is there an easier way to hitch the trailer? - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 06-08-2009, 02:53 PM   #1
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is there an easier way to hitch the trailer?

On my 3rd year with our wonderful 17 foot Escape. It is nearly perfect, but I have one continuing problem. Attaching the trailer seems like it is just too hard. The hitch ball must fit EXACTLY into the receiver - there is virtually no forgiveness. It is true that I can move the trailer a bit in each direction to try to improve the positioning, but I seem to have to get the car backed up precisely in the right spot or the ball is either too far forward or too far back and it won't go in. I believe there is either some technique that I don't know or there should be a different mechanism that allows for a less exact lineup before you close the hitch latch.

Can anybody offer some advice? It sometimes takes me a half hour to get the trailer attached! And, a half hour in Alaska equals quite a few mosquito bites.

Thanks in advance for your suggestions.
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Old 06-08-2009, 04:27 PM   #2
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Re: is there an easier way to hitch the trailer?

You shouldn't have to line it up exactly. Sometimes the "u" shaped collar that latches the ball to the hitch does not drop down far enough to allow some latitude. The next time you unlatch your hitch, check underneath the tongue and if necessary, pull down on the "u" shaped collar.
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Old 06-08-2009, 05:05 PM   #3
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Re: is there an easier way to hitch the trailer?

Yep.. it doesn't have to be exact.. Just get a portion of the ball (something like half the ball) under the hitch.. When you lower the jack, the weight of the hitch/tounge should pull the ball into position so you can lock it in place.. Sometimes I put my foot on the car side of the hitch to move the back-end of the car so that the ball slips under the trailer hitch and it just snaps into place under the weight of the trailer hitch..
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Old 06-08-2009, 06:25 PM   #4
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Re: is there an easier way to hitch the trailer?

All the above is dependent on only the back of the trailer wheels being chocked. If both sides of the trailer wheels are chocked (ie. the front of the wheels too), the trailer will not move forward as Jeff has just said. Using Glenn's "back up mirror" (look under Towing-Hitches-Mileage, Rav mileage May 27) will help immensly in getting it lined up quickly!
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Old 06-08-2009, 10:58 PM   #5
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Re: is there an easier way to hitch the trailer?

A couple of "helpers" come to mind:
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=95684

or something Glen should recognize.
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Old 06-08-2009, 11:38 PM   #6
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Re: is there an easier way to hitch the trailer?


My daughter got me the poles that attach to hitch and ball, but I haven't tried them yet. I'm happy with my mirror set up. Anyway, the kit she got me has red LED's instead of the yellow ball, so you could line it up at night.

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Old 06-09-2009, 05:49 AM   #7
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Re: is there an easier way to hitch the trailer?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 12ladyblue
A couple of "helpers" come to mind:
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=95684

or something Glen should recognize.
The yellow balls on magnetic rods are available at your local WallyWorld (WalMart). Saw them last night.
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Old 06-09-2009, 04:21 PM   #8
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Re: is there an easier way to hitch the trailer?

I absolutely LOVE the magnetic balls.

I don't believe I'd be able to align my tug and trailer without them
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Old 06-09-2009, 08:56 PM   #9
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Re: is there an easier way to hitch the trailer?

There's also this thing too. It does double-duty as it protects the tug. But you'd better have a wheel on the tongue jack or you may bend it. Or, the foot pad could dig into the dirt/asphalt. It's called a Couple Mate and this is a link to the J.C. Whitney page with reviews
http://www.jcwhitney.com/autoparts/P...wflag=1#review
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Old 06-10-2009, 07:24 PM   #10
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Re: is there an easier way to hitch the trailer?

Hi: dlehman... An easier way I know of is to buy a 5.0 ...It's way easier!!! Alf
escape artist N.S. of Lake Erie
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