Towing a 5th wheel can have its challenges. There’s the length and weight of the 5th wheel, how much truck is needed, and once these issues are address, the type of 5th wheel hitch to use. We started towing on the low end of cost with our first hitch. A huge mistake! It had a small, light-weight hitch head and nothing to support the shock experienced with poor road conditions. The results were a less than positive tow where we experience a substantial amount of chucking (that jarring back and forth from poor 5th wheel pin lock-up) and the amplified shock from rear pin weight when traveling on rough roads. Adding to the discomfort was the realization of the long term effect knowing the shock and vibration was going to take a toll on our F350 Super Duty and the 5th wheel frame. After much research, we determined towing with the Hensley TrailerSaver Hitch would be our best option to improve towing reliability, comfort, and protecting truck and 5th wheel from the ever growing list of poor roads.
Hensley TrailerSaver 5th wheel hitches are offered in three models. Each model varies in tow weight capacity and/or mounting features. The three mounting methods offered are:
- Drop in rail mounts
- GM, Ford and Ram PUCK under bed systems
- Fits Pre-drilled mounting holes for sport chassis haulers
Gross trailer weight ranges from 14,000 lb to substantial 32,000 lb meeting the towing needs for virtually all styles of towing vehicles and conventional 5th wheel RVs. But the benefits don’t stop there. The TrailerSaver is equipped with rear facing air bags, suspension shocks and a heavy-duty 4-way pivoting hitch head. Adding this altogether, our Hensley TrailerSaver TS3 5th wheel hitch not only improves our towing and ride quality, but protects our investment in our truck and 5th wheel from the constant beating received from poor quality roads.
The 5th Wheel Ride Experience
The first thing one needs to realize when towing a 5th wheel, the ride is different from what is experienced in a Class A, Class C or a pull behind RV. The ride of all these types of RVs is different in feel when facing rough road conditions. For the 5th wheel, rough roads translate into a shear or that vertical bump that is experienced in the front of the truck, the truck rear axle and the 5th wheel axles. There are solutions for the 5th wheel axles and these are less about ride quality and more to do with preventing damage to the trailer frame.
For the truck rear axle, and the up and down pin weight shift of the 5th wheel, some form of damping needs to occur. This is where the TrailerSaver excels. Combining properly calibrated air bags, along with the shock stabilizers and the heavy-duty hitch head, the chucking is eliminated and shearing experienced can be greatly reduced.
In the video below we provide a series of excerpts on a recent tow to and around Metro Atlanta in route to the North Georgia Mountains. We experience the dreaded “un-even concrete replacement”, pot holes, and those wicked shears from the access and exit of poorly settle bridge to road connections.
It’s doubtful the 5th wheel tow will ever be that perfect riding experience, but it can be substantially improved. That has been our experience with our TS3 by Hensley Trailer Saver and our realization that we will never tow a 5th wheel without one.
Products Discussed In This Video
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