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 > Where to start with wdh adjustment for new truck?

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shades9323

Lansing, MI

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Posted: 03/04/22 05:01am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Bobbo wrote:

Measure the distance from the ground to the top of the front wheel well before putting the trailer on the ball. Write that number down. Memory is fickle. Put the trailer on the ball and retract the tongue jack so the entire weight is on the truck. If the wheel well rises less than about an inch, you are good to go. No WDH needed.

If the wheel well rises more than about an inch, slowly increase the amount of WD until the front wheel well comes back to about 1/2 inch above the level without the trailer attached.


Thanks for the write up. I get the gist of how it works. Was looking for to see any prior experiences here could guide me a little more than just incremental changes.

shades9323

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Posted: 03/04/22 05:06am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

valhalla360 wrote:

Have you been to the CAT scales? GVWR is 5500lb, so I would be expecting around 700-800lb hitch weight (well within your trucks capability).

If the hitch weight is too light, it can cause sway issues and a WDH isn't a good solution to that issue. If you are just guessing at the hitch weight, swing by a CAT scale and get the weights with and without the trailer attached, so you know what you are dealing with.

First step to setting up the WDH would be to find the manufacturers directions for setting up the hitch. They usually have a process laid out.

I wouldn't want to second guess the manufacturer but in general terms, you want the front axle weight to be pretty close to the same as when the trailer is disconnected and you want both truck and trailer to sit level when hooked up. You have enough truck now that assuming you don't put 3000lb of gear in the truck bed, the WDH likely won't be as critical but it will improve the towing experience.


Yes, I took it to the cat scales with my old ride. Hitch weight was right around 500lbs. Gvwr in mine is 4950. A sad amount of CCC in this trailer with great storage, but we camp pretty light. Loaded out (no water) we are right around 4500lbs.

ajriding

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Posted: 03/04/22 07:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have never had a trailer sway after about 5 owned trailers. The only sway I have experienced was towing a truck backwards on a tow dolly above 55mph.
Make sure you need it. Sure, it is going to maybe be safer to have sway control, but it is more safe to wear a helmet to drive, so consider priorities here.

Did you tell us your trailer and tongue weight? If your truck can adjust for payload automatically through airbags then that eliminates part of the reason to have WDH. If your truck can handle the tongue weight with no issues then that eliminates the other half.

I used WDH when needed, but it is so much nicer without it.

shades9323

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Posted: 03/04/22 09:26am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ajriding wrote:

I have never had a trailer sway after about 5 owned trailers. The only sway I have experienced was towing a truck backwards on a tow dolly above 55mph.
Make sure you need it. Sure, it is going to maybe be safer to have sway control, but it is more safe to wear a helmet to drive, so consider priorities here.

Did you tell us your trailer and tongue weight? If your truck can adjust for payload automatically through airbags then that eliminates part of the reason to have WDH. If your truck can handle the tongue weight with no issues then that eliminates the other half.

I used WDH when needed, but it is so much nicer without it.


I already have the hitching system with built in sway control, so why not use it? Hitch weight is right around 500. No airbags. Don't need the distribution part of it for sure.

Bobbo

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Posted: 03/04/22 07:39pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ajriding wrote:

If your truck can adjust for payload automatically through airbags then that eliminates part of the reason to have WDH.

No, it doesn't. The purpose of a WDH is to put weight back on the front tires that has been removed by the trailer. Levelling the tow vehicle is just a cosmetic effect. The airbags that level the truck do absolutely nothing to put the weight back on the front tires. It is cosmetic only.

shades9323 wrote:

I already have the hitching system with built in sway control, so why not use it?

Because that is a reactive system that achieves its goal by braking the tow vehicle's wheels, and ONLY the tow vehicle's wheels. If that system activates, it is already too late.

You need a proactive sway control. Proactive sway control PREVENTS sway, it doesn't try to stop it after it starts.

The proper way to stop sway is to slightly SPEED UP while activating the TRAILER'S brakes with the brake controller's slide control. Note that activating the tow vehicle's brakes is not on that list. After activating the trailer's brakes, let off of the gas and let the TRAILER's brakes slow you down until the sway has stopped. Then, and ONLY THEN, do you use the tow vehicle's brakes.


Bobbo and Lin
2017 F-150 XLT 4x4 SuperCab w/Max Tow Package 3.5l EcoBoost V6
2017 Airstream Flying Cloud 23FB

shades9323

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Posted: 03/05/22 04:59am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Bobbo wrote:

ajriding wrote:

If your truck can adjust for payload automatically through airbags then that eliminates part of the reason to have WDH.

