a small rectangular wooden stool under the hitch to hold it in place when I attached the four hitch mounting bolts. 5. I did not finally tighten the four hitch mounting bolts until I had the heat shield bolt access holes in the hitch centered over the heat shield mounting holes, and the heat shield mounting bolts in place and tightened. I used the handle of my socket wrench as a lever to move the hitch sideways. It would be nice if the Hidden Hitch heat shield bolt access holes were about 1/4" larger, so that everything would line up perfectly. We just made a 780 mile trip, pulling a filled 5' x 8' U-Haul trailer. The hitch, wiring, receiver, ball, and receiver lock all worked perfectly. Thanks very much! 211964
by: Suman C.02/01/2014
etrailer is amazing. I ordered on a Saturday night late in West coast timezone and within a hour my order was processed and a shipping label was created. Daniel upgraded my order to 3-5 business days shipping at no additional cost and it arrived promptly. No damage to the box or the hitch. Followed all the great reviews here and took the trunk approach. Removed the muffler completely is the way to go. Widened the holes in the trunk and once the screws are snaked in, rest of the installation was easy. I used two jacks to lift the hitch in place and it made it was so much easier. With the help of my 13 year old son, we were able to finish the installation in under 2 hours. Now it's time to shop for a good bike rack to hold our 4 bikes :-) 115425
by: Bob D.09/19/2016
I just completed installation of the 75673 hitch onto my 2017 Subaru Outback 3.6R Ltd. As already stated in other reviews, I found the hitch to be well made and a perfect fit for the vehicle. I also strongly recommend, as others have done, that you access the frame from above. The drilling there is easier and gives you direct access above the frame holes where the bolts go. I used a step drill purchased for about $8 just for this and it was worth it. One other benefit I found by doing it this way was that it allowed the bolts to be held in place as the nuts were being put on below. It is very easy to push the bolts back up into the frame if you push too hard with the nuts. At that point the fish wire is off and you'll have a tough time getting the bolts out again. I had someone put pressure from above on the top of the bolts which kept them from coming back up as I installed the nuts from below. I also used a floor jack to lift the hitch into place. I used a C clamp to attach a 30" length of 2X2 wood stake, available at any Home Depot or Lowes, to the jack lift arm. The 2X2 stake fit perfectly into the hitch receiver and gave the additional benefit of allowing some back and forth adjustment as I lined the holes up. The only down side is that this hitch is more visible than I would prefer, but apparently it is either this one or the Curt hitch for the Subaru. The Curt hitch looked to be even more obvious after it is in place so I went with the Draw-Tite. It seems very secure and I think it will work just fine. As usual, e-trailer provided great service and was available to answer any questions. 296444
by: Bob B06/23/2012
Ordered this hitch late on Thursday evening expecting to receive it late the next week. Order was processed immediately and hitch was here on Monday. Used the inside inspection port method as it was not only easier, but retained more structural integrity. As I only had 2000 miles on the car, I removed the muffler ( removed two hangers and unbolted from the tailpipe. This made the muffler side install very easy. I also chose to use a hole saw to cut a 1.5" hole in the heat shield for the bolt rather than cut the corner off. ( After removing the plugs from the frame, I reinstalled the heat shield and marked through the holes where the bolt would be). I did the install on the ground by myself. I used a motorcycle lift to lift and support the hitch while connecting the bolts. A few tricks made it easy. Insert the metal pieces in the frame with the long side front to back. It seats better in the frame and allows the bolt to stick through the frame more. After installing the bolts using the fish wire, I used masking tape to tape the spacer washer to the frame over the bolt. This made its install easier. I used a heavy chisel in the drilled holes ( inspection ports) to hold the bolt down while working on them. This prevented pushing them back up into the frame once the fish wire was removed. If you have a two people, one can do this with their finger. Total time to install was about 1.5 hours. Prior to the install, I used a grinder to round the corners and edges of the four steel bolt plates so they would not scratch the inside of the frame. I also coated with undercoating to prevent rust. 45379
by: John S08/14/2012
