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Blue Ox Base Plate Kit Installation - 2022 Chevrolet Equinox

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How to Install the Blue Ox Base Plate Kit on a 2022 Chevrolet Equinox


Hey everybody, Ryan here at etrailer. Today, on our 2022 Chevy Equinox, we're gonna be showing you how to install the Blue Ox base plate kit with removable arms. But before you get into that, why don't we just take a minute and check this out and make sure it's gonna work for you. Chances are pretty good, you're not always going to be flat towing your Equinox. And so, one of the things that I feel like would be important to myself would be how's it gonna look, right And so, this is how everything is set up and it's not too bad by any means. I mean, obviously, you can see there's something there but it isn't crazy.

Compared to some of the other base plates available, it's really not a whole lot different. They're all relatively close on how they're gonna look and how things are positioned and whatnot. One of the things that separates this one a little bit from some of the others though is you finish of it. So, it's more of a matte black, all right Not a huge game changer by any means but personally, I think it matches the plastic a little bit better, it just helps kinda blend in. One thing that does kinda separate this from some of the others as well is not all of them are gonna come with brackets that allow you to mount up your wiring connector and your breakaway switch, so that's a nice touch.

You don't have to worry about kinda fobbing something up yourself, it's already in place and other for you to use. Something else obviously really important is how easy is the setup gonna be to use, right You don't want something that's a huge pain to set up every time you're ready to flat tow. This one really isn't too bad at all. It has these removable arms. And so, when you are ready to hook up, you're gonna pull these caps out, which they gave you, just to help keep stuff out from getting inside there.

But you're just gonna put these in and rotate them about a quarter turn until they lock into place. It'll be set up the same way on the other side. So, really straightforward. And now, this is gonna give you an attachment point. That way, you can hook your tow bar up to it.

