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Trailer Hitch Installation - 2014 Subaru Outback Wagon - Curt

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How to Install a Trailer Hitch on a 2014 Subaru Outback Wagon


Today on our 2014 Subaru Outback Wagon, we're going to take a look at and show you how to install the Curt Custom-Fit Class III 2" Trailer Hitch Receiver. This is part number C13206. Here's what the hitch looks like once we get it installed on our vehicle. As you can see, it's kind of a narrow line hitch, gives that nice, robust, heavy-duty appearance to it which goes right in line with the Outback's go anywhere outdoors kind of mentality, really beefens up the back here for us. It's a 2" by 2" receiver. We've got a collar all the way around.

Adds some stability and structure there, but also helps us with any of the hitch immobilizers and things like that. The 5/8ths hole you see here, that's a standard hitch pin size. It's also going work great with any of the anti-rattle devices or anti-wobble devices that we have available at etrailer.com. The hitch is going to offer a 600 lb maximum tongue weight, which is quite a bit for a SUV or crossover style. It's going to offer a 4000 lb gross trailer weight rating. Definitely take a look at the owner's manual on the Subaru.

Just make sure it can handle those loads. If not, we'll go off of whichever one of those numbers are the lowest. It's got the plate style safety chain connectors here that you say, as opposed to some of them have a loop or hoop style that comes off. These are going to look a little bit stronger. I think they both serve the same purpose pretty well.

You do have the round tube design, which is pretty complementary with the way the vehicle rounds back here on the back and then our plates on the side are going to go directly up into our mounting location, so we're not going to have a lot of bracketry and hardware hanging down. Overall, pretty good looking hitch. Easy to use. It's going to work out great being a Class III for whatever kind of bike rake you'd like to us, all the ball mounts, lots of hitch accessories available for this Class III, 2" size. Let's go over just a couple of measurements that will help you in selecting your ball mount, bike rack, or maybe hitch cargo carrier. To start with, from the ground to the inside top edge of the receiver tube opening, we're going to have about 15".

From the center of our hitch pin hole to the outermost edge of our bumper, it's about 2 1/2. For our installation, we're going to be lowering our exhaust down, so to do that we'll want to support it underneath to give it some additional support and keep it from having any unnecessary stresses on our other connection points and hangers. To do this, we just use a strap, tighten it up underneath. That's going to give us what we need there. Then we'll be removing 3 exhaust hangers. One's going to be right here, just in front of your rear drive shaft, on the driver's side, or half shaft, I guess we'd call it. We're going to hit this with a little bit of spray lubricant, just like the other 2 that we're going to need to remove. The other 2 are going to be on either side of our rear tailpipe here. The 1 on the outside is located in the forward spot and the 1 on the inside is located here in the rear. Again, a little spray lubricant will never hurt. To get these off, we just need to kind of pull them back just to where they'll come off the end of the stud that goes through the bottom hole. Lastly, the 1 here by the rear diff. Now we'll carefully relax our strap a little bit while supporting it and that will allow us to bring it right down out of our working area and give us plenty of room. Now we're going to remove our heat shield. Of course, that's right above the rear tailpipe. We're going to have 4 10 mm bolts that we need to remove. For our heat shield here, we're going to have a really simple, little trim job to do. There's going to be this hole location. That mounts in the frame in a spot that's just not conducive for our hitch going in properly, so we're going to come right down this edge and trim it all the way down to this bend line. You see there how it's kind of bent Then we're going to bring that right over and up. Let's mark out a line. You can be as perfect as you want here. It's going under your car, so if you want to impress your mechanic, you'd better get it right. Then we'll just bring this over here. Just give us a rough guide to follow. Some aviation style snips or tin snips are about all you need to get that job done. Now let's put it back up into place and we're going to line up our holes and, as you can see, with the mounting location we'll be drilling in this area. We're not going to have any interference. If we need to, we can trim a little bit more off later, but I don't think we will. Our next step will be to remove the black plug that's located here on the front side and also the one located there in the rear. A little pick or a screwdriver, really all you need to get those out. Then we'll do the same thing over on the passenger's side. Then, if we look at our forward most hole in our frame rail, this is the one that we need to enlarge to allow our spacer block and bolts to pass through. We'll do that on both sides of our vehicle. We're using a rotary carbide style bit on a standard drill. We're just going to mill away at it and bring that hole forward and back. Then we'll do a quick check to make sure our spacer block will pass through there okay as well as the head of our bolt. You can see we have to open that up just a little bit more for that bolt to go in. That should be all the room we need to get our attachments in. We'll feed our fish wire into our rear hole location where we removed that plug and then up towards the front. We want to be able to grab it here in the access hole. Once that comes out up here, let's slide on our spacer block and also thread on 1 of our 1/2" carriage bolts. Then we'll feed the block up into the access hole separately from our bolt. Then, all we've got to do is just pull on the wire and guide it out of our location, just as you see there. Now let's head over to the passenger's side and repeat that process. With an extra set of helping hands, we'll raise our hitch up into position. Remember our fish wires We're just going to guide those through the rearmost hole and slide it right up into place. Now we'll take our fish wire off and add that flange nut. Let's take a quick look, be sure our hitch is centered with the rear of the vehicle and snug those nuts down. That's going to give us a great template for where we'll be drilling our front most mounting location. With the passenger's side done, let's take care of the driver's side as well. Now we can run our fish wire through the hole we just made and right back through that same access point that we used for our first one. It's going to get the same treatment. We'll put on the spacer block, carriage bolt, and then let's draw these through. We're going to be adding a flange nut to these as well. Let's do the same thing for our driver's side. Now let's go through and tighten down our fasteners. Then we can torque them down to the specifications that we'll find in the instructions. The heat shield, we're going to put it back up into place. Remember, we're only using 3 of the 4 screws that we removed, so this is one of those things that you will in fact have extra parts. We'll just put them up there, snug them down in their original location. With the heat shield in, let's get the exhaust put back up. It will be helpful to cinch that strap back down, guide your exhaust up into the hole. This is just going to help hold it up while we're working these hangers into place. Let's do the middle one first. Just want to bring it down and just push it one there. Again, a little spray lubricant, never a bad idea if you've got it laying around. Finally, the last one right here on the outside. That's really all there is to it. Nice, straight-forward installation. The last step, something we don't want to forget is removing our strap here on the underside and let's give our exhaust a little shake and make sure everything is secure. That will complete today's installation of the Curt Custom-Fit Class III Trailer Hitch, part number C13206, on our 2014 Subaru Outback Wagon. .


Info for this part was:

Employee Joshua S
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Joshua S
Employee Jacob T
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Jacob T
Employee Dustin K
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Dustin K
Employee Chris R
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Chris R
Employee Andrew L
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Andrew L
Employee Kathleen M
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Kathleen M
Employee Randy B
Test Fit:
Randy B
Employee Jared G
Test Fit:
Jared G
Employee Ryan G
Test Fit:
Ryan G

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