How to Install a Trailer Hitch on a Car? [Full Guide]

How to Install a Trailer Hitch on a CarFor any expert, installing a tow hitch is easy. But if you are a beginner, you might now know how to install a trailer hitch on a car! From the spare tire removal to the adding the bolts, things might not be too easy for you! Don’t worry because we are here to help you out!

We have come up with some easy methods of installing a trailer hitch on your car. Even if you have a truck, the method will not change too much!

Let’s learn how to do it at home without wasting money on the professionals!

Step by Step Guide to Car Trailer Hitch Installation

Here, we will talk about how to install a trailer hitch receiver without taking any expert help! If you keep doing it, you will be an expert soon!

Best Drop Hitch For Lifted Trucks

Step 1: Manual is the Key

The first thing you need to do when you learn how to install a trailer hitch on a car is to go through the manual. Don’t read one step and do it and then move to the other step. First, read the whole instruction.

In this method, you can get an idea about the whole procedure and won’t make any mistakes afterward. Yes, these days, there are several online videos for helping you out too! If you don’t find a hardcopy of the manual, you can check online and get the correct procedure for your hitch installation process.

Step 2: Read the Instructions

When you are done reading the manual, you have to start collecting the gears that you need for this process. Yes, this process will require so many tools for the installation. Gather them beforehand so that you do not worry much when it is time to install the trailer hitch, first, you will need a shop light along with a socket set.

Also, ratchet set and ratchet extension are required. Even for installing the drop hitch for the truck, you will require the same equipment! Now, get a swivel socket, pry bar, and tape measurements. For your safety, you will need work gloves and safety glasses. Torque wrench, trox bits, jacks, and stands are other necessary objects for the trailer hitch installation.

Don’t forget the typical items for the process like the screw drive, trim tool, metal sheers, masking tape, and utility knife. Add the cutting lubricant, carbide drill bits, and die grinder with the lot. The Rat tail wire brush, power drill, and penetrating lubricant are the must for this. Also, keep the trailer couple and the shackle hitch receiver with you.

Step 3: Choke the Wheels

After you are prepared with the gears, get your hands on the wheel chocks. All you need to do is place them on the front wheel of your vehicle. As different hitches require a different type of fitment, you might require jacking up the vehicle a bit.

This will help in the perfect installation according to the hitch and the workspace you have. However, mostly, vehicles don’t require jack up. But if you require additional space underneath the car for working, this can be an amazing idea to settle for.

Also, go through the emergency brake of your vehicle and activate it. Otherwise, the car will not be at a safe height which is dangerous for anybody who is working underneath! With this method, you can easily use jack stands to stabilize the vehicle.

Step 4: Enlightened Workspace

When you have chocked the wheels and jacked up the car, you can start the next step. To proceed, first, you need proper lighting. As you are working underneath the car, if you don’t get the required amount of light, you might end up messing up with the wires. As you have to reference the installation too, keep an adequate amount of lighting for you.

Get a light that has the required amount of lighting and position it. While placing it, keep in mind that the light should illuminate the entire workspace. Also, it should not obstruct your work! Keeping the light beside, go through the bolts and holes so that you can install the hitch trailer easily and knowledgeably.

Step 5: Removing the Spare Tire

When it comes to receiver hitch installation, you will see that the rear spare tire is stored underneath the car. In this case, it will bother you when installing the hitch. If you go through this, you have to check the instructions once again. You might need to remove it so that you can go ahead and work.

If the instruction says so, do it and put it aside. After this, you have to check the exhaust and lower it. Make sure you have checked the CURT trailer hitches. These will need the tailpipe. Also, a part of the exhaust assembly will be needed to lower while going through this installation process.

Step 6: Remove Required Parts

As we have already told you, not every hitch installation process will be the same. In some cases, you will need to go through the bolts and rubber plugs and take them off. As you have jobs to be done on the mounting hitch frame, these bolts and rubber plugs can be the obstacles.

Remove them first and then if you need, you have to take off the small panels and the heat shield. In some rare cases, you have to drill into the frame too. Remove the components that are hindering your way.

Step 7: Add the Hitch

Keep your vehicle prepared and move your trailer hitch into its place. As the weight of the hitch can be high, get an assistant that can help you out. When it comes to hardware, tighten the nuts and bolts. It will help in holding the hitch in the right place.

Step 8: Torque the Bolts

When you have added the hitch and hand tightened it, you are almost done! Your work now is to torque them. Search for the values given with the instructions and follow them. The sizes of the bolts affect the amount of torque.

All you need to do is get the right tool and torque the hitch in its place! You are done with installing the hitch! Get the weight distribution hitch for the travel trailer and add it here to make your towing experience better!

Wrap Up

The installation process will roughly require 30 minutes to 5 hours. It completely depends on the experience of your trailer hitch installation. Go throughout method if you are a newbie, you will see how easy it is!

Check our site for more information, the installation process, and other details for your vehicle. You will get all the details you need!

About Jeremy

Hello! My name is Jeremy Bloomberg. I have been passionate about carpentry and DIY. Over the years, my passion slowly turned into expertise and wider knowledge about electronics. I’ve been involved in numerous projects, both professional and personal. I want to share all I have learned with you. Welcome!

Follow me: Facebook, Twitter