Are you in the market for a new trailer hitch? Whether it’s for a boat, trailer, camper, or anything else, there’s the right type of trailer hitch that will get the job done. As a hitch supplier and professional hitch installer in Calgary, we can point you in the right direction. Here is all you need to know about the different different types of hitches available and some tips on how to find the right one.
The different types of trailer hitches
Rear trailer hitches are categorized into 5 classes, each one handling a higher tow capacity and receiver opening size:
- Class 1 Hitch – A light-duty receiver-hitch that supports a maximum trailer weight of 2,000lbs or less. They can work with compact and midsize vehicles.
- Class 2 Hitch – One of the most common trailer hitches that supports a maximum trailer weight of up to 3,500lbs and trailers up to 12ft in length.
- Class 3 Hitch – A heavy-duty hitch type with a towing capacity of up to 10,000lbs ideal for mid to large-sized pick-up trucks, SUVs, or vans.
- Class 4 Hitch – A super-duty hitch with a towing capacity of 10,000-14,000lbs, ideal for pulling light campers and trailers.
- Class 5 Hitch – The most advanced trailer class with a towing capacity of 12,000-20,000lbs, ideal for those who regularly pull heavy equipment, cargo, or machinery.
Another type of trailer hitch is the gooseneck hitch, which is a cousin of the Class 5 hitch. They are specifically designed for pickup and flatbed trucks as the hitch is installed on the bed of the truck near the rear axle. Gooseneck hitches have a towing capacity of up to 30,000lbs and are the first choice for pulling commercial and industrial trailers.
Along with the different class types, there are 2 trailer hitch systems to know about:
- Fixed tongue trailer hitch – This type of hitch is permanently installed on a vehicle. They are a convenient and practical choice for those who tow regularly.
- Receive style trailer hitch – This type of hitch is a ball mount hitch that is easy to install and remove after each use. They are the most widely used hitch today and can be utilized for everything from bike racks to trailers.
Tips for choosing the right trailer hitch
- Consider the maximum torque weight and maximum trailer weight of your vehicle
First and foremost, you’ll need to know your vehicle’s safe towing capacities. All vehicles today specify what type of hitch can be installed and the maximum amount of weight it can support. However, the maximum torque weight and maximum trailer weight of your vehicle are not as straightforward as it seems.
For example, a smaller vehicle and a larger vehicle can have different ratings with the same hitch. If you’re unsure, speak to one of our hitch experts and we’ll make sure you have the right trailer hitch for your car and towing needs.
- Do your research
The Internet is stock full of information from different resources about trailer hitches, including car forums, social media groups, and videos, just to name a few. Often, you can find the exact make and model of your car along with recommendations for hitch accessories, reviews, and troubleshooting towing issues. Doing your research will help get you started on the right foot when choosing a reliable and safe hitch for your vehicle.
- Ask an expert
Last but certainly not least, always work with an expert before you buy and install a trailer hitch. When it comes to your safety on the road and the life of your vehicle, it’s worth seeing a hitch specialist who can match you with the right products that work for your vehicle and matches your towing needs.