A fifth wheel hitch is a towing system made for different load-pulling setups. The best 5th wheel hitch should have the ideal traits optimal for medium- to heavy-duty towing operations.
Users can take advantage of top-notch 5th wheel towing systems to pull different heavy loads, such as a horse trailer, a large camper, or a semi-trailer. Most of these kits will come with two main parts: the trailer coupling system and the hitch. Take note that the hitch may look like a horseshoe or a half donut.
Although many fifth wheel hitches aim to meet roughly the same objectives, it can be challenging for buyers to search for the right model for their needs. Therefore, it is necessary for shoppers to consider the following factors while thinking about their options:
- Included items: Buyers should purchase fifth wheel hitch kits that come as a complete set. Otherwise, it can be quite annoying to make different trips and/or purchases to buy the parts needed for the towing setup.
- Truck used: Aside from thinking about the hitch, shoppers should also consider the truck they are going to use for the towing operation. Ponder upon and identify details like if the vehicle has a short truck bed.
- Type: 5th wheel hitches often come with different builds and designs. For example, some units are fifth wheel sliding hitches while certain models possess the typical fixed hitch makeup.
Take note that the factors mentioned above may not be the only elements to think about when choosing the right fifth wheel hitch. Interested customers should also check the buying guide below for more tips. Meanwhile, let us introduce the top 5th wheel hitches on the market.
Table of Contents
Best Fifth Wheel Hitch Reviews
1. Andersen Hitches 3220 5th Wheel Connection
I won’t hesitate to purchase this Anderson hitch again if given the chance. Upon installing this set, the road trip while towing a second vehicle has become a quiet ride. Gone are the days when I had to squint due to worrying about what could go wrong because of a noisy hitch setup.
Speaking of the installation, this model is reasonably easy to set up. It was even possible to connect the hitch from relatively any angle. With this benefit, I did not worry about attaching or removing the hitch from my tow truck when the vehicle was on rough terrains.
Plus, after completing the initial setup, it only takes a few moments to mount or remove the hitch when I do not need to use it. It takes about six steps to achieve these tasks and would only take a few minutes of my time to complete.
I also admire the compatibility supplied by this model. The manufacturer combined the ease of installation with superb versatility as I was able to set up this kit on different vehicles. This model is a 5th wheel hitch for Ram 2500, and it fits my short bed pickup truck and other tow trailers.
Also, this wheel hitch features all the necessary parts for a proper installation, such as a pin box that latches onto the connection. The ball coupler also provides a high degree of clearance, allowing the kit to supply me with a sufficient amount of turning radius.
2. B&W Trailer Hitches RVK3500 Fifth Wheel Hitch
This model is one of the top-rated hitches for fifth wheels on the market, thanks to its myriad of helpful features. In particular, I would like to give special mention to its superb sturdiness.
It has a 20,000-pound gross trailer weight (GTW) that did more than enough in helping me tow a 45-foot toy hauler on a hill. This kit also held well when one of the truck’s safety chains slipped. Although the gooseneck attachment became bent, this hitch still prevented a catastrophic incident.
Apart from its first-rate durability, installation is a reasonably easy affair with this unit. Unlike other similar products, this hitch does not require additional parts or modifications for it to work as intended.
All the necessary components are in the package, allowing me to save precious time and gas money from traveling to and from a store. It also has a cam action latching handle for easy removal and storage.
I also like that this system comes with polyurethane bushings. With these components, my towing operations became silent and rattle-free experiences. I would even go as far as to say that this hitch was one of the quietest, if not the most silent model I used.
3. Andersen Hitches 3200 5th Wheel Connection
While many fifth wheel attachments on the market are heavy, this Andersen hitch did not require a lot of strength to install. The reason is that this product is a lightweight 5th wheel hitch that weighs a measly 10 pounds. In comparison, other models on the market weigh more than 50 pounds.
It is also fairly easy to install and use. This product did not even require me to call for help to attach it onto its rails. Attaching the main unit to its four clips and pins takes seconds, helping me save time on the road.
Tight maneuvering is also one of this product’s greatest traits. The hitch provided great clearance for both long and short bed trucks. As a result, I could use this product for several of my vehicles.
The performance is also admirable as it is quiet. I did not have to deal with almost any type of creaking or squeaking during my road travels with this hitch attached to my towing setup. Also, since this hitch did not give me unwanted movements, I did not have to worry about my safety while traveling.
4. CURT 16115 E16 Hitch for Fifth Wheels
I was surprised to see a hitch this inexpensive on the market. It is even less expensive than a Roadmaster tow bar I owned. But this fairly low-priced option comes with features that do not seem to belong in the budget-friendly category.