So, this particular setup will work with most Blue Ox tow bars and some of the other manufacturers as well. Let's say, for example, if you already have a Roadmaster tow bar and you really like this base plate and you're concerned about them being able to link up together, now there's a ton of different adapters available that you can pick up. You simply just change the ends out on that tow bar and that will allow you to connect everything up. So, there's gonna be a total of five main parts that you're gonna need to flat tow your Equinox down the road. First one is gonna be the base plate. And that's gonna provide us with a solid attachment point. That way, we can hook our tow bar up to it. That tow bar is gonna be the second component. So, that's gonna connect the back of your motorhome to the front of the Equinox and be the physical link that's actually towing the vehicle behind it. The third main component will be safety cables. So, these will clip on to the front of your Equinox into the back of your motorhome. And those are there in the event of an unlikely disconnect. They're gonna keep everything paired together. The fourth main component will be your tow bar wiring. And what that's gonna do is transfer the lighting functions from the back of your coach to the back of your Chevy, keeping you safe and legal. And last but not least, the fifth main component will be a supplemental braking system. And what that's gonna do is apply the brakes in your SUV whenever you hit the brakes in your motorhome, helping to bring you to a more complete and predictable stop. Other than that, at the end of the day, you really can't ask for too much more. It looks pretty good, easy to set up and easy to use. As far as getting it installed, I wouldn't say it's super difficult, but more time-consuming than anything. We'll have to drill some holes out, take the fascia off, so be prepared to spend some time on it for sure. But as long as you stay focused, hopefully our video can help you get going in the right direction and make it a little easier on you. And hopefully, it's something you can get done. But speaking of that, if you'd like to hang around, we'll go ahead and install it together now. To you begin our installation, we're gonna be here at the front of our Equinox and we need to get the front fascia removed. So, first thing you wanna do is pop the hood. We're gonna have three Torx bit fasteners on each side of our hood latch. So, we'll take a T15 and get those removed. And I wanna mention, from this point on, anything we do to one side of the vehicle, we're also gonna do to the other side so it'll be set up the same way. Now, if you move in front of your front tire, on this wheel well liner edge here, we're gonna have several fasteners, it looks like five of them, that we need to pull out. We'll just work our way down here. And I'm using a T15 to get all these out as well. So, now if you take the wheel well liner and just kinda peel it back out of the way, right here where the quarter panel meets the front fascia, on the inside of it, there's gonna be a fastener. So, grab a seven-millimeter head and we're gonna have to pull that out. So, if you look underneath the vehicle now, along this edge, we're gonna have this little air diffuser deal and I'm gonna pull these off, just so we can have more adjustability with our wheel wall liner when we go to pull the fascia off. But there's a total of four bolts. And they're seven-millimeter in size. And this will just pop off and we can set it to the side. On each side of our fascia now, there's also gonna be three more screws and we'll pull those out, again, using a seven-millimeter. So, what we need to do now is unsnap this silver piece that runs along the length of our headlight 'cause it's actually part of the fascia. And so, I put some painters tape along all the areas we're gonna be working 'cause we're gonna have pry this out. And I sprayed some soapy water in there too, just to help kinda lubricate everything. And take your time at this part because this piece is super brittle. And essentially, it's part of the whole fascia, or it looks that way. So, definitely you don't wanna mess this part up. But I'm gonna use some trim panel tools, this wedge one seems to work pretty good, and start in here. And we're just gonna kinda carefully start to pry it. And if it feels like it don't wanna come, don't keep forcing it right there, just kinda move your way down and try to get some things loosened up here. But what we're looking to do, there's some plastic push pin fittings that's holding this in, and so we're just trying to work our way down and get them to release. You can kinda start to hear them popping a little bit. Get that one out. And if you kinda lift up on this corner and push, that will release it. So, if you look in here, we can kinda get an idea on these push pin fasteners, that we're in place there, that we're keeping this portion connected to the headlight. So, now with an extra set of hands, we can get our fascia removed. Start at the corner and I spray it down with soapy water again. And what you're gonna wanna do is just kinda carefully pull out and up to release the clips. And don't get too carried away here, we might have some electrical connections, which it looks like, over there on the passenger's side, we do. You can pull down, there's a red tab that you can pull down on. You can push down in the center and you can remove it. Then we can set our fascia off to the side. Here's kind of a better view of the connector. The red tab, you're gonna pull back on it to dislodge it, like how we have it here, and then you can push down on the center. And while you're pushing down on the center, that will release the two. It will be pretty tight so expect that, but that's how you get it off. On the driver's side of our vehicle, we're gonna remove