SELECTING THE RIGHT TRAILER HITCH
This will help ensure both performance and safety.
“When you are ready to hit the road with your new trailer, it is important that you have all of the pieces in place. The right trailer hitch is one of those essential parts, and choosing one that fits your needs is an essential part of the process. There are a number of factors to take into account when making this decision.
With so many different options available, choosing the right trailer hitch requires some research and attention to detail. Below, we will cover the top areas to consider when selecting the right trailer hitch for your use. Each factor can affect the safety and performance of your vehicle and the load you are planning to haul.
UNDERSTAND YOUR VEHICLE’S TOWING CAPACITY
Before considering what type of hitch will work the best for you, you need to have a clear understanding of the capacity of your vehicle. Every vehicle is different and many serve a specific purpose. In addition to the information provided by the manufacturer, you will need to consider the constraints or performance advantages certain aftermarket upgrades can provide.
To determine your vehicle’s towing capacity, you will want to subtract the curb weight of your vehicle from the Gross Combined Vehicle Weight Rating (GCVWR). This is the maximum weight of your loaded vehicle and the weight of its attached trailer. The curb weight can be found in the vehicle’s owner’s manual or on the sticker inside the driver’s door.
Many aftermarket modifications can affect the performance in different ways. Some may enhance the performance. While some may degrade the performance. Modifications to the suspension, power chips, bumpers, and even tires can have an effect on the maximum capacity your vehicle can tow.
UNDERSTAND THE ACTUAL WEIGHT OF THE TRAILER AND LOAD
When selecting your hitch, you will need to understand the weight of the actual trailer and the loads you plan to haul. Like your vehicle, each type of hitch and attachment configuration has a limit.
While your truck may be able to pull your offshore vessel safely, your hitch may not be suitable for it. This includes the ball size and tongue weight. Each hitch type will provide you with a GTW and VTW (or TW).
Most bumper hitches will provide the support and stability needed for everyday loads such as refrigerators, household goods, golf carts, small recreational vehicles, etc.
If you are looking to step up your game to medium sized construction equipment or large toys, you’ll want to research their weights extensively.
Having a clear understanding of these variables will ensure you can safely move the loads you need. In addition to the all-important safety aspect, performance of your vehicle can be greatly affected if the right combination of equipment is not put in place.”
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