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Comparing the Tongue Weight Ratings of the Draw-Tite Hitches for a 2018 Honda Odyssey

Question:

I have seen at least one person state on a Honda Odyssey forum that this hitch bent while they were on a road trip with a bike rack in the hitch. They said that the bike rack was nearly scraping on the ground by the end of the trip. Looking at how the receiver is welded to the crossbar with only a metal plate bent at 90 degrees no gussets to reinforce and prevent bending, I can believe that this is possible. Also, Im not sure I can trust the customer reviews on your website since it seems that not a single product out of the hundreds you sell has anything less than all 5 star reviews which is a little beyond belief. At any rate, I would be purchasing this hitch to use it with a four bike hitch rack. With the rack weighing about 50 lb and each bike weighing no more than 40 lb each, thats a total of only 210 lb, much less than the stated 525 lb tongue weight. So on paper it should be fine. Im just wondering if your real life experience backs that up. Thank you.

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Expert Reply:

The Draw-Tite Max-Frame Trailer Hitch Receiver part # 76170 which is a fit for a 2018 Honda Odyssey has a 525 lb tongue weight rating as you mentioned. Therefore, so long as you do exceed this rating then you will not have any issues with the trailer hitch deforming. If anything were to happen, you would be covered under warranty. The trailer hitch testing procedures are carried out by the manufacturers and must follow strict federal guidelines.

In regards to design, the drop tube does limit capacity which you can see when compared to the straight tube option of the Draw-Tite Max-Frame Trailer Hitch Receiver part # 76171 which has a 675 lb tongue weight rating. Please note, the Honda Odyssey may not be rated for 525 lbs or 675 lbs respectively so be sure to check your owner's manual and abide by the lowest rated component.

expert reply by:
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Conner L

Question:

Thank you, Conner. I'll be placing an order for the hitch as soon as I figure out which bike rack I want to go with. I think if money wasn't an issue and space to store it also wasn't an issue, I would go with a platform style rack that swings away for access to the luggage area, but it seems that setup would cost close to $1000. And I think it would take up a lot of space in the garage when not in use. For those reasons, I'm looking at the hanging style that tilts because the women's bikes that we have should work with that style of rack. I really like the Thule brand racks because of the ease of use (especially installing into the hitch receiver), the bike straps that don't come off (I don't like the Yakima zip strips that can come off and get lost), the anti-sway mounts, and a single key that works with both the integrated cable lock and the hitch mount. The problem is, the Thule racks ain't exactly cheap either.

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Expert Reply:

The Thule Apex XT 4 Bike Rack part # TH9025XT is the bike rack you just described and it is an excellent option. It has adjustable arms for use with women's bikes, folding arms for easy storage, a tilting design for access into the hatch area, and integrated cable/hitch locks for security. The only downside is that it may be more than you were looking to spend and if this is the case then your next best option is the Inno Aero Light 4 Bike Rack part # INH640 which although not made by Thule is still a quality bike rack. That said, the straps are removable on this bike rack but that means they can easily be replaced.

expert reply by:
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Conner L

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