the headlight. So, there's gonna be four bolts. One will be kinda tucked in this area here. And that's a seven-millimeter. And now, on this corner, there's gonna be another seven-millimeter. And we're gonna have one more, this one in the corner here 'cause we took that fourth one off when we remove that radiator cover panel at the very beginning. But regardless, that's another seven-millimeter. And I think, unless I missed one here, and I think this should be it. We'll pull this out and then we're going to disconnect it. So, there's a connector, and just like the fascia, push back on the red tab down on the center. And the wiring's gonna be connected to this little plastic tab here. So, what I'm gonna do, this one's really tight, is let's set this down and grab a trim tool and get that popped out. If you're fighting any of these, a trim tool makes easy work of it. But a flathead screw driver will also work as well. So, we should be free now and we can set this out of the way. At this point, we can remove our windshield washer reservoir tank. So, there's some connections, there's some lines that we need to take off. This wiring, we'll just gonna kinda pop all this free and then disconnect it, so these. I can't push these clips in. This one might be set up a little different. We'll get these lines out of the way, don't worry about that one. But this one, pushed down on and pull it out. This one's the same style of clip as the other one here. We can see these two often. And there we go, if you come in right from the bottom like this, it pops right off. And get that out of the way. And then we can get our lines removed. So, what I'm gonna do is unplug it here. And when you do this, get something ready to block it off, so you can either let it drain or you could take these lines off and with the wires hooked up, you could run the pump motor and spray it all out. I really don't feel like dealing with all that, so I'm just gonna take a bolt and kinda stuff it in there to plug it. Hopefully, it's the right size but we'll pop this off and plug that. And then there's this here, you can release these lines. And so, we can kinda get them out of the way for now. And then we can come back and get all of our bolts removed. We have a total of four pieces of hardware. Three of them will be kinda on this area and one down here. We're using a 10-millimeter to get these out. And then the other one is gonna be up along this edge by our filler tube. Here's the last one here. Not a lot of space to work with this one. And we'll get that one pulled out and then we should be able to kinda grab our tank and pull it towards us and sneak it out. I'm back underneath and we can remove this belly pan. So, you're gonna have one in the dead center. And that's a seven-millimeter. And then several, kinda just throughout on it on each side. These will all be sevens. This should be the last one. So, it was, and we can drop this down for now. If you look on the driver's side, we're gonna have this air temp sensor and we're just gonna disconnect it from our plastic housing there. So, you just take an edge and your finger and push these clips in, kinda all at the same time to kinda pop it free from that. And then this plastic shield here, we're gonna take that off as well. So, there's two pins on each end of it. We got the other two out already on the other side. Just pry underneath the head and work that out and it should come off. Yeah, it pops right off and you can set this aside. Underneath our frame rail now. So, we're gonna have this gasket or this pinch weld and our base plate's gonna get mounted up to this. And so, what they want us to do is tap this in a little bit about an eight of an inch, I guess, to make it fit better. So, we'll get our hammer and give it a tappy. And we need to remove our subframe bolt. So, there's a 21-millimeter head bolt on each side of the vehicle. So, we have to take both of them out and have them out at the same time. I do highly recommend supporting the subframe in some way. So, I just have a pole jack here holding this up because those bolts are doing a lot of work. So, for those of you at home on the ground, take a jack stand or something and make sure it's supporting this, just to be on the safe side. But with that said, take a 21-millimeter and get this bolt pulled out. And then once we have it out, we're gonna kinda get it ready for our base plate to go on. I'm gonna take some red Loctite and put it on the threads. And all the hardware that we're gonna use to secure the base plate is gonna receive some of those Loctite. It doesn't come in the kit, but you can grab some here at etrailer. After looking at everything a little closer, this whole air shroud piece is gonna have to come off. That way, it don't hit our base plate. So, there's just a couple of push pins connecting the wire to it. We'll pry them off, and then this should slide out and we can get it out of the way. So, now with an extra set of hands, we'll see if this fits. We're gonna slide it up into place and then we're gonna take that bolt that removed earlier and work it up into position and get it started here tight. So, once you have the base plate up, a lot of times, it just doesn't slide right in, okay So, if you can get one of these started and then snug it down. 