Are you having issues finding the best weight distribution hitch for your situation? This issue has become a common theme for people looking to buy these devices. It seems to come from the overwhelming number of options on today’s market.
But don’t worry; our article will help navigate this flooded market to ensure you buy a device that fulfills your needs. It will accomplish this task by covering every relevant topic about these useful products from types to top tier brands.
Our article will even provide 12 product reviews of the options that we feel have the best chance to meet your needs. In other words, we intend on giving you all the info a person might need to make a smart choice when buying one of these devices.
This info will make sure you don’t end up wasting money on an ineffective option that causes even more stress. We just want to make sure this process ends with a smile on your face rather than a feeling of being misled.
So please, keep reading and let this article help you find the perfect device. I promise you won’t regret it. You’ll instead be too busy enjoying a sway-free towing experience that only a top tier weight distribution hitch can offer.
Table of Contents
- 13 Top-rated Weight Distribution Hitch Reviews
- 1. EAZ LIFT 48058 Elite Kit
- 2. EAZ LIFT 48069 Elite Kit
- 3. Husky 30849 Weight Distribution Hitch
- 4. Pro Series Reese 49903 Weight Distribution Hitch Kit
- 5. Equal-i-zer 4-point Sway Control Hitch
- 6. Fastway e2 Sway Control Trunnion Hitch
- 7. Husky 32218 Center Line TS
- 8. Fastway E2 2-point Sway Control Hitch
- 9. CURT 17063 MV Round Bar Weight Distribution Hitch
- 10. Reese 66559 Steadi-Flex Trunnion Weight-Distributing Hitch
- 11. Camco Chem 48751 ReCurve R3 Weight Distribution Hitch Kit
- 12. Blue Ox BXW1000 SWAYPRO Weight Distributing Hitch
- 13. EAZ LIFT 48054 Elite Bent Bar Weight Distributing Hitch
- What to Look for When Buying a Weight Distribution Hitch
- Other Important Factors to Consider
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
13 Top-rated Weight Distribution Hitch Reviews
This section will start us off by offering those 12 product reviews mentioned previously. These discussions should end up being a crucial resource during your search. In fact, each one will give you a better handle of what a top tier weight distribution hitch looks and offers.
1. EAZ LIFT 48058 Elite Kit
Our first product happens to be the EAZ LIFT 48058 Elite Kit, which comes with an adjustable shank and ball mount. These two features have proven to offer a smooth towing experience that ensures you won’t find yourself in any dangerous situations.
I also love this model’s maximum tongue weight of 1,000 pounds and its 10,000-pound gross trailer weight rating. Both these figures should mesh well with the 8,000-pound trailer that I intend on towing over the summer.
The hitch’s design is another area which piqued my interest. You see, these hitches are made with top tier steel that’ll provide a level of durability most rival products can’t match. This aspect makes sure you can bet on the device lasting more than a few years.
I also love that the hitch-ball comes pre-installed as it makes the install process much easier. And since I’m not the most technically savvy person, it’s always a nice touch when there’s a feature that’ll make the install a more straightforward task.
We should mention that this model’s a sway control system as well. This aspect will ensure your trailer doesn’t sway from side to side during your trip. It’ll also help improve your steering and other driving maneuvers while towing.
Overall, it seems EAZ LIFT did a great job creating a product that’ll suit their customers’ needs. They even felt kind enough to offer a 5-year warranty with purchase. As a result, it’ll provide you a bit of coverage against something happening with the hitch.
2. EAZ LIFT 48069 Elite Kit
The CAMCO EAZ LIFT 48059 Elite Kit is one of the most effective weight distribution hitches. It has a fully adjustable design, a noteworthy construction, and several years of coverage for the meticulous RV owner.
I find this weight distribution hitch for camper, motorhome, truck, and travel-trailers reliable. We have a 2018 Silverado truck and a 6,000-pound 2015 Heartland camper our family utilizes for weekend adventures, and this hitch stabilizes everything like a charm. It can handle any trailer with a maximum weight of 10,000 pounds, making this hitch the ideal solution for most RV owners.
Like the Husky 30849, this hitch is fully-adjustable. RV owners can modify the shank and ball mount to fit their needs. Although finding the adjustment sweet spot can be tedious, people will love the smooth and sway-free ride this system delivers once set.
I also do not have to fret about getting the different components together because it already comes pre-assembled. There is also no worrying about breaking a bolt because the pieces of hardware come with the correct torque specifications.
The engineering of the steel materials is also top-notch, giving peace of mind to trailer owners. People will also appreciate the five-year warranty on this weight-distribution hitch, although I wished the guarantee was good for a lifetime.
My only concern is the complaint of some users about the hitch pin wearing out sooner than expected.
3. Husky 30849 Weight Distribution Hitch
Travel trailer and motorhome owners looking for a reliable trailer weight distribution hitch should check out the Husky 30849 Round Bar. This product improved the classic hitch design and added several innovations to make towing safer for everyone.
Owning a large-sized RV, I appreciate this WD hitch’s 7.25-inch total height adjustment, allowing me to tow different trailers and take on various weights without any problems. Some products on the market limit their height adjustability to six inches. One and a half inches more leeway is good news.
