Trailer Hitch

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I didn't want to do it either so I get where you are coming from. Don't fret about it too much because look

$150 gets you all shiney new again.

Kudos on your 8 to 10 plan, I'll see how long I can keep myself from that VW electric bus. I love the bolt but I have 27K miles in 18 months so that'll be some high mileage.
Thanks for the link. That's not a big deal if I ever wanted to reverse it. Truth is, having a small 5" x 3.5" hole in the back bumper probably wouldn't bother me once it's there. It's just that initial cut.

Funny you mention the VW bus. My wife and I are eyeing that to replace her '15 CMax Energi. The basic idea is that we have two cars in the family, and alternate who gets a new car. So we keep the cars for 8-10 years and buy a new one every 4 or 5. So far it hasn't worked out that way (see also my signature :oops: ), but having two car payments has been a strain on our budget.
Can you link to the wiring kit you used? Edit: found it -

Did you take pictures of the location you spliced into? Do all the lights work - taillight, turn signals, and brake lights? Do you have to open the hatch in order to get the lights to work?

The pictures don't show that you have a trailer license plate - I have that same trailer, and the plate drags very easily. I tried flipping the light (so you still light the plate) but the plate would have to stick out to the side; as it does't fit into the low rail.
All the lights work, yes.
No, in fact if you open the hatch the lights stop working because that's a different wire (ironically with the exact same wire color pattern). I have a PDF of the instructions for the wiring. But this message board doesn't allow me to attach anything. Not sure exactly how to get it to you. I could email it if you want to share your email address.
The license plate is zip tied to the vertical ramp/gate not the plate spot cause yeah, its a stupid design. A cop isn't going to hassle me about that trailer tag not being lit. Not where I live anyway.
Hey NeilBlanchard, thanks for posting the pics. I just ordered the EcoHitch and will be undertaking the installation with a more experienced friend when it arrives. I also hope to cut a hole, as you did, instead of cutting all the way through the fascia. Aside from breaking the plastic clip on the bumper and the difficulty of removing the trim over the wheels, anything else you can think of to look out for? The closest I've come to doing anything like this is installing and wiring a dashcam, but that didn't involve any destructive steps, so I'm looking for any and all advise. Thanks again.
The clips on the rear wheel arches is the hardest part. We used a drill at the corners of the hole - this makes it possible to use metal snips to cut the edges - and it relieves stress to prevent tears that are likely with sharp corners.
Thanks for your response. We actually did the install about 2 weeks ago and it worked out great. thanks for you advice. I made a video of our install that I'll be uploading shortly to help others do your great fascia cut. We used a drill as well. Hardest part for us was not having the right tool for the middle screw in the wheel well. Thanks again.
Here's the video I did of a friend and I installing the Ecohitch with the cut that @NeilBlanchard did:

Thanks for forging the path!

In the meantime, etrailer put out a very clear video of the install as well (they do the standard cut though, and skip over the most difficult torx screw to remove from the wheel well, not that it's a big mystery how to do it). You can find that video here if you're interested:

Hope you find it useful if you've made it this far into the thread.
How doestThe trailer behave in everyday life?
Does it move/swibg fully loaded eg. 4bikes (200lbs)?
Do you mind making a video with your bike rack mounted and drive a few miles to see how it behaves in everyday situations?

Thanks for your amazing work so far.
How doestThe trailer behave in everyday life?

To be clear, I haven't attached a wiring harness so therefore cannot trailer, technically. I have only attached a bike rack.

Does it move/swibg fully loaded eg. 4bikes (200lbs)?

It is remarkably stable with 3 bikes installed. There is very little side to side motion and also very little back and forth when properly secured, but this is all largely dependent on the rack you choose, and not so much on the hitch. Unfortunatley, none of our bikes even come close to 50 lbs, so I wouldn't be able to test as large weight as you noted.

Do you mind making a video with your bike rack mounted and drive a few miles to see how it behaves in everyday situations?

Unfortunately, with my current equipment, I wouldn't be able to safely make one that was high enough quality. I suggest checking out etrailer for the specific rack you're interested in. They have a ton of great videos for different racks, and the 2 inch receiver on the bolt behaves similarly to the 2 inch receivers you'll see there.
By drilling the holes at the corner (which is what I did also) the corners are radiused and much less likely to tear or crack. Thanks for the video - it will make the process much clearer.