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etrailer Trailer Hitch Installation - 2017 Toyota Sienna

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How to Install the etrailer Trailer Hitch on a 2017 Toyota Sienna


Ryan: Hey everybody, Ryan here at etrailer. Today on our 2017 Toyota Sienna, we're going to be taking a look at, and showing you how to install, the etrailer.com Class III 2 inch Trailer Hitch Receiver. So in my opinion, this is probably going to be the best choice, as far as hitches go, that's available for the Sienna.That's really for a few different reasons. One of the reasons being, in my opinion, it is the best looking hitch, it's going to be completely hidden for the most part, only thing you're going to be able to see is a receiver tube opening. And it's going to have that really nice matte black finish, which just matches and blends in perfectly to the back of the van.Since it is hidden, it is going to sit up a little bit higher and that's good compared to some of the other hitches that aren't hidden and they sit a little bit lower and we don't have nearly as much ground clearance. And that's important because Sienna don't ride super high and so by obtaining this extra ground clearance, we're not going to have to worry as much whenever we're going up steep driveways and things like that.It's also going to be really versatile, and the Sienna vans are versatile as well and can do a lot of different things, whether they're pulling a trailer or hooking up some accessories to the back of them, but this being a Class III, it's going to have some pretty good weight capacities if you are pulling a trailer.

And since it has that two inch by two inch receiver tube opening, the choices as far as hitch-mounted accessories go are more or less endless. So you shouldn't have any issues finding a bike rack, cargo carrier, whatever you may want to use with your Toyota van.So the hitch is going to have a reinforced collar, which does give it some extra strength and looks pretty good too, in my opinion. It's going to have the standard 5-8 size pinhole. Now keep in mind a pin and clip does not come included but if you need one, you can find it here at trailer. Going to have loop style, safety chain openings, which aren't huge but they'll give us enough room to use just about any hook.

Really the only thing we have to watch out for, and it's not really a huge deal but worth mentioning, is that they do sit right below the pin and clip so whenever you go to put your hooks on, make sure that they don't interfere with your clip or your pin.Now as far as the hitch's weight capacities go, it's going to have a 525 pound maximum gross tongue weight rating, so that's going to be the amount of weight pushing down on the hitch. That's a pretty high number so you should be able to use just about any size bike rack or cargo carrier that you'd want to. As far as the maximum gross trailer weight rating goes, it's going to be 3500 pounds, so that's going to be the amount of weight that's pulling on the hitch. So that'll be the weight of your trailer plus anything that you might have on it.Now I do always like to point out, it's never a bad idea just to check with your Toyota's owner's manual to make sure your Sienna can pull that much weight. And if you do plan on doing a little bit of towing, I would recommend picking up some trailer wiring.

That way the lights on your trailer will match up with the lights on your van and you'll be safe and legal.Now I'm going to give you a couple of measurements and you're going to use these to help figure out which hitch mounted accessories to get. From the ground to the top inside edge of the receiver tube opening, that's going to be about 13 inches. So if you do plan on doing some towing, chances are pretty good you're going to need to get a Ball Mount with a rise. From the center of the hitch pin hole to the edge of the rear bumper, that's going to be about four inches, and you're going to use that measurement to help figure out that if any folding accessories you might have, can be stored in the upright position without contacting the bumper.So overall, really functional hitch, that looks good, and it's going to allow you to do whatever you're trying to get done. Now, as far as the installation goes, it's really not that bad.

