It is an exciting and enjoyable experience to spend time with your family in a fifth wheel that fits your needs and wants. You can select floor plans, colors, and upgrades depending on your preferences and needs. A fifth-wheel hitch is the one thing you need to consider before taking your dream fifth-wheel on the road.
The most common fifth wheel hitch installation aftermarket is above-bed because they’ve been on the market the longest. Below-bed fifth-wheel hitches are also available but are less common than above-beds. Since they are easier to use and look cleaner, below-bed setups are becoming increasingly popular.
The fifth-wheel trailer hitch is essential if you have a lot to tow. Adding a fifth-wheel trailer hitch to your pick-up truck can allow exceptional hauling power. A ball hitch is not designed to handle a load much heavier than what these hitches carry. 5th wheel hitches are needed if you have a heavy burden because they allow your truck to carry significantly more weight.
There are two main designs of 5th wheel hitches, although there are a few leading brands. Snags that are fixed in one position and adjustable slider hitches. Usually, the type of truck they are to be installed determines the choice between these two designs. Slider 5th-wheel hitches are generally more suitable for trucks with shorter beds because they prevent contact between the trailer and the cab. Through sliding traps, the pivot point can be moved forward or backward as needed.
Installing a fifth wheel: the complete process
Use jacks and jack stands to raise your towing vehicle. Your car should be thoroughly cooled. Make sure your hitch is in the right place. For the best weight distribution, put the bed near the center. The bumper may be cut, or the exhaust system may need to remove if necessary.
Plastic linings cannot be installed over rails. Remove them if you have them. The truck bed should be drilled if holes need to instruct. If holes need to plug into the truck bed, do so. Your rails should be anchored to your frame. An anchor should be placed between your fences and your frame. Ensure your hitch is installed above the rails if it hasn’t already been done. You need to align the hitch with the rails and attach the hitch to secure it with your hardware.
Bolt and hitch attachment measurements and marks on your truck bed
It’s the most straightforward yet crucial step in the installation process. Ensure that the drilling locations you have measured and marked are correct so your fifth-wheel hitch fits correctly in your bed.
The detailed instructions included with your kit will explain where precisely to measure and mark for drilling in your truck because each truck is a little different. Measure the distance between the inside edge of the bed and the outer edges of the rails when the rails are centered in the bed on each side. Drilling new holes in your bed will not look good if the rails are not centered before drilling.
If you want everything to line up according to your instructions, double, triple, and even quadruple-check your measurements. If your bed has one, remove your drop-in liner or cut it to line up your holes with the rails.
Ensure that the truck bed has holes for the frame brackets
Whether you’re drilling into the frame underneath or the bed of your truck, drilling into it can be intimidating. Taking precautions and following the directions carefully will help you complete this step.
If you choose a universal or a custom installation, drilling into the frame of your truck may be required (voiding its warranty). Installing an existing fifth-wheel kit is more accessible than installing one that uses existing mounting holes, so you can avoid drilling into your truck’s frame. Unlike, This kit is universal, Thus the brackets will fit any car. Custom installations are always recommended, but not always possible, particularly with older trucks. Take your time if you drill into your truck’s frame with a universal kit.
The truck bed will have to be drilled, regardless of your choice. The next step is to drill pilot holes where you will attach the bolts to the rails after you have measured and marked the locations where the rails will sit. Check underneath your bed after drilling the pilot holes to ensure that the holes are aligned with the frame brackets.
In the following steps, you will enlarge your pilot holes to the specified size after drilling them and verifying their location.
Have you ever heard of the easiest part of measuring your truck? A fifth-wheel installation may be one of the simplest parts. After jacking up your vehicle, finding the exact dimensions for your rails, and drilling out the holes, you’re ready to install them. Lastly, make sure they are torqued down and bolted in place.