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What Is a Weight Distributing Trailer Hitch?

Aug 23, 2007
When you are towing any amount of weight with a trailer, the control you have over your vehicle and trailer is vital for ensuring a safe trip. A trailer with unevenly distributed weight or one that is too heavy for your vehicle can be very difficult to handle and may cause an accident. This is why it is so important to choose the right type of trailer for both your load and your vehicle. It is also very important to make sure that you attach your trailer to your vehicle using the correct towing hitch.

One sure way to know that something is wrong with your tow vehicle and trailer combination is that the rear end of the tow vehicle is visibly weighed down while the front end is raised up. This uneven distribution of weight will severely affect your steering and braking capabilities.

There are several different types of trailer hitches; one type is called a weight distributing trailer hitch. This hitch is most often used for heavy loads and trailers. A weight distributing hitch makes carrying a heavy load safer by distributing the weight of the load evenly between the wheels of the tow vehicle and the wheels of the trailer resulting in improved steering and brake control.

A weight distributing trailer hitch has a special bar that slides into the vehicle attachment. This attachment transfers the tongue weight of your trailer to the front axle of the towing vehicle and the axles of the trailer. It also has two spring bars, one for each side of the trailer tongue, that help provide leverage to the towing vehicle.

You should always use a weight distributing hitch if you are towing a large amount of weight. These types of hitches are considered class 3 hitches and are capable of pulling up to 10,000 pounds trailer weight and 1,000 pounds of tongue weight. The cost for these hitches generally range anywhere from $200 to $300. While a weight distributing hitch is a little bit more expensive than a standard hitch, the price is well worth the stability it provides when towing a heavy trailer.

Before attaching any trailer to your vehicle, you should find out what the maximum towing and tongue weight capacity is for your particular type of vehicle. You can do this by consulting your owner's manual or a dealership that sells the type of vehicle you have. You may also be able to find this information online. In addition to all of these considerations, be sure to use the right type of trailer to tow your load. This will result in a smooth and safer trip for all.
About the Author
Emily Sandberg is an outdoor enthusiast who takes her truck off road every chance she gets. When she's not towing anything, she covers her hitch with a hitch cover from Trailer Hitch Universe.
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