Just installed this hitch this weekend on my 2012 Outback. Certainly the most-intrusive thing I've ever done to an automobile and apart from a bloody knuckle and sliced thumb, all went pretty smoothly. I opted to go through the observation holes as recommended by other reviewers. Seemed making two existing holes larger would be better than creating two new ones. I opened up the two holes nearest the front of the hatch area which made threading the guide wire to the back holes a bit tricky. I solved it by running a fish wire of my own up through the rear hole then attaching the provided wires to that and pulling the whole shebang back through. I installed this so I could use a hitch-mounted bike rack. I purchased the Softride Dura Parallelogram and had read on this site that it was necessary to also purchase the extender bar for that rack, so I did. Turns out this was an unnecessary purchase as it fit fine with the standard bar. So if you're planning on going that route, hold off on the extender bar until you find out if it's really needed. Oh yeah, have help. Although I'm certain I could have done this alone with some cleverness, having a couple extra hands made it far easier. 51683
Installation was on my new 2014 Subaru Outback Limited 2.5. Received Hitch and wiring lighting quick. Installation took about 2 hours (mainly because I would stop and check out the NCAA tournament). Used technique posted by others who posted on this site. I did the installation solo. Used a step bit and enlarged holes already provided by Subaru. Removed muffler completely. Drilled hole using my step bit, in heat shield rather than cut out (gives it a more finished appearance). One thing I did that helped considerably since it was a solo install. I have a floor jack and I clamped the hitch in the mouth of the receiver with vice grips to the lift platform of the floor jack. I just rolled the hitch under the bolts, threaded the wire attached to the bolts through the hardware, jacked the hitch up slowly until bolts came through the hitch holes and secured and torqued the nuts. Highly recommend this hitch. Will use e-trailer again. 121595
by: Scott L.04/10/2014
Perfect fit, great product. With a little forum research I put this hitch on without a hitch! Anyone doing this to a Subaru Outback should do the research and DO NOT drill holes in the frame. The OEM bumper removal way was not hard. Tossed in a LED light from here which looks great when you're not towing something. Can't wait to tow something with my Do It Myself hitch, saved many hundreds and made me proud (the OEM hitch sticks out so this one is better than factory). The Subaru forum was indispensable help for this project. A lot of reviewers wrote of damaged packages and scratching, mine was perfect. Box to bumper in three hours, average mech. skills. 124569
by: Tim J09/04/2013
I installed this product on a brand new, less than 50 miles, 2014 Subaru Outback 2.5 Limited. Product was delivered promptly with all the parts. The box worked as a great platform to slid in and out from beneath the car, instead of rolling around on the concrete drive. Installation, due to others comments, tips, and the video made this a great experience, saving me at least half when compared to the dealer cost of a hitch. I did drive the rear up onto a set of solid paver blocks when I started, to give me just a few extra inches to get under the car comfortably once the hitch was placed up under the car and finish the install. I used a jack to lift the entire hitch into place, which made the wife very happy. I also drilled down with a step-bit from the trunk, using one of the existing inspection holes (the front-most hole). Doing this required the use of a wire snake to get the wire leads for the retainer and bolts threaded from the rear-most hole to the access hole. If you drilled an entirely new hole in the middle of the two existing access holes, you may not need the snake to get the wires into place. The unit aligned with the factory holes perfectly, making the final steps of bolting down the assembly a real breeze. I sprayed the trunk access hole with undercoating just to be safe, then covered it with metallic HVAC duct tape. I would recommend this hitch to anyone contemplating adding a hitch to a Subaru Outback. 98192
by: Happy Customer07/03/2013
etrailer processed and shipped my order promptly. The package arrived the next day in perfect condition. The installation instructions were very easy to follow. I installed the hitch via enlarging the drain-holes in the rear cargo compartment area (inside the vehicle) rather than drilling the frame rails (underneath the vehicle). Additionally, I did not cut a large rectangle out of the heat shield, rather I drilled a 3/4" hole through it to allow for the hitch bolt/nut to pass through. Total installation time was 1.25 hours and I was going slow and cleaning up as I went along. I would recommend this product and vendor in anyone. 87209
by: Steve F.10/29/2013