New campers would love its pre-assembled construction. At least, they will never have to guess which part goes into what component. It eliminates installation errors and quickens the setup process. People can go on their weekend adventures sooner than later with this system.
My favorite thing about this weight-distribution system is its dual sway control platform with a pair of innovative brake pads. I can drive on straights without worrying about strong winds creating a whiplash on my tail. Passing vehicles on the highway is also more straightforward.
Furthermore, this hitch’s thoughtful construction can accommodate a maximum trailer tongue weight of 1,200 pounds and a gross trailer weight of 12,000 pounds. Campers, motorhomes, Class A RVs, and other recreational vehicles will have no issues tugging a trailer behind them.
The hitch’s finishing is also remarkable, saving owners hundreds of dollars from rust and corrosion-related repairs.
Unfortunately, some buyers reported missing bolts for installation. I believe those are isolated shipping issues.
4. Pro Series Reese 49903 Weight Distribution Hitch Kit
The Pro Series Reese 49903 Weight Distribution Hitch Kit would be a perfect model for any bargain buyers to consider. In fact, it’s one of the least costly models on our entire list. But don’t think this low cost hurt its performance.
It’s actually quite the opposite as this hitch is routinely praised for its ability to provide a smooth towing experience. This ability comes from it coming with everything a person might need to get one of these devices working.
The model even comes with a hitch ball with purchase, which will make this entire process much easier. You should also love that this device doesn’t feature a tricky install. The installation was another aspect receiving a high amount of praise in customer reviews.
I love that It can handle most towable trailers and RVs as well. This attribute comes from the device’s 1,000-pound tongue weight and 10,000-pound gross trailer ratings. As a result, this model should appeal to a lot of different people’s situations.
The model coming with friction sway control doesn’t hurt either. This aspect will ensure your towing experience doesn’t encounter dangerous situations such as the trailer swaying or diving. Both these issues can lead to severe consequences when left unchecked.
I was also excited to see this model comes with a 10-year warranty. It’s another sign that this device should end up being a part of your towing lifestyle for years to come. And it does seem like Pro Series honors these warranties based on the customer reviews.
5. Equal-i-zer 4-point Sway Control Hitch
Our next product is the Equal-i-zer 4-point Sway Control Hitch, which will ensure any driving maneuver become much easier when you’re towing. This ability comes from its highly advanced 4-point sway control that’ll make sure you get where you’re going safely.
But the sway control feature isn’t the only notable aspect offered by this device. I also found its versatility to be an intriguing feature. You see, this hitch’s capable of working with many trailers such as RVs, boats, utility, cargo, and even horse trailers.
Its versatility comes from the product’s 12,000-pound gross trailer weight and 1,200-pound tongue weight ratings. Plus, you can be sure it’ll offer top tier performance in these situations due to its steel design.
This design also offers a heightened sense of durability that you won’t find with many other models. It happens to be compact as well, which further helps perform the functions you’d want from it.
For instance, this design improves your ability to steer, brake, and provides a safe towing experience without any issues. We should also mention that this model even comes with a lifetime warranty.
This aspect only further proves this company put a lot of focus on the product’s longevity. After all, why would a brand offer a lifetime warranty for a product with a short lifespan? It’s worth noting that the install and using processes aren’t seen as too tricky among this Equal-i-zer hitch’s reviews either.
6. Fastway e2 Sway Control Trunnion Hitch
Families looking for a versatile weight-distribution system for various towing applications should consider the Fastway e2.
In fact, this trunnion hitch has a permanently integrated sway control platform, which is a feature other weight distribution bars do not have. It offers a safer and smarter towing experience for everyone.
It is easy to trust this hitch’s integrated sway control design. Never again will people worry about their trailers swaying with the wind. Their trucks or SUVs will keep their front axles securely on the pavement, improving road safety and drivability. I can only imagine how smooth the ride is with this hitch coupling the trailer to the truck.
Passing vehicles on the highway, navigating downhill, making lightning-quick maneuvers, and fighting crosswinds are a breeze with this system. It makes me a more confident driver, regardless of how seemingly impossible the situation is.
Installation is never an issue because the instructions are clear and comprehensive. The YouTube instructional videos also help in ensuring the correct setup. People who want to adjust their hitches can also rely on the manual’s clarity, significantly reducing the time required to get the whole system up and running.
I appreciate its 10,000-pound weight rating, allowing many people to tow their boats, campers, cargo, construction, and ATV smoothly, safely, and smartly. Moreover, the 10-year warranty gives me better peace of mind than other brands.
Unfortunately, the ‘kit’ does not include a ball, increasing its already-prohibitive price tag.
7. Husky 32218 Center Line TS
If you’re looking for an option with a simple and easy install process, the Husky 32218 Center Line TS might be the suitable option available. This model makes the install much easier by having a lightweight design and adjustable frame brackets.
Both these aspects ensure this model’s installation will take much less effort than you’d see with other models. In fact, this device’s hitch-ball comes pre-installed to ensure further installing the hitch won’t cause you any issues.
This device also offers top tier performance thanks to features such as its built-in sway control, which doesn’t require any additional hardware for use. The model’s 12,000-pound GTW and 800 to 1200 pound tongue weight ratings aren’t too shabby either.
