Weight Distribution Hitch Benefits Explained (How They Work and Why You Need One)

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When it comes to hauling a trailer, correct weight distribution is a lot more important than you might realize.

Weight distribution is the element behind safe towing and smooth driving. By being aware of weight distribution, you are protecting yourself and your safety, and keeping your trailer and cargo safe.

Normally, the weight in your trailer will rest at the center of the hitch. However, with a tool called a weight distribution hitch, the weight will shift forward and also towards the back, to ensure even weight distribution. This simple tool will make towing heavy cargo a lot easier for both you and your tow vehicle.

Here are just a few of the benefits of a weight distribution hitch.

Reasons to Use a Weight Distribution Hitch

1. Always having an even weight distribution

Anyone who has tried to tow something knows how important an even weight distribution is. Without this, the drive is rough, and your cargo might fall out of the trailer. This creates a hassle for everyone, and risks damaging your trailer and your cargo. A weight distribution hitch is such a simple solution to this problem. It's nothing fancy, just a normal hitch - that will make your life a whole lot easier.

2. Increases towing capacity 

Without a weight distribution hitch, you might only be able to tow minimal cargo. With all the swaying and shifting during the ride, it's just not safe to tow a lot of cargo without having an even distribution. A weight distribution hitch can fix all of that! 

You will be able to tow a lot more cargo than you did before. This will make things much more convenient for you, and will save you time and energy.

3. Smooth driving 

No more swaying while in the middle of a drive! No more driving slower and slower and looking back in your rearview mirror, watching all your cargo sway to one side. A weight distribution hitch guarantees a smooth, calm drive that you can feel comfortable about. It eliminates having to stop your vehicle and having to adjust your cargo so it all stays put. Again, saving you time and effort.

4. Safety 

Your safety is of utmost importance, and having a weight distribution hitch will make sure that you drive safely while towing your cargo. Getting out of your vehicle on a busy road and adjusting your cargo isn't safe or ideal, and it also may affect another driver's safety as well. Don't take that risk. Get a weight distribution hitch and ensure from the beginning that your drive will be a safe one.

5. Overall less wear and tear

Your vehicle, trailer, and cargo are all expensive items. You don't want to put them in jeopardy by not having the proper equipment. Your vehicle and your trailer will last so much longer if you take care of them. Having an even weight distribution while driving ensures that none of the parts of your trailer are strained, and that your vehicle isn't shifting to one side because of the weight.

So, how does it work?

You might be thinking that all of this sounds too good to be true, and could never be that easy. But, it really is! The weight distribution hitch works by using adjustable spring bars and tension. It evenly distributes the weight and makes life a whole lot easier for you! There are actually two types of weight distribution hitches.

Distribution Hitches with Trunnion Bars

This type of weight distribution hitch works when spring bars are secured into the ball mount. These spring bars are square, which is why they're called trunnion bars. This type of hitch is ideal if you're going to tow a lot of weight. It is very easy to install on your trailer - usually, it takes less time to put together than the type of hitch we're about to mention next.

Distribution Hitches with Round Bars 

This one works when round bars slide through the bottom part of the ball mount on the trailer. It gives you more space to connect your trailer to your vehicle. This type of hitch is designed for lighter cargo, and takes a bit more time to install it onto your trailer.

Sway Control

Trailer sway is a problem that everyone has when towing cargo of any weight. It can be caused by wind, or the weight on the trailer being all the way in the rear. Using a weight distribution hitch alone will definitely lessen trailer sway, but won't eliminate it completely. It won't help to prevent sway that is caused by the wind.

To control sway, you can buy a sway-control device for your trailer. There are several types of sway control devices that are available, and there are basically two main types. Tere are devices that prevent sway before it occurs, and then there are devices that attempt to lessen sway after it happens.  

The types of sway control devices that stop sway after it has begun use friction to work. And there are two kinds of these friction-powered devices that are available.

1. Independent 

Independent friction sway control devices are reliable because they are installed onto both ends of your trailer.  When used with a weight distribution hitch, the whole sway control system uses tension to keep the trailer from swaying. If the trailer begins to sway, the friction pads form resistance to stop it from continuing.

Keep in mind that this type of sway control system cannot be used with hydraulic brakes. Also, You should not back up your vehicle with this sway control system attached to your trailer, as it could damage your trailer and the device. For your safety, you should take it off your trailer before driving in reverse.  

2. Dependent 

These kind of sway control devices prevent sway as soon as it happens. This system creates a lot of resistance, which occurs when the spring bars apply friction to the brackets on the trailer. The trailer then cannot sway, because it doesn't have enough force to break that resistance.

You can use this type of sway control device while driving in reverse, and you can also use it with hydraulic brakes.

The types of sway control systems that stop sway before it even happens are more popular because once installed, are more convenient and reliable. There are two very popular types.

1. Dual-Cam Sway Control System

There are special sliding devices, called cams, that make this system very strong. With one end of a cam in the trailer's frame and the other end of the cam connected to the lift bracket, the ends of the spring bars are able to rest securely in the cams. The spring bars are very controlled then, but still allow enough movement between your vehicle and the trailer.

With this system, you must have spring bars with curved ends, so they fit in the cams. You can use this system with any kind of brakes, and it does not need to be taken off to drive in reverse.

2. 4-Point Sway Control System 

This system also relies on spring bars to work. The spring bars are tightly in place to ensure proper resistance, and connect to the trailer's frame at four points. Like the previous system, it does not need to be taken off to drive in reverse, and can be used with any  brakes.

Weight distribution vs. weight carrying 

You might be wondering what the difference is between these two elements. This is important for you to know, so that way you will understand why weight distribution matters so much when it comes to towing cargo.

Weight distribution systems use spring bars to work. The spring bars essentially keep your trailer stable on either side, and distributes the weight of your cargo evenly. It is very bad for your vehicle to have all of its weight on only one axle, which is what would happen without even weight distribution.

Weight carrying happens when you're using a standard hitch. By default, your trailer's weight is moved to the rear, lowering the back and raising the front of the trailer. Because of this, your vehicle will have basically all of the weight on its rear axle, which isn't good for the lifespan of that vehicle. Having so much weight on one axle can cause damage, and you won't be able to steer properly in the front. You also might experience more trailer sway.

Here's a video for you

Try a weight distribution hitch!

As you can infer, it's very important to have a weight distribution hitch for your trailer. It will prevent a lot of problems and help you successfully tow your cargo. You won't have to worry about trailer sway, getting out of your vehicle on a busy road, or having your cargo fall out of your trailer. Try a weight distribution hitch today and see the difference it makes!

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