Towing Accessories & Tricks
December 23, 2011
Filed under RV & Trailer Accessories
In addition to hitches, there are countless devices and accessories associated with the art and craft of towing a trailer, and these include but are not limited to tow balls, mirrors, wiring to power the trailer lights and brakes, brake controllers and much more. Yep, towing is a world unto itself, with its own language and special tools. Knowing the right gear to have can make your towing experience easy and fun. And whether you’re a novice or a pro, we think we’ve found something for everybody in this towing accessory roundup.
Convert-A-Ball offers its multi-ball system with three ball sizes available on just one receiver mount. You can also purchase separate shanks without the need for extra balls.
The TelaSwivel from Williams Innovations is a unique ball mount that takes the hassle out of connecting to your trailer. By pulling a handle, the hitch extends out 4 inches from the locked position and swivels 4 inches left or right. Once the trailer is connected to the ball, you simply drive away and the TeleSwivel will lock into towing position automatically. Two models are available, a fixed 4-inch drop hitch and one that can be adjusted from a 4-inch rise to a 12-inch drop, without tools. The TeleSwivel units plug into a standard 2-inch receiver hitch.
These channel-style adjustable mounts from Curt Manufacturing allow you to adjust the height of your mount to match different truck and trailer combinations. When combined with a multi-ball setup, these save time and money with multiple trailers.
A simple and economical solution for the difference between the height of your truck’s receiver hitch and your trailer’s coupler is a drop hitch ball mount. Draw-Tite offers them in a 5-inch rise or 6-inch drop.
Valley Towing Products “Super Duty” standard height ball mount is rated to 10,000 pounds towing capacity and is offered in a rise of 1-inch or a drop of 2-inches.
The Prodigy P2 brake controller from Tekonsha is one of the most sophisticated brake controllers on the market today. If offers a tri-axis accelerometer for precise braking performance.
You’ll find a variety of security devices to keep your trailer and towing gear from walking off with someone unauthorized. This trailer tongue lock that covers the coupler completely is from Tow Ready.
CIPA USA Inc. offers a wide selection of replacement towing mirrors. All these mirrors extend out for towing and collapse for regular use. Integrated turn signals and heaters are available for some vehicles.
Consider adding circuit testers like these from Wesbar to your tool kit. These simply slip into the trailer plug on your tow rig and let you know that the tow rig is providing good ouput to the trailer lights. This will shorten your search for an issue if trailer lights are not working properly.
The Multi-Use Ball Mount from Valley Towing Products allows you to tow a lightweight trailer and still utilize a receiver mount accessory such as a bike carrier.
Wireless Tow-Lights has the answer to towing anything that doesn’t have trailer lights, has damaged lights, or has a trailer wiring plug that won’t mate with your truck either due to mismatched plug types or incorrect plug wiring. Simply plug in the Wireless Tow-Lights to your tow rig trailer plug, and place the magnetic lights on the back of what you are towing. Now you’re off to your destination.
While you might not think of an alternator as a towing product, consider that the trailer’s battery puts extra load on the alternator when its being charged and that most factory towing packages include a higher output alternator. A replacement alternator like this 200 amp unit from Mean Green Industries has enough power for your tow rig, the trailer and even a few aftermarket accessories.
If you are towing a travel trailer, wheel chocks are a must when you reach your destination or park it at home. These lightweight chocks from Valley Towing Products are stackable, and unlike blocks of wood, are unlikely to be accidentally tossed onto the campfire for extra warmth on a cold night.
If you tow often, you know the surest way to increase your towing range between fill-ups is to increase the size of your fuel tank. Pictured is the 50-gallon replacement unit for the 2011 Ford diesel short bed crew cab, but Transfer Flow, Inc. offers high-capacity fuel tanks for a wide range of pickups.
An electric fan kit like this one from Flex-a-Lite does two things; it improves your engine’s low-speed cooling, and reduces the drag of the factory belt on the engine. The reduction in drag can mean improved low-speed response from the engine and usually means an improvement in the vehicle fuel mileage. d