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Blue Ox Ascent Non-Binding Tow Bar Installation - 2018 Jeep JK Wrangler Unlimited

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How to Install the Blue Ox Ascent Non-Binding Tow Bar on a 2018 Jeep JK Wrangler Unlimited


Rob: Hey everybody. Rob here at etrailer.com. Today we're going to be taking a look at the Blue Ox Ascent Tow Bar on our 2018 Jeep Wrangler JK Unlimited. Now our tow bar is what's actually going to be connecting our motor home to our Jeep when we want to flat tow it. It's going to hook directly to the base plate and go right into the receiver tube on our motor home. Just keep in mind this is only one component that we need to flat tow your Jeep safely.

You'll need a base plate, a tow bar, tow bar wiring, a braking system and safety cables.Now it is pretty nice that our tow bar comes with safety cables, because that's one less thing we have to remember to get. And they're coiled, so you can see it's going to keep all that slack off the ground and prevent them from dragging when we're driving.One of my favorite features of this tow bar is the fact that it has a non-binding design. That's what these levers are here. Whenever we go to tow, the arms are going to extend out into a rigid towing position. And getting hooked up is pretty easy, but the problem comes in after we get towing and we're moving down the road, the arms end up getting really tight and they're get in kind of a bind.

Now this lever here is going to take all that tension off the arms and allow us to unhook extremely easy.Traditional style tow bars that are not nonbinding, typically this pin right here that's holding the tow bar to the base plate can get stuck or jammed or bound up in there. And again, hooking up's pretty easy. We can line everything up, put our pins in, but again, once we start towing, there's a lot of force on this pin and it can be extremely hard to remove. But since the lever's built into the tow bar, there's no extra tools that we're going to have to have. We can simply pull that lever.

The tension will come off and then we can unhook and pull the pin out.And you can see the arms on our tow bar pretty long. And those extended arms are going to make it a lot easier for us to hook up. We won't have to be directly in line behind our motor home. We can be off a little bit and that extra length of arm is going to make it that much easier to hook up. Not to mention when we're trying to go around turns and go around a gas pump or something, this is going to make the Jeep track a lot easier and better behind our motor home.You'll notice that we're going to have these boots over the arms.

Now these are going to help protect the inner arm because they're going to be telescoping in and out. The boot's going to make sure that none of that dirt, debris, moisture, or anything else is going to get inside, so the arms will slide in and out easily, make it easy for us to hook up and unhook for a long time.Now whenever we're not towing and we want to unhook our tow bar, the really nice thing is we're not going to have to worry about taking it in and out of the hitch and finding somewhere to put it. Simply unhook from our base plate with the arm up. I always like to replace the pins so we don't lose them. Once we have it unhooked from our Jeep, we can bring the arms together, rotate it upwards, and then we can rotate it to the side. It will actually store on the back of our motor home. Now we can either store both arms to the left or the right, whichever is easier for you making sure there's no obstructions like a ladder or anything else you have on the back.But I do realize there's times where we do need to take our tow bar out. Maybe we're going to put it in storage and we don't want to leave it at the back here. Well the nice thing is, is that our tow bar is made completely out of aluminum, so it's pretty lightweight and really easy to move around. You can see I have it with one hand. It's pretty lightweight considering how big it is and the fact that it's aluminum means it's going to be rust-proof as well.Now despite it's light weight, it still maintains a 7,500 pound weight capacity, which is more than enough for our Jeep to be flat towed. Now the Ascent is going to be compatible with Blue Ox Base Plates, as well as Curt's Base Plates like we have here and there are some other manufacturers base plates that'll fit. It's just required it's after that is sold separately, but you can find those here at etrailer.com.Now one important thing I want to mention is that when you're hooking up your tow bar, you want to make sure that it's as level as you can get it. Now we are allowed a variance of three inches up or down with the difference between our base plate and our hitch on our motor home. You don't want to go any farther than that. And the easiest way to tell the difference is if you park your motor home on a nice flat level service, measure to the center of the pin hole, and then put your Jeep on a nice flat level service and measure to the center of the attachment point on your base plate. If the difference is any more than three inches, you'll need a high-low adapter. And we have a wide variety of high-low adapters with different sizes, rises, and drops and weight capacities here at etrailer.com.We're going to go ahead and continue hooking up the rest of our components, so we can take our Jeep and motor home for a quick test drive. As I'm driving to the parking lot, you can see how well my Jeep is tracking behind the motor home. Even in these tight spots, we can go around these turns and not have to worry about it. That's because those extended arms are really giving us a really good turning radius, just makes it really easy for the Jeep to track behind the motor home.Now that we've seen the tow bar in action and gone over some of the features, let's make sure you know how to get everything set up from start to finish. To get our tow bar hooked up, we want to make sure we slide it into the receiver tube on our motor home and secure it down with a pin and clip. And we can just raise the arms to where they're upright. We're going to rotate them towards our Jeep, bring them down, then we can spread the arms open and go ahead and remove the retaining pin and the large pin. Now you'll notice on the ends of the arms here, there is an arrow that says up, so we want to make sure that's pointing up when you're bring the arm over to our base plate. We'll line those triple lugs up with the hole, put the pin through, and secure it with the retaining ring. Let's do the same thing for the other arm.When we want to grab the safety cables that come with it, we'll work one end to our base plate. Since this is the passenger side, I'm going to take the other end of my safety cable, and I'm going to cross it underneath the tow bar and go to the driver's side on the hitch. We'll do the exact opposite with the other one. We'll hook up the driver's side on our Jeep, go underneath across our tow bar, connect it to the passenger center of our hitch. And that's it. Now all we have left to do is hook up the rest of our flat tow setup, put our Jeep into tow mode and hit the road.But again, I'm Rob and that'll finish up your look at the Blue Ox Ascent Tow Bar on our 2018 Jeep Wrangler JK Unlimited.


Info for this part was:

Employee Joshua S
Video by:
Joshua S
Employee Aidan B
Video by:
Aidan B
Employee Jacob T
Video Edited:
Jacob T
Employee Dustin K
Video Edited:
Dustin K
Employee Kathleen M
Installed by:
Kathleen M
Employee Robert C
Test Fit:
Robert C
Employee David F
Test Fit:
David F
Employee Ryan G
Test Fit:
Ryan G

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