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Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 13 May 2019, 21:40
by lckstckn2smknbrls
I recently acquired my parents 2006 Toyota Sienna mini van, they bought it new and put 90,000 miles on it in 13 years. It's the limited XLE with almost every option but no hitch. I bought a Drawtite hitch over the winter but just got around to installing the hitch. The van has 6 threaded holes under the rear. I tried screwing the bolts in the holes but no go 13 years of northern Illinois weather, winters, salt and corrosion had messed up the threads.
I went to Auto zone and through their loan a tool program I got a thread restorer kit. I couldn't get the thread restorer to start in the threads either. My next idea was to use a tap to clear the threads. I went to Menards they had the proper size tap and the T handle too. It took about 15 minuets to run the tap through the 3 holes on the drivers side the holes on the passenger side were a little harder to get too because the tail pipe was in the way.
The instructions and most of the videos say to drop the exhaust but if you pull on the tail pipe and use a ratchet, long extension and 5/16" 12 point socket you can get the tap to the holes.
Now that the holes were cleared I slid the hitch in over the tailpipe and set the other end of the hitch on a floor jack and raised it up.
Now it was just a matter of screwing in the 6 bolts and torqueing them to 75ft pound and done. The hitch sits pretty low on the Sienna vans so I'll be getting a fairly tall hitch and I'll be using the Masterlock 1-7/8" 2" and 2-5/6" 10,000 pound rated interchangeable ball system.
All in all it went pretty well, I'm waiting for the trailer light wiring kit to come in.

Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 14 May 2019, 18:37
by FormerParatrooper
I had the same Illinois issues when I added my hitch to my 2008 Saturn Outlook. It was a pain, I used cutting oil to retap all the holes. Fortunately when I traded that vehicle in for a 17 Dodge Durango, the hitch and lighting was already installed by the factory. I really wasn't looking forward to going under another vehicle to repeat that.

Only thing is I left my drawbar in the Outlook. Have to pick another up when the river comes down and I can get the boat out this year.

Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 14 May 2019, 20:50
by lckstckn2smknbrls
FormerParatrooper wrote:I had the same Illinois issues when I added my hitch to my 2008 Saturn Outlook. It was a pain, I used cutting oil to retap all the holes. Fortunately when I traded that vehicle in for a 17 Dodge Durango, the hitch and lighting was already installed by the factory. I really wasn't looking forward to going under another vehicle to repeat that.

Only thing is I left my drawbar in the Outlook. Have to pick another up when the river comes down and I can get the boat out this year.
I've installed 6 or 7 hitches and trailer wiring kits, most had issues of some sort even on new vehicles.

Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 15 May 2019, 01:55
by LDUBS
I installed a class III hitch on my previous pick-up. Probably a lot easier because I had plenty of ground clearance.

In addition to the wiring harness I had to get a heavy duty turn signal relay in order for the trailer lights to work. Basically plug and play, but I wouldn't have known had the guy at the auto parts store not said something.

Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 15 May 2019, 13:00
by enwez
Our boats are pretty light, so maybe not necessary but look into installing a transmission cooler. I think they're <$100 and not to hard to install.

Luckily for me the CD4E transmission is so notoriously unreliable Ford already installed one stock on my 08 Escape... #-o

Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 15 May 2019, 15:03
by lckstckn2smknbrls
enwez wrote:Our boats are pretty light, so maybe not necessary but look into installing a transmission cooler. I think they're <$100 and not to hard to install.

Luckily for me the CD4E transmission is so notoriously unreliable Ford already installed one stock on my 08 Escape... #-o
The 06, 07 sienna's have a trans oil cooler and an engine oil cooler and have a 3500 pound towing capacity. I believe starting in 08 Toyota did away with the engine oil cooler and lowered the towing capacity to 1500 pounds.

Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 15 May 2019, 17:03
by enwez
lckstckn2smknbrls wrote:
enwez wrote:Our boats are pretty light, so maybe not necessary but look into installing a transmission cooler. I think they're <$100 and not to hard to install.

Luckily for me the CD4E transmission is so notoriously unreliable Ford already installed one stock on my 08 Escape... #-o
The 06, 07 sienna's have a trans oil cooler and an engine oil cooler and have a 3500 pound towing capacity. I believe starting in 08 Toyota did away with the engine oil cooler and lowered the towing capacity to 1500 pounds.
Looks like you're all set then!

Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 15 May 2019, 19:24
by FormerParatrooper
lckstckn2smknbrls wrote:
FormerParatrooper wrote:I had the same Illinois issues when I added my hitch to my 2008 Saturn Outlook. It was a pain, I used cutting oil to retap all the holes. Fortunately when I traded that vehicle in for a 17 Dodge Durango, the hitch and lighting was already installed by the factory. I really wasn't looking forward to going under another vehicle to repeat that.

Only thing is I left my drawbar in the Outlook. Have to pick another up when the river comes down and I can get the boat out this year.
I've installed 6 or 7 hitches and trailer wiring kits, most had issues of some sort even on new vehicles.
For me it is just getting harder to crawl under there and do the work. Having it already installed was a major plus.

Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 15 May 2019, 19:32
by lckstckn2smknbrls
FormerParatrooper wrote:
lckstckn2smknbrls wrote:
FormerParatrooper wrote:I had the same Illinois issues when I added my hitch to my 2008 Saturn Outlook. It was a pain, I used cutting oil to retap all the holes. Fortunately when I traded that vehicle in for a 17 Dodge Durango, the hitch and lighting was already installed by the factory. I really wasn't looking forward to going under another vehicle to repeat that.

Only thing is I left my drawbar in the Outlook. Have to pick another up when the river comes down and I can get the boat out this year.
I've installed 6 or 7 hitches and trailer wiring kits, most had issues of some sort even on new vehicles.
For me it is just getting harder to crawl under there and do the work. Having it already installed was a major plus.
Getting down under the car is easy Getting back up is the hard part.

Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 16 May 2019, 19:33
by FormerParatrooper
lckstckn2smknbrls wrote:
FormerParatrooper wrote:
For me it is just getting harder to crawl under there and do the work. Having it already installed was a major plus.
Getting down under the car is easy Getting back up is the hard part.
So true, I often wonder what happened to the years, there didn't used to be so many behind me.

Installed a trailer hitch

Posted: 16 May 2019, 22:19
by LDUBS
FormerParatrooper wrote:
lckstckn2smknbrls wrote:
FormerParatrooper wrote:
For me it is just getting harder to crawl under there and do the work. Having it already installed was a major plus.
Getting down under the car is easy Getting back up is the hard part.
So true, I often wonder what happened to the years, there didn't used to be so many behind me.

Yeah, I thought it would take a lot longer to get this old!

Re: Installed a trailer hitch update

Posted: 25 May 2019, 11:51
by lckstckn2smknbrls
Update.
I installed a Tekonsha T-one trailer wiring kit. Installation was very easy and so far it works as it should.