5 Ways to Enhance Your Trailer Hitch

Accessories that will help you get the most out of your trailer hitch and keep your haul safe on the road.

Truck Hitch
A good trailer hitch ball mount should be able to support loads weighing several thousand pounds.CURT

The hitch on your truck can be a lot like a Swiss Army knife—you can switch out different implements as your tasks or needs change. But there’s more to consider than just doing something simple like swapping out a ball hitch for a bike rack. Whenever you’re hauling something with a hitch, you need to alter the way you drive, and monitor your loads to make sure everything is riding safe. When you’re not using your hitch to haul, you can still use it to solve other problems. If you consistently use a trailer hitch, here are a few items that can make your life on the road a little easier.

Standard Operating Procedure

CURT 45036 Trailer Hitch Ball Mount
For insurance, use a trailer ball with a weight capacity greater than your hitch.Amazon

Boats, campers, ice fishing shelters, and UTV trailers all help us enjoy our time in the outdoors—but you usually need to tow them somewhere first. The humble two-inch ball connects your truck to almost everything you need to haul as sportsmen. Choose one rated with a greater weight capacity than your hitch to ensure it doesn't become the weak link. It also pays to keep a couple different ball sizes on hand with various drop heights so you can hook up to anything.

Two-Wheeled Freedom

MaxxHaul (70210) 4-Bike Deluxe Hitch Mount Rack
A bike rack can help you save space inside your vehicle or truck bed.Amazon

Hitting the backcountry on a bike is a great way to experience nature. You can go much farther, faster, on two wheels than you can hiking, without the noise of an internal combustion engine. But unless God's Country is right out your backdoor, you'll need a way to get your bike there. Adding a carrier to your vehicle's hitch doesn't take away from interior or bed space while safely transporting your trusty steed.

Lock It Up

Master Lock 2866DAT 1/2 in. and 5/8 in. Swivel Head Receiver Lock
Lock your hitch, not the coupler, to deter thieves from stealing whatever you’re pulling.Amazon

Make sure your valuable property doesn't disappear while you're in the woods or on the water by using a a locking hitch pin. Locking your trailer's coupler doesn't do much other than make you feel good; if a thief wanted your rig all they would need to do is pull the entire hitch ball out of the receiver and attach it to their own rig.

Eyes on The Prize

Fit System 81850 Snap and Zap Tow Mirror Pair (2015 and Up F150)
Make sure you can see whatever you’re hauling in the mirrors to prevent possible accidents.Amazon

Towing anything requires your complete attention—particularly if you're dealing with any blind spots. A set of tow mirrors allows you to easily see what's going on behind you so you can keep your payload safe on the road. Choose a pair that provides enough reach that you're not craning your neck for a better view.

It's in the Vault

HitchSafe HS7000T Hs7000 Key Vault
If you’re not using your hitch to haul something, you can use it to safeguard valuables.Amazon

If you've ever managed to lock yourself out of your truck you'll wish you had a spare with you. This can be particularly troubling if you manage to do so past the bounds of cell phone coverage. If your hitch isn't otherwise occupied, a combination safe makes a good hiding place for a spare set of keys and some cash.