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etrailer.com Trailer Hitch Installation - 2019 Subaru Outback Wagon

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How to Install the etrailer.com Trailer Hitch on a 2019 Subaru Outback Wagon


Today on our 2019 Subaru Outback Wagon we're going to be taking a look at, and showing you how to install, the etrailer Class 3 Custom Fit Trailer Hitch Receiver. Part number E98847.So here's what our hitch looks like once we have it installed. The cross-tube is going to sit right below the bumper here and be visible. It is going to give us a 2" receiver tube opening. Since our hitch is a Class 3 it's going to have a really big variety of accessories that we could mount up all the way from a ball mount, bike rack, or a cargo carrier.Now the way we're going to mount all of those accessories, the hitch pin hole here on the side. It is going to accept a standard 5/8th pin and clip.

Now these are not included with the hitch, but you can pick them up here at etrailer.com along with some locking devices to keep your accessories secure. Notice a chain connection point, it's ggt be a plate style welded to the bottom. As you can see we're not going to have too much trouble getting most size hooks on or off.Now one thing I really like about the etrailer hitch opposed to a lot of the other ones is going to be the finish. This is going to have a matte black, carbide style finish on it opposed to the really high gloss finish that you see on most hitches. Not only is it going to help protect it from rust and corrosion but it's also going to hide dirt and scratches a lot better.Now as far as the weight capacity goes for our hitch it's going to have a 600 pound tongue weight, which is the maximum downward force at the receiver tube.

Along with a 4,000 gross trailer weight rating. That's the amount it can pull including the trailer and everything we have loaded on it. Now with all those numbers in mind you should always double check your Subaru's owners manual and never exceed the manufacturer's recommended weight.I'd like to give you a few measurements, and that's going to help you whenever you're looking at accessories for your new hitch. From the center of the hitch pin hole to the outer most edge of the bumper it's right about 3-1/2". That measurements going to come in handy when you're looking at folding accessories to make sure you have enough room and that they're not going to come in contact with the rear bumper.

From the ground to the inside top edge of the receiver tube opening is going to be right about 16". That measurements going to help you out whenever you're looking for a ball mount to make sure you find the appropriate rise or drop to match up to your trailer.So now that we've seen what our hitch looks like and gone over some of the features let's show you how to get it installed.To begin our installation we're going to come to the back of our Subaru and we're going to need to lower down the exhaust. Before we do I'm going to put a strap up to support it so it doesn't cause any damage. So you want to find a solid connecting point somewhere on the frame and have that strap there to support it. To lower the exhaust we're going to have a hanger, we're going to have one at the back of the muffler towards the middle of our Subaru, and they'll be another one towards the front on the edge of the muffler here.Going to take a little bit spray lubricant, I'm going to spray it on the rubber isolator and the hanger.

That'll make it a little bit easier to slide that rubber isolator off so the exhaust can come down. Going to slide that off, and we'll repeat that for the other one as well. If the exhaust didn't come down far enough we can always move further forward on the vehicle right by the rear axle. We'll have another rubber isolator, so we can take a little bit more spray lubricant spray the hanger down and slide that isolator off as well.Now, right above the muffler we'll have our heat shield. We'll grab a 10 millimeter socket and pull out the four bolts holding it in place. Now on the bottom of the frame rail, right by where we just removed our heat shield, we'll have two plastic or rubber plugs. We want to pull those out. We'll get a flat headed screwdriver and just pop them out of the bottom of the frame. We're going to do that on both sides.The very rear hole, the one at the very back of the bumper, is going to be one of our attaching points for our hitch on each side. Then the hole towards the front of the vehicle, that's going to be our access point to get our hardware into the frame. However, you can see that our spacer block and our carriage bolt aren't going to fit. So we're going to need to enlarge this hole until we can get both pieces easily inside the frame. You can drill a single hole on either side making it a little bit easier to file it down. Or, you can take a step bit and enlarge the hole that way. Either way you do it you want to periodically check, because you only want to enlarge that hole big enough to get our spacer block and carriage bolt in place.Now it's not a good idea to leave exposed metal on your vehicle. So I'm going to come back with a little bit of spray paint and I'm going to spray everywhere that we drilled and has any exposed metal. You want to make sure you repeat this on the other side as well.To get our hardware in place we're going to take our fish wire. We'll take the coiled end, we're going to put it into the attachment point hole at the very back of the bumper. We're going to feed it into the frame until we can get the end of the coiled wire to come out the access hole. Once we have the coiled end sticking out we'll take our spacer block with the square hole in it, we'll feed that into the frame. Then we'll take one of our carriage bolts, we'll thread it onto the end of our wire. We'll push that back into the frame. Then we'll pull on our pull wire until we have our bolt dropping down through the frame. Now you want to go ahead and leave the pull wire attached and do the same thing on the other side.Now with an extra set of hands we're going to lift our hitch up. We're going to feed our pull wires through the top of the hitch to where it'll come down. We're going to lift it up till our hardware comes through. We're going to remove the pull wire, and you want to be careful not to yank these and damage the wire itself because we're going to be reusing them. But we'll remove one from each side. You want to get the flange nut just loosely installed so it'll hold the hitch up, we don't have to worry about it falling down.So with the hitch in position we can see that there's going to be another attachment point towards the front. This doesn't line up with anything, we're going to have to drill the hole into the frame and then use our access hole to get our hardware in place. So I'm going to take a 1/2" drill bit and I'm going to go through the hitch using it as a template and drill a hole into the frame. So I'm going to take my pull wire, go through my hitch and into the frame and going to have it start going back towards the access hole. Once we have it out we'll do the same process getting our hardware in place. Once we have our bolt through remove our pull wire and we can attach our flange nut. We'll go ahead and repeat this whole process on the other side as well.Now I'm going to come back with a 19 millimeter, or a 3/4" socket and snug up all my hardware.Our heat shield is going to require some trimming in order to get back in place. So if we look at our head shield we'll notice that it's going have that kind of cut out section right here. If we follow that seam up to where it meets this angled piece by our mounting location that entire area here is going to need to be trimmed out because our hitch is taking up that area. So you can use a pair of tin snips, or whatever you have available to cut this out. But we want to cut this out so we can get it re-installed. With this trimmed we can go ahead and test fit and make sure that it fits. If we need to we can always come back and trim a little more off.Now that we know that our heat shield fits we can start putting all the hardware back in place. Just keep in mind you are going to lose one attachment point from trimming. So we're only going to be putting three bolts back in to hold it in place.You want to double check your instructions so we can torque all of our hardware down to the specified amount in the instructions. You want to make sure you repeat that for any remaining hardware you have. With everything torqued down we can lift our exhaust back up and put all those rubber isolators back in place.That'll finish up your look at the etrailer Class 3 Custom Fit Trailer Hitch Receiver, part number E98847, on our 2019 Subaru Outback Wagon.


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