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Trailer Hitches, Front Mount Hitches, Fifth Wheels, Goosenecks, RV Hitches, and Weight Distribution

Custom fit trailer hitches are available for virtually every vehicle. At etrailer.com we carry rear mount trailer hitches, front mount, fifth wheels, goosenecks, RV trailer hitches, and weight distribution systems from the best manufacturers such as Draw-tite, Hidden Hitch, Reese, Torklift and Curt. You will also find a complete selection of hitch accessories and related products such as bike racks, cargo carriers, hitch covers, ballmounts, and locks.


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Trailer Hitch Information Videos

How To Tow a Trailer

Today we are going to review the components needed to pull a trailer. Basically, this video is designed for somebody who just decided they have a need for a trailer, so we will cover all the components in the most basic form, so you know exactly how to update your vehicle. What we are going to do is start from the truck and work our way back to the trailer. First off, we are going to show you the hitch itself. All vehicles require a hitch to pull a trailer. What this device does is makes an attaching point on the frame of the vehicle, or body components, and transmits the forces from the trailer to this one point here. This point here is the receiver part. Consequently this hitch is called a receiver hitch because this hitch can receive a draw bar, or also called a ball mount. It is held in place by this pin which we just ed, and this clip holds it in place. There are more fancier pins, like locking pins, but that is the basic thing you need right there to get the job done. 1:12


Cleaning Weld Nuts for Trailer Hitch Installation

Okay as you can see here on the drivers side, our weld nut has a lot of corrosion built up in there. And when we try to install our 10 millimeter bolt is not wanting to start at all, in fact it almost seems like the bolt is too big for the weld nut. It is a common misconception, again when the weld nuts got a lot of build up in there.


Lowering Exhaust Example for Trailer Hitch Installation

The first step to do is to lower the exhaust and we will do that by taking off the rubber hangers on the front and back, and there is one hidden in the back.


Class III Trailer Hitch and Weight Capacities Review

Traditionally a class III receiver hitch is good for trailers up to 5000 pounds and 500 pounds tongue weight. There are a few different variances from that, well show you that here in a second. Again were going to start with the stickers and show you the differences, as you can see here the max gross trailer weight is 5000 pounds as we discussed. The tongue weight looks to be 500 pounds, again about 10percent of your trailer weight. On the other side of the class III you will see a sticker for weight distribution. That is a specification when you use a device that goes in between the truck and the trailer that takes up the tongue weight. What it does is distributes the weight between the truck and the trailer and allows you to carry a heavier weight. As far as a class III hitch is concerned, that increases the rating the hitch can handle.


Class II Trailer Hitch and Weight Capacities Review

Now well move on to a class II receiver hitch. Well cover the weights on the sticker and cover a couple of differences on the receiver tube itself. You see here it says weight carrying ballmount that means the ballmount going into the receiver and the ball, that is what that means. You see here where it says weight distribution that is a separate device that allows you to carry heavier weights, that does not really apply to class II receiver hitches. Again by itself on the hitch its rated for 3500 pounds, that is the total weight. The tongue weight is listed at 300 pounds. On the details of the Class II hitch, there is not too many details on it compared to a class one. Basically all class II hitches have this ring that goes around the end of the tube. This is so at a quick glance you are working with a class II.


Class I Trailer Hitch and Weight Capacities Review

Were going to start off with this example here which is a class I hitch. Class I means this hitch is good for trailers up to 2000 pounds. What were going to show you over here is the sticker which shows the different weights and capacities involved. Well show you what those mean. As you can see by the sticker here, were going to show you some notes on it, these stickers will apply to any class hitch that you come across. Once you figure out what this means, you are home free. Starting here at max gross trailer weight which shows 2000 pounds. So that means the total weight you can pull with your trailer, for example if your load on your trailer is 500 pounds, you have 1500 pounds of weight to put on it so it remains at a safe capacity for this hitch. Moving on to this next number which is max gross tongue weight, it shows 200 pounds there.