These two ratings should help this product appeal to a lot of different towing situations. I found this device’s trunnion spring bars to be an appealing trait as well. These spring bars have proven to offer unmatched sway control and integrated weight distribution.
As a result, it’ll ensure your towing experience will proceed without any hassle. This hitch will also be able to offer these safe towing trips for many years. Its longevity comes from the steel components used in the model’s design.
But even with all these great aspects, this device’s price still falls in the range of any reasonable budget. It might not be the cheapest option on this list, but it’s right in the middle of the pack. In other words, the price is more than fair when you consider all these top tier features.
8. Fastway E2 2-point Sway Control Hitch
The Fastway E2 2-point Sway Control has become a favorite among buyers recently. This spike of popularity seems to come from the product’s 2-point sway control feature. I mean, it’s all anyone can talk about within this weight distribution hitch with sway control’s reviews.
This aspect brings forth such a positive reaction because it can easily prevent trailer sway before it happens. It’ll ensure both your tow vehicle and trailer stay straight when you’re traveling in rough conditions such as high wind areas.
It also helps that this hitch can easily fit into 2-inch receivers. As a result, you shouldn’t have any issues using it on most RV, boat, construction, ATV, and cargo trailers. This amount of versatility could go along way in making sure you get the best bang for your buck.
The product’s design will help in this regard as well. You see, this hitch is made from steel materials that are highly durable and resistant to corrosion. These aspects will ensure you never have to worry about an issue such as rust becoming a problem.
Even if you do encounter an issue such as rust, you can rely on the 10-year warranty that comes with this device. It’ll ensure you have some coverage to help prepare against a damaging accident or problem occurring.
We should mention that this hitch’s GTW and TW ratings are a bit lower than other models on our list: 6,000 pounds and 600 pounds respectively. But these ratings still ensure this hitch will be useful in a large number of situations.
9. CURT 17063 MV Round Bar Weight Distribution Hitch
Our next product comes from one of the most well-known brands in this market, CURT. This particular weight distribution trailer hitch does job at showing what’s behind the popularity with a great set of features.
For instance, I love this hitch’s integrated lubrication system, which is a unique aspect that you don’t always see in these products. This design feature ensures the hitch stays smooth and quiet while towing.
It’s an aspect that’ll make sure you don’t end up getting annoyed by the amount of noise being created with this device’s use. This device also excels in offering versatility as it’s equipped with a 2-inch adjustable shank, which will fit almost any 2-inch hitch receiver.
As you know, this aspect means the product shouldn’t have any issues working with a lot of different trailers. These trailers include ATV, RV, cargo travel, horse, and boat trailers.
Given its versatility, it’s quite apparent that there are plenty of ways this product could end up benefiting your life. The product’s GTW (10,000 to 14,000 pounds) and TW (1,000 to 1,400 pounds) ratings only further confirm this claim.
The inclusion of the trailer sway control bar doesn’t hurt matters either as this aspect will effectively improve driver control. I’d also love to point out that this model’s covered in a carbide black powder coat finish, which provides rust resistance.
10. Reese 66559 Steadi-Flex Trunnion Weight-Distributing Hitch
Reese’s 66559 Steadi-Flex Trunnion Weight-Distributing Hitch Kit comes with a set of features any person who tows regularly would love. One of these features is the integrated friction sway control, which functions as well as you could expect.
In fact, this system will easily ensure potential issues such as high wind areas or another truck rushing pass you won’t cause trailer sway. It’ll make sure you can enjoy towing your trailer around for maybe the first time ever.
This model’s redesigned hitch head was another aspect that got my attention. You see, Reese developed a new method of creating this part to raise the product’s user-friendlessness. And it succeeded because the hitch head now makes bar connections much easier.
You should also love this product’s black coat finish. This aspect has rust-resistant qualities, which will make the product last longer. And since these devices aren’t cheap, any feature that promotes a longer lifespan should be seen as a winning one.
We should mention that this hitch is capable of fitting any trailer with a 6-inch bottom mount coupler as well. The weight ratings are rather standard with a GTW of 10,000 pounds and TW of 1,000 pounds to ensure it can work in many situations.
It also features a lifetime warranty like some of the other options on this list. Given all these features, it’s quite apparent that Reese did an excellent job making their hitch appealing to a long list of people.
11. Camco Chem 48751 ReCurve R3 Weight Distribution Hitch Kit
The Camco Chem 48751 ReCurve R3 Weight Distribution Hitch Kit is an option that should grab any bargain buyer’s attention. It’ll appeal to this type of buyer because the hitch does its intended job effectively and at a fair price.
This product’s capable of offering these effective results due to its adjustable sway control. It’s an aspect that provides positive performance by delivering an unprecedented amount of control. What do I mean by control?
Well, you can control the amount of sway control placed on your trailer by adjusting the clamp. This aspect puts the entire process into the palm of your hands. It gives you the power to turn this feature off or on whenever it fits your situation.
Aside from the adjustable sway control, this model also offers more ground clearance than other options. It can offer this benefit thanks to its top-loading spring bars, which will ensure installing the hitch never seems like a big deal.