We do find a way to make it a lot easier and save yourself a lot of time, so why don't you come on in the garage and help me get it on.To begin our install we're going to be working underneath the back of our Sienna. We're going to need to remove this splash guard. It's going to be held in place with multiple types of fasteners, but we're going to first work on the white push pin style fasteners. This is what they're going to look like here, and the way we're going to get them out is take a flathead screwdriver, we're going to pry underneath the head of them. You can get that to drop down, if the whole fastener comes out like this then we can pop the base out as well. We're just going to use that same technique to get all of these types of fasteners removed.We're going to have a total of five, 10 millimeter screws, just like this, along this very back edge of our bumper, so we'll go ahead and pull those out too.We're going to have four more fasteners that we need to undo, and this is what they're going to look like. These aren't actually going to come off of our shield, but they are going to unthread. Sometimes it can be a little finicky. For example, this one kind of just popped off, so we'll move back here to this corner to kind of give you a better example. What you can do is take a big Phillips screwdriver or even a big flathead. You're going to turn it and sometimes you'll feel it come unthread ed, other times you might have to kind of grab the splash shield and put a little downward pressure on it to get it to pop free. So we're going to do that for the other remaining two and keep in mind, once these do come off, there's not going to be anything holding our splash shield on. Once we have it released, we can just send it off to the side.Now we're going to need to lower our tailpipe a little bit, that way we have a little extra room to work. We come here, we're going to have a rubber isolator hanger. We're going to spray down with some soapy water or some penetrating oil, make it a little easier. We're just going to take a pry bar, or a big screwdriver if you don't have a pry bar, that can work sometimes, and just pry that hanger off of the exhaust. That way, it'll drop down a little bit and give us a little extra room.Now what we're going to do is come to our frame rail, and we're going to have some little stickers as well as a rubber plug that we're going to need to remove. Just underneath the stickers we're going to have some factory weld nuts that we're going to use as attachment points. I want to mention too anything we do to one side of our van from this point on, we're also going to do to the other side, because it will be set up the same way. These stickers are pretty straightforward, take a little flathead screwdriver or a razor knife, something like that, and just work them off. Rubber plug will be this one, pretty much same deal, we'll just kind of pry underneath it and kind of pop it out.Now, even though these weld nuts we're covered up with stickers, it's never a bad idea to take a tube brush and a little bit of penetrating oil, spray these down and just clean out any potential dirt or debris that may have gotten inside. Now, at this point, we are going to deviate from the instructions a little bit. They want us to actually remove our whole bumper to give us room but I found in the past that that is not necessary if we do this one easy step. If you look right here, we're going to have this little tab, one on each side, and if you bend that down out of the way, it'll give us enough room to get our hitch up where it needs to go. So you kind of just very carefully, kind of just use your hands. I kind of like to put my fingers on the top portion just to kind of help pull it place, and just kind of bend that out of the way. We're going to do that to each one.Now with an extra set of hands, we can raise our hitch into position. We want to go up and over the exhaust on the passenger side, then we're just going to kind of take these tabs on our fascia, pull them out a little bit, that way the hitch will kind of slide into this opening. Once we have it up into place, you can line up the holes in the hitch with the three attachment points in our frame, then grab a bolt and a conical tooth washer. Make sure the teeth on the washer face up towards the hitch. We're going to use this hardware combination for all of the attachment points, but we're going to want to get at least one started on each side, hand tied. That way the hitch will support itself while we work on the rest of the bolts. With all of your hardware hand tied you can come back and snug it all down.Now we can grab a torque wrench and tighten down all the hardware to the amount specified in the instructions.Once the hitch is twerked, we can raise our exhaust back up, just kind of grab the rubber hanger and kind of bend it towards the front of our van, push up on the tailpipe and that should kind of just slide in there. And we can move over to the tabs that we bent down. We can carefully just bend them back up and now we can work on getting our underbody panel reinstalled.So we're going to need to trim our panel to get it reinstalled. Now this is something you don't have to do, it's not necessary that the panel goes back up so I just wanted to mention that, but if you do want to reinstall it, this is kind of what you're going to need to do. So there is a diagram and instructions and tells you where to cut, and I kind of like to hold it up and eyeball it and get an idea to verify that our diagram is indeed going to work, which it is pretty close.I used a marker to kind of draw them lines out for you. This is plastic, I'm just going to use a pair of snips to get that opening cut out.So I did try to test fit our panel and the hitch is barely hitting this little portion here, so I'm just going to come back and open it up down here to where it flattens out a little bit. And that should give us more than enough room for our panel to fit correctly. So we'll put our panel back into position and reinstall it the opposite way that we removed it. And that'll finish up our look at and our installation of the etrailer.com Trailer Hitch Receiver on our 2017 Toyota Sienna.


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