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Best value in load leveling hitch and airbag setup?

rxa4929

Full Member
Joined
Jun 24, 2003
Messages
136
Location
DFW TEXAS
I am going to need a load leveling hitch and a set of airbags so I can comfortably tow a car-hauler and car with my Avalanche 1500.? I would like to find a good value in both departments (hitch and airbags) and a place to buy them locally (near Dallas TX) and/or a good online source.

I'm not familiar with either of these setups, so I don't know what I would be in for as far as installation.? I would prefer something simple that I could do myself.? Any advice would be great.

Thanks for your help.?
 
First I don?t know why you think the 1500 would not be able to support a car trailer w/car.? I?m sure there are folks in the club that have and still do it.? Maybe they will chime in.

Max weight for a 2WD with a 3.73 ratio is 7200lbs and for the 4.10 is 8200lbs

As for the installation of airbags?check this out
Air bag install

Looks like a big project to me

 
mine has towed a 91 Impala, 05 Cavalier and a 90 S10 with no problems.  I used a uhaul auto transport each time.
 
Loggie said:
First I don?t know why you think the 1500 would not be able to support a car trailer w/car.? I?m sure there are folks in the club that have and still do it.? Maybe they will chime in.

Max weight for a 2WD with a 3.73 ratio is 7200lbs and for the 4.10 is 8200lbs

As for the installation of airbags?check this out
Air bag install

Looks like a big project to me

I know my Avalanche will tow a 2400 lb trailer with a 3500 lb car on it.  It's been recommended to me that I should invest in a weight distribution hitch and possibly an airbag setup if I'm going to continue to tow this combination.  Just looking for recommendations on what I should do.
 
Loggie said:
First I don?t know why you think the 1500 would not be able to support a car trailer w/car.  I?m sure there are folks in the club that have and still do it.  Maybe they will chime in.

Max weight for a 2WD with a 3.73 ratio is 7200lbs and for the 4.10 is 8200lbs

As for the installation of airbags?check this out
Air bag install

Looks like a big project to me

That airbag install is for full airbag suspension replacement.  I think the OP is only refering to the helper air bags that get installed in the rear springs.  Those are pretty easy to install.
 
WarWagon said:
...The OP is only refering to the helper air bags that get installed in the rear springs....

Yes, trying to find the best value in helper air bags for the rear springs and a load leveling hitch.

Is a load leveling hitch the same as a weight distribution hitch?
 
rxa4929 said:
I know my Avalanche will tow a 2400 lb trailer with a 3500 lb car on it.? ?It's been recommended to me that I should invest in a weight distribution hitch and possibly an airbag setup if I'm going to continue to tow this combination.? Just looking for recommendations on what I should do.

  I'm sure it will not hurt having a setup like that, but why would be my question.  What benefits would one receive for doing so.  Better ride perhaps? Less roll? 
Who's doing the recommendations?
 
Hi rxa4929,

With that much weight you definitely are going to want a weight distribution hitch. The weight distribution (or load leveling) hitch just as it's name suggests distributes the hitch weight from your rear axle across the AV's entire chassis to the front axle. It is sometimes called a load leveling hitch because it gets rid of a great deal of the suspension drop you see when you hitch up. The distribution hitch is the only way to safely tow heavier loads. Most will recommend the distribution hitch when total trailer weight exceeds about 4000 lbs. A good hitch will help to eliminate  the sway motion that you get with longer, heavier trailers. Although offered by many manufactures with a broad price range it probably isn't one of the places to try and save a whole lot of money. The distribution hitch is what is going to keep you on the road and upright in situation such as a hard stop, strong cross winds, tire blowout, etc. The hitch I like is the one from Equil-I-zer. Not the cheapest around but also not the most expensive. Where I live you can get the 1200 lb hitch for about $550. As far as the air bags I would buy the hitch and see how it looks first. With your trailer's weight I really don't think you will need them if you go with the good hitch. Hope this helps a bit.

Good luck!

-UtahAV
-Mark
 
UtahAV said:
Hi rxa4929,

With that much weight you definitely are going to want a weight distribution hitch. The weight distribution (or load leveling) hitch just as it's name suggests distributes the hitch weight from your rear axle across the AV's entire chassis to the front axle. It is sometimes called a load leveling hitch because it gets rid of a great deal of the suspension drop you see when you hitch up. The distribution hitch is the only way to safely tow heavier loads. Most will recommend the distribution hitch when total trailer weight exceeds about 4000 lbs. A good hitch will help to eliminate? the sway motion that you get with longer, heavier trailers. Although offered by many manufactures with a broad price range it probably isn't one of the places to try and save a whole lot of money. The distribution hitch is what is going to keep you on the road and upright in situation such as a hard stop, strong cross winds, tire blowout, etc. The hitch I like is the one from Equil-I-zer. Not the cheapest around but also not the most expensive. Where I live you can get the 1200 lb hitch for about $550. As far as the air bags I would buy the hitch and see how it looks first. With your trailer's weight I really don't think you will need them if you go with the good hitch. Hope this helps a bit.

