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Draw-Tite Max-Frame Trailer Hitch Installation - 2016 Toyota Sienna

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How to Install the Draw-Tite Max-Frame Trailer Hitch on a 2016 Toyota Sienna


Today on our 2016 Toyota Sienna we're gonna be taking a look at and showing you how to install the Draw-Tite Class III two inch max frame trailer hitch receiver. This is what our hitch is going to look like installed. Now that our Sienna has a hitch, we're gonna be able to tow a trailer, or even use it for things like bike racks or cargo carriers. What I like about this hitch over many of the others is how hidden it is. Everything will be behind the bumper, leaving only the receiver tube exposed.It's even going to allow you to put back on your splash guard, and that'll help keep your undercarriage protected. Also, since it sits up a little bit higher, we're not gonna lose that ground clearance that we had before.

That ground clearance is critical, because we won't have to worry about our hitch scraping the ground when we're going up and down steep hills. This is a Class III hitch, so it's gonna give us that two inch by two inch receiver tube opening. It's gonna have a thick reinforced collar for extra support. It's also going to utilize a standard five eight style hitch pin. Now the pin and clip does not come included with the hitch, but if you need one you can find it on etrader.com.It has a loop style safety chain opening, which is welded to the bottom of the receiver tube, and offers plenty of room to get just about any size safety chain hook you might use.

The maximum tongue weight for this hitch is 525 pounds. That's the amount of downward pressure on the receiver tube. Now the maximum gross trailer weight rating is 3,500 pounds. That's the amount of weight pulling on the hitch. That's gonna be the weight of your trailer plus anything you might have on it.

Now this can be used with the weight distribution system, however all the maximum weight capacities will remain the same. It's always a good idea to check with your vehicle's owners manual to make sure your Toyota can pull that much weight.Now I'm gonna give you a few measurements. These are gonna help you when deciding which hitch mount and accessories to use. From the ground to the top inside edge receiver tube opening is about 12 inches. That measurement's gonna come in handy when deciding to get a ball mount with either a drop or a rise.

From the center of the hitch pin hole to the edge of the bumper is about four and a half inches. You're gonna use that measurement to determine if any accessories you have that fold up will interfere or make contact with your bumper.Now that we've gone over some of the features, I'll show you how easy it is to get installed. To begin our install, we're gonna need to remove this black splash guard here at the back of the vehicle. It's gonna be held in with multiple fasteners, but we're first going to start with these 10 millimeter screws. There's going to be five of them all along the edge of the bumper.Now there's going to be eight light push pin style fasteners just like this all along the front edge of the splash guard. We're gonna be using a trim panel removal tool to get those out. To do that, you'll go to the edge of the fastener, and pry down. Then you can pry out the rest of it. Finally, we'll have four Phillips head fasteners just like this. We'll do this, we'll unscrew them, and then kind of pull down on the splash guard, put some pressure on it, and finally it will release.We can just take our splash guard and set it off to the side for now. We do need to partially lower the exhaust to give us a little more room to work. What I did, I took a strap, and ran it from side to side. That way when we do lower it, the exhaust will be partially supported. Right here is the exhaust hanger, that's where we're gonna remove the exhaust. Now it does make it a little easier to use some penetrating oil and spray it in there, and it just makes it a little easier to get off. Now to remove it, we're just gonna get a pry bar, and pry the rubber portion of the hanger off of the exhaust pipe.Along each side of the frame here, there will be four holes that are covered. One of them will be a rubber plug style cap, and the other three will be almost like tape. What we're gonna do is remove this plug, and remove this tape to gain access to the holes underneath. We're gonna do that with a trim panel removal tool, however a regular flathead screwdriver will do the trick too. I'll get the rest of this tape cleaned off, then we'll go ahead and repeat that procedure to the other side. I'd just like to point out our attachment points and how our hardware's gonna hold it in place. Now keep in mind, this is going to be the exact same on both sides.The hitch is going to be held in place by three contact points; here, here, and back here. These bolts are going to hold the hitch into place, but before we put those up, you'll first place a lock washer over it and then a flat washer. Now it's not a bad idea to clean out the threads on our well nuts. We're going to use some penetrating oil, and a tube brush. If you need a tube brush, you can find one on etrader.com.Once you thoroughly cleaned out the holes, it's not a bad idea to make sure your hardware will go in nice and smooth. Now I'll show you a trick. The instructions say that we're gonna need to remove the whole bumper to install our hitch. However, this technique, if you're careful, will save you a lot of time and energy. There's going to be two tabs here and here. We're gonna actually bend those down a little bit, that way we'll have enough clearance to slide our hitch into place. Now what I like to do is along this back side of the tab, take a screwdriver and put pressure against it to hold it in place. Then I'll take a pair of pliers, bend this down.Now we're going to have to pull our bumper out a little bit to give us enough room to slide our hitch into place. I did find here at the wheel well and the edge of the bumper, there's a little push pin style fastener on each side. We're gonna go ahead and remove this, that way it'll give us a little more room when we're moving the bumper. To do it, just take a flathead or a trim panel tool, very similar to how we removed the ones on the splash guard, and pull it out like so. Over here on the passenger side, there's going to be two of those fasteners.Now with an extra set of hands, we're gonna install the hitch. We're gonna make sure you get it over the exhaust, and then we're going to have to lift on the bumper tabs. It can be kind of tricky, just be careful and take your time. Once you have it in place, you can take your bolt, go ahead and get it started, and get one hand tight on each side. That way the hitch will support itself while we're installing the rest of the fasteners.With all of the hardware in place and hand tight, now we can go ahead and run everything down with a 19 millimeter socket. We can then use a torque wrench to torque everything down to the proper specification. You can find that specification in your instructions.Replace your push pin fasteners back here at the wheel well. Push them in, and then just push the top part until it clicks. Now we're gonna push our tabs that we bent earlier back up into the original position. Be really careful when you do this, and just take your time. I'll use once again a device to put pressure on that top portion, and then I'll just use my finger to push it back up like that. We'll go ahead and rehang our exhaust the same way that we took it off. Since the exhaust is properly secure now, we can remove our safety strap.Now we're gonna need to trim our splash guard, that way it'll clear our hitch when we put it back in place. I went ahead and marked out the spot we're going to cut according to our instructions. Now once we get it cut, we'll put it in place and make sure it clears everything nicely. If it doesn't, we'll take it down and make any adjustments that we may need to do. To cut this, I'm gonna be using a pair of 10 snips, however it's pretty thin material, so you can use a pair of snips, a utility knife, or even a Dremel tool.I'll go ahead and put our panel back in place. Now with our panel back up, you can see just how easy this was to get installed. That'll do it for our look at an installation of the Draw-Tite Class III two inch max fame trailer hitch receiver on our 2016 Toyota Sienna.


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