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Compare 5th Wheel Hitch
  • Overall Fit and Finish
  • Weld Appearance
  • Extra Support Arms
  • Receiver Tube
  • Closed Side Plates
Comparing: OVERALL FIT & FINISH


CURT Trailer Hitches
Draw-Tite Trailer Hitches
Hidden Hitch Trailer Hitches
Reese Trailer Hitches
Click to enlarge curt trailer hitch
Click to enlarge draw-tite trailer hitch
Click to enlarge Hidden Hitch trailer hitch
Click to enlarge Reese trailer hitch
Overall Rating:
Average Hitch Cost:
$160.36
$199.36
$198.40
$221.71
Average Delivery Time:
2-3 Days
7-14 Days
7-14 Days
7-14 Days
Factory Phone Support:
Yes
No
No
No
Shipping Warehouses:
8 US - 1 Canada
6 US
6 US
6 US
Hitch Warranty:
Limited Lifetime
Limited Lifetime
Limited Lifetime
Limited Lifetime
Hitch Finish:
High Gloss Black
Black
Black
Black
*Learn how we rated each brand
Overall Fit & Finish
We rated the overall appearance of each trailer hitch installed on our test truck (2006 Ford F250) along with the trailer hitch finish, weld appearance, factory support, and overall quality of construction. After installing all 4 brands' trailer hitches, which included CURT, Draw-Tite, Hidden Hitch, Reese, and Valley, the winner was clear. CURT trailer hitches have the best overall fit and finish.

Average Delivery Time
We based it on ordering each trailer hitch off the internet and getting the trailer hitches delivered to a Florida address. Each trailer hitch was shipped via regular ground shipping.

Factory Phone Support
Our goal was to find the highest quality trailer hitch as well as factory support and customer service to back it up. After reviewing each brands factory website there was only 1 brand that published a Technical Customer Service Hot Line for their customers, CURT Manufacturing.

Shipping Warehouses
All Shipping locations were taken from each respective trailer hitch brands factory website.

Hitch Warranty
We compared the factory warranty on each trailer hitch. CURT, Draw-Tite, Hidden Hitch, Reese, and Valley trailer hitches all have a Limited Lifetime Warranty.

If you are thinking about a trailer hitch for your vehicle there are several manufacturers on the market to choose from. CURT's approach to the market has been a welcome sign to hitch installers and RV shops looking to diversify their line of trailer hitch products. Many of these businesses feel that the number of warehouses in close proximity to their location gives them an advantage with their end customers. When a hitch installer has a customer that is going on vacation or moving and find out that they are going to have to wait for the hitch because it is out of stock or on back order, their chance of losing that customer becomes very great. There are over 2500 trailer hitch parts and accessories which make stocking for most operations near impossible. CURT Manufacturing has nine warehouses across the United States and one in Canada. The locations of these warehouses spell convenience for the customer. CURT manufacturing will be opening another warehouse in Seattle WA very soon.

Reese Towing Products is currently owned by Cequent Towing Products located in Goshen IN. Reese was founded in 1952 by TJ Reese and to date are an industry leader. Hidden Hitch is also owned by Cequent Towing Products,.Founded in 1968 Hidden Hitch hitches are seen on thousands of vehicles all over the world. Draw-Tite is another Cequent Towing Products company that began operations in 1946 with an inventor named Bill Whichello. Draw-Tite Hitches became popular with end users for their easy one piece trailer hitch. The most interesting manufacturer to date is CURT Manufacturing out of Eau Claire, Wisconsin. Where others have been downsizing, or “rightsizing”, CURT has been expanding. CURT's philosophy of giving great service to everyone whether a retailer or end user makes them a front runner in the competitive trailer hitch market.

Towing Safety Tips

As more and more vehicle owners decide to put trailer hitches on their vehicles and tow trailers, a number of these drivers will be towing for the first time. There are some things that may be overlooked in doing this. Some obvious things like weight of the loaded trailer verses the trailer rating are a couple things to study. Also, be sure to personally inspect the trailer you are towing immediately before towing and during each stop. Things to look for include but are not limited to the following:

Make sure your trailer hitch is in good condition, No rust and no weak spots. Be sure you are using the right size pin and clip for the trailer hitch. This can affect how much you can tow with your trailer hitch and how safe it is to tow with that hitch. Be sure the ball you are using is the correct size for the coupler on the trailer. Incorrect ball size can create a weak link in your trailer hitch that can also create towing problems. Check to see that your safety chains have no weak links from dragging on the pavement or from rust. These should be ‘crossed’ below the ball mount before being hooked to the trailer hitch.

