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etrailer Class III Trailer Hitch Installation - 2020 Toyota RAV4

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How to Install the etrailer Class III Trailer Hitch on a 2020 Toyota RAV4

Hey, everybody, Ryan here at etrailer. Today on our 2020 Toyota RAV4, we're gonna be showing you how to install the trailer hitch receiver. But before we get to that, why don't we just take a minute, check this out, and make sure it's gonna work for you. When it comes to the Toyota RAV4, you know, there's a ton of these out on the road. They're really popular and I can understand why. Awesome SUVs, you know, and because of that, people do a ton of different things with them.

And if it we're me and I was looking for a hitch, I would want something that would allow me to do all those different types of tasks, whether it's towing or using accessories. And a setup like this one here is going to allow us to do just that. And I would also think about how's it gonna look on my RAV4, 'cause you know, these are pretty sharp. They got nice lines and pretty sporty. I wouldn't want you know, a big, huge, bulky hitch hanging down below my SUV, and that's not the case at all with this one.

Really the only thing you're gonna be able to see is a receiver tube opening. And honestly, out of the ones that sit like this, this one's probably my favorite, and really just due to the finish. It's more matte black in color. And to me it just looks a little bit more like a factory type option. I do wanna address one of the big questions a lot of people ask when it comes to putting a trailer hitch on the RAV4 and that is, "Is it gonna interfere with the hands-free lift gate assist" And the answer is no, it'll still work.

Unfortunately, today our model that we have right now doesn't come equipped with that feature. But from past experience, you get 'em to work. You know, you just have to kick your foot to either side of the hitch, they'll open up like it should. Might take you a little bit to get used to it and find that sweet spot. But everything will still function as it should.

And I also want to address the different types of RAV4. So the hitch will work with the hybrid models like we have here today, and it will also work with the standard gasoline engines. This is gonna be a class III hitch. So that means it has a 2" by 2" receiver tube opening. Super common size, a ton of different stuff will work with it. It is going to use the 5/8 pin and clip. One these don't come with the hitch. If you need one, not a big deal. You can grab it here at etrailer, or honestly a lot of times the accessories and stuff like that that you buy will come with a setup. So, you know, just keep an eye on that. And the safety chain openings are going to be a loop style and allow us to use just about any size hook that our trailer might have on it. When it comes to the hitch's weight capacities, it's gonna have some good numbers. Maximum gross tongue weight will be 600 pounds. That's the amount of weight pushing down on the hitch and you'll be able to use just about any size bike rack or cargo carrier that you want to, for example. As far as the maximum gross trailer weight rating, that's gonna be 4,000 pounds. That's gonna be the amount of weight pulling on the hitch. So the weight of your trailer plus anything that you might have on it. The setup can be used with the weight distribution system, which is a separate component. What happens whenever you use that it's gonna keep your RAV4 and your trailer level whenever you're towing down the road. So if you got a bigger camper or something like that, might be worth checking out. But with that said, even if you do use that type of system the weight capacity is gonna remain the same. With all that in mind, I do always like to suggest, it's never a bad idea just to grab your SUV's owner's manual. That way you can check in there and make sure your RAV4 can handle that much weight safely. Now let's just grab a couple of measurements. These will help us figure out what type of accessories will work best. The ground to the top inside edge of the receiver tube opening, that's gonna be 12 inches. So if you plan on pulling a trailer, I'd probably get a ball mount that has at least a four inch rise in the shank. Or if you can use an accessory that has a rise in the shank too, probably not a bad idea. It buys you a little more space. If you go from the center of the hitch pin hole to the edge of rear rear bumper, that's gonna be about five inches. And you can use that to help figure out if any full length accessories you might have can be stored in that upright position without hitting the back of your Toyota. Other than that, though, at the end of the day, a hitch you really can't go wrong with. If I was gonna put one on my RAV4 this would probably be it. I just like the way it looks. It has good weight capacities. And just a good all-around hitch, you know. In terms of the installation, it's really not too bad. Essentially, you kinda just hold it up in place and bolt it in. I like to lower the exhaust down a little bit, just gives you a lot more room to work, but it's something you don't have to do, so that'll be your call, but it shouldn't take you a whole lot of time. But if you're interested in seeing that, why don't we go ahead, pull into the garage, and put it on together now. To be in our installation, we're gonna be underneath the back of a RAV4 and we are gonna lower our exhaust down some. That way it'll just give us a lot more room to work. So before we actually do that, I like to take a strap, just run it from side to side. That way we can kind of control how fast and how far we let the exhaust come down. To get the exhaust down we're gonna remove three rubber isolator hangers. So we're gonna have one just like this on each side of our muffler. So obviously we're over on the passenger side. There's one on the driver's side and one in the middle, which we'll get to in a second. But for these, you can lubricate them with some soapy water And you're gonna take a pry bar and just work one end of the hanger off. Just like that. So I already did the one on the other side, same way. And here's the one in the middle. Pop that off. And we should be able to loosen up our strap some and let the exhaust come down a little ways. From this point on, I wanna mention anything we do to one side of our vehicle, we're also gonna do to the other side, so it'll be set up the same way. But if you look at the side of the frame rail we're gonna have two stickers here and we want to get them off 'cause these are covering up our attachment points. Get that out of the way. Just like that. And sometimes up here you'll have some foam or some sealer. And sometimes it'll be in the way of the hitch. So we're just gonna remove a portion of it. Take a scraper, whatever you got. Stuff comes off relatively easy. That way we don't try to get the hitch up and then fight this and then have to lower it down and come back and do it again anyway. So I'll just remove a little bit of it. Hopefully ease our installation. Even though our attachment points we're covered, it's not a bad idea to clean out the threads in there. So spray in some penetrating oil and just take a tube brush and work out any dirt or junk that may have gotten inside. Before we put our hitch up, I'd like to just go over the hardware we're gonna use. You're gonna have this bolt and a conical tooth washer. Put the washer on the bolt like this. That way when we thread the bolt in that those teeth will be facing the hitch. So obviously we'll put the hitch up, line up the holes with our attachment points. And then the bolts are simply just going to thread right in. Now with an extra set of hands, we can take our hitch and raise it into position to up and over the exhaust system and get our hitch lined up. And then get our hardware started. Come back with the 19 millimeter socket and snug the bolts down. Over here on the passenger side, it's a little tight. You just don't have a ton of room to work so getting a regular socket in there can be quite challenging. So you can always just use a regular wrench like this, whether it's an open end or a box end. I have a ratcheting one just to make it kind of go a little bit faster but a good little standard one will work just as fine. And at this point we can come back with a torque wrench and tighten down all the hardware to the amount specified in the instructions. We can rehang our exhaust so we can re-lubricate the hangers and they'll just slide back on. This one here in the middle. Already did the other one on the side of the muffler and with the exhaust supporting itself we can remove our strap. And that'll finish up our look at and our installation of the trailer hitch receiver on our 2020 Toyota RAV4..

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