My new DrawTite hitch for a 2014 Outback surprisingly arrived without any boxing or wrapping. Just a shipping label wrapped around the receiver, which had the bag of parts tucked into it. I called eTrailer out on this, and they said it was packed up correctly when they sent it. UPS was the culprit. It was fine and unharmed nonetheless. Installation was fairly easy, and having the video was really helpful. I drilled 4 holes down from inside the back of the car behind the wheel wells with a 1-1/8" hole saw, instead of up through the frame, and it made it really easy to see the pre-drilled frame holes right below them to pass through the fish wires with the bolts. And now there are no extra holes underneath the car for rust and corrosion to attack. I covered the new holes I made with a couple of layers of metal HVAC tape, then put all the Styrofoam pieces back in place. Also, I reattached the whole heat shield after cutting the corner piece off, and then torqued the main bolts down. Having access to a lift at my local garage also made this a piece of cake. Lastly, I will mainly be using the hitch for a 4-bike Thule rack, which won't see much action throughout the winter. I put a fitted piece of the HVAC metal tape over the back of the receiver opening. If you put a cover on one end to keep out dirt and moisture, why not cover the other end as well??? 105601
by: Steve C.05/16/2014
Online ordering was a cinch and shipping was lightning fast. I had my usual mechanic install it for me for $135 which was well worth the expense. It looks great and is barely noticeable. I am only going to use it for my bike rack and possibly a cargo carrier. Will definitely get the cargo carrier from etrailer. I am a highly satisfied customer. 131008
by: Mark L02/16/2015
Installation went smooth. Just a described in the video. I used a Ratching Tie down attached to the hatchback latch loop on one end and then passed it through the center hole of the receiver and attached the other end to a hole in the frame along the midline. This made the installation easy as a one person install. The Tie down held the weight of the receiver while I aligned the bolts. The pictures attached are a recreation of what I did. Thanks. 174948
I installed this hitch on my 2013 Outback 3.6R. Even though I am somewhat mechanically inclined this installation took me a couple of hours due to a bit of OCD and not having any help lifting the hitch into place. The etrailer.com video was helpful but I made some changes. As some others have done, I enlarged the holes in the trunk versus drilling the frame underneath. The trunk metal is much thinner than the frame underneath and not really a structural part of the frame so it didn't bother me as much to drill it. I also drilled the heat shield holes versus cutting them as they are visible once everything is put back together (pic). To do this I just put the heat shields back with two bolts after removing the plugs in the frame, then I used a marker inserted through the factory holes in the trunk to mark the location for drilling with my hole saw. After the install was done I used metal hvac tape to cover the trunk holes for a clean look. For those interested, my local Home Depot sells 11/8" metal plugs in the hardware aisle that will snap right into your holes. The finished install is quite clean looking and the hitch is hardly noticeable. Note... the installation instructions say to torque the 7/16" nuts to 50 lb. ft. but they are actually 11/16". 95574
by: Scott C.05/27/2014
Ordered this from the really helpful folks at etrailer and it came very promptly and exactly when they said it would. I installed it on a 2014 Subaru Outback wagon using the OEM method which requires removing the rear bumper, which eliminates the need to drill additional holes in the uni-body frame. I hired a local autobody shop to do the bumper removal and replacement of the rear bumper. He and I removed the bumper and had the whole installation done in an hour. The Drawtite sits up snug underneath, is unobtrusive and does the job. 132672
As others have suggested, I drilled a hole from inside the spare tire area for installing the bolts. Again, as has been noted before, it is difficult to run the fish wires to the bolt holes as the fish wire's natural bend makes them want to go in opposite direction. Doing this job myself, I solved this problem by shoving another piece of semi-flexible wire (about 20" long) up through the bolt holes. With a small loop at the end to this piece, I was able to snag it when I saw it near the hole I had drilled. I then ran the end of the fish wire through the loop of the second "fish wire", bent it back onto itself to form another loop. For added security I taped both loop ends securely so I wouldn't loose the fish wire inside the frame channel, and pulled both wires out the bolt holes. Worked great! One other small note, just before you do the final tightening of the four hitch bolts, screw the two heat shield bolts through the hitch and into the frame. Now tighten and torque the hitch bolts. You can now remove the two heat shield bolts and install the heat shield. The alignment of the predrilled holes in the hitch were not exactly dead on and this step will prevent some frustration and spewing of expletives when trying to install the heat shield. 108312
by: Bob P04/03/2014
