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Old 06-05-2022, 05:04 PM   #1
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Sway Bar Tightness

We recently bought a used 24 foor travel trailer that came with a friction anti sway bar. The technian that walked us throuth everything said to turn the bar as far as I can with one finger. This does not seem tight enough to me, as I can move it with my bare hands when not attached to the hitch. I've since been tightening it about half what I think I cold do with one hand full force. I hear it creeking turning at slow speed, but still notice some sway at highway speeds, especially when passing/being passed. I assume some sway is normal even with sway control, but I am curious how tight everyone else tightens their bar.
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Old 06-05-2022, 06:30 PM   #2
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Find/ download a few owner manuals, maybe best source?
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Old 06-05-2022, 07:06 PM   #3
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An anti-sway bar cannot resolve an incorrect hitch setup. This is the most accurate and easy to understand weight distributing hitch setup instructions I've ever read.
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Old 06-05-2022, 11:25 PM   #4
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If your sway bars is adjusted properly you tighten the lever all the way down until it bottoms out.

The adjustment is on the other side of the tensioner that requires a wrench to adjust.

Mine is pretty tight.
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Old 06-06-2022, 07:11 AM   #5
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Tail wagging sway means trailer balance is off or tow vehicle is inadequate. Shifting trailer loads forward may reduce tail wagging sway. Of course tongue weight should be 10 to 15 % of actual weight.

Trailer deflection in side winds and when large vehicles pass one another is normal. The more stable the tow vehicle, the less passing sway will occur.

Anti-sway hitch devices will reduce sway of course. More unstable behavior requires more friction to dampen the sway. The friction adjustment should be tight enough to dampen tail wagging sway. The tighter the friction adjustment, the louder the squeaks and the faster it will wear out.

Some people loosen the anti-sway adjustment for tight slow moving situations like in campgrounds. Remember to re-tighten for highway driving.

I wish you good luck and happy trails ahead!
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Old 06-06-2022, 09:17 AM   #6
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Yes, it sounds like the hitch weight is too light.

People towed for years and years without anti sway or WD systems.

With proper weight on the hitch, you shouldn't have any problems with sway under normal driving conditions.
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Old 06-06-2022, 12:44 PM   #7
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I did find THIS: https://thecampingadvisor.com/how-to...ler-sway-bars/
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Old 06-06-2022, 01:56 PM   #8
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Throw the friction bar in the trash and get an equalizer or blue ox hitch. Thatís what i did with mine. It was one of my better life choices.
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Old 06-06-2022, 04:33 PM   #9
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So when you say you still get sway when being passed? Are you being pushed? Or does the trailer start to wobble back and forth and about the only to stop the wobble is to apply the trailer brakes?

If its the second, the wobble that is what I call sway. Normally caused by the tongue not weighing enough. The tongue needs to be greater than about 12% of the total trailer weight, and depending on the trailer it could be even greater.

The first being pushed is more about being prepared to counter steer when you are passed.

I agree tighten the sway control all the way. Make adjustments with the nut.
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Old 06-11-2022, 08:03 PM   #10
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I have a good hitch setup, but I still keep my friction anti-sway bar tightened on interstate. I can definitely feel the difference when a semi passes me and I have it tightened well.
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Old 06-12-2022, 08:49 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtJoyce View Post
So when you say you still get sway when being passed? Are you being pushed? Or does the trailer start to wobble back and forth and about the only to stop the wobble is to apply the trailer brakes?

If its the second, the wobble that is what I call sway. Normally caused by the tongue not weighing enough. The tongue needs to be greater than about 12% of the total trailer weight, and depending on the trailer it could be even greater.

The first being pushed is more about being prepared to counter steer when you are passed.

I agree tighten the sway control all the way. Make adjustments with the nut.
I guess when I said sway, I meant pushed. The trailer does not wobble back and forth at all. I guess we just weren't prepared for how much larger vehicles would push the trailer around when passing. We are getting used to it... I no longer have my wife's hand imprint on my forearm.
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Old 06-14-2022, 04:03 AM   #12
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My question is does the tow vehicle and trailer feel like it is being pushed at the same rate.
Example natural wind pushes or a semi trailer going the opposite direction pushes what feels like 8-18 inches but the trailer tracks and does not wag. I feel this is a normal occurrence. If you felt the trailer step out of line and dance back and forth then you should check tongue weight, ball height, weight distribution on the vehicle and possibly your pants. Depending on how much side profile area your tow vehicle and trailer has you will experience the wind differently.
I have a eaz lift WDH. I have not installed the friction sway control. I have driven our trailer 4-5k miles now including about 2200 miles summer 2020. I never felt the trailer wag. I suspect that it is set up properly and the trucks have been properly rated and not undersized.
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Old 06-14-2022, 03:01 PM   #13
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Sway Bar

I think after all my years towing there is a substantial variation in correct methods depending on your equipment. I tighten my Sway Bar to a point of firm, maybe using 1 or 2 finger. The Sway bar for me is to assist in trailer control not to eliminate trailer side to side movement.

Don't exceed your weights and excessive speed is not your friend. IMHO.
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