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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Another interesting email from eTrailer.

Hitch Adapters and Extenders

Hitch Expander

Do you have the coolest 2" bike rack or cargo carrier on the block but have a 1-1/4" receiver opening? Don't sweat it - all you need is a hitch expander. The expander has a 1-1/4" piece that fits into your receiver opening and expands it to the 2" opening you need. However, when you use a hitch expander, you must keep in mind that your tongue weight capacity will be reduced by 50%. For example, if your hitch has a 200-lb maximum tongue weight, it will be reduced to 100 lbs. This is because the expander extends the load out farther from your vehicle, applying more leverage to your hitch. It is always best to match the hitch opening measurement to the accessory measurement, but if you are in a pinch, the extender can help you out. Keep in mind that hitch expanders are not to be used for towing.

Hitch Reducer

Is your receiver opening too big for your favorite towing accessory? Get a reducer and make your receiver opening the perfect size. When it comes to hitch reducers, there are two different styles; the sleeve (where the accessory shank and reducer both fit inside the hitch) and the stinger (where the reducer slides into the hitch and moves the pin hole away from the vehicle). The sleeve is recommended because it has a greater towing capacity and tongue weight than a stinger. A stinger-style reducer will reduce your tongue weight and towing capacities by 50 percent because it is extending the load farther away from the vehicle. This means that if your trailer hitch is rated for 5,000 lbs, then your towing capacity will be reduced to 2,500 lbs and your tongue weight will go from 500 lbs to 250 lbs.

Hitch Extender

Do you have problems clearing your bumper or spare tire when you tow? If you are hearing your hitch accessories hit your car, then you need a hitch extender. Hitch extenders come in various lengths that will extend your receiver tube opening to where you need it. When using an adapter your towing capacity and tongue weight will be reduced by 50%. For example, if you have 5,000 lbs towing and 500 lbs tongue weight, you will be reduced to 2,500 lbs towing and 250 lbs tongue weight. This is because the hitch extender moves the load out farther from your vehicle, applying more leverage to your hitch.

Hitch Height Adapters

Some hitch accessories sit low to the ground, which can allow them to scrape. Adapters are available to help solve this problem - they raise your hich-mounted accessory. Check out our*hitch adapters*to find one that is designed to raise a hitch-mounted accessory. But be careful when choosing an adapter - not all are made to solve the hitch accessory ground clearance problem.

Tow bar adapters*look like they could be used to raise a hitch-mounted accessory, but they are only to be used with tow bars and not with any type of trailer or accessory. These adapters are only for flat towing, which is when all four tires of your towed vehicle are on the ground. Tow bar adapters usually have a low tongue weight capacity.

If you are looking to tow a trailer and carry a bike rack or cargo carrier, you will need to use a*multi-purpose ball mount*like the ball mount pictured, not a tow bar adapter.

If you are looking to lower your ball height, you should select a new ball mount. You can get help finding the perfect ball mount by reading the following FAQ:*Choosing the Correct Ball Mount.
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