'Cause a lot of times, the other side will fight you and what happens is there's this cutout here that goes around this portion of our subframe, you wanna get that to clear and be able to push it all the way back. So, a lot of times, over on the other side, that'll get hung up and not let you go all the way back. So, I'll pay attention to that. It may help too, to hold it in place and if you got clamps, you can clamp it and position it. But once you get both of these in, take your socket and wrench and snug them down. So, what you can do now is make sure your base plate's level, so you might have a little bit of adjustability this way. Sooner or later you might run out of room. I pushed mine up as far as I could. That seems to be pretty good. I clamped it there and now I'm gonna drill out one hole. That way, we can get a bolt in it and tighten it down and get rid of our clamp. So, three-inch drill bit, get it drill through. And be careful not to go flying through the other side either 'cause you might have wires or something on the other side that you don't wanna damage, so keep that in mind. And get that opened up, so we can grab our hardware and get it in place. We can take the appropriate bolt and the nylon lock nut. Put your red Loctite on the threads there. That'll go through on the other side. We'll get the nut started. And here's the other side and we'll get this nut hand tight, and we're gonna snug this down. We'll take a 9/16 wrench to hold the nut from spinning. A 9/16 socking on the other side. And once that's tight, then we can get rid of our clamp. We've put this in place now and the clamp out of the way, we're gonna have four more holes here along this edge and we're gonna drill all of them out. That way, we can get all the bolts and whatnot in there as well. Just like the first one that we did, pay attention to where you're drilling. Obviously, you don't wanna hurt anything. If you need to put a block of wood or something behind here to give you some reassurance, feel free to do that. But you can go ahead and work your way all the way around. So, I got all of them drilled out and put the bolts in. So, it's the same hardware combination that we use for the first one. Your bolt, lock nut and put your Loctite on the threads. And then once you get all of them started and hand tight, we'll come back with our 9/16 wrench and socket and snug them all down. And once they're snug, we need to come back and torque down all of the hardware holding the base plate on to the amount specified in our instructions. This air dam piece that we took off, we can trim some of it out to get it back up in place. There is a diagram in the instructions. It's not super clear, so I just use my best judgment here on where we need to cut to get this to fit. And so, I kinda marked that out. And the thought is, if can I get rid of this piece here, then we should be able to kinda sneak that back up in place and still retain all of the parts that actually hold this on. So, I'm just taking a pair of snips, 'cause it's plastic. Or you could use a Dremel tool or kinda whatever you got that'll cut this out. So, I kinda just slid this piece back in and we should be able to plug our sensor back in. And it looks like it'll fit in there. We might have to kinda reposition it. Somewhat. That should do the trick. But once we have it lined up, we'll just resecure this with the original push pin fasteners. So, I went ahead and reinstalled our washer fluid reservoir the opposite way that we removed it and plugged everything back in and whatnot, with one exception. This attachment point down here, you're gonna use this bolt that they give you and a flat washer and use that in place of the factory one. And since you're adding that base plate, it's a little bit thicker, and so this longer bolt is going to make up for that. So, I've taken the included safety cables and the D-links and I doubled them over and put them through this opening here in our subframe. And then just use the link and the hole there on our base plate to connect everything. The same deal on the other side. And then I'd just like to use some zip ties and kinda zip everything together. That way, all this stuff isn't loose and we're not gonna have to worry about it kinda rattling around whenever we're driving down the road. Now it'd be a great opportunity to work on some of your other flat towing components like your wiring and your braking system. And I said that because obviously, with the fascia off, you got a lot more room to work, right A lot easier to route wires and everything else, so that's exactly what I'm gonna do. If you're already done doing that, you'd simply check the instructions. If you have to trim the fascia, do that and reinstall everything the opposite way. But like I said, I'm gonna get our other stuff set up and then when I'm ready to, we'll come back and get the fascia on. So, now that we got the rest of our components installed on the front, we're ready to come back to our fascia. And you can hold this up and get it as close as you can, in terms of where you need to trim. It looks like, really the only thing stopping us from putting it on per se is the wiring connector in the front. So, I'm gonna cut that little area out and then hopefully we can put it on there and we'll have to cut more out to get to our base plate tabs, I guess you could call them. But it looks like they sit behind there so hopefully, we can get this on and then make our cuts then and probably just turn out a little bit cleaner. So, for now, I'm just gonna cut out this section here. That way, our wiring will clear. And now, I'm just using a pair of snips to do this. You could use a Dremel tool and whatever you got. So, we'll get this cut out and try to put it on and see if we need to make any adjustments. And that'll finish up our look at and our installation of the Blue Ox base plate kit with removable arms on our 2022 Chevrolet Equinox..


Info for this part was:

Employee Andrew K
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Andrew K
Employee Joshua S
Video by:
Joshua S
Employee Jonathan Y
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Employee Jacob T
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Jacob T
Employee Chris R
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Employee Robert C
Test Fit:
Robert C
Employee Ryan G
Test Fit:
Ryan G

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