Check the level of the trailer to see if it is tipping forward with the tongue down or tongue up. If so, this can be corrected with the correct size ball mount. If the weight is excessive, a Weight Distribution trailer hitch can be purchased for class III hitches or higher. Be sure the coupler pin is in the down position or closed on the ball. Check the air in all tires and check for ‘dry rot’ on the outside of the tires. In many cases, trailers will sit for long periods of time without being used. This, at times, can contribute to ‘dry rot’ or tires splitting. Performing these and other safety checks, as well as looking at applicable state and local laws will help ensure safe passage. Be Safe.

Why CURT Mfg is #1 in towing products

When it comes to towing, CURT Manufacturing holds up under great scrutiny. From CURT’s almost silent Fifth wheel design to the strength of their hitches for most all vehicles, they stand out over all others in their field. CURT uses both Robotic and manual welding. They can robotically weld hundreds of applications which ensures consistent quality. Everyone from the welding department supervisor to the associate packing the order takes enormous pride in the quality of the product. They will take raw material to assembly in the shortest time possible. CURT strives to have an incredible 100% order fill rate the day an order is placed. They can react to changes in demand and changes in the market and supply those orders in a timely fashion. CURT uses state of the art CNC technology and designing all their hitches with the highest level of strength and quality. Speaking of quality, all the materials are built with A-36 standard carbon steel. In other words: high quality steel. CURT meets and exceeds all safety standards used in the industry today as well as striving to meeting and exceed the expectations of their customers. CURT takes the approach of a total quality management system. In this system, everyone is empowered to stop production of anything at anytime in regards to quality. The employees at CURT take a lot of pride in the products they manufacture.

CURT uses a high gloss powder coat finish because it provides the best overall protection on the market. The powder coat process employs mechanical descaling as the first step. They are the only hitch manufacturer that uses this in their application. Mechanical descaling removes mill scale and prepares the surface of the part for the application of the powder coat. After descaling, the trailer hitch or part goes through a 6 stage wash system where all the contaminants are removed. Also added is a phosphate application that allows for rust prevention between the dry off oven and the powder coat application. Hitches are powder coated both by robotic arms and by hand before moving into an oven which liquefies, spreads and cures the powder. Protective wrap is then applied to areas of the hitch tube and receiver to protect it during the shipping process. CURT also has a custom color application that is handled a little different than the main line hitch. When an order is placed for a custom color trailer hitch, these are handled manually. A clear coat is added on the colored hitches in addition to the high gloss powder coat. CURT is one company who gives everything they do a personal touch.

CURT recently set out to have the broadest line of T-connector applications in the in the industry by bringing the manufacturing process in house. They are succeeding in following the same philosophy in the T-connectors as they do in hitches. There is little doubt they will be successful. CURT has invested in the Surface Mount Technology (SMT) when it comes to the construction of the converter boxes. This is a major advancement for the manufacturing of those boards. Converter boards have been around for many years. This style of manufacturing is a new and better way to assemble them. The converter boards run more efficiently and cooler. In electronics, this is always a plus. CURT can enjoy a much lower warrantee rate than anyone else in the industry.

CURT is poised to be the leader in hitches and trailer hitch parts and accessories. Their philosophy and level of dedication is the paramount reason for this. From the senior management and across to assembly workers, all share the same spirit of pushing CURT into number one in the hitch industry.
Comparing: WELD APPEARANCE


CURT Trailer Hitches
Draw-Tite Trailer Hitches
Hidden Hitch Trailer Hitches
Reese Trailer Hitches
Click to enlarge curt trailer hitch
Click to enlarge draw-tite trailer hitch
Click to enlarge hidden hitch trailer hitch
Click to enlarge reese trailer hitch
Overall Rating:
Average Hitch Cost:
$160.36
$199.36
$198.40
$221.71
Average Delivery Time:
2-3 Days
7-14 Days
7-14 Days
7-14 Days
*Learn how we rated each brand
Weld Appearance – The ratings were based on the overall weld appearance of weld splatter and cleanliness of the welds. Smooth welds are important on a trailer hitch because it has direct contact with the harsh elements. When powder coat or paint comes in contact with rough or jagged welds, complete coverage can be reduced. If there are any areas the powder coating cannot reach due to small crevices, or pits, there is a strong possibility of corrosion. Note: All of the trailer hitches are built to meet or exceed the national V5 standard. Of the trailer hitches compared, the CURT trailer hitch had the smoothest overall welds and the least amount of weld splatter.
Comparing: EXTRA SUPPORT ARMS


