The answer to whether you should use weight distribution or not is almost always a resounding yes. RV’ers have been using weight distribution for a long time now and the quality of hitches are only getting better. There are just too many reasons for why you should use weight distribution as opposed to standard hitching. Let’s look at why you should even think about getting a weight distribution for your RV.
In the towing world, weight is everything. GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) is like the North Star for using that weight on the road. Your standard rear hitches are great for light loads. However, a weight distribution hitch will need to come into play when the tongue weight of the trailer is exceeding the weight of your tow vehicle’s receiver hitch. On standard hitches the weight of the trailer is transferred onto the rear axle. This can cause your truck or tow vehicle to sag, meaning a loss of control, traction, braking power, increased sway and even poor headlight projection.
Distributing weight on a Travel Trailer
When you are towing a trailer, the whole weight of the trailer is primarily shifted to the back axle of your tow vehicle. All that weight concentrated in one place can allow for less control on the road. Imagine setting a 2×4 wood block on its narrow side and then placing a heavy cinder block on top of it. Just from a glance, you can see that this is a lot of weight placed on a narrow base which allows room for instability. However, if you place that same block down on its wide side the stability is much greater. The surface area from the cinder block to the ground has increased drastically which in turn creates more traction but more importantly is that the weight of the cinder block is now more evenly distributed through the length of the block. In this way, a weight distribution hitch can shift the weight of the trailer evenly throughout the trailer, so that all the weight is not concentrated in just one place, making the vehicle more controlled.
Weight Distribution Solution
The cure for uneven weight and sag is a weight distribution hitch. A weight distribution hitch will settle the weight evenly along the frame of your vehicle offering a more stable and controlled ride which in turn makes a smoother drive and protects against wear on your tires. It can also regulate or eliminate sway (Side to side movement caused by wind current or road conditions). It’s always good to get advice from a professional (Like your local dealership Service shop) on what will be the best weight distribution to use with your vehicle and situation.
Written by: Robert Norman