The hitch fits the Subaru Outback (2014) perfectly, and it does not stick out beyond the bumper, which is good. I would mention three things. First, it IS possible to perform a 1-man installation, fairly easily, if you have a car jack. As shown in the picture, put a bucket with a cover on the car jack and raise the hitch up. Use 2x4 scraps or anything else you have to push the rails up exactly where you want them, attach the washers and nuts, and you're done. Second, pay close attention to the backing plates for the carriage bolts. The shorter one MUST go in the rear hole and the longer one MUST go in the forward hole. Otherwise the plate in the forward hole (which is too short) will spin and you won't be able to tighten the nut. Then, everything has to come out and you start over. Bad karma. Third, to drill the 1 1/8 inch holes through the frame, go to Harbor freight Tools, or to a good hardware store and buy a step drill as shown in the picture. It will cut through the frame like butter, and cut exactly the right size hole in seconds 123592
by: Benny T.01/05/2014
Excellent fit on my 2014 Subaru Outback. I did not drill a hole underneath because the 2014 Outback has 4 observation holes in the trunk directly above the hits mounting holes covered with tape. All I need to do was enlarge them to insert the rectangular washer. Also instead of cutting the heat sheild I just drilled a hole where the bolt needs to pass..Easy installation. Took me less than 45 minutes. 111961
by: Mark S.06/22/2016
Installed the hitch yesterday. I fit perfectly - all holes lined up well. It sits somewhat behind the bumper, so it's not overly visible from the rear. I installed it by taking off the bumper facia and bumper so that I could access the frame tubes without drilling the 1 1/8 inch holes. It took considerably more time, but we keep our cars forever and I didn't like the thought of drilling such large holes. Getting the mounting hardware in place once the bumper was off was a snap. Getting the bumper into position was an ordeal. It was just me, and I couldn't raise the car. I finally got it up and aligned using an auto jack and two jack stands to support the hitch. It's just very awkward to work with. Everything went back together perfectly and the installation looks nice and clean. I also put in a wiring kit. Left the end in the wheel well rather than stringing it through to the outside. As someone notes in comments to the etrailer Youtube video, the wiring harness doesn't just magically appear like it does in the video. You have to take off the cargo hook and cut the upper blue tape and fish it out. Other than that, there's not much to it. 263604
Hitch came fast and well packed. Excellent welds and finish. Like several other people I chose to drill from the top - used a hole bit (not step) worked great but added the challenge of fishing out the cutouts, not really that hard. 2 hours to install on a 2106 Outback taking my time. A few tips, especially for those of you doing it by yourself: - the foam trays pop up easy with a screwdriver, but the clips will go flying and land in whatever the smallest space available is. - push the rubber frame plugs out from the top, and then make a mark on the heat shield so you know where to drill - take the muffler off, it will make it a lot easier to work, you won't have to mess with the forward most hanger, it's only 2 extra bolts. - take the 2 rear rubbers piece off the hanger but not off the muffler - use the box to slide around on under the car - get one rearmost bolt loosely fitted then slide over to the other rear, you can hold up the hitch pretty easily and prop it up on your side - before you tighten, pay close attention to the heat shield bolt holes on the muffler side - when sliding the muffler back into place, lube is your friend 247764
by: Henry Taber01/24/2011
Wow, this is a hard review...because everything fit up perfectly and went together exactly like the online video. I was amazed how easy it was. Took my nephew, who had never installed a hitch before, about 30 minutes for the hitch itself and about 20 minutes installing the wiring. Since the Outback had less than 500 miles on it he didn't want to break any interior plastic. I'm in a wheelchair and was getting the hitch to install a chair carrier platform on the back. It took longer to put the carrier together than install the hitch. 6029
by: Thurman K.09/16/2013
The hitch appears to be of high quality. It is heavy-gauge and the finish looks like it will withstand the weather for a long time. It came well packaged, and with all the hardware securely attached to the hitch itself -- not just loose in the box -- very nice. Installation went almost as smoothly as in the video :-/ After getting past 1. Deciding it was OK to drill two big holes in my new car, and 2. Actually drilling two big holes in my new car, the installation went pretty smoothly. The toughest part after the hole drilling, since I did it in my driveway, without benefit of a lift, was wrestling the hitch into position and getting the first two nuts threaded on. I used a floor jack to help me get the hitch in position. In hind sight, I should have cut a wooden bar of about 2 x 2 inches, and stuck it through the receiver out the front side so the jack could lift the hitch at its center of gravity, then I could have jacked it straight up into position. A nice addition to the kit would be two plastic plugs to use to fill the access holes. I used some spray-on undercoating to protect the drilled edges. 100094
by: Jack D.05/24/2015