CURT Trailer Hitches
Draw-Tite Trailer Hitches
Hidden Hitch Trailer Hitches
Reese Trailer Hitches
Click to enlarge curt trailer hitch
Click to enlarge draw-tite trailer hitch
Click to enlarge Hidden Hitch trailer hitch
Click to enlarge Reese trailer hitch
Overall Rating:
Average Hitch Cost:
$160.36
$199.36
$198.40
$221.71
Average Delivery Time:
2-3 Days
7-14 Days
7-14 Days
7-14 Days
Extra Support Arms:
Yes
No
No
No
*Learn how we rated each brand
Extra Support Arm on Mounting Arms – 1 of the 4 trailer hitches we compared had extra support brackets on the mounting arms. CURT and Valley trailer hitches were the only trailer hitches that went the extra step using an extra support gusset welded to the mounting arms. It is great to see that there are still companies out there going above and beyond. The Reese, Draw-Tite, Valley, and Hidden Hitch trailer hitches did not use extra support gusset in the construction of their trailer hitch.
Comparing: RECEIVER TUBE CONSTRUCTION


CURT Trailer Hitches
Draw-Tite Trailer Hitches
Hidden Hitch Trailer Hitches
Reese Trailer Hitches
Click to enlarge curt trailer hitch
Click to enlarge draw-tite trailer hitch
Click to enlarge Hidden Hitch trailer hitch
Click to enlarge Reese trailer hitch
Overall Rating:
Average Hitch Cost:
$160.36
$199.36
$198.40
$221.71
Average Delivery Time:
2-3 Days
7-14 Days
7-14 Days
7-14 Days
*Learn how we rated each brand
Receiver Tube Construction - We looked at the overall appearance and construction of each receiver tube and were able to point the differences between them. Since this is the part that shows from the vehicle it is important that it looks great and holds up to the elements. The CURT trailer hitch was the only one that allowed the entire frame of the trailer hitch to tuck up under the bumper leaving only the receiver tube exposed. Draw-Tite, Reese, Valley, and Hidden Hitch all had receiver tubes that were constructed in a way that exposed the trailer hitches main body.While it is common to see cross-tubes from all hitch companies, CURT makes a special effort to keep things hidden and when they cannot, they usually make the cross-tube round to fit the contours of the vehicle.
Comparing: CLOSED SIDE PLATES


CURT Trailer Hitches
Draw-Tite Trailer Hitches
Hidden Hitch Trailer Hitches
Reese Trailer Hitches
Click to enlarge curt trailer hitch
Click to enlarge draw-tite trailer hitch
Click to enlarge Hidden Hitch trailer hitch
Click to enlarge Reese trailer hitch
Overall Rating:
Average Hitch Cost:
$160.36
$199.36
$198.40
$221.71
Average Delivery Time:
2-3 Days
7-14 Days
7-14 Days
7-14 Days
Closed Side Plates:
Yes
No
No
No
*Learn how we rated each brand
Closed Side Plates - Only 1 of the 4 trailer hitches had closed side plates, CURT Manufacturing. Draw-Tite, Hidden Hitch, Reese, and Valley trailer hitches all have open side plates. The benefits to having closed side plates include reducing water and debris from entering the trailer hitch preventing rust and corrosion from the inside out. It is an important feature that offers a great benefit on appearance and longevity of the trailer hitch from corrosion.

Draw-Tite®, Reese® and Hidden Hitch® are all registered trademarks of Cequent Performance Products, Inc. Valley® is a registered trademark of GRLC, LLC. CURT® is a registered trademark of CURT Manufacturing, Inc. All hitch brands compared have been tested to meet or exceed V-5 specifications with all safety requirements of VESC or Vehicle Equipment Safety Commission Regulations V-5. http://www.vesc.org/vescregs.html
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