For instance, it has a dual-pivot head that provides additional lateral movement by up to 10 degrees. This dual-pivoting head design helps elongate the hitch, reducing unwanted friction that might otherwise shorten this unit’s serviceable life. Additionally, this feature makes my towing experiences both smooth and stable.
I also like the automatic locking feature of this fifth wheel tow hitch. With it, the coupling process is quite easy. Plus, the connection between the towing and towed vehicle is secure, thanks to this functionality.
Next, I applaud the manufacturer for ensuring this product has an industry-standard design. It means that I can mount it onto relatively any 5th wheel base rail, making its compatibility one of the best in its class.
5. B&W Trailer Hitches RVK3300 Fifth Wheel Hitch
Perhaps the best feature that I like about this particular fifth wheel hitch is its fully articulating head. It allowed the towing setup to pivot the towed load without putting unwanted strain on the hitch kit.
The strength provided by this product is also one of the best on the market. It has a maximum gross trailer weight of 20,000 pounds. In comparison, some models barely scratch the 16,000-pound weight capacity mark.
Also, the cam action latching handle works like a charm. Using it is a no-brainer, seeing that I was able to release the hitch from the setup with relative ease. Easily detaching this hitch is also almost hassle-free when I park my towing setup on uneven locations.
Plus, the manufacturer is kind enough to provide a limited lifetime warranty to customers like me who purchased this product from certified sources. This policy allows me to contact and take advantage of customer and technical-related services from the company if I encounter problems with the product.
6. CURT 16120 A16 Hitch for Fifth Wheels
This hitch for fifth wheels is an all-in-one model that ticks a lot of boxes on my list. For instance, it has a smart coupling system that self-resets after each use. That way, it removes a step from the coupling procedure, making each vehicle attachment operation easier than before.
Next, this model’s installation is relatively easier than other units. It only has one head, making the removal process of the fifth wheel hitch from the truck’s bed less time-consuming and tiresome.
In addition to the one-pin design, this hitch’s head has a pair of high-strength interlocking jaws that secures the connection. Its gripping strength is first-rate, and it even reduces chucking movements and the associated rackets to almost non-existence. Paired with the cast yoke, towing operations are as quiet as they can be.
I also like that the manufacturer offers add-ons to help enhance the convenience of their customers’ towing experiences. One accessory is a lube plate to make this removable 5th wheel hitch grease-free.
7. B&W Trailer Hitches RVK3600 5th Wheel Hitch
I was trying to find an issue with this hitch’s performance but could not find any. It is a rarity for a product to have its build quality and features. That’s why I consider the RVK3600 a must-buy for anyone that has the budget to own it.
Its best-in-class performance starts with its 4-way pivoting system. With this feature, it allows the hitch to move according to the driving conditions. In turn, it prevents unwanted strain on its materials, extending its longevity beyond the standard period.
Also, the double-jaw design made every ride with this fifth wheel hitch as smooth and noise-free as possible. Gone are the clanking noises that would otherwise be present when I used low-quality hitches.
This hitch’s strength is also top-tier. It has a 25,000-pound maximum weight limit, allowing it to pull different heavy loads with relative ease. Its OEM construction also makes it a good choice for Ram trucks.
It also comes with the manufacturer’s limited lifetime warranty. I have not been able to talk with the company’s customer service representative. But one of my buddies in the towing niche mentioned that communicating with the brand’s agents is fairly hassle-free.
8. Reese 30047 16K Hitch for Fifth Wheel
This 5th wheel hitch can be an ideal choice for a specific niche. Its 16,000-pound load capacity may not be up to par with other models that can pull over 20,000 pounds. However, its characteristics focus on outdoing products with similar specs instead of trying to compete with stronger units.
For instance, it has an adjustable height that can go from 14-1/2 to 18 inches. Fine-tuning the placement of the hitch within these parameters does well in preventing the towing setup from undergoing excessive movements. There is also the two-jaw locking mechanism that secures my towing and towed vehicles firmly.
Helping the adjustable height is the 4-way pivoting system. Like other models with this feature, it is an essential attribute to preventing unwanted wear and tear to the assembly. It functions by increasing the flexibility of the connection during on-road towing operations to enhance its serviceability.
Moreover, this product has the manufacturer’s 5-year limited warranty. The existence of this guarantee proves to me and other users that the company has its user base’s best interest at heart.
9. CURT 16245 Q24 5th Wheel Hitch
This 5th wheel hitch is a heavy beast. Unlike other models that only weigh around 20 to 40 pounds, this unit weighs over 130 pounds. Although this heft makes it quite difficult to install without an assistant, it also means that I can be at peace, knowing that this heaviness comes with amazing durability.
