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Deep metal "groaning sound" from hitch. Is this normal?

DaveRVman
Explorer
Explorer
So I have a type of WD hitch I've never used before... Without chains.
On sharper turns I hear a deep groaning type of sound. I think it's the springbar rubbing the support bracket. The only thing I can compare the sound to is what you'd hear in navy type movie in boats where it sounds like the hull is "bending". LOL. Just a deeper groan.

Is this normal?

This is what my WD hitch looks like.
Link

Picture

20 REPLIES 20

kellem
Explorer
Explorer
Never met a quiet one.

Been using a Reese DC for many years and it displays more of a popping sounds.....little dry lube on the chains eliminated the pop.

Lynnmor
Explorer
Explorer
Kampfirekid wrote:
I’ve had many Equalizer brand hitches over the past 25 years. Never a noise issue. Picked up a new trailer two weeks ago. On the way home I crossed the scales to find they set the hitch up perfectly. However, we pulled it home about 60 miles and it was noisier than expected. I figured it was new. Bars were losing paint on wear surfaces... good. It’ll quiet up. Then went another 60 for our inaugural run the next weekend. The hitch was groaning so loud. I had to take the hitch apart. I found they never lubed the hitch at all. I had no reason to think... I thought... to lube the hitch right away. It’s new! They’ll do it! Riiiiiiiggggghhhhht. In 120 miles, the head was destroyed. Gouges of metal pulled from the wearing surfaces. Metal pulling up like “ feathers” from the friction surfaces. If I could figure out how to attach a picture, I would. It’s nasty.


That's why I would never buy a steel on steel friction device or trust a dealer to do much of anything.

Kampfirekid
Explorer
Explorer
I’ve had many Equalizer brand hitches over the past 25 years. Never a noise issue. Picked up a new trailer two weeks ago. On the way home I crossed the scales to find they set the hitch up perfectly. However, we pulled it home about 60 miles and it was noisier than expected. I figured it was new. Bars were losing paint on wear surfaces... good. It’ll quiet up. Then went another 60 for our inaugural run the next weekend. The hitch was groaning so loud. I had to take the hitch apart. I found they never lubed the hitch at all. I had no reason to think... I thought... to lube the hitch right away. It’s new! They’ll do it! Riiiiiiiggggghhhhht. In 120 miles, the head was destroyed. Gouges of metal pulled from the wearing surfaces. Metal pulling up like “ feathers” from the friction surfaces. If I could figure out how to attach a picture, I would. It’s nasty.

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2019 Ford F-150 Lariat Supercrew. 5–/2 foot bed. 3.0L Powerstroke,
Loaded. 2020 K-Z Connect SE 241BHKSE

Hannibal
Explorer
Explorer
LarryJM wrote:


NO TRUE AT ALL, if it's like the Equal-i-zer system where the friction on the WD bar to frame "L" brackets are secondary to the main sway control which is from the sockets on the hitch head assembly.

Larry


I agree. When I use the Equalizer for longer trips, I put a dab of grease on the L brackets as well as the head and ball. I can’t tell the difference other than it’s quiet.
2020 F250 STX CC SB 7.3L 10spd 3.55 4x4
2010 F250 XLT CC SB 5.4L 5spdTS 3.73
ex '95 Cummins,'98 12v Cummins,'01.5 Cummins,'03 Cummins; '05 Hemi
2017 Jayco 28RLS TT 32.5'

LarryJM
Explorer II
Explorer II
Terryallan wrote:
mike-uswest wrote:
I have a Husky Center-line hitch, and it makes a lot of noise when you first start out, but does get a little better after awhile. A drop of lithe oil on the rub area seems to help, but I guess that nullifies it's main action.

Mike


Yeah that pretty well kills the swaycontrol


NO TRUE AT ALL, if it's like the Equal-i-zer system where the friction on the WD bar to frame "L" brackets are secondary to the main sway control which is from the sockets on the hitch head assembly.

Larry
2001 standard box 7.3L E-350 PSD Van with 4.10 rear and 2007 Holiday Rambler Aluma-Lite 8306S Been RV'ing since 1974.
RAINKAP INSTALL////ETERNABOND INSTALL

harley4275
Explorer
Explorer
The pads are called "bracket jackets" and well worth the 20bucks. Also a dab of grease where the bars move at the head. And on the ball too.
2013 Sunset Trail 25RB TT
2015 Silverado 2500HD 4x4 6.0 l gasser.
Equilizer 4 pt
From Belle River, Ontario
2003 Mountain Star 890sbrx Truck Camper

joelc
Explorer III
Explorer III
No pun intended, but do you have your ball greased and other moving parts with WD-40 or lithium grease on them. When not towing use a cut tennis ball with grease (bearing grease) in it and put it over the ball, this will keep it greased and clean.

