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Trailer Hitch Types Review

Custom Fit Trailer Hitch

Trailer Hitches come in a variety of different styles to meet a wide range of towing and cargo carrying needs. Following is a review of the main types of trailer hitches and their typical uses.


Hitch Types:





Trailer Hitch Receiver

The most common type of trailer hitch, also refers to "bumper pull" hitches. The standard hitch is a piece of steel that will typically bolt to the vehicle frame. They have a wide variety of uses. The most common include:

  • Towing a trailer
  • Carrying a bike rack
  • Carrying a cargo carrier
  • use any of the hitch mounted accessory

Trailer Hitch

These types of hitches come several different styles, but the majority of them are designated into classes ranging from I to V. The classes provide a guide for the two most important aspects of a trailer hitch: weight capacity and receiver opening size.


Trailer Hitch

  • Classes range from I to V
    • A "class" is a way of defining the weight rating and receiver opening size of a hitch
  • Hitches within the same class will have similar weight capacities
  • Designed for use with removable ball mounts
  • Custom built according to the vehicle manufacturer and model year to ensure perfect fit
  • Most hitches bolt to the vehicle frame using existing holes
  • Towing capacities typically range from 1,000 pounds to 17,000 pounds
  • Construction is solid and, in most cases, all-welded for maximum strength and safety

If you would like to learn more, we have a review of hitch classes article and a hitch classes video.





Fifth Wheel Hitch

5th wheel
  • Designed for heavy duty towing with pickup trucks
  • Capacities range from 15,000 to 30,000 pounds
  • Installs inside the truck bed
  • Because the hitch must remain in front of the rear axle, long-bed full-size trucks are recommended
  • If a short-bed truck will be used, it is recommended that a Slider Fifth Wheel Hitch or Sidewinder is used
    • Without a slider or Sidewinder, the trailer can strike the cab on sharp turns
    • If a fifth wheel hitch with slider is used, an extended pin box (min. 13") is recommended to create even more space between the truck cab and the trailer.

You may also be interested in our fifth wheel information article.





Gooseneck Hitch

Gooseneck Trailer Hitch
  • Designed for heavy duty towing with pickup trucks
  • Typical uses include towing horse trailers and construction trailers
  • Typical capacity is 30,000 pounds, but is limited by capacity of truck
  • Installs in truck bed, similar to a fifth wheel hitch
  • Can be used with short bed trucks
  • Allows for maximum use of the truck bed while still allowing the vehicle to tow gooseneck trailers
  • Some gooseneck hitches fold down or install under the truck bed, allowing full use of the truck bed when not towing
  • Others can be removed by releasing the attachment pins




Front Mount Trailer Hitch

Front Mount Trailer Hitch

Front mount trailer hitches are a great accessory for carrying additional gear or equipment. They work well for use when launching boats, carrying a winch, spare tire, or bike rack.

  • Typically used on trucks and SUVs
  • Uses include carrying a spare tire, launching boats, and mounting winches, bike racks or snowplows
  • Designed for use with removable ball mounts
  • Custom built according to the vehicle manufacturer and model year to ensure perfect fit
  • Most hitches bolt to the vehicle frame using existing holes
  • Construction is solid and all-welded for maximum strength and safety




Specialty Trailer Hitch

RV Bumper 2" Trailer Hitch Receiver

Specialty trailer hitches come in a wide variety of styles and are typically designed to meet a very specific need. They range from light duty, fixed tongue hitches that are intended for small vehicles that need to do light duty towing, to invisible hitches that are completely concealed from view, or heavy duty weld-on hitches for towing large trailers.

  • Invisible Hitch
  • Fixed Tongue Hitch
  • Weld-On Hitch
  • RV bumper mount trailer hitch
    • For bike racks and cargo carriers

For more information about specialty trailer hitches, you can read our specialty trailer hitch review.






















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