No, it doesn't. The purpose of a WDH is to put weight back on the front tires that has been removed by the trailer. Levelling the tow vehicle is just a cosmetic effect. The airbags that level the truck do absolutely nothing to put the weight back on the front tires. It is cosmetic only.

shades9323 wrote:

I already have the hitching system with built in sway control, so why not use it?

Because that is a reactive system that achieves its goal by braking the tow vehicle's wheels, and ONLY the tow vehicle's wheels. If that system activates, it is already too late.

You need a proactive sway control. Proactive sway control PREVENTS sway, it doesn't try to stop it after it starts.

The proper way to stop sway is to slightly SPEED UP while activating the TRAILER'S brakes with the brake controller's slide control. Note that activating the tow vehicle's brakes is not on that list. After activating the trailer's brakes, let off of the gas and let the TRAILER's brakes slow you down until the sway has stopped. Then, and ONLY THEN, do you use the tow vehicle's brakes.


I am slightly confused by your statement. Are you saying the equalizer hitch with built in sway control is not proactive?

MFL

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Posted: 03/05/22 06:53am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

shades9323 wrote:



I am slightly confused by your statement. Are you saying the equalizer hitch with built in sway control is not proactive?


Bobbo wrote:
"Because that is a reactive system that achieves its goal by braking the tow vehicle's wheels, and ONLY the tow vehicle's wheels. If that system activates, it is already too late."

^^He misunderstood, thinking you are saying the truck's sway control system, rather than the built in system of your WDH.

If you don't mind the extra effort of using the WDH, for possible sway control, it certainly can't hurt to use it.

Jerry





Bobbo

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Posted: 03/05/22 07:23am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

shades9323 wrote:

Bobbo wrote:

ajriding wrote:

If your truck can adjust for payload automatically through airbags then that eliminates part of the reason to have WDH.

No, it doesn't. The purpose of a WDH is to put weight back on the front tires that has been removed by the trailer. Levelling the tow vehicle is just a cosmetic effect. The airbags that level the truck do absolutely nothing to put the weight back on the front tires. It is cosmetic only.

shades9323 wrote:

I already have the hitching system with built in sway control, so why not use it?

Because that is a reactive system that achieves its goal by braking the tow vehicle's wheels, and ONLY the tow vehicle's wheels. If that system activates, it is already too late.

You need a proactive sway control. Proactive sway control PREVENTS sway, it doesn't try to stop it after it starts.

The proper way to stop sway is to slightly SPEED UP while activating the TRAILER'S brakes with the brake controller's slide control. Note that activating the tow vehicle's brakes is not on that list. After activating the trailer's brakes, let off of the gas and let the TRAILER's brakes slow you down until the sway has stopped. Then, and ONLY THEN, do you use the tow vehicle's brakes.


I am slightly confused by your statement. Are you saying the equalizer hitch with built in sway control is not proactive?

No. I thought you were talking about a tow vehicle with "sway control" built in that fights sway by selectively activating the tow vehicle brakes. My F-150 has that. I was unclear that you were discussing a WDH with sway control.

ajriding

st clair

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Posted: 03/05/22 09:06am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

No, as others said, use your sway control if it makes you feel safer and if you think you might need it.

Someone is talking about electronic sway control where the trailer brakes are applied and things happen with the motors and brakes automatically. IDT this is what OP means by sway control. He likely is talking about the little shock absorber on the hitch that helps prevent sway.

My point is, do you need sway control? I have never needed it. My trailers are always loaded and weighted correctly and even if I try to make the trailer sway it corrects itself with no input. If you dont need it then you dont need it (not to say having it is not a safety feature).

As for tongue weight. Yes, the WDH does transfer weight to the front axle (and or rear axle of a dual axle trailer), but that is not a huge amount of weight. 600 lb tongue weight is not a big deal for a big truck built to carry payload back there. And keep in mind that the WDH is only transferring that weight when the truck is level or the hitch is lower than the wheels of both vehicles, not when the hitch is higher.
Some newer trucks can self adjust ride height, using air, and will self adjust when you drop a 600lb tongue weight on it too. That 600 lbs is doing nearly nothing to the front end of a big truck. Do the math and you wonder why you even bothered to use WDH if not for the lack of height adjustment.
Dont get me wrong... WDH are great things and a great solution when needed, but are not always necessary.

HTElectrical

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Posted: 03/06/22 06:42am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Look at page 24 under Troubleshooting guide


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* This post was edited 03/06/22 06:54am by HTElectrical *


2007 Duramax, Cognito 7"-9" Lift,


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