This model also has a low-noise operation to make your towing experience as quiet as possible. It might not seem like a big deal now, but you’ll thank me later when your head isn’t splitting from a migraine caused by the constant banging.
You’ll instead feel relaxed and stress-free thanks to the smooth towing trip this hitch provides. We should mention that the GTW/TW ratings are 6,000 pounds and 600 pounds respectively, which should be ideal for many trailers.
12. Blue Ox BXW1000 SWAYPRO Weight Distributing Hitch
Our next product is the Blue Ox BXW1000 SWAYPRO Weight Distributing Hitch, which happens to be an entirely weatherproof hitch. This aspect means that any weather condition, whether it be snow or rain, won’t have any effect on the product’s performance.
It’s a helpful little insurance to have considering you never know when the weather might turn a bit nasty during your trip. I also found this product’s using process to be rather appealing because it doesn’t come with those annoying pins or clips.
You can instead quickly hook it up and remove it without wasting much effort time. It’s utterly painless and should be seen as something that separates this great product from others on today’s market.
We should also mention that this product’s head uses the caster effect, which prevents sway from ever starting. This aspect was something many customers felt the need to point out positively in the customer reviews.
People were rather intrigued by this product allowing you to back up and turn without worrying about the hitch disconnecting as well. It’s another aspect that highlights the convenience offered by this outstanding Blue Ox device.
As with some other models on our list, this product also comes with a lifetime warranty. You can sleep easy knowing you’re covered against any accident or malfunction with this policy. Plus, it seems Blue Ox has a reputation for honoring the warranty based on this product’s customer reviews.
13. EAZ LIFT 48054 Elite Bent Bar Weight Distributing Hitch
The last product on our list is EAZ LIFT’s 48054 Elite Bent Bar Weight Distributing Hitch, which continues to show why this brand is such a force with its own set of great features. An excellent example of its features would be the adjustable shank.
This aspect allows the user to adjust their hitch based on a specific situation. It provides a flexibility a lot of other models can’t seem to match effectively. As a result, this product seems a step ahead of its rivals when it comes to convenience.
It isn’t the only area where it’s ahead either as this product also comes with an easy using process thanks to features such as its spring bars. These spring bars are interchangeable and have a positive latching action for easy operation purposes.
This aspect isn’t something that you find in most other models, which speaks to the hitch’s uniqueness. I also found its heavy-duty and sturdy design to be an appealing trait. This design will ensure the hitch remains functioning and useful for many years.
You even have a 5-year warranty as a back-up plan to offer protection against the product, not meeting your expectations. I don’t see why it wouldn’t, though, with these features and its more than fair price. I didn’t even mention yet that this model carries a GTW limit of 14,000 pounds and a TW rating of 1,400 pounds.
Andersen Hitches 3350 Weight Distribution Hitch (Outdated)
If you’re looking for the most advanced device, the Andersen Hitches 3350 Weight Distribution Hitch would be in the running. Honestly, this product has everything a person could be looking for in a trailer sway control kit.
An excellent example of its features would be the motion-dampening system. This aspect helps decrease the bounce of both your tow vehicle and trailer. As a result, you’ll enjoy the smoothest ride possible when using this hitch.
I also love this model’s anti-sway system, which has proven to be the most advanced and effective on today’s market. This system even self-adjusts to ensure the best towing situation possible.
Given this info, it seems like trailer sway will be the last of your worries with the Andersen Hitches 3350 Weight Distribution Hitch. It’s also worth stating that this model happens to be a greaseless system.
This model’s instead made from top tier materials, which don’t require any lubrication. Due to this, the system removes one more potential hassle from your life. These materials also ensure the hitch won’t produce any noise with its use.
Its install process isn’t too tricky either with it receiving a large share of praise within this Andersen weight distribution hitch’s reviews. I mean, it was shocking when a customer didn’t take the time to point out easiness of the install.
As for its weight ratings, it falls right in line with the other models on this list. It has a GWT rating of 10,000 pounds and a TW rating of 1,000 pounds. It also comes with a lifetime warranty, which should ensure you get proper protection against accidents.
Pro Series 49904 Weight Distribution Kit (Outdated)
Our second Pro Series product might be the most trusted weight distribution hitch with sway control for first-timers on today’s market. One of the reasons behind this claim is that the product comes with everything needed for proper install.
It even comes with a detailed manual that’ll guide you step by step through the entire process. In other words, it’s the perfect situation for a person looking to buy their first weight distribution hitch. But the easy install process isn’t the only thing worth discussing about this device.
I also love this product’s integrated sway control, which will ensure the towing process goes off without an issue. This aspect will keep your trailer in check and prevent sway from ever becoming a problem during your trip.
The product’s use of two round spring bars was another appealing trait for me. This aspect means that the product will have low ground clearance, which makes ideal for people who have a tall tow vehicle like a truck or SUV.
You shouldn’t overlook this product’s design either as it’s made from top-quality steel, which provides longevity and durability. It’s another product on our list that will remain functional for years to come.
The price being rather low certainly helps its case as well. I mean, this product has a cost that most would consider a bargain when you look at its great features. But there’s a reason this device does have a low price as it has two large issues some customers would find problematic.