How To Clean Weld Nuts

A common problem that we run into with a lot of our vehicles that have existing weld nuts in the bottom of the frame is that when you go to try to put a bolt in them you have an excessive amount of road grime or rust built up in there and when you go to put your bolt inside the weld nuts you find not only does it not want to thread but it also appears that the bolt is too big for the weld nut. The first thing that typically comes to mind is that the bolts that I received are too big and 99.9 percent of the time this is not the case. What we have actually got here is an excessive amount of rust and debris built up in the weld nuts that are preventing the bolt from starting. We are going to show you how to get those thoroughly cleaned out so that we can not only get our bolt started but to get it threaded completely into the weld nut. 00:41


How to Make a Thread Tap

Today we are going to show you a cheat. In some cases you are going to have a hitch that uses threaded holes in the bottom of the frame. Those holes are going to be probably corroded up within a few years of the vehicle being on the road with dirt, grime, salt corrosion, you name it is probably in there inside the fine thread. What you want to do is clean out the threads probably with an existing hitch bolt if it is lightly corroded and you can probably work it in and out a few times and do that. 00:20


Drilling a Spare Tire Pan for a Trailer Hitch Installation

What we will do next is tighten this down just enough to snug it to hold it in place, and then we will see where to drill or holes out using the hitch as a template. We will use the hitch as a template to drill or holes, so we will just use a drill and let the hitch do the work for us, we will punch right through this thin metal with a half-inch bit.


Lowering Exhaust Hangers

Alright we will get started by lowering the exhaust. These rubber hangers here will need lubricant sprayed on them to make it easier to get them off. Before we lower the exhaust we are actually going to put a safety strap underneath here so we can control the exhaust as we lower it. See how we can control it.


Handle Nut Demonstration

Today we are going to show you the proper operation of a handle nut. Basically, a lot of hitch installs will use this type of device here. You can manipulate this handle any way you want to, to run this nut into an area that has a tight fit. You can bend this at will, basically. Just take it like this and bend it, and then put another hook into it, and make a handle like that. And you can thread it into the frame, where you can actually run your bolt through the bottom of it. All right, and now we will go ahead actually and install this handle nut on a typical application.


Drilling to Enlarge a Frame Hole for Hitch Install

On this hitch we have to enlarge this hole to a half-inch and there is one on the opposite side we have to do the same thing with.


Weld Nut Removal and Replacement Review

So you are in the middle of doing your hitch installation and you are in the process of taking out one of your existing factory bolts. In the process you find that the bolt is not coming out due to the fact that the weld nut inside the frame has broken. We are just going to go ahead and show you a couple of things you can do to not only get the bolt out of the way but to also go ahead and continue on to be able to put your hitch in position without the weld nut welded inside the frame. The first thing that we obviously need to do is go ahead and get the bolt out of here. There are a couple of different ways you can do this. You can take a chisel, is you have one large and strong enough to do so, and possible grind the head of the bolt off. Or you can actually take a torch and torch it off. And that is actually what we are going to do on this application here. I am going to try to get most or as much of the head of the bolt off as I can. And we will take and push the remaining section of the bolt-weld nut combination up inside the frame. 0:49


FAQ Trailer Hitch Exhaust Rattle

Today on our 2010 Lincoln MKX were going to address the exhaust rattle issue. There are a couple of reasons for occasional contact between hitch and exhaust. One, the manufacturers have loose tolerances from mounting the hangers that suspend exhaust systems. Final placement of the exhaust can vary slightly from vehicle to vehicle. The flexibility of rubber isolator connecting exhaust hanger to the vehicle frame allows for more movement of the exhaust system relative to other vehicle components. An isolator can also stretch over time.


Hitch Class Receiver Sizes FAQ

Today were going to go ahead and review the various classes of hitches starting from the smallest working our way up to the largest.Some good terms to know about receiver hitches. Tongue weight. Thats the amount of weight of the trailer thats pushing down on the hitch ball. Trailer weight will be a larger number and that will include the weight of your trailer plus whatever is on top of it or in it.When you get to two-inch receivers, you can use whats called Weight Distribution. Which this is a separate device that goes between the trailer hitch and the trailer. It takes tongue weight, picks it up and what it does it distributes that weight over the axles of the truck and the trailer.




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Articles about Trailer Hitch



