What size is receiver hitch tubing?
Well, this is a question that everyone planning to tow shall ask and know the answer to.
A standard hitch size is very essential for the utmost towing efficiency.
Once you have the ideal size receiver hitch tubing, the hitch will enable you for a greater variety of towing choices.
So, let’s explore the standard sizes of hitch receivers and determine which one suits the best for you.
What Size Is Receiver Hitch Tubing?
The most common receiver sizes for trailer hitches are 1-1/4″, 2″, 2-1/2″, and 3″.
However, which of them will suit best for you depends on many external factors, such as the hitch class, tractor, towing capacity, towing preferences, etc.
Various sizes of receiver hitch tubing:
To clarify again, the hitch receiver size or measurements correspond to the breadth of the openings in the receivers.
Hitch classes vary based on the needs, and so does the hitch size.
So, with the continuous development in the hitch industry, we now have 4 types of hitches in terms of size.
Among them, both 1-1/4″ and 2″ are considered to be the most common dimensions for trailer hitch receivers.
2-1/2″, and 3″ have been around for years, and we see them in use for heavy-duty and bulky tasks.
Receiver hitch size vs hitch category:
Simply measuring the height and width of the aperture in your trailer hitch is all that is required to establish its size.
But, before, knowing the hitch class simplifies the job for you. Why?
Because, essentially, the hitch class determines what size of receiver hitch tubing is suitable for you.
|Receiver hitch tubing size
|Class I and Class II
|Class III and Class IV
|2-1/2″, and 3″
Trailer Hitch Receivers:
It is no secret that we have 4 main sizes of trailer hitch receivers.
For now, we won’t dive into details.
When it comes to hauling a trailer, there is a wide variety of hitches that may be employed.
Among all, the receiver hitches are likely the most prevalent type. There are five different kinds of receiver hitches.
Each variety of trailer hitch serves a different function and has a different approach to coupling, in addition to having a different range of carrying capabilities and dimensions.
So, now the crux job for us is to determine how to match the 4 hitch receiver sizes with the 5 types of trailer hitches.
However, this is not as complicated as you are thinking!
Receiver hitch sizes:
To simplify the process, we will discuss the receiver hitch sizes based on the categories of the receiver hitches.
For Class I and Class II Hitch:
A receiver aperture that measures 1-1/4″ x 1-1/4″ is suitable for both Class I and Class II Hitches.
The vast majority of the time, you will find these classes of hitches on the most compact SUVs and passenger automobiles.
So, as you can guess, they are not much of use for heavy-duty and bulky tasks.
Note: However, sometimes there are a few receivers hitch tubing for the Class II hitches on the market that may measure 2 inches. But this is not a particularly typical feature.
The following is a typical breakdown of weight capacities for trailer hitches of Class I:
- Gross trailer weight (maximum allowable) = 1,000 pounds to 2,000 pounds
- Weight for the tongue (maximum allowable) = 100 pounds to 200 pounds
The following is a typical breakdown of weight capacities for trailer hitches of Class II:
- Gross trailer weight (maximum allowable) = 2,000 pounds to 3,500 pounds
- Weight for the tongue (maximum allowable) = 200 pounds to 525 pounds.
For Class III and Class IV Hitches:
The most typical size for trailer hitch receivers is a 2″ by 2″ configuration.
The vast majority of 2″ receivers are in use for either a class 3 or 4 hitches.
Pickup trucks, sport utility vehicles, and even certain full-size sedans can have one of these attachments installed.
The majority of SUVs and pickup trucks have a 2″ receiver size for their factory-installed trailer hitches.
There are a lot of 2 inches hitches that allow the use of weight distribution systems.
A weight distribution system is kind of a blessing in terms of towing efficiency.
It helps a lot while you’re hauling behind a vehicle.
Thus, you can make the most of the hitch’s capacity to carry a maximum amount of weight.
Weight capacities of Class III trailer hitches are usually as follows:
- Gross trailer weight (maximum allowable) = 3,500 pounds to 8,000 pounds
- Weight for the tongue (maximum allowable) = 300 pounds to 800 pounds
Weight capacities of Class IV trailer hitches are usually as follows:
- Gross trailer weight (maximum allowable) = 5,000 pounds to 12,000 pounds
- Weight for the tongue (maximum allowable) = 500 pounds to 1,200 pounds
For Class V Hitches:
For all the class V hitches available out there, we either find 2-1/2″ or 3” hitch receivers.
So, for a better understanding, we will discuss the two sizes separately.
2-1/2″ hitch receivers:
Receivers for trailer hitches that measure two-and-a-half inches in width are for heavy-duty tasks.
They are intended for installation on heavy-duty pickup trucks.
These trucks can carry significant loads.
You can buy hitches of this size as aftermarket modifications/upgrades for your vehicle.
However, most of the trucks are equipped from the factory with 2-1/2″ receivers.
The biggest plus for this class of hitch is that you can modify it using a unique hitch adaptor.
In this way, hitch attachments that have been intended to be used with 2″ trailer hitches can be adapted to work with 2-1/2″ hitches.
The vast majority of Class V hitches are able to work fine with weight-distribution systems.
So, you can make the most of the weight-carrying capacity of these hitches by combining them with weight-distribution systems.
Weight capacities of 2-1/2″ Class V trailer hitches are usually as follows:
- Gross trailer weight (maximum allowable) = 10,000 pounds to 20,000 pounds
- Weight for the tongue (maximum allowable) = 1,000 pounds to 2,000 pounds
3″ hitch receivers:
In terms of pulling capacity, these are the strongest hitches.
These class V hitches with 3″ hitch receivers can even pull hills!
Nah, I’m just joking! But, yeah, in a sense, they can do the most heavy-duty of tasks!
Lately, these 3” hitch receivers have become standard equipment on some of the newest models intended for pulling heavy loads.
Additionally, you have the option of purchasing 3 “hitches to modify your vehicle.
To have these hitches on your vehicle, the vehicle should have a C-channel frame.
Then, an expert mechanic can weld the 3” hitch to the vehicle.
Consequently, most experts suggest using these hitches with flatbeds and dump trailers.
There are converters available for 3-inch hitches that can transform a 3-inch opening into a more conventional 2-inch or 2-1/2-inch one.
Another advantage is that these hitches don’t ask for any particular type of vehicle, unlike the vast majority of other hitches.
Most of the 3” Class V hitches are compatible with weight distribution systems.
However, you will only have a few options as this type of hitch is not very common.
Weight capacities of 2″ Class V trailer hitches are usually as follows:
- Gross trailer weight (maximum allowable) = 20,000 pounds to 25,000 pounds
- Weight for the tongue (maximum allowable) = 3,000 pounds to 4,000 pounds
FAQs on the size of the hitch receiver
What Size Is A Truck Receiver Hitch?
It depends on the class of the hitch as we have shown above.
However, you can still have the modification options with some classes of hitch.
What Is The Most Common Hitch Size?
The most common hitch size is 2 inches.
It suits both class III and class IV hitches.
Are All Hitch Pins The Same Diameter?
Not at all.
They come in a wide range of sizes to suit a wide variety of conventional hitch receiver sizes.
So, what size is receiver hitch tubing on the trailer hitches mostly depends on the hitch class, doesn’t it?
Here, we have provided you with a comprehensive guide to the pulling capacities of each hitch class.
So, it should help you sort it out.
Also, don’t forget that some hitch classes allow for two different sizes of hitch receivers.