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Bumper Ball Hitch vs. Frame Hitch

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Old 01-29-2012, 03:06 PM   #1
Phillywill [OP] Phillywill is offline
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Bumper Ball Hitch vs. Frame Hitch





It looks like my bumper is the same material as the frame and attached to the frame.
Does this make the bumper hitch as strong as a frame hitch?
In other words, can I just buy a hitch ball and screw it into the bumper or should I install a frame hitch?
Thanks
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Old 01-29-2012, 03:07 PM   #2
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Frame hitch, bumper hitch= pull something to heavy and your bumper will bend
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Old 02-01-2012, 06:40 PM   #3
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Bumper is rated for 3500lbs but would never approach that weight with it. If you have the towing package frame hitch is good for 6500lbs. Sounds like you don't have the tow package so 3500lbs is your stock limit anyways but a frame hitch is cheap and very easy to install. Get the frame hitch.
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Old 02-01-2012, 06:41 PM   #4
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frame hitch ftw
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Old 02-01-2012, 07:41 PM   #5
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I'm amazed those bumper hitches don't fail when I see them in use. Guess they work but from just looking at them it seems it like it wouldn't hold up.
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Old 02-02-2012, 04:48 AM   #6
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Frame hitch it is. Should have got the Towing Pkg. Thanks everyone. I appreciate it.
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Old 02-02-2012, 11:54 AM   #7
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Fawk'em both, shitz wizzeak. Tailgate hitch FTMFW!!!

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Old 02-02-2012, 12:01 PM   #8
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Frame hitch is also lower and you can get adjustable ball mounts to make trailers tow much easier.
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Old 02-02-2012, 07:09 PM   #9
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Nice decision OP! Good luck - I think you will be happier with your choice.
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Old 03-02-2012, 07:43 PM   #10
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Could i tow 1000 lbs or less with my bumber, got to move 915 mile in two weeks trying not to spend any more money than i absolutely have to
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Old 03-02-2012, 07:43 PM   #11
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2012 crew prerunner
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Old 03-03-2012, 11:03 AM   #12
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Bumpers are only for towing very light loads in my opinion. IE: 14' aluminum boat with a electric trolling motor.
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Old 03-03-2012, 03:31 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gnstpd View Post
Could i tow 1000 lbs or less with my bumber, got to move 915 mile in two weeks trying not to spend any more money than i absolutely have to
You can do it but a few cautions:

--Do not try to back the trailer unless you are very adept--it is likely that when the trailer gets sideways you will be marring the hell out of your bumper.

--Start out s-l-o-w-l-y and stop the same way. (I realize that the second one is not always in your control)

--Keep your speed down and your trailer well balanced. If you look you will see that the bumper mounting tabs are MUCH less substantial than the frame or a commercial receiver (frame-mounted hitch). This means side to side sway is an even bigger problem with the bumper than it is with the hitch.

--Lock your trailer hitch to the ball using a bolt or an actual lock through the hole. Even if you have a decent place to hook your safety chains ( a problem with bumper balls) you will likely jerk your bumper off (and not in a good way) if that sucker comes loose.
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Old 03-04-2012, 01:44 PM   #14
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I tow a small 1000 pound trailer once a year off the bumper. 450 miles round trip. Trailer has electric brakes and I have a brake controller. I have had no problems. I am actually surprised by how stout the bumper looked.

With the wide plate portion of the bumper, you can be at about 75 degrees before you hit the bumper.

Hardest part of bumper towing is finding suitable place to attach safety chains. I ended up getting some hooks from McMcaster Carr and attaching to the holes either side of the ball hole.
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Old 03-09-2012, 01:05 PM   #15
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Hey guys, I'm new to the forum, but a veteran Tacoma owner. My trusty 98 was in a wreck last month and totaled, so I replaced it with a 2000. Only difference is the newer truck doesn't have the tow package and I'm trying to go about re-creating one.

Does anyone on here know exactly what the factory tow package entails? I've currently got a goofy-looking silver ball sticking off my bumper... and that is just not gonna cut the mustard with me!
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Old 03-09-2012, 01:11 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kac3924 View Post
Hey guys, I'm new to the forum, but a veteran Tacoma owner. My trusty 98 was in a wreck last month and totaled, so I replaced it with a 2000. Only difference is the newer truck doesn't have the tow package and I'm trying to go about re-creating one.

Does anyone on here know exactly what the factory tow package entails? I've currently got a goofy-looking silver ball sticking off my bumper... and that is just not gonna cut the mustard with me!
You could pick up an aftermarket class 3 hitch from a local Uhaul or a place like Autoanything or JCWhitney. Any name brand would do. Other than that, all you'd need is wires and possibly a brake controller depending on what you tow. Wiring for a 4 pin is pretty simple, companies make plugs that intercept the wires going to your tail lights, no splicing necessary. A 7-pin connection is obviously a little more involved.

If you tow heavy, you might want to consider a transmission cooler if you have an automatic.
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Old 03-10-2012, 08:40 AM   #17
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yeah don't use that ball, I have seen the result of that on too many different trucks, (not just ours)
check out Redneck Trailers, on the web. they have 2 locations in Texas and are good to deal with, and you can get a idea of what you need.
If you are good with wiring, its not too hard, use good quality stuff, if not find a good RV place to do the wiring, so it will last. Having had to find where a short is in someone's wiring nightmare is not easy, and I have had a truck were they killed truck and trailer......
and if you tow different things they make adapters for the plugs. And if you need a brake controller added to the truck, get a good one the real cheap one's will burn out fast. I learned alot from my uncle who made backhoe trailers for 35 years, 6,9,12, ton ta-a-longs.... he always used Tekonsha in his truck.
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Old 03-13-2012, 07:57 AM   #18
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Gents- Thanks so much for your advice! I will definitely keep this info in mind as I move forward with the modifications!
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Old 03-13-2012, 07:14 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XxTHe FioLOxX View Post
Frame hitch, bumper hitch= pull something to heavy and your bumper will bend
WAIT A MINUTE! You have the truck I'm looking for, haha. Any advice on towing with the same model of truck as yours? Besides the frame hitch? Any transmission issues? I know you may not have towed with it yet, but I won't for a while anyways haha.
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Old 03-14-2012, 12:41 AM   #20
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As stated by others here, bumper towing should only be for very lite loads. Getting an aftermarket class III hitch, adding a trans cooler, & having brakes on your trailer helps out a lot. I once towed about 3000 lbs with a V6 Nissan Frontier and it was ok, but I feel a lot more comfortable towing with my Tacoma that has the tow package. You might check with Toyota to see how much you can tow if you add these upgrades. I'm sure that it will be more than 3500 lbs.
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