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Slider Handle on Curt Q20 5th Wheel Hitch # C16536 is Difficult to Pull Out

Question:

My Ford dealer installed, or had installed, a Q20 hitch and R20 slider in my 2017 F350 short bed before I took delivery. The slider release lever is extremely hard to pull out. Felt like I was going to get a hernia trying to pull it out. Feels like maybe binding. If I work at it it finally lets me pull it out with a lot of tension on the spring and I can rotate the lever towards the cam to lock t in place.and the slider comes free. Is this typical? Is there an adjustment for the spring tension? Is there an installation problem? This is with no trailer attached. Will I even be able to pull it out when the trailer is attached and putting some forward or reverse pressure on the hitch? Havent pulled a trailer with it yet, but will be picking up my new 5th wheel on Wednesday. This is my first 5th wheel hitch, so I could use some advice.

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Expert Reply:

If the rails that Curt trailer hitch # C16536 is sitting in are not square that could be causing some issues but it probably would not have much affect on the slider handle. If the rails aren't square then the hitch would not easily slide. If it does slide just fine then squareness would not be the issue.

We have one of these set up in our show room so I went to see how it functioned. Pulling the handle out does take a bit of force but nothing that should give you a hernia! The handle only pulls out about 1-1/2 inches or so. If you are not pulling it straight out then that could be the problem. Pulling it at an angle could cause the notch in the handle rod to get hung up on the hitch making it difficult to pull.

It is also possible that the mechanism needs to be greased. There are 2 points that require grease: on the rod at the spring (driver's side) and at the smaller diameter end on the other side. I have linked the instructions for the roller/slider assembly which points on the areas that need to be greased. Using a spray version of white lithium grease will make it easier to reach those locations.

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