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Buying a Hitch

Most standard vehicles aren't equipped to carry a large number of accessories and cargo. Whether you're transporting items for work or going camping, a hitch can come in handy. There are certain classes built to handle different weights and equipment. Before selecting a specific model, it's important to research which type of hitch is right for your vehicle.

 


Types of Hitches

Class 1 Hitches

A class 1 hitch is ideal for carrying lightweight equipment. This model can typically be mounted on compact cars, standard passenger vehicles and light SUVs or pickup trucks.

Weights Limits...

  • Gross trailer weight - Up to 2,000 pounds 
  • Tongue weight - Up to 200 pounds
What does it haul?
  • Bicycles - This type of hitch can mount a rear bike rack so you don't have to wedge your bicycle in the car.
  • Cargo boxes - When you're making a brief trip over the weekend, a class 1 hitch can carry various cargo boxes. That way, you can haul all your necessary items without cluttering the vehicle's interior.
 
Browse all class 1 hitches

Class 2 Hitches

Use a class 2 hitch to transport light recreational equipment. This hitch mounts to mid- to large-size passenger vehicles, vans, SUVs and light or heavy-duty pickup trucks.

Weight Limits...

  • Gross trailer weight - Up to 3,500 pounds
  • Tongue weight - Up to 350 pounds

What does it haul?

  • Small boats - If you're taking a short fishing trip, then consider hauling a small boat with a class 2 hitch. This type of hitch can typically carry a boat as long as 20 feet or a trailer approximately 10 feet long.
  • Recreational vehicles - Whether you're hauling ATVs to the terrain or transporting your motorcycle to storage, a class 2 model can handle these small recreational vehicles.

Browse all class 2 hitches

Class 3 Hitches

A class 3 hitch is widely recognized as a versatile hitch because it can haul both light and heavy-duty items. This option should only be mounted on SUVs, vans and both light and heavy duty pickup trucks.

Weight Limits...

  • Gross trailer weight - Up to 8,000 pounds 
  • Tongue weight - Up to 800 pounds

What does it haul?

  • Large boats - This model can carry a heavy fishing boat that seats multiple people. This hitch should also be able to handle all the extra gear you need for your time on the water.
  • Medium-sized trailers - You should be able to haul a fair amount of construction materials, large home appliances and other items back and forth in an average-sized trailer. Make sure that your cargo doesn't exceed 8,000 pounds.

Browse all class 3 hitches

Class 4 Hitches

A class 4 hitch carries heavy accessories and gear. This model should be mounted on light or heavy-duty pickup trucks.

Weight Limits...

  • Gross trailer weight - Up to 10,000 pounds 
  • Tongue weight - Up to 1,000 pounds

What does it haul?

  • Items too heavy for a class 3 hitch - A class 4 hitch handles more weight than a class 3 hitch and is designed to evenly distribute the load. Anytime you have equipment that exceeds 8,000 pounds, you should use a class 4 model.
  • Mid-size campers - If you take small camping trips from time to time, a class 4 hitch can come in handy. It's able to haul mid-size campers in and out of storage without a hassle.

Browse all class 4 hitches

Class 5 Hitches

A class 5 hitch carries very large accessories or vehicles. This type of hitch is typically installed on heavy-duty SUVs and pickup trucks or large cargo vans.

Weight Limits...

  • Gross trailer weight - Up to 12,000 pounds
  • Tongue weight - Up to 1,200 pounds

What does it haul?

  • Large RVs - It can be a hassle hauling a king-size RV. Fortunately, most class 5 hitches should be able to tow one back and forth easily.
  • Horse or livestock trailers - If you own a farm and need to transport livestock, this model can help carry a trailer full of show horses or any other animals.

Browse all class 5 hitches

Gooseneck & Fifth-Wheel Hitches

These specialty hitches are designed for extraordinary weight. Both a gooseneck and fifth-wheel model should be attached to heavy-duty pickup trucks only.

Gross Trailer Weight Limits...

  • Fifth-wheel hitch - Up to 24,000 pounds 
  • Gooseneck hitch - Between 20,000 and 30,000 pounds

What do they haul?

  • Hefty equipment - If you're someone that consistently hauls large livestock trailers, RVs or boats that weigh this much, consider a gooseneck or fifth wheel hitch.
  • Heavy duty pickup trucks - Both fifth wheel and gooseneck hitches are designed solely for heavy duty pickup trucks. Their attachments are installed inside a pickup flatbed.
 
 
 

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