What to Look for When Buying a Weight Distribution Hitch
Finding the right weight distribution hitch will come down to a few factors. This section will introduce you to these elements and provide extensive detail about each of them. It’ll give you a better grasp about what makes specific models better choices than others.
One of the first things to concern yourself with is the weight distribution hitch’s weight capacity. The simplest way to understand this aspect is knowing the two basic parts: gross trailer weight (GTW) and tongue weight (TW).
We’ll provide more in-depth detail about these terms in later sections. But right now, all you need to know is GTW concerns your trailer max’s weight, and TW refers to how much downward force your trailer places on the hitch. The TW is usually about 10 to 15 percent of your GTW’s total.
For instance, a person with a 10,000 pound fully loaded trailer will want a hitch that has a maximum GTW of more than 10,000 pounds. But the hitch will also need a TW rating of 1,000 pounds (10% of 10,000) or more to ensure no swaying occurs during your trip.
You mustn’t get an option with too big a TW rating either as it could cause the head system to rise. I’d suggest staying inside this 10%-15% range when looking into TW ratings to ensure you avoid issues like this one.
We should also mention that finding your trailer’s GTW isn’t too tricky. Its weight should be located within the owner’s manual. Once you have this number, all you have to do is account for the cargo’s weight laying inside it.
Simple Install Process
Weight distribution hitches aren’t the easiest products to install, regardless of the model. But it’s a good idea to ensure you don’t make it even more tricky by picking a device with a complex install process.
You’ll instead want to choose an option with a detailed manual and numerous customer reviews praising the install process for being simple. Honestly, these customer reviews will be vital resources and something you should lean on heavily during this search.
A good guideline would be looking for products with reviews stating the install took between 30 to 60 minutes. It’s also worth noting that these products are made with heavy materials, which means help from another person might be needed.
You’re going to want a model that comes with the sway control feature. This aspect is rather important because it’s crucial in preventing your trailer from swaying side to side. As a result, you shouldn’t encounter any issues in lousy situations such as making a sharp turn on a windy day.
This feature will instead ensure you enjoy a smooth towing experience and get where you’re going safely. I can’t put enough emphasis on how essential this aspect should be during your final decision.
Of course, we should also note that there are different types of sway control: one stops the sway as it’s happening and the other prevents from starting in the first place. The difference between these two kinds will be something we’ll dive into later on in our FAQ section.
But the important thing right now is that any weight distribution hitch worth getting will end up having this crucial feature. If a product doesn’t, I’d suggest taking it off your list immediately unless there’s a reasonable reason for its absence.
One aspect customers tend to overlook is the convenience that a weight distribution hitch with pre-installed components offers. You see, many brands send these products with components already attached on the hitch systems.
This aspect ends up making the install process much easier for the person receiving it. In fact, many people who are first-time owners of a weight distribution hitch find these pre-installed parts to be incredibly helpful.
If you’re in this position, getting a hitch with pre-installed parts would be a wise move. It’s just the easiest way to ensure nothing happens during the install process that might cause an issue or problem.
Weight distribution hitches won’t be a product that comes cheaply. This issue is why it’s essential to construct a carefully planned budget based on your needs and wants. For instance, if you want an option made from heavy-duty materials, it’s going to cost you a bit extra.
This extra cost will need to be reflected in your budgetary ranges. It’s the only way to ensure your budget remains realistic based on your preferences. A realistic budget will make it much more likely that this process finishes with you feeling happy about your decision.
It’s worth noting that a realistic budget will make this process easier by limiting the number of choices as well. Due to this, the overflooded market will now become much more manageable and filled with options which fulfill your unique needs.
Finding the right choice in this more manageable amount of options should be rather easy and painless. It’ll make those earlier feelings of being overwhelmed disappear and replaced with confidence from choosing a product that suits your situation.
This factor might seem like common sense, but any hitch worth choosing will be durable. It should have a rust-resistant aspect to ensure longevity that’ll make the large investment seem worth it down the road.
An excellent way to examine this aspect is by reading customer reviews. These reports will provide various indications about how well each product holds up over time. Trust me; a product with a widespread durability issue will be ripped to shreds in these writeups.
After all, nobody likes spending a large sum of money on something like a hitch and having to buy another one in a few months. It’s just not a logical or practical way to spend your hard-earned money.
It would be a much wiser move to use these reviews as resources and ensure you’re getting a great product: one that’ll last more than a few years.
Other Important Factors to Consider
Of course, those six factors aren’t the only things that’ll end up affecting your decision. This section will provide all the other background information needed to make a sound choice when buying a weight distribution hitch.
What is a weight distribution hitch?
As you probably know, towing a trailer can be rather dangerous. One of the leading reasons for it being hazardous is the existence of trailer sway, which can cause a driver to lose control. This issue is where having a weight distribution hitch will help.
You see, a weight distribution hitch is a device that a driver can attach to their trailer and helps make driving maneuvers easier. This aspect means turning, steering, and braking become less of a hassle then they would be without the device in place.
The device can offer this benefit by using a method called “weight distribution.” This aspect means it will create a balance between the GTW (gross trailer weight) and TW (tongue weight). The GTW is your trailer’s total weight, and the TW is the percentage of your load that’s pressing down onto the hitch.
