I’ve used many hitches for towing campers and other loads over the years, but camper towing with equalizer bars is far better than any other way.
Using equalizer bars, or also known as weight distribution hitches, it allows you to get the weight between the trailer and tow vehicle equally distributed, and makes for safer, better handling rig.
The secret is getting the load bars set to where they are parallel with the camper or trailer frame. I’ve see. Them pointed up and pointed way down, and this is just the wrong set up.
Having the hitch ball pointed downward (or toward rear) just a little bit will allow for you bars to be parallel once cinched up tight. I normally am in the 3rd link of my chains once set and tight. In other words, I will be in the 3rd link with 2 links hanging loose at top.
Measure your tow vehicle on level ground with nothing hooked to it, then re-measure with trailer or camper hooked up. The ideal set up is getting back to a very close measurement of your first one when empty, but now with trailer on and bars hooked up. Just an inch or so down in the rear of your tow vehicle is fine.
Remember, when rear of tow vehicle is squatted way down, it points the front end way up and this makes for terrible handling, braking and steering. When semis or other large vehicles go by you it makes your rig wander all over the road. The same thing when it’s really windy, your all over the roads and your trailer is back there going side to side, which can get bad enough to take you off the road.
You will hook up your trailer and latch the ball, then raise the trailer and tow vehicle all together, usually 4 to 6 inches. Then hook up bars and you should have to use your cheater bar to cinch up your chains and then use clips to secure. Now let jack down and re-measure tow vehicle. NOTE: If you have the rear of your tow vehicle higher when hooked up then what it was when unhooked will not work. This will not allow for any rear wheel traction and can be dangerous.
Look at the picture below of my set up, which is the ideal and perfect way yours should be once set up. Notice how the load bars are parallel with the camper frame, and this is your goal to have yours set up the same way once your done testing and making the necessary adjustments to get you here.
Camper towing with equalizer bars is the only way to go, especially when towing long distance. I love the smooth ride of my shocker air hitch, but I must say this equalizer set up is smooth as well, and takes all of the sway out of the long (32′ up to 38′) bumper hitch campers I tow long distance.
I’ve also been testing a sway bar (shown above) that I use with the equalizer/ weight distribution hitch. This helps as well on the real windy days (20+mph) winds, and can also be used alone without equalizer bars. The longer and taller the unit your towing, the more wind it catches, so anything you can do to stabilize your load will be a huge improvement.
Above is the kit I ordered and used. This is 1400# tongue weight and 14,000# tow weight. Curt part number is 17063. I love the Curt hitches and use them for my fifth wheel hitch as well. Great quality and proven parts and great prices.
Always do your best,