So you have something that you need or want to tow and you have decided to buy a trailer tow system. There are many different brands and types of trailer hitches available and the task of picking
one out may appear to be daunting. But keep in mind that when purchasing a hitch, it is important to find the right one for your vehicle and your budget. If you are interested to know more, take
a look at Receiver Hitch.
Having said this, you may experience a bit of -œsticker shock- when you start looking at trailer hitches. But like so many other big ticket items, bare in mind that you get what you pay for. It is also important that the hitch you select has a universal fit. Meaning that it is transferable from one vehicle to another. When it is time to sell your current vehicle, you might want to make sure that you can take your hitch with you.
Safety is key when doing your research on the many different hitch systems available. You need to gather information that will ensure the safety of you, your passengers and others on the road. You also need to know the state and local requirements for trailer towing for what and how much you will be towing.
There are three common types of hitches on the market. They are the weight distributing hitches, the weight carrying hitch and the fifth wheel hitch, also called Gooseneck. Distributing hitches are used with a receiver hitch and a part that distributes the tongue weight among the tow vehicle and trailer axles. Weight carrying hitches are made to carry all of the trailer's tongue weight. Fifth Wheel (Gooseneck) hitches are designed to mount the trailer connection in the middle of the truck bed.
It is also important to keep in mind that the trailer towing industry has developed a classification system that differentiates hitches according to the amount of weight they can tow. From class 1 (one) to class 5 (five). Please refer to resources below.
Once you have selected what type of trailer hitch will be best for you and you have installed it be sure and check the nuts, bolts and any other fasteners to make sure it is secure to the tow vehicle. It is recommended that you have a professional do the installation. The connection point may also require frequent lubrication so that the coupler to the hitch ball can move freely. Again, your safety and those of your passengers and those around you is key.
Towing vehicles require more maintenance such as oil changes and cooling system checks. Tire pressure should also be checked regularly as it affects vehicle handling and tire safety. Consult with your owner's manual for information pertaining to scheduled maintenance.
So do a little research and determine which trailer hitches is right for you. Keep safety first when it comes to installation, maintenance and pulling your trailer hitch and you can end up with a system that can last a very long time.
NOTE: Always choose a hitch that is strong enough to handle the maximum anticipated total weight of the trailer but does not exceed the towing capacity of your vehicle. Refer to your vehicle's owner's manual for maximum towing and tongue weight limitations. The trailer tongue load should be kept at 10 percent of the loaded trailer weight for weight-carrying (dead weight) trailer hitches, and 12 percent for weight-distributing** (equalizing) trailer hitches. Also, you may want need to consider vehicle modifications that might be beneficial, such as stiffer springs, air springs, overload or air assist shocks, larger sway bars or automatic transmission fluid (ATF) cooler. Such modifications may be needed on vehicles used for heavy towing or long-distance towing. You may also want to refer to the U.S. Department of Transportation web site for additional towing tips and information. For more info, visit Receiver Hitch.