Trailer Hitch Questions and Answers

  • Recommended Trailer Hitch for Cherokee 2015 Latitude 2x4
  • The Curt Class III Hitch, part # C13172 is indeed a fit for your 2015 Cherokee Latitude. If you don't already have a bike rack, you can't go wrong with the Thule Hitching Post Pro, part # TH934XTR, which is a popular bike rack for our customers who own the 2014 or 2015 Cherokee. If you'll be transporting women's bikes or bikes with sharply-angled top tubes, you might also consider a frame adapter bar like part # 64005. The bar spans the distance between the handlebar gooseneck and...
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  • Does the Draw-Tite Class I Hitch # 24925 Have a Stop Punched Into the Receiver Tube
  • Hidden Hitch and Draw-Tite brand Class I hitches will all have the stop punched or welded into the receiver tube to prevent higher capacity Class II accessories from being used. This is intentionally done as a safety measure. Overloading the hitch can cause the receiver tube to bend or the hitch attachment points to the vehicle to fail. Curt offers a Class I, part # C11355 that don't have the stop in the receiver tube. This being said, only a Class I rated accessory should be used in...
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  • Hitch Recommendation for a 1997 Oldsmobile 88 for Towing
  • For a hitch confirmed to fit your 1997 Oldsmobile 88 you would want the Draw Tite Hitch part # 36211. This hitch will attach to the frame of your vehicle and has towing capacities of 3,500 lbs total trailer weight and 300 lbs tongue weight. You will need to check the owners manual of your vehicle to determine the capacity for the vehicle and be sure not to exceed this figure. To complete your towing setup you may also be interested in the following products. Class II Drawbar 3-1/8"...
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  • Hitch Recommendation for a 2014 Toyota Camry Hybrid for Carrying Bike Rack
  • I have a solution for you, but since the Curt Hitch part # C12107 requires the use of a stabilizer strap like part # 18050 when used with a non-supported accessory like a bike rack I would instead recommend you go with the Draw Tite Hitch part # 36540 as it doesn't have the requirement. This way you won't have anything contacting any painted surfaces of your vehicle while carrying your bikes. The tech tips for this hitch install on your vehicle state that drilling is required for...
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  • 2015 Nissan Murano Hitch Recommendation
  • The Hidden Hitch Trailer Hitch # 87679 that you referenced is a new hitch that has been confirmed to fit your 2015 Nissan Murano. It does not fit older models of the Murano, only the 2015. I confirmed this by checking with Hidden Hitch. The Hidden Hitch that fits the older Muranos is actually part # 87486. If you plan on doing some towing you might be interested in etrailer ball mount kit # 989900. It comes with 2 ball mounts; one with a 3/4 inch rise or 2 inch drop and one with a...
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  • Cargo Carrier Recommendation for a 2001 Ford Taurus with Draw Tite Hitch # 24699
  • The issue that you are running into is that the Draw Tite hitch part # 24699 that you referenced is a Class I hitch and the cargo carrier you bought is a Class II only accessory. That tab that you have found in the hitch is designed to prevent Class II accessories from being used in the hitch. This is so you don't overload the hitch. Realistically the only solution I can recommend for you would be to go with a Class I rated cargo carrier like the # C18145. Check out the review video...
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  • What Size Socket or Wrench Is Needed to Install Curt Hitch part # 13322
  • The install hardware that is included with the Curt Hitch part # 13322 that you referenced includes bolts that are M14-2.00. That size of bolt head calls for a 21 millimeter socket or wrench. I attached an install video for you to check out as well.
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  • Trailer Hitch Recommendation for a 2004 Volkswagen Jetta GLS
  • The reason the Curt Hitch part # C11070 that you referenced won't fit a GLI is because the GLI models have OEM ground effects. The GLS models do not have the ground effects so the # C11070 would fit. I attached an install video for you to check out as well. If you are looking to doing any light towing with your vehicle, I would also recommend these items listed below. Wiring Kit # 119178KIT 2 inch Hitch Ball # 19258 1-7/8 inch Hitch Ball # 19256
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  • Recommended Trailer Hitch and Ball Mount for a 2009 Chevy HHR
  • The trailer hitch I recommend is the Draw-Tite Class I # 24756 and Draw-Tite ball mount # 3594 because the top of the receiver to the ground is 10-1/4 inches and the ball mount will give you a 4-inch rise. As a result, giving you a 14-1/4 inch ground clearance and stay above the 13-1/2 inches. The weight will bring the clearance down a tad from the 14-1/4 inch clearance which will keep your trailer more level. The wiring for your 2009 Chevy HHR is # 118407 and 1-7/8 hitch ball is # 19256.
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  • Trailer Hitch for Carrying 350lb Dirt Bike in Hitch Mounted Carrier on 1999 Ford Explorer
  • The Curt Class III hitch you referenced, part # 13540 will indeed allow you to retain the full-sized spare in place under the rear of the vehicle. If the 350 lb figure you mentioned is just the weight of the bike, not including the carrier you'll be overloading the hitch. In that case, I'd recommend the Draw-Tite Class III, part # 75096 which has a 500 TW capacity and would also allow the spare tire to remain in place. Even if that 350 lb figure included the weight of the carrier, I'd...
