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Trailer Hitch Installation - 2017 Ford Escape - Draw-Tite

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How to Install a Trailer Hitch on a 2017 Ford Escape

Today on our 2017 Ford Escape we're going to take a look at and also show you how to install the Draw-Tite custom fit class three trailer hitch receiver. This is going to offer the 2" by 2" opening. Its part number is 75758. Here's what our hitch is going to look like installed. You'll see the roundtube's going to come over and drop down under the exhaust. It runs up into the side plates where it's going to connect to our frame.

Now most of that's going to be visible even standing up behind the vehicle. It's a round tube, comes up, meets here at the middle. Now this being a class three hitch, it's got the 2" by 2" receiver tube opening. It's going to make it perfect for just about any type of hitch accessory that you'd like to use: cargo carriers, bike racks, ball mounts. Whatever they've got out there, they're going to probably have a class three version of it, so it should work out just fine for you. For securing all of those items, we've got a 5/8 diameter pinhole here on the side of the hitch.

We're going to use class three-rated accessories. It looks like we've got plenty of room there, so whether you want to use a pin and clip, locking hitch pin or anti-rattle bolt, shouldn't have any issues there. One option of anti-rattle bolt is going to be the j-pin stabilization system. It's going to be the only time we'll use that hole located closer to the rear. We've got a plate-style safety chain connection point that's going to come around. Nice large, open hole.

Should give us plenty of room to connect whatever size chain that we would want, maybe with the exception of the very, very small ones because we do have a little plate here that we'd have to get around. Something I like about the hitch is going to be the tab that's been welded on already for connecting our wiring. Got three pre-drilled holes there, so any of the four-pole or seven-pole brackets should be able to bolt up there without any kind of an issue. Now when it comes to towing, the hitch is going to offer a 675 pound tongue weight rating. That's going to be the maximum downward force that we can put here at our receiver tube opening. It gives us a 4,500 pound gross trailer weight rating.

That's the total weight of our trailer and anything that we might load up on it. If we go into a weight distribution setup, we'll keep our 675 pound tongue weight rating. That gross trailer weight rating, it goes up to 5,000 pounds. Now it is a good idea to check your owner's manual. You want to see what the tow ratings are for the Escape itself and then just go off of whichever of those numbers are the lowest. Now a couple measurements that you'll find helpful in selecting your ball mounts, bike racks, or hitch cargo carriers will be from the ground to the inside top edge of our receiver tube opening we've got about 14". Then from the center of our hitch pinhole to the outermost edge of our bumper it's about 3-1/2". The first thing we need to do is get our hardware up into location. On each frame rail we're going to have an access hole. You just go straight behind where the tailpipe is here right up on the frame rail, it's going to be right inside of that exhaust hanger. Now we need to get our 7/16" carriage bolts up in there. You can see there's just a little bit of metal that we need to get out of the way to make that happen. Now what you can do is use a file. You can see just go in there and file the edge. It's going to take a little bit of time. You could also use a high-speed rotary tool and make a little notch. Just that it was pass through like that should be all we need. We'll go do the same thing over on the driver side now. Now we're ready to take our pull wire and feed it up in our . you can do the front or rear first. It doesn't really matter too much. We just want it to come out the access hole that we enlarged. We're going to take our spacer block. That's going to go up on. Also going to thread on our carriage bolt. I like to push that up in there, bring our bolt up in. Then we're going to bring that back so that we can bring that out and it's going to engage our spacer block there. Then you just want to tip that right back down in. Then we'll do the same thing for the front location there. Now in this location, when you slide your hitch in, there's a arm that sticks up. You want to be careful of that fuel line there, or that fuel filler line, and also the fuel line here. That's something that hangs down there with it. Just don't do any damage to that. You want your pull wire to hang back this way so you can put it through your hitch as you guide it up into place. Now we'll go do the same thing over on the driver side. Now is going to be a good time to get ourselves an extra set of hands. Then we can get our hitch guided up into position. Now with the help of an extra set of hands we can get our hitch raised up into position. We want to bring our pull wires through the outside here. As we guide it up, we're just going to get those pulled tight. Now as we get it up in the right post we should be able to pull our bolts through, then just give the hitch a little bit of a pull down and we can let it rest right on top there. Now we start to take our pull wires off here and we'll attach our hardware. Now we'll place on our conical tooth washers. We want the teeth of those washers to be faced in towards our hitch. Then we can thread on our hex nut. Now with everything started, we're ready to get it all snugged down. Now we'll grab our torque wrench and we want to torque all of our fasteners down to the appropriate specification which are listed in our instructions. Now with everything torqued down the specification, that's going to complete our installation of the Draw-Tite custom fit class three trailer hitch receiver, part number 75758, on our 2017 Ford Escape.

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