The ability to tow is one that people rarely think about until they need it. Whether it’s hooking up a trailer, hauling stuff across the country, or simply pulling around yard debris, the ability to tow offers several advantages and benefits. If you’re a first-time tower, you may be wondering how to install a trailer hitch. Thankfully, it’s quite easy and with a few simple steps, you can be well on your way!
Choose The Right Hitch
There are many trailer hitches on the market to choose from. However, choosing the right hitch is necessary and often neglected. You shouldn’t use just any hitch for your vehicle. Choosing a quality hitch that’s rated for your vehicle’s towing capacity will allow you to get the maximum benefits out of the hitch without damaging your trailer, vehicle, or cargo. It will also help you stay safe and in control while on the road.
GEN Y hitches are among the highest quality hitches on the market. Our use of Torsion-Flex technology allows us to offer greater advantages than standard hitches as the tech helps reduce trailer sway and inertia by up to 90%.
Aside from selecting a quality hitch, you should also pay attention to your vehicle and its towing capabilities. When towing, your trailer should ride as level as possible with your vehicle. So measuring the distance from the ground to the bottom of your trailer coupler as well as the distance from the ground to your hitch opening will help identify the appropriate class of hitch. Furthermore, always consult your vehicle’s manual for more information on its maximum towing capacity. Once you’ve identified this and obtained an appropriate trailer hitch, it’s time for installation to begin!
Read Your Directions
Improperly installing your hitch can lead to spurious injury and even death. So this isn’t the time to throw away the directions. Read them, and read them carefully. Not all hitches are the same and so it’s incredibly important that if your hitch has a unique feature that you are familiar with it so that nothing bad happens during or after installation.
Select Your Tools
Once you’ve read through the instructions for your hitch, take time to lay out all of the necessary tools. This will save you from having to run to the store or scramble around if you can’t find anything. Organization always improves productivity. Depending on your vehicle and which hitch you’re installing, necessary tools may include:
- Shop light
- Socket set
- Ratchet extension
- Swivel socket
- Work gloves
- Safety glasses
- Torque wrench
- Jack and stands
- Pry bar
- Tape measure
- Torx bits
- Trim tool
- Paint pen
- Die grinder
- Carbide drill bits
- Cutting lubricant
- Box wrench set
- Power drill
- Rotary cutting tool
- Penetrating lubricant
- Masking tape
- Utility knife
- Metal sheers
Take Safety Measures
Anytime you work on your vehicle you should take safety precautions. Chock your wheel, use jack stands, and make sure all kids and animals are away from your truck during the installation process. Once your vehicle is secure, you can begin working on the hitch area itself.
Remove Your Spare Tire (If Applicable)
During a receiver hitch installation, your vehicle’s spare tire may get in the way if it’s located under the vehicle. If this is the case, simply remove it, set it to the side, and reattach it after the hitch installation process.
Remove Specified Bolts, Plugs, Etc.
Depending on your hitch, you may need to remove specific bolts, rubber plugs, and other small items to properly install your hitch. Consulting your hitch’s instruction manual as well as your specific vehicle’s manufacturer will offer insight on what may need to be removed.
Place The Hitch And Fasten It Down
With everything out of the way, you can move your receiver hitch into position. Some trailer hitches can weigh up to 50lbs or more, so always ask for help lifting the hitch into position. Dropping the hitch mid-installation may cause damage to your vehicle, the hitch, or your foot.
Once the hitch is in place, you can tighten all the nuts and bolts that will hold it in place on the frame of your vehicle. Once everything is hand-tightened, you can move on to torquing them. After the hitch is tightened down, reverse the preparation process by returning any bolts or plugs you removed, attaching your spare tire, etc.
If you need help attaching your trailer hitch, reach out to a hitch expert like GEN Y hitch for advice on your specific vehicle, what hitch is right for you, and how you can safely install your hitch.
We Can Help You!
Our goal is to better the lives of our customers by providing only the best products possible. We never sacrifice quality for profit and we strive to provide you with exactly what you need. Contact us today with any questions you may have!