Hitch arrived exactly as promised. I installed it last weekend in just an hour. I should add that I am a retired professional mechanic and do have a vehicle lift in my home garage. Aside from that, the instructions were very clear and explicit. All the parts were perfect fit, and the fishwire accessories are extremely clever. In fact, I intend to keep them in my toolbox for future use on other jobs. I recommend this receiver hitch kit without reservation, and will recommend Etrailer to anyone who needs trailer hitches and/or accessories. Thanks very much, Jack D. 196545
Great product, well designed, good not be easier to install. I am very handy but was intimidated by the prospect of this installation. You should not hesitate to install your own trailer hitch. Less than an hour of working time, I over thought the process so spent another hour preparing to make sure I did not make any mistakes. Wiring harness I bought was also very simple to install (less than 10 minutes). A few simple do's and don'ts based on my experience: Don't: - remove the bumper - remove the exhaust - not necessary, just lower it using a strap to hold it and prevent damage, I had plenty of working space - drill holes from the bottom Do: - enlarge the already existing holes from the trunk area - VERY easy to install this way - drill a hole in the heat shield to fit over the bolt, no need to trim the entire corner - get some help to lift the hitch into place - watch some of the excellent install videos on the website, I watched a few from different years and they offered slightly different tips that were very helpful. 129895
by: Stephanie C.06/25/2014
Product arrived very promptly, but ends of hitch had torn through the cardboard box and paint was scraped, as other reviewers have also noted. Touched it up with some black Rustoleum. DH went with the "bumper removal method" of installation to avoid adding extra holes to my Outback. This probably doubled the installation time! Total installation time about 5 hours, including a trip to the hardware store to replace a broken bolt-head (his fault - forgot to reinsert washer). Instructions that came with hitch did not include torque needed to tighten bolts - we were able to find that online elsewhere. Installation of the hitch itself went very easily except it was quite heavy to lift into place and get the nuts onto the bolts - I cannot imagine how one person could do this alone. Definitely a 2-person job at our house. Did not need to jack up the car - there was plenty of clearance under the Outback for an average-sized person. Once attached, it seems rock solid! Can't wait to load up our bike rack and go on vacation. 137578
Installation video and written instructions were good. For my 2012 Subaru Outback, two of the four muffler heat shield bolt holes were not aligned very well. It required grinding one of the holes open to get everything back together. The brackets also did not clear the underside portion of the bumper and needed about 1/4" x 1" trim on each side for everything to clear. These items are not major issues, but made installation a pain. 77540
Rack went on very well to my 2013 Subaru outback (4 cylinder). I recommend taking the muffler off (vs. lowering) and reattaching after the hitch is applied. Took me about 90 minutes. If you can read and operate a drill you can install this rack. Outback has enough clearance to just lie underneath and work right there. Pictures taken with the Kuat NV bike rack attached ... another excellent product. 71530
by: Scott Neal06/16/2015
I really like the way the product matches up without cutting away one of the heat shield bolt holes. The four wires for fishing in the bolts is nicer than one other I looked at that only gives you two. The hardware could be the only change I can think of. The four plates to be the same size and the nut and lock washer to be one so it would be easier when you have to do it all by yourself. 203695
by: Jack D02/03/2015
- Finding and ordering the correct hitch was simple on the ETrailer site. I felt vey confident that I was ordering the right one. - My order arrived VERY quickly. While the box looked like UPS wasn't thrilled to be delivering it (a little beat up), the hitch was in perfect condition. - The video and content of other reviews (drill from above, drill out the heat shield) made installation a breeze. While I am not tremendously mechanically inclined and I took my time because our Outback only has 250 miles on it, it still only took me about 2 hours. I had the help of my 15 year old son for the 15 minutes it took to hold up the hitch and thread the nuts onto the bolts. Installing it myself saved a great deal of money AND I think I got a much better quality hitch. All in all, a very positive experience indeed. This is the second hitch I have ordered from ETrailer. I ordered and installed a hitch on a CR-V about 6 years ago and was equally impressed with this company. 172344
by: Anna P.08/24/2015
