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Trailer Hitch Installation - 2010 Subaru Outback Wagon - Draw-Tite

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How to Install a Trailer Hitch on a 2010 Subaru Outback Wagon

Today on our 2010 Subaru Outback wagon, we'll be installing the Draw-Tite hitch, part number 75673. Now this is what our hitch will look like once it's installed on the vehicle. Next, we'll give you some measurements that will help when selecting accessories for your new hitch, such as ball mounts, bike racks, or cargo carriers. From the center of the hitch pin hole to the edge of the bumper will be 6". From the top of the receiver tube opening to the ground will measure 14". Now we'll go ahead and get started with our installation.

To begin with, we'll first lower the exhaust. To safely lower the exhaust, we're going to put a safety strap underneath, and allow it to hold the weight of the exhaust system. We'll be removing three rubber isolators. There will be one behind the muffler, one ahead of the muffler, and one just ahead of the axle. To remove the rubber isolators from the exhaust, we'll spray them down with some lubricant, and then use a pry bar, some pliers, or an exhaust hanger removal tool.

Now that we have the rubber isolators removed from the exhaust, we'll go ahead and use the safety strap to lower it out of the way. With the exhaust down, we can now remove the heat shield. There are four fasteners that need to be removed. Once we remove these fasteners, we'll take the heat shield down and set it aside for reinstallation later. Now we're able to see the attachment points for both sides.

We'll have a total of four attachment points. These will be predrilled holes in the frame that we'll be able to see once we remove the rubber plugs. To remove the plugs we'll just take a flat-bladed screwdriver, get underneath them, and pry them out. Go ahead and discard these rubber plugs as they will not be used later. To secure the hitch to the attachment points, we'll be using the 7/16 carriage bolt.

At the forward attachment points, we'll need to use the 1" x 3" block with the carriage bolt, as well as a 7/16 flat washer that will be sandwiched between the hitch and frame. For our rear attachment point, we'll be using the 1" x 2" block with no flat washer. To secure them to the hitch, we'll use the 7/16 conical tooth washer, with the teeth of the washer facing the hitch, and of course the 7/16 nut. To get the hardware into the frame, we'll need to drill an access hole. Measuring from the forward heat shield attachment point back towards the bumper 2" and centering it in the frame, we'll drill a 1-1/8" hole using a hole saw bit. Now that we have our frame marked, we'll make a pilot hole first, and then continue on with our hole saw. With our hole drilled out, we're ready to start installing our hardware into the frame. Starting with the rear attachment point first, we'll use the bolt leader supplied with our install kit, go through the attachment point, and then out the access hole. We'll slide our 1" x 2" block, and then thread on our carriage bolt. We'll feed the block and bolt into the frame, and then pull them into position with the fish wire. Now we can do the forward attachment point. Again, we'll feed the bolt leader through the attachment point and back out of the access hole. Then we'll slide on the 1" x 3" block and thread on the bolt and pull it into position. Next, to make it easier to get our flat washer into position, we'll feed it onto the bolt leader and onto the frame. To hold it into position, we'll tape it up using electrical tape, just to make sure it stays in place when sandwiched between the hitch and the frame. Each process we do here on the passenger side, we'll repeat now on the driver side. With all of our hardware in place, we're ready to install our hitch. It would be a good idea to grab another set of hands to help hold the hitch into position and fit it over the hardware. We'll feed the hitch up over the exhaust and run the bolt leaders through the attachment points, lift it up to the frame, and pull the hardware through. Now we can go ahead and remove the bolt leaders and add our conical tooth washer and nut. We'll attach all the fasteners finger tight. Once they're all in place, we want to make sure that the hitch lines up with the attachments points in the frame for the heat shield. There are holes in the hitch that allow access to these. With all of our hardware in place and the hitch lined up, we'll go ahead and snug them down, and then torque them down as specified in the instructions. Next, we'll trim an area out of the heat shield. We'll mark out our area to be cut with a paint marker, and then use a rotary tool to cut out the sections. With that done, we can reinstall the heat shield, and then put the exhaust back into place. This will complete the install of our Draw-Tite hitch, part number 75673, on our 2010 Subaru Outback wagon.

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