I replaced an old fifth wheel slider hitch with this model because of its top-tier strength and sturdiness. Its 24,000-pound maximum weight capacity is more than enough to hold and pull different loads behind my towing vehicle. Plus, it also passed the SAE J2638 standards, proving to users like me its superb performance.
Additionally, this 5th wheel hitch has a universal design. I attempted to outfit different tow trucks with this hitch and experienced minimal issues with the installation processes. Still, I should mention that the design is not compatible with turret-style pin boxes like the one found in a Sidewinder.
But for the most part, this hitch performed without any problems. It functions with one short-throw handle that delivers smooth operation each time. Plus, this feature ensures easy coupling jobs for my 20,000-lb pickup.
10. Mopar 82214743 Fifth Wheel Hitch
Before stating my thoughts about this fifth wheel hitch, I would like to make it clear that Curt is the manufacturer behind Mopar tow accessories. That also means that some Curt products may be similar to this hitch, which makes buying replacement parts fairly easy when needed.
Moving forward, I love that this model is one of the strongest and sturdiest 5th wheel hitches on the market. Its 25,000-pound towing capacity is not a mere marketing gimmick. That weight limit means that it is compatible with medium- to heavy-duty vehicles, like all Class 4 and certain Class 6 trucks.
I also like that the installation is suitably easy, thanks to the color-coded parts. This way, it is fairly safe to say that even beginners in hooking up fifth wheel hitches will not have a difficult time assembling this set.
The next feature from this product that made me quite happy with the purchase is its 360-degree pivoting head. This component allowed the towing setup to flex and stretch to reasonable levels, providing the hitch with sufficient flexibility and reducing wear and tear.
5th Wheel Hitches Buying Guide
The different 5th wheel hitches on the market can make the shopping experience more challenging than intended. Some customers might be asking themselves different questions before making their final purchasing decisions. These inquiries may include:
- Is the lightest 5th wheel hitch the best to buy?
- What is a good 5th wheel hitch for Ram 3500?
- What model is perfect as a 5th wheel hitch for Ford F350?
Before arriving at a sound decision, buyers should take time in thinking about different factors that can affect their purchase. Some of the elements to consider are:
The top-tier fifth wheel hitch often comes as a set. The kit should free users from making extra purchases and offer optimal convenience. Some of the items that should be in a typical 5th wheel hitch packaging are:
- Hitch head: The component inserted into the receiver hitch and functions to support the hitch ball.
- King pin: The part that installers will attach to the fifth wheel trailer permanently.
- Mounting rails: Securely fastens the truck bed to a sturdy hitch system.
- Slider: As its name implies, this part slides forward and backward. It helps reduce unwanted movement on short bed trucks. It might not be a necessity for long bed trucks.
- Pucks: Attachment in truck beds that specify that the setup has a prep package.
Many buyers often concentrate their purchasing efforts on looking for the best fifth wheel hitches that they forget about checking their trucks. Compatibility, or the lack thereof, can impact the performance of the 5th wheel attachment used.
Tow truck owners should ask themselves probing questions to arrive at the ideal fifth wheel hitches for their specific setups. Some of these queries may include:
- What is the length of the truck’s bed?
- Does the bed of the truck have pucks? If yes, will the fifth wheel hitch adapter fit them?
- Does the truck have metal rails on its bed?
- What is the specific brand and model of the tow vehicle?
Next, it is important to pay attention to the type of 5th wheel camper hitch to use. Fifth wheel trailer hitches often fall under four primary categories, which are:
- Standard Fixed Hitch
Fifth wheel tow hitches falling under this type often have no cushioning systems and have permanent installations. Many fixed hitches are also reasonably lightweight and are fairly inexpensive. However, fixed units may not do well in providing optimal stability to towing setups.
- Air Ride
Ideal for a long bed truck, an air ride hitch for fifth wheels is typically an all-in-one towing system that can provide great stability against bumps. However, interested buyers should prepare to spend more cash to purchase air ride systems than when buying standard fixed 5th wheel hitches.
- Manual Sliding Hitch
Manual sliding hitches are generally good for use on short bed trucks. As the name implies, manual models help stop the truck with the help of a slide release lever. Although this system typically works well in many towing setups, users would need to get out of their vehicles to operate the manual slider.
- Automatic Sliding Hitch
Automatic fifth wheel camper hitches do not require users to step out of their vehicles to operate these systems. Instead, these hitches can function without the need for significant human interventions. However, these models typically share the same issue with air ride models, and that is their relatively expensive pricing.
