I took my Airstream to the Hitch Corner in Littleton, CO this past Wednesday to have an Equal-i-zer Hitch installed. The men there were very competent and professional. They installed 1,000 lb. “arms” or spring bars as I call them, since that comes closest to matching my trailer’s tongue weight (varies from 850 to 900 lbs. depending on load) with the entire set-up being a 10,000 lb. hitch to accommodate my Airstream’s GVWR spec of 8,300 lbs.
This is the fourth weight distributing hitch I’ve used in the past ten years. The first was a Draw-Tite, then a Reese Trunnion, then a Reese Dual-Cam, a Hensley, and now Equal-i-zer. All pretty much do as advertised. The Draw-Tite seemed to me the simplest to use, the Hensley the most complicated. I gave up the Hensley soonest. It just didn’t seem a good fit for my needs. I’ve used the Reese Dual-Cam the longest. My major complaint isn’t its design, which I liked, but the fact that the only spring bars available for my needs were either 1,200 lb. or 800 lb. The first too stiff, then the other not quite enough. Equal-i-zer on the other hand offers bars in 200 lb. increments.
The day before the installation I had new tires and wheels installed on my Suburban. I went with a slightly wider wheel and tire, but the tire also had about a 1” lower profile. My thinking here was to improve handling and get a bit lower drive ratio. I may have achieved that, but I didn’t change the Reese Dual-Cam hitch setup to accommodate those changes.
After all, I was simply going across town to get a new hitch, so why bother? Well, it was a white knuckle drive – really scary, with the trailer going into a sway at the slightest provocation. I’ve never had that problem before. Obviously, the new tires and wheels changed the relationship between tow vehicle and trailer. Likely, the trailer had a slight nose down attitude, putting more weight on the front axle and removing some weight from the rear. Effectively, that may have given it a longer “tail” to wag. Although I expected there would be a difference, I was surprised by how much.
Compared to that one bad experience, the performance of the new hitch was dramatically better. Of course, it was set-up according to the Suburban’s new stance, but I have to admit the towing was nearly perfect. It even improved braking. So far, I’m very happy with it. Granted, the tow home was only 27 miles, but I’ll be giving it a long distance test in a couple of weeks when Patrice and I go on a road trip to Seattle, WA.