In other words, the TW is the load’s front end plus any weight located behind your rear axle. This figure will usually end up being about 10 to 15 percent of your GTW. As a result, a truck with a trunk full of items would end having a higher TW.
Since you now understand these terms, let’s dive deeper into the problems these devices end up fixing. The two primary issues I’m referring to are dive and sway. We’ll discuss both at length to give you a better handle on what one of these devices does.
The first thing to know about a trailer diving is how it occurs. Your trailer will dive when the TW is too much when compared to the GW. If this situation occurs, it means there’s too much weight placed at the junction of your trailer and tow vehicle.
As a result, this event will cause the trailer hitch and your tow vehicle’s rear axle to dive toward the ground. It will also cause your tow vehicle’s front end to raise off the ground. You must know a dive’s more likely to occur when the driver brakes too quickly as well.
But trailer sway is a whole different matter and happens when the TW is too low. In this case, there would be too much weight pushed on your trailer’s rear, which causes it to sway. This event can end up leading you to lose control of your tow vehicle.
It can even lead to the trailer flipping and bringing your tow vehicle along for the ride. This situation will most likely lead to a severe accident and poses a risk to everyone around you. Obviously, it’s not an ideal circumstance for anyone.
But you can avoid both of these issues by finding a balance between the GTW and TW. This balance is found by using one of these weight distribution hitches. As you can see, these devices end up being a worthwhile investment based on the safety they provide.
Do I need a weight distribution hitch?
Yes and no. People need a weight-distribution hitch if their towed vehicle’s gross trailer weight (GTW) is more than 50% of the tow vehicle’s gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR).
For example, suppose the truck’s GVWR is 5,000 pounds. Truck owners need a weight distributing hitch system if the towed vehicle’s GTW is at least 2,501 pounds. If the GTW is 2,500 pounds or less, there is no need for a weight-distribution hitch.
It would be best to understand that heavy loads increase trailer tongue pressure on the hitch, pushing it downward.
Unfortunately, this action also removes weight from the tow vehicle’s front axle, leading to more weight in the truck’s rear and the trailer’s front. It can be unsafe to drive this way, making it more challenging to steer and reducing the truck’s traction and braking force.
How does it work?
You’re probably wondering how these devices find a balance between the gross trailer weight and tongue weight. If you’re looking for the simple answer, a weight distribution hitch distributes weight in a safe manner. Of course, the actual process has a bit more detail.
You see, attaching a trailer to your tow vehicle causes the trailer’s TW to rest on a hitch ball located on your tow vehicle. This situation means that all of this weight is now bearing down onto your rear axle, which causes something called squat.
The term squat refers to taking the weight off your tow vehicle’s front end. It’ll end up affecting both steering and braking when it occurs. This issue is where a weight distribution hitch will help. These devices will lift your vehicle rear using its spring bars or chains and pushes the weight back onto the front axle.
A weight distribution hitch accomplishes this task by using the spring bars or chains to create upward pressure. This upward pressure will counteract the downward pressure being applied onto the hitch by your trailer’s tongue weight.
This process results in the front axle having almost the same weight on it with the trailer attached as it would without towing anything. Therefore, the front axle can now do everything you need to do, such as turn, steer, or brake without any issues.
What are the different types of weight distribution hitches?
If you plan on buying a weight distribution hitch, you’ll have to understand there are different types. The good news is that there are only three variations of these devices: round bar hitches, trunnion bar hitches, and Andersen hitches.
As you might imagine, each type has a situation where it would fit the best. We’re going to discuss all three at length to ensure you know which one meets your needs. This info will end up being a vital part of your final decision.
Round Bar Hitches
A round bar weight distribution hitch uses rounded sway bars that’ll attach to the bottom of your trailer’s ball mount and assembly. Another critical detail is that these devices are kept in place using clips.
This design results in you having more clearance room to attach your trailer onto a tow vehicle. It’s also worth noting that these types tend to have issues with bumps and potholes. As a result, these devices might not be the best choice for people towing around backroads.
I’d suggest going with either of the other two options in these situations. It’s the right way to avoid any potential hassles that might come your way. But we should mention these types do tend to be a bit cheaper and are still quite effective at their jobs.
Trunnion Bar Hitches
Trunnion bars weight distribution hitches are almost exactly like the round bar types except for two key differences. These devices have square sway bars rather than rounded and don’t require a clip to stay fastened on the receiver.
These square bars means that the device instead attaches to the ball mount’s center. This design gives them even more ground clearance than your round bar types. But it does make adjusting the head a more difficult task.
Buyers also often find them to be the most suitable option for increasing your system’s load weight rating. Traveling bumpy roads or dealing with harsh weather isn’t much of an issue with these type either.
Our last type is the Andersen weight distribution hitch, which uses chains and dampers rather than sway bars. These types have proven to be incredibly effective at reducing bounce and trailer sway.
It also helps that the tightness of these chains and dampers are controlled by using a button. These aspects ensure you don’t have to mess with them yourself, which means there’s no chance of you messing up the process.
But their higher quality and top tier performance make them have a much higher price tag than our previous two types. You’ll have to ask yourself whether the difference in performance is worth the extra cash.
Why do you need a weight distribution hitch?