- Gooseneck Adapter
Some trucks already have a gooseneck towing system. These gooseneck trailers will have a particular ball hitch that allows the installation of certain types of 5th wheel hitches without adding modifications to the setup.
Take note that adapters for gooseneck hitches often come in different types, which are:
- Trailer pin box replacement
- Gooseneck hitch that goes into the ball hole
- Gooseneck ball attachment
- King pin plate attachment
How Big Of 5th Wheel Hitch Do I Need?
Always keep in mind that there is no camper 5th wheel hitch that can fit every towing setup. Finding the correct size to buy a new or used fifth wheel hitch needs careful assessment of certain factors.
Consider the following steps when determining the best 5th wheel hitch size to comply with specific towing scenarios:
- Determine the trailer’s hitch weight capacity. Use the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) in verifying this value.
- Identify the trailer’s dry hitch weight.
- Verify the compatibility of the chosen RV 5th wheel hitch. For instance, a 5th wheel hitch for Chevy 2500 may not fit a Ram 2500.
Additionally, it is a practical choice to select a fifth wheel tow hitch with a higher weight rating than the vehicle’s gross trailer weight. Opt for at least a 20% higher towing capacity to ensure the hitch setup can handle more than the amount of load pulled.
Are Fifth Wheels Easier To Back Up?
In certain cases, fifth wheels are not as easy to reverse as other vehicles, particularly when compared to travel trailers. It is because backing up a 5th wheel vehicle will move the towed second vehicle in an unexpected direction.
Therefore, making tight turns or driving on rough terrain can become tougher than usual when trying to back up fifth wheels. Still, certain techniques exist to help mitigate these issues.
For instance, having an assistant to issue commands and warnings while backing up the towing setup can ensure that no collision happens. The other person can also stay in the passenger seat to help make sure that the driving experience will be devoid of on-road accidents while ensuring a smooth ride.
How Long Do Fifth Wheel Hitches Last?
The best fifth wheel hitch, along with the practice of regular and proper care, can last a long time. Some models may last more than a decade, as long as users take good care of these systems.
How Much Does A Fifth Wheel Hitch Cost
Interested buyers should expect to spend money ranging from $800 to $1,600 for a new hitch for a 5th wheel vehicle. Shoppers may also opt to use professional services for the installation to save time and effort from this process. However, expert labor might be expensive for some folks.
Another option is to install the hitch using DIY techniques. But installing these systems may also require additional equipment and materials, which should be about an extra $100 in costs.
The design and build quality of fifth wheel hitches may also affect their costs. For example, a particular 5th wheel hitch for lifted trucks might be more expensive than a specific sliding fifth wheel hitch model.
Extra features in some fifth wheel hitches may also increase their overheads. Look out for additional functionalities like a dual-jaw system, dual-pivot head, and an automatic locking feature. Finding these features in certain models may put off some interested buyers following strict budgets.
How To Install A Fifth Wheel Hitch On A Short Bed Truck?
Before proceeding with the setup process for the 5th wheel hitch for short bed, it is important to mention that this task can be easier than expected if buyers choose a kit with an easy installation procedure. So it is best to read online reviews to ensure the convenience for this job.
Additionally, take note that each model may have unique steps for the installation process. Check the owner’s manual to make sure that the tools are accounted for and the steps are fairly clear.
After taking note of these precautions and finishing the preparations, here are the general steps to install fifth wheel hitches for short bed trucks:
- Locate and mark the center location of the truck’s bed on its rear. The marked area should be the location where installers affix the side rails.
- Mount the brackets for the rails at the bottom of the truck’s frame.
- Mount and slide the rails into the mounting system and secure this assembly.
- Repeat steps 2 and 3, but this time for the top of the truck’s rear frame.
- Drill a hole into the rear of the truck that is equal to the king pin’s size.
- Attach the 5th wheel hitch onto the rails while ensuring a proper alignment among the parts.
- Secure the hitch to the rails and plate.
- Fasten the king pin and side gear underneath the truck’s frame. Secure this setup by welding or using the available screws.
The best 5th wheel hitch possesses features aimed at supplying users with optimal convenience, satisfaction, and value. It should provide benefits that also deliver peace of mind, ensuring that the towing setup stays secure throughout different on- and off-road situations.
With that said, interested buyers can choose to purchase the B&W Trailer Hitches RVK3600 5th Wheel Hitch for their towing setups. Despite its hefty cost, I can easily recommend this hitch because of its premium features like its 4-way pivoting system and double-jaw design.
Hi, I am Joseph. Carpe diem! Seize the day! That’s always been my life motto. If you haven’t seen some of the most beautiful places in the country, you are missing out on incredible adventures.