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  • Hitch Mounted Options for Carrying 540lb Motorcycle with 2001 Nissan Frontier
  • Although we do offer tray-style motorcycle carriers, the 400-500 lb tongue weight capacity of the hitch, which is the maximum downward force that can safely be applied, would be exceeded by the weight of your bike. This would cause the hitch or its attachment points on the truck to fail while you're transporting the bike, which would be very bad. If your bike is smaller than a 750cc, a hitch mounted carrier like part # RHMC2 would be a good alternative if the tires on your bike are between...
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  • Hitch, Cargo Carrier, and Accessory Recommendations for 2014 Chevrolet Orlando 1LT
  • Yes, the Curt Class I Trailer Hitch Receiver, # C11278, is the correct hitch for your 2014 Chevrolet Orlando 1LT. Please keep in mind that Curt does require the use of Support Strap, # 18050, for all non-trailer loads including bike racks, cargo carriers and so forth. Failure to properly support these loads will void your hitch warranty from Curt. As for a cargo carrier, the 20x48 Pro Series Cargo Carrier, # 6500, with angled shank for added ground clearance is a great choice. In an...
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  • Clearance Issues with 2015 Subaru Outback with Hidden Hitch Trailer Hitch and Yakima Holdup 2
  • We have not yet taken that measurement but I can tell you how to determine the bumper clearance measurement. To determine if the Yakima Holdup Bike Rack # Y02443 will work on your vehicle when carrying bikes and folded on your 2015 Subaru Outback, the measurement from the center of the hitch pin hole to the farthest back portion of the rear bumper is needed. We installed the Hidden Hitch Trailer Hitch, # 87568, on a 2014 Outback and measured 4-1/2 inches from the center of the hitch...
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  • Class III Trailer Hitch Fit for 1997 Ford F-150 with Flareside Bed
  • Yes, the trailer hitch you referenced, Curt Class III # 13355, is indeed a confirmed fit for the 1997 Ford F-150 with flareside bed. This hitch bolts on with included hardware with no drilling required. You will need to temporarily lower your 20-inch (or smaller) spare tire for installation. If you have a larger spare then the hitch will not fit unless you relocate the spare. An installation video is linked for you. I did go to our warehouse to measure the hitch for you; its overall...
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  • Trailer Hitch Recommendation for a 2000 Toyota Tacoma
  • For a Draw Tite Hitch that has been confirmed to fit your 2000 Toyota Tacoma you would want the part # 75078. The part # 75031 that you referenced is designed to fit older Toyota trucks so I cannot recommend it for you. If you plan on doing some towing you might be interested in etrailer ball mount kit # 989900. It comes with 2 ball mounts; one with a 3/4 inch rise or 2 inch drop and one with a 2-3/4 inch rise or 4 inch drop. It also includes a 1-7/8 inch ball, 2 inch ball, hitch...
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  • Trailer Hitch Recommendation for a 2005 Subaru Forester
  • The difference between the Curt Hitches part # C120383 and part # C12038 is that the # C120383 comes with a ball mount that you would use for towing and the other hitch does not. Either hitch would fit your 2005 Subaru Forester. I attached an install video for you to check out as well. Then you will need to add a properly sized ball and the wiring. Those items are not included with the hitch. For a 1-7/8 inch ball use # 19256 and for a 2 inch ball use # 19258. For trailer wiring...
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  • Trailer Hitch Recommendation for a 2015 Volkswagen Golf
  • All of the hitches we offer for the 2015 Volkswagen Golf are confirmed to fit all models except for the R models. The Draw Tite hitch part # 24925 that you referenced will fit either a TDI or the gas models so it would be the one to use as long as you don't get the R model with the center exhaust. With that being said, I recommend the ball mount # C45016 as it fits 1-1/4 inch trailer hitch receivers. For a 1-7/8 inch hitch ball, go with # 19256. For a 2-inch hitch ball # 19258...
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  • Trailer Hitch Recommendation for a 2014 Ford Escape
  • The etrailer.com Ball Mount Kit part # 989900 does not include a wrench to tighten the hitch ball down. For a wrench to go with this kit you would want the part # 62342. For a trailer hitch the part # 87627 that you referenced would be the correct hitch to use. I attached an install video for you to check out as well. For trailer wiring you would want the part # 118566.
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  • Hitch Recommendation for a 2012 Dodge Ram 1500 without Factory Hitch
  • For your 2012 Ram 1500 without a factory hitch the correct part number for a Curt Class IV hitch would be the # 14374. The # 1461 is designed to fit older 1500 models so it would not work for you. I attached an install video for you to check out as well.
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  • What Vehicles does the Curt Hitch Part # C13149 Fit
  • The Curt Hitch part number # C13149 that you referenced will fit 2006-2015 Toyota RAV4s. When you sell the hitch you can have the person who buys it check out the link I attached for info on how to install it. If the install hardware has been used you will need to replace it with new hardware. For that you would need part # RHK. You will need to select Curt from the drop down menu on the product page and enter the part number in the box provided.
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