As you’ve read through this article, it’s become rather clear that these products offer great benefits to anyone towing a trailer. I thought summing these benefits up in one section could make these advantages even more evident.
It’ll also make much clearer whether getting a weight distribution hitch is the right move for you. In other words, you’ll get a better sense about why these devices are worth their respective price tags.
Improves Trailer Stability
Your regular trailer hitch will no doubtable be great for pulling your trailer. But these hitches offer many instabilities in certain driving conditions. This issue comes from these products attaching to your tow vehicle via a single point. Due to this, the trailer will balance and tip around this singular point.
This design can become rather problematic when you enter an area with high winds which can create an imbalance. It can then lead to issues such as a sway when driving at high speed. But a weight distribution hitch avoids these hazards by offering more contact points, which improves your trailer’s stability.
Makes Driving Maneuvers Easier
Swaying most often occurs when a driver is either making a turn or braking. The additional forces present in these driving maneuvers can your trailer’s balance to become unstable. A weight distribution hitch remedies those issues by keeping your trailer’s weight equally distributed.
This evenly distributed weight only gets reinforced when a driver’s attempted a driving maneuver such as braking or turning. It’s safe to say these devices will ensure your safety during a towing trip with a benefit like this one.
Handles Rough Drive Conditions with Ease
It can be quite frustrating to plan a driving route around the limitations of your trailer. After all, you never know when some snow or a rainstorm might make the driving conditions less than ideal. It never hurts to have a bit more security.
These weight distribution hitches can provide it by offering an extra amount of stability when encountering rough conditions. Trust me; it’s a nice feeling to know your trailer won’t start swaying when you’re already dealing with an icy road.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Our FAQ section will work like you’d expect one to operate. In other words, this part of the article will attempt to cover any questions that haven’t been answered earlier. It’ll also clear up any loose ends, which might still be causing you issues during this process.
When should you use a weight distribution hitch?
Truck manufacturers provide clear guidelines on when to use a weight distributing hitch.
For example, toy hauler and camper companies might require owners to utilize a vehicle weight-distribution system when towing trailers exceeding 5,000 pounds.
The law requires truck drivers and haulers to use a weight-distributing mechanism when towing a trailer weighing more than 50% of the tow vehicle’s weight.
- It would be best to check the truck’s gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) and the towed vehicle’s gross trailer weight (GTW). A weight-distribution system is necessary if the GTW is more than 50% of the GVWR.
- Vehicle owners should also observe their driving. For example, trailer swaying, difficulty steering, and challenging braking are all indicators of the need for a weight-distribution system.
- People can also check their truck’s rear if it sags or is lower than the front after hooking up the trailer. The headlights also tend to point upward.
- A weight-distribution system is also necessary for owners who want to maximize their truck and trailer’s capacities.
What are good weight distribution hitch brands?
Each weight distribution hitch brand mentioned in our product section would fall under the category of being respectable. It’s not a stretch to say all of them could easily provide you with a top tier product and customer service.
But this claim doesn’t mean that some brands don’t deserve a bit more shine than the others: Reese and EAZ LIFT. Both brands have time and time again shown a willingness to go above the expectations of their customers.
This quality has led them to become forces within the weight distribution hitch market. I thought diving into their backgrounds could give you a better idea about what makes them unique. It’ll also help show what you should come to expect from a top tier weight distribution brand.
Since getting their start in 1952, Reese has one of the most common names associated with the heavy-duty towing market. They were able to gain this popularity by regularly outpacing their rivals with innovative designs and unmatched performance.
It also helps that Reese has gained a reputation for providing great customer service. Honestly, you’d be hard-pressed to find a customer review complaining about their performance in this area. It’s quite hard to see how their rivals would compete with these three aspects in Reese’s repertoire.
EAZ LIFT got their start even before Reese in 1946 and has seen the same kind of success. Their journey into becoming a household name comes from their willingness to always search for ways of improving its products.
This search even goes into considering customer feedback, which is a nice touch. It gives you the feeling that EAZ LIFT actually cares about the people buying their products. This feeling is only confirmed more by their outstanding customer service as well.
What is a sway control?
It’s time to dive into all the ins and outs of the sway control feature. This aspect is something that’s built into a lot of weight distribution systems to help deal with swaying issues. As we mentioned earlier, the sway control feature itself can come in two different types. One type works by stopping the swaying once it begins, and the other prevents it from ever occurring.
Devices that Stop Sway Once it Starts
The first thing to know about these devices is that they’re either classified as featuring dependent sway control or independent friction sway control. Each type deals with swaying differently.
You see, dependent models are considered a part of the hitch’s system. What does this mean? Well, the process isn’t hard to understand. Once the swaying starts, the spring bars will produce a downward force.
This downward force will then provide frictional resistance to the brackets located on your trailer frame’s sides. The resistance consists of both steel-on-steel resistance and resistance of material that has the same consistency to brake pads. Both of them combining will be enough to ensure your trailer stops swaying and stays in a straight line.
On the other hand, independent friction-style sway control is done through the use of a bar that bolts onto your trailer’s frame. This connection point means the bar’s attached to both the hitch system and your frame.
As a result, it produces tension which will keep your trailer straight and sway-free. We should also note that there’s an interior bar that helps out by telescoping in and out as you’re towing the trailer. This action will stop any bucking or binding of your trailer.
