Trailer Hitch Installation - 2018 Subaru Forester - Curt

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How to Install the Curt Trailer Hitch on a 2018 Subaru Forester


Speaker 1: Today on our 2018 Subaru Forrester, we're gonna be taking a look at and showing you how to install the current class three custom-fit trailer hitch receiver, part number C13144. So here is what our hitch is gonna look like once we have it installed. It is gonna sit right below the bumper, and the cross tube is gonna be visible just right below, and kinda back in behind the bumper area. It is a class three hitch, which means it's gonna give us that two-inch by two-inch receiver tube opening, and as you can see, it has a nice reinforced collar, not only giving it added strength, but just an overall clean, finished look to it. Since this is a class three, there's gonna be a wide variety of accessories that are available for the hitch, and they're all gonna mount right here using a standard Five Ace pen and clip. Now neither of these are included in the kit, but you can pick them up on our website using part number PC3.Now as far as the safety chain connection points go, it's gonna be a plate style that's loaded into the bottom of the receiver tube here, and as you can see, there's gonna be plenty of room to get your most size hooks on and off.

I can almost get my entire hand through the hook opening. Now as far as weight capacity is concerned, our hitch is gonna feature a 525-pound ton weight along with a 3500 pound gross trailer weight rating. I do wanna mention that you always wanna double-check your Forrester's owner's manual to make sure you don't exceed the manufacturer's weight. Now per the manufacturer, Kirk does recommend the use of a stabilization strap anytime you're towing any non-trailer loads or any loads that don't have any tires, such as a bike rack or a cargo carrier. Now if you need one of those straps, you can pick one up on our website using part number 18050.

I'd like to give you a few measurements, and this is gonna help you when you're deciding for accessories for your new hitch, such as a ball mount, bike rack, or even a cargo carrier.From this center of the hitch, inaudible 00:01:49 to the outermost edge of the bumper, it's gonna be about four inches. And from the ground to the inside top edge of the receiver tube opening, that's gonna be right about 14 and 1/4 inches. So now that we've seen what our hitch looks like and gone over some of the features, let's show you how to get it installed. To begin our installation, we're gonna need to lower our exhaust down. Now you wanna make sure that you support the exhaust before you lower it down so you don't cause any damage.

So if we come right to the rear differential, there is gonna be a hangar right here that we're gonna have to remove, so we're gonna be supporting it right in this general area. So I'm gonna take a strap, find a few points to attach it to, and make sure it's nice and secure. It'll actually go right on the rear tire rods here, and make sure that it'll have enough tension to support the exhaust.So I'm gonna take a little bit of spray lubricant, and we're gonna spray down the rubber isolator, to make it a little bit easier to slide it off the hanger. Then you just take a pry bar, and the main goal here is just to slide it off the rubber isolator. So however you need to get it off, just slide it off like that, now we can move back to the muffler.

Now the muffler, we're gonna have two hangars. One at the back inside towards the back of our bumper here, and if we move to the other side of the bumper towards the back of the muffler, there's gonna be one on the outside. So we're gonna spray both those down with some lubricant, and slide those off the hangars as well. Now this outer one is a little bit harder to get anything to pry in there, but if you got a pair of gloves and you spray it down with some lubricant, you should be able to just pull that rubber isolator off. This is gonna take a little bit of force, but it will slide off if you spray enough lubricant on there.So I'm gonna loosen my strap up enough to where it'll support the exhaust, but we have a little bit more working room at the back, and we got plenty of room to get our hitch in place. Now we're gonna need to remove our heat shield. It's gonna be held on by four bolts, two on the inside of our frame rail, and two on the outside. I'm gonna be using a 10-millimeter socket to pull the bolts out. Once we have all the bolts removed, I'm gonna pull the heat shield out, and we're not gonna be reinstalling it. Now on each side of our frame rail, we're gonna have four plugs starting at towards the front right by the rear axle moving towards the back. Now we're gonna pull all of these old. I'm just gonna take a flat-head screwdriver, come underneath the plug, and pop it out. We'll do this on the other side as well.Now per the instructions, they're gonna want us to enlarge this center hole so that we can fit our hardware through, but we're actually gonna be coming back to the forward hull and enlarging that, because our hardware almost fits through it right now, and when we enlarge this hole, we're not gonna be enlarging any of the holes that our mounting points are gonna be. Our hitch is gonna mount on these three holes toward the back. So we're gonna be using either a file or anything you can to just basically enlarge this hole. Now I'm gonna be using a drill with a deburning bit to file that hole out, and you just wanna periodically take your hardware and check after you've been filing because you don't wanna file too much, just enough to get your hardware in place. So we'll go ahead and file the other side just like we did over here. Since it's never a good idea to leave exposed metal on your car, we'll take a little bit of spray paint, I'm gonna spray the inside of where I filed, and this hopefully will prevent any kind of rust or corrosion from building up.Our kit's gonna come with some pull wire with a coiled end on it. We're gonna wanna feed the coiled end into the furthest rear hole going towards the back where we filed our access hole. It may take a little finesse, but the main goal here is to feed it all the way back and have the coiled end come out this hole, and if you do reach in, just be extremely careful not to cut yourself since we just got done filing. Once we get our pull wire through, put a slight bend in it so I don't have to worry about it falling back in, then we're gonna take one of our square spacer blocks, we're gonna go over the coiled wire, and then we're gonna take one of our half-inch carriage bolts, and we're gonna thread it onto the coiled wire. Now you just wanna make sure that the tail-end of the wire does not go all the way into the frame.You wanna have a little bit so you can grab it still, and when you take our spacer block, and one at a time, we're gonna feed our spacer block in, then we're gonna feed our carriage bolts in, and then we're gonna pull our wire until the hardware comes down and drops through, and we're gonna go and leave the fish wire attached to make it a little bit easier so we don't have to worry about the inaudible 00:07:19 falling back in, and we'll repeat that for all the remaining holes in our frame. Now that we have this side down, we're gonna repeat that on the other side as well. So now with an extra set of hands, we're gonna put our hitch in place, we're gonna take our fish wires, and we're gonna put them through the corresponding holes in our hitch. That's just gonna make it a lot easier than having to worry about pushing the hardware back into the frame.We're gonna raise it up into position, and we're gonna pull one of the pull wires off, so then we get our hardware secured, and we're gonna grab one of our inaudible 00:08:05, put it in place. We're only gonna get one end on each side, hand-tight for now, so we don't have to worry about the hitch falling down. Once we have one in on each side, we'll work on getting the rest of our hardware in. So we're gonna come back with a 3/4-inch socket, and I'm gonna snug up all my hardware. So now I'm gonna come back with that same 3/4-inch socket and a torque wrench and we're gonna torque all our hardware down to the specified amount in the instructions. We'll make sure to repeat that for any remaining bolts. So I'm gonna take a little bit more spray lubricant and spray the rubber isolator as well as the hangar. We can put our exhaust back up. So I'm gonna go ahead and remove our strap, and that'll finish up our installation. And that'll finish up your look at the current class three custom-fit trailer hitch receiver, part number C13144 on our 2018 Subaru Forrester.


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