Good luck!

-UtahAV
-Mark
Thanks, that helps, and I'm definately in pursuit of a weight distribution setup.  Locally I can only find a Reese Setup at Tractor Supply, which has a 1000 lb tongue allowance and 10,000 lb GCWR.  Anyone have any opinions on this one?
 
UtahAV said:
Hi rxa4929,

With that much weight you definitely are going to want a weight distribution hitch. The weight distribution (or load leveling) hitch just as it's name suggests distributes the hitch weight from your rear axle across the AV's entire chassis to the front axle. It is sometimes called a load leveling hitch because it gets rid of a great deal of the suspension drop you see when you hitch up. The distribution hitch is the only way to safely tow heavier loads. Most will recommend the distribution hitch when total trailer weight exceeds about 4000 lbs. A good hitch will help to eliminate? the sway motion that you get with longer, heavier trailers. Although offered by many manufactures with a broad price range it probably isn't one of the places to try and save a whole lot of money. The distribution hitch is what is going to keep you on the road and upright in situation such as a hard stop, strong cross winds, tire blowout, etc. The hitch I like is the one from Equil-I-zer. Not the cheapest around but also not the most expensive. Where I live you can get the 1200 lb hitch for about $550. As far as the air bags I would buy the hitch and see how it looks first. With your trailer's weight I really don't think you will need them if you go with the good hitch. Hope this helps a bit.

Good luck!

-UtahAV
-Mark

Good explanation. ?Would load leveling shocks help instead of the air bags
 
Loggie said:
Good explanation.  Would load leveling shocks help instead of the air bags

I don't know much about load leveling shocks. I would think they would really hurt your ride when not towing though.

rxa4929 said:
Cheap=Good Enough???

Or should I look for others?

Search online for the Equil-I-zer. I noticed several online places selling it. You will be glad you did!

-UtahAV
-Mark
 
I was just looking over the Eqali-i-zer website (http://www.equalizerhitch.com) and really like how it works  (y)

My question would be, how do you figure out which one to get?  Initially I was looking at the 1000/10000 one, but the 1200/12000 would be better for possible "future" endeavors.  Does it really matter which one you get?

I found a couple of places on line that sell them, both are listed at the same price $399  :eek: , shipping might be a killer though.

I looked up a local dealer and he has it listed for $635  :9:
 
UtahAV said:
I don't know much about load leveling shocks. I would think they would really hurt your ride when not towing though.

-UtahAV
-Mark

Not true.  The Z66 comes standard with them and the ride is  (y)  Thinking along with the Eqali-i-zer and LL shocks, you might have a winner :dunno:
 
Equalizer Hitch will work well. Try that first.

BTW the airbag set up in post 2 is a custome set up and NOT engineered correctly.

Try the Firestone website. I put them on my 2500 and it made a world of difference for towing my 11,000 lb. boat. But the 1500 has coil springs, totally different.

Check etrailer.com

Avalon
 
I found a Putnam 1000/10,000 lb here locally.  The install only took about 1/2 an hour.  Don't know if it's a good one or not, but it was affordable and was simple to install
 
rxa4929 said:
I found a Putnam 1000/10,000 lb here locally.  The install only took about 1/2 an hour.  Don't know if it's a good one or not, but it was affordable and was simple to install

That is great! Hope it works well. Make sure all of the measurements look good when you hitch up. It isn't uncommon to have to adjust the height of the ball a few times to get everything right. If it isn't setup right it can put all of the weight on the front axle of the trailer. Not good.

Happy towing!

-UtahAV
-Mark
 
I had to put it in the lowest setting on the shank, but everything seems level.  Not really sure how to tell other than by sight.  Before setting it down on the ball I had to raise the trailer up quite a bit more than I did with just the regular setup, but once everything settled it looked level. I pulled it around town a little.  It's amazing how much it levels out the truck, even on a hill, the truck sits level where before it would sag in the rear. 
 
Putnum is what I was going to go with because it is cheap but good.

I still am thinking that way unless mark somehow sways me over to the Equalizer :wave:
 
Trafficman said:
Putnum is what I was going to go with because it is cheap but good.

I still am thinking that way unless mark somehow sways me over to the Equalizer :wave:

Hey Kent,

I will show you my Dad's Equil-I-zer sometime. All you have to do is see it to understand the difference. It is built like a tank!

-UtahAV
-Mark
 
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