An independent sway control device will feature friction pads as well. Once your trailer’s in motion, these pads will come into contact with each other and produce resistance to help further reduce any swaying movements.
Devices that Prevent Sway From Beginning
Many of the best weight distribution hitches have sway control that can prevent sway from ever starting. In some cases, this process is achieved through the use of sliding devices called “cams,” which will suspend and lock the spring bars into place.
One end of a cam will attach onto the lift bracket via the lift chain and the other to your trailer’s frame. The spring bar’s rounded metal ends then sit inside the cams. This controlled location of the spring bars keeps its entire system secure and will keep your trailer from swaying side to side.
You might also come across hitches that have four points of sway control built into their designs. These models rely on a stable connection in the head unit to get enough tension. Meanwhile, the other two points work to provide resistance as well.
These two points will work to ensure there’s enough tension produced throughout the hitch’s system. This amount of tension will ensure swaying never becomes an issue. It’s truly an effective way to rid yourself of a dangerous situation.
What size weight distribution hitch do I need?
As we previously stated, figuring out what size hitch is needed for your situation will come down to the weight of the load you’re towing. You’ll also have to be aware that these devices are often rated by a maximum gross trailer weight and tongue weight.
Both these figures will have to be higher than your trailer’s GTW and TW. But you must ensure it’s not way above those respective figures either. For instance, a trailer with a TW way below the given weight for the hitch can cause the weight distribution to become unpredictable and dangerous.
But if your trailer’s TW happens to be higher than the hitch’s instead, it won’t be able to handle the load. The hitch will end up being utterly useless. Given this info, it’s quite clear that you’ll have some thinking to do about these matters before starting the buying process.
We should also mention that it never hurts to call a professional or ask for help from a fellow RVer on these matters. You can then feed them your particular info and receive a more detailed answer than I can provide with these general terms.
How do you install a weight distribution hitch?
The following are the steps for installing a load leveling hitch.
- Prop the trailer tongue with a jack to ensure it is parallel to the ground.
- Measure the distance between the trailer coupler’s top and the ground and the truck’s ground clearance to its front and rear bumpers.
- Carefully insert the weight-distribution shank into the trailer hitch receiver tube, securing it with a hitch pin.
- Position the hitch head on the WD shank.
- Insert the adjustment rod with washers into the hitch head’s lower hole.
- Rotate the hitch head into its mounting position on the WD shank. Remove or add washers to achieve the correct head angle.
- Insert a mounting bolt into the hitch head’s top hole and secure it with washers and nuts.
- Install the WD spring bars on the trailer’s hitch head.
- Couple the truck to the trailer ball.
- Raise the trailer’s tongue jack.
- Connect the sway control bracket system.
- Adjust the weight-distribution hitch accordingly.
- Secure all fasteners.
Can you backup with weight distribution hitch?
Some weight-distribution systems allow vehicle owners to back up their rigs with a WD mechanism. For example, the Equal-i-zer hitch enables truck drivers to back up their vehicles in a straight line and tight turns without any problems.
Unfortunately, not all systems have a similar hitch design. The Curt weight distributing hitch might allow reversing the vehicle in a straight line, but not in a tight turn. This product features the friction sway control technology that makes it unsafe to jackknife the trailer.
Where to buy?
The best place to start looking for a weight distribution hitch would be through Amazon. Their selection and prices tend to be much better than other options. After all, there’s a reason all our product links take you to their site.
It also doesn’t hurt that their customer review database happens to the most extensive found online. As you know, these resources will end up being crucial in determining each product’s overall quality during this process.
These reviews could be the difference between getting a top tier weight distribution hitch or finding yourself stuck with a dud. But even with Amazon having all of these great aspects, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t check elsewhere.
One of these other places would be Camping World, which will have a decent selection and prices. These prices even sometimes fall below Amazon’s when there’s a sale happening. Due to this, comparing rates between these two sites would be a wise move.
This action will ensure you don’t end up paying more than needed on a selected product. Given the price tags on these devices, saving a few dollars here or there could make a lot of difference. You mustn’t feel hesitant to look around at a couple of different places.
If you’re a person who doesn’t like shopping online, a couple of options are still available during this digital age. Places like Wal-Mart, Home Depot, or even your local RV supply store should have a few options to peruse. But the prices at these places will be much higher than you’d see online.
These places do offer one advantage an online site such as Amazon can’t: face to face customer service. This benefit might not seem like a big deal, but these devices are a bit complicated. Having a knowledgeable person around to help during this process could be wildly helpful.
After reading this article, locating the best weight distribution hitch for your situation shouldn’t be much of an issue. You just have to apply the info learned here, and the choice should become apparent rather quickly.
It might even be one from our product review section. After all, these options are considered the best on today’s market. But your choice doesn’t have to be one we mentioned in this article. It just has to be one that fits your particular needs perfectly.
Once you do find the perfect choice, this device will then make towing adventures much easier to deal with as swaying and diving won’t be an issue. It’ll also make it much simpler to plan out trips because the device will make towing in rough conditions a safer experience.
But if any issues arise during your search, please feel free to leave a comment below. We’ll try to answer them as quickly as possible.
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