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Help! Frozen bolts on hitch install

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Old 06-17-2009, 01:05 PM   #1
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Help! Frozen bolts on hitch install

I'm trying to install a class 3 Hidden Hitch on my 2004 extra cab. The instructions say to remove the frame bolts just in front of the leaf springs. It appears they are threaded into weld nuts and I can't get them to budge. The leaf springs preclude getting an impact wrench on them. I need this thing to be operable by this weekend. Any suggestions? Another hitch that would be better than the Hidden Hitch?
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Old 06-17-2009, 02:30 PM   #2
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I just installed that same hitch on my '03 a month ago.
1st tip - remove the spare as it will be a pain to get the new hitch in with it in place.
2nd - pick up some PB Blaster and soak the bolts ahead of time. You have to give it some time to work its magic.

Breaking the bolts free on the 2 forward bolts was a pain. Removing the spare also makes the drivers side bolt easier to get to. The exhaust gets in the way on the passenger side, so do what you can. A long handled box wrench might be the easiest way.

Once you get the bolts out, installing the hitch is quick and easy.
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Old 06-17-2009, 03:14 PM   #3
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Thanks for the tips. I already had the spare out and used WD40, but I've now stripped the bolt head down pretty bad on the driver side...I used a 6 point socket on a 24" breaker bar and it spun. Not good. I think I'll give the PB Blaster a try, let it soak overnight and see if I can get it with the Craftsman nut removal tool I have. If that doesn't work I think I'll just have to return the hitch and order a Curt/DrawTite/Valley or something that doesn't use those bolts.
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Old 06-17-2009, 03:20 PM   #4
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Ouch. That could be tough. If the nut removal doesn't work, maybe grind opposite flats and use an open ended wrench or a pipe wrench. I have no idea what those bolts are for. I don't remember them linking anything together?
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Old 06-18-2009, 03:47 AM   #5
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The PB blaster should work better, WD40 just ain't what it used to be. A lot of the "good" ingredients were removed or replaced over the years to pacify the clean air hippies.

You can also try to heat the bolt with a torch. If you do get it off, I'd recommend replacing it since you've already stripped the head.
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Old 06-18-2009, 01:27 PM   #6
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Hidden Hitch provides new bolts for the location he is talking about, so getting the old ones out is the hard part. Good advice though.
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Old 06-18-2009, 03:26 PM   #7
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If the bolt head is rounded off, try a pipe wrench with an extended handle...like a 2 foot pipe. If you get the right bite with the pipe wrench they can be pretty effective.
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Old 06-18-2009, 08:04 PM   #8
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I'm not sure what the bolts are for either...they seem to attach the frame cross member, but it's welded so that doesn't make sense. Thanks for the ideas. I think I'll try the pipe wrench after a little grinding and see if that does it before I completely give up and get a different hitch. I'll let you know how it goes
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Old 06-19-2009, 08:24 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gumby View Post
I'm not sure what the bolts are for either...they seem to attach the frame cross member, but it's welded so that doesn't make sense. Thanks for the ideas. I think I'll try the pipe wrench after a little grinding and see if that does it before I completely give up and get a different hitch. I'll let you know how it goes

There are three bolts per side and they are used to mount the spare wheel cross member to the chassis frame. Only one needs to be removed to install the hitch. I have the same problem and I sparyed PB to threads from the opening on the side of the frame.

One of my bolts are almost rounded. I am thinking of dropping the rear leaf spring mounting and disconnect the shocks from the axel and slowly drop the whole rear end until I have space to put impact gun. Wheels will be removed and jack stands on the frame and using the jack to lower the rear end being careful about the rear brake hose. Seems like lot of work. But I don't want to spend money on buying a different hitch.

Do other brand hitches fit differently on Tacomas'?
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Old 06-19-2009, 08:32 AM   #10
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pb blaster, and a little heat and beat.
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Old 03-06-2011, 06:04 AM   #11
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Hey Gumby - did you ever break that bolt free? I am running into the exact same problem.
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Old 03-06-2011, 09:07 AM   #12
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my miracle worker is my MAPP torch. i PB blast it the day before..and then i get it glowing red hot. never lost a rusty fastener yet..(knocking on wood)
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Old 03-06-2011, 04:16 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jicbulk View Post
Hey Gumby - did you ever break that bolt free? I am running into the exact same problem.
I gave up on that one and put a different hitch on...found a buyer for the old hitch so it was the low cost and low effort way to go. I've since had success with the torch method. The key seems to be to get it red hot. Good luck
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