DaveRVman
Explorer
Explorer
Thanks a bunch guys! Really answered my question. 🙂

bob213
Explorer
Explorer
These work well to reduce noise. I'm told they reduce sway control a bit just like grease.
If you have the new L pin with the clip attached you will need the smaller pad made for that pin.
L bracket pads
You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality – Ayn Rand

joshuajim
Explorer
Explorer
I’ve been using a Equalizer for many years. Early on I had the typical groaning. I studied the installation and discovered that when fully loaded for a trip that the bars were not 100% perpendicular with the L brackets. This resulted in the bars rubbing on a thin edge, not the full flat L bracket surface. I adjusted the L brackets to be 100% perpendicular with a carpenters square when static and the noise mysteriously went away. Now when moving at road speed the trailer will porpoise some and the bars will constantly change contact which is normal.
RVing since 1995.

grampacc
Explorer
Explorer
Have the same hitch. Bought pads fron Equal-i-zer website for bars to sit on. Lubricate bar where it goes into socket. Equal-i-zer sells it too, but I now use Extreme Graphite as is less messy. Need to apply after all hook-ups.

Cheers.

TurnThePage
Explorer
Explorer
I've had my Equal-I-zer for 16 years. It makes that noise. Nature of the beast. I think most of the noise is from the hitch head where the bars are inserted. Back when I bought mine, they didn't offer the nylon jacket for the L brackets but did recommend a bit of grease on them, as well as the flat, horizontal surfaces of the hitch head. The sway control is still there with the grease on those parts. I've learned you have to grease that hitch head every trip.
2015 Ram 1500
2022 Grand Design Imagine XLS 22RBE

Ron3rd
Explorer
Explorer
aftermath wrote:
I have an Equalizer hitch and have used it, actually two different ones, for close to 16 years now. The "4 point" sway control comes from the two sockets the bars fit into and the two L brackets they ride on. Look at their website and they will mention lubing up the hitch. Don't use oil, use a white lithium grease. Look at the sockets and you will see friction points above and below the socket. Put a small amount of grease on these spots.

They sell jackets that fit onto the L brackets to reduce the noise. I have never used these but I have put a small amount of grease on the L brackets too. I don't think they recommend this but I have had no trouble in doing so.

It is somewhat counter intuitive to put some lubricant on surfaces that rely on friction to function. Equalizer suggests that doing this will help the noise. If they say it is OK,I am not concerned. If you think that this "negates" the operation I suggest you try this. When hooked up, remove the clamp on the L bracket and try to move the arm.

Again, this works for me. I have over 50K miles on my current trailer and have not experienced any negative affects.


X2 I have the same hitch and yes they can be noisy. They sell pads for the L brackets that takes a lot of the noise out. I might buy some one of these days
2016 6.7 CTD 2500 BIG HORN MEGA CAB
2013 Forest River 3001W Windjammer
Equilizer Hitch
Honda EU2000

"I have this plan to live forever; so far my plan is working"

aftermath
Explorer II
Explorer II
I have an Equalizer hitch and have used it, actually two different ones, for close to 16 years now. The "4 point" sway control comes from the two sockets the bars fit into and the two L brackets they ride on. Look at their website and they will mention lubing up the hitch. Don't use oil, use a white lithium grease. Look at the sockets and you will see friction points above and below the socket. Put a small amount of grease on these spots.

They sell jackets that fit onto the L brackets to reduce the noise. I have never used these but I have put a small amount of grease on the L brackets too. I don't think they recommend this but I have had no trouble in doing so.

It is somewhat counter intuitive to put some lubricant on surfaces that rely on friction to function. Equalizer suggests that doing this will help the noise. If they say it is OK,I am not concerned. If you think that this "negates" the operation I suggest you try this. When hooked up, remove the clamp on the L bracket and try to move the arm.

Again, this works for me. I have over 50K miles on my current trailer and have not experienced any negative affects.
2017 Toyota Tundra, Double Cab, 5.7L V8
2006 Airstream 25 FB SE
Equalizer Hitch