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Old 02-11-2013, 06:15 PM   #1
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Hitch noise

We tow a Mini Lite with a factory installed hitch. I've noticed a metal on metal sound occasionally when towing. I THINK it's the ball and receiver, but I'm not sure. I grease the ball, so it's lubed properly. Are there any adjustments on the hitch clamp? I would definitely appreciate any help.
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:18 PM   #2
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Is it a weight distributing hitch? Are you sure it isn't the bars sliding when you make a turn? Ours took some getting used to, and then the dealer said that where they had not previously recommended lubing those points, the latest thinking is a little grease on there won't hurt and will certainly sound better.
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:19 PM   #3
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My friction sway bar would creak and moan when turning when I had the popup.
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:31 PM   #4
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This not a weight distributing hitch. Never thought about the stabilizer bar being the cause!
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:56 PM   #5
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you should be using a WDH if you're pulling that trailer with the MDX.

i'll bet your owner's manual will require using one, for a trailer that size and weight.

what you're calling a factory hitch is actually a hitch RECEIVER.
it's what you put a hitch into.
and what you're calling a "stabilizer bar", sounds like a anti-sway bar, which does no weight distributing.

did the dealer tell you that you didn't need a WDH?
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:07 AM   #6
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Ok, I got the terminology wrong. I always considered the receiver a hitch, never gave it any thought. I know the anti-sway bar does no weight distributing. In answer to your question, I wasn't told by the FR dealer I needed anything but the receiver/hitch. Now you've got me wondering! I will get my manual out and investigate - and get back with you. I honestly have no idea how a WDH even attaches to the tow vehicle nor the towee! I hope that term isn't too technical! I really am grateful for the response!
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:32 AM   #7
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Need a photo of you hooked up (like this) to help here.
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Old 02-12-2013, 09:21 AM   #8
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Ok, I'm up, got my eyes opened now and got the owners manual out re the hitch. The vehicle manual clearly states: "A WDH is not recommended for this vehicle." I don't grease the connecting points of the anti-sway bar, never gave those points much thought. I use a wire brush on the slide to keep it clean and tighten it for expwy driving. The sounds I hear occur when driving straight, not in turns. So, what I still wonder is whether or not the clamp on the tongue should be/can be adjusted?
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Old 02-12-2013, 10:30 AM   #9
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Are you using the correct size ball? Also, grab your draw bar and see if you can move it up and down at all. Even the slightest bit of play will sound harsh inside your vehicle. If so, you can drive a small wedge between receiver and draw bar or they make a clamp that will quiet things down also.
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Old 02-12-2013, 10:