I found this website on a Subaru forum and couldn't be more pleased with the friendly and professional service. I called, Courtney answered (a real live person!) and she helped me figure out what I needed and even went thru the differences of the hitches/price points. I was told my package (hitch and wiring set) would arrive by Friday and it was actually delivered to my doorstep on Wednesday! Super amazing :) I haven'y actually used the hitch yet but will in a few days when I hook an enclosed trailer to it to move from SoCal back up to Oregon. After my move I will be able to put a super sweet bike rack on the back of my car and take the Thule racks off the roof rails (kind of excited about that). I will update my review with pics when I get the trailer hooked up to my new hitch :) I would reccomend this company to absolutely everyone I know. The service and prices are unbeatable and Courtney was so friendly and genuine. No fake-talk or upselling. Very refreshing. 221353
by: Paul H.03/30/2012
Easy to install providing you have some sort of mechanical knowledge . I did as another fellow did , I drilled my holes from inside the trunk area , as there was pilot holes already in place from the factory ! Much easier to install the plates/bolts this way , as they drop straight down , and at the same time , it keeps the frame rails sturdy . I didn't like the idea of weaking my frame rails , by drilling such a large hole in that area , and at the same token , allowing water to eventually rust the frame , even if a sealer is used . And last of all , be sure you have a second person to help align the hitch , when installing the nuts , washers and spacers . Unfortunately , Subaru only recomends a 200lb. tounge wieght , which to me is unexceptable and in turn limits me in what I'm able to tow . Just be sure you weigh your load before towing it ! 35607
by: Todd H02/06/2014
Etrailer.com was the perfect site for me. I am an research junkie and I was able to select the best hitch for my 2012 Subaru Outback using all of the tools available (customer reviews, installation videos, photos, Q&A, etc.) The hitch was delivered in 2 days in great condition. Installation took me about 1:30. I could not get the muffler bolts to move and didn't want to risk breaking anything, so I lowered the muffler assembly. That added a little time. I elected the top down installation that others customers suggested and found that to be pretty easy. The one thing I would add is that most DIY customer reviews overlooked torquing the bolts to specification. I would highly recommend purchasing a torque wrench ($25-30) at your local hardware store and doing so. I suspect the etrailer.com techs would say this is a must do for good reason. Not only would I use etrailer.com again, I just upgraded my bicycle rack to a platform style. 115874
by: Rick O11/19/2012
The hitch arrived on schedule and the install was pretty easy. Thanks to the suggestions of other customers I widened the observation holes from inside the car rather than drilling new holes in the frame. I also pulled the muffler rather than mess with holding it up with a strap. I propped the hitch into place using a couple of 2x4s so an extra set of hands were not needed. The only issue I had was that the nuts supplied in the package were 3/8 and the carriage bolts were 7/16. I spent a little too much time trying to get the too small nuts on, thinking that I was just not coordinated enough. I finally pulled one of the bolts back out and verified that the nuts were the wrong size. I made a quick trip down to Ace and got the correct size nuts. All went well after that. The video instructions, the correspondence and the quick turn around on the order were all excellent but I have to give 4/5 for the wrong size nuts. 59704
by: Joe D10/28/2013
I ordered the hitch on a Tuesday and received it Thursday, and this was with the free shipping. I had watched a couple of installation videos at etrailer before ordering. They convinced me the project was doable. The instructions that came with the hitch were accurate and all parts were included. The Subaru has just enough ground clearance that I was able to install the hitch myself with the car sitting in the carport. A few tips: -Safety glasses or face shield for the drilling. Long sleeved shirt will keep hot chips off of your arm too. -If you're scooting around on the floor as I was, make sure to slide out and sweep up the chips after drilling. -Remove the rear-most rubber muffler hanger before mounting the hitch. The clearance hole in the hitch is large enough for the hanger post but not the rubber. Based on my experience, I highly recommend etrailer. I will be purchasing from them again. 105378
by: Brad N.10/19/2014
Shipping was fast. Just installed this morning and it took about 3 hours by myself. I watched the videos and read the previous postings and decided I would drill from the bottom and just put one hole per side. After drilling, I sprayed the exposed metal with a primer to help prevent rust. I noticed that the holes are covered by the hitch once it's install so I wasn't too worried about corrosion. One thing I did try since I was by myself was to use zip ties to secure the hitch to my floor jack which made placing the jack super easy. I did double up on them after the first set snapped but double worked perfect. You also definately want to use WD-40 on the hangars both remove and install, makes it very easy. 156781
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