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Old 06-13-2016, 08:50 AM   #1
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Is it true that I can't use a weight distribution hitch?

I was told I could not use a weight distribution hitch (WDH) on my 2014 toyota 4runner. Has anybody heard about this? I have a small single axial gulfstream amerilite 198bh and It is light but it makes my 4runner sag quit a bit. Does anybody have any cheap solutions or can I just use a WDH. Does anybody know alot about 4runners? One guy told me that somehow the way the hitch is setup under my 4runner it won't be compatible but I don't know if I believe him.
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Old 06-13-2016, 08:58 AM   #2
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Do you have a manual you can check? It would seem strange that a WDH is not recommended but it should be in the manual under trailer towing if applicable.
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Old 06-13-2016, 11:50 AM   #3
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You need to post this in the Travel Trailers forum, not in Motorhomes.
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Old 06-14-2016, 12:19 PM   #4
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Who said that? If it wasn't Toyota itself (not just a dealer guy guessing), I would ignore it.
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Old 06-14-2016, 01:00 PM   #5
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Do you know what class hitch is on your 4Runner?
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Old 06-15-2016, 08:51 AM   #6
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I have the manual today

I brought my vehicle with me to work today so i can read the manual on this subject during a break - i will get back on exactly what it says
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Old 06-15-2016, 07:09 PM   #7
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Year Make Model Engine Tow Capacity
2014 Toyota 4Runner (All) 4.0L V-6 4700 lb

198bh dry weight is 2790

Probably sags because you are at the top of the truck's capacity, be sure your trans fluid does not run hot( if automatic)!

I would go with the wdh...unless....the hitch manufacturer or Toyota says otherwise

The other option might be air bags on the back
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Old 06-15-2016, 07:48 PM   #8
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Don't know about a 2014 Runner, but the older ones came with 2 styles of hitches, light duty one bolted to centre of rear cross member with 4 bolts. You could not use a WDH with it as it could twist the rear cross member. The heavy duty hitch bolted to both fame side rails so could be used with WDH. I just looked at Reese and do not see a hitch listed for the new generation of 4Runners. If your hitch is only bolted to rear cross member I would not do it, I would check with Toyota or aftermarket and see if anyone makes a hitch that bolts to frame rails, then you would be ok.
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Old 06-16-2016, 02:19 AM   #9
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my neighbor went through this with there 08 (I think) 4 runner. like said the stock hitch its a simple bracket bolted to the rear frame cross member and is labled to not be used with a WDH. they have a 19" 2 axle trailer they tow so they purchased a hidden hitch to replace the stock hitch and it has been problem free.
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Old 06-16-2016, 08:53 AM   #10
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ETrailer.com does not show a replacement receiver hitch for a 2014 4Runner. So I suspect it will be difficult to find one that is made to bolt onto a 2014 4Runner.
https://www.etrailer.com/vehicle/2014/Toyota/4Runner

So the alternative is to buy a "universal fit" receiver then determine a way to bolt it onto the frame of the 4Runner. I would have a hitch expert replace the stock receiver with a frame-mounted receiver, such as this one:
CURTŪ - Class 3 Adjustable RV Trailer Hitch
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Old 06-16-2016, 10:33 AM   #11
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Usually if a vehicle does not come with a hitch that is capable of towing a heavy enough load to require WD it is because the vehicle would make a poor tow vehicle. I suspect that is the case with yours. It would probably be better to put your efforts towards finding a better tow vehicle than to attempt to make this one work.
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Old 06-17-2016, 12:10 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by keymastr View Post
Usually if a vehicle does not come with a hitch that is capable of towing a heavy enough load to require WD it is because the vehicle would make a poor tow vehicle. I suspect that is the case with yours. It would probably be better to put your efforts towards finding a better tow vehicle than to attempt to make this one work.
Not really true. My neighbor uses his and loves it. he is a retired truck driver so he knows all about towing. Swapped out the hitch, added a brake controller (vehicle came factory wired) and installs some little coil spring overloads when he tows. he even averages 12-14mpg while towing his TT around.
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Old 06-17-2016, 12:58 PM   #13
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the advice is very much appreciated! It was a little unnerving to here that my truck is just not a good tow vehicle and to just put efforts into getting another one. I love my 4runner and it is my only vehicle and I don't have the means to buy another vehicle or even a place to put another vehicle.
What it is sounding like is that I am just going to have to make modifications to my 4runner to safely pull my trailer. When I researched the weight of the trailer and the towing capacity of the truck then I thought I was good and the truck would be capable of safely pulling it. It unfortunately sounds like I am not good on weight wither it be trailer total weight or tongue weight or both.
At least what it is sounding like is that I do have options to make modifications to my truck. I didn't want to have to though. Would you all recommend that I don't take the trailer out on a long 8 hour road trip to the neighboring state then (I have a family reunion planned) unless I pay to have modifications done to my truck?
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Old 06-17-2016, 06:58 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by edekgb View Post
Would you all recommend that I don't take the trailer out on a long 8 hour road trip to the neighboring state then (I have a family reunion planned) unless I pay to have modifications done to my truck?
TT specs include: Dry Weight 2,790 lbs. Hitch Weight 350 lbs. Net Carrying Capacity 900 lbs."

Dry hitch weight is 12.5% of dry trailer weight. Expect that percent to stay as you load the trailer. 2790 plus 900 = 3650 max trailer weight, with 461 pounds max tongue weight. Tongue weight is less than the 500 pounds max without a weight-distributing (WD) hitch.

Determine the max weight-carrying (WC) tongue weight of your receiver hitch. If it is 500 pounds, then you can get by without a WD hitch. I wouldn't want to tow that heavy a trailer without a WD hitch with excellent sway control, but lots of folks do it and get by without drastic consequences.

So if you want to get by without investing in a WD hitch, and provided your stock receiver is rated for 500 pounds WC or more, then here's the drill:

DO NOT tow west on I-70. If your destination is west, then go way around so you don't cross the Rockies in Colorado. Also do not go south on I-25. Monarch Pass then Raton Pass are too steep. Instead go east on I-70 to U.S.287, then go south on 287 to Amarillo, then west on U.S. 60 across New Mexico to Utah. If your destination is near Salt Lake City, then I-25 to Fort Collins, U.S.287 to Laramie, then I-80 into Utah. If your destination is in Kansas, then no problem with mountain passes. If your destination is in Wyoming, then just avoid any high mountain passes.

Do not load the trailer with anything heavy. Empty holding tanks, with maybe a few gallons of water to flush the pottie while on the road. No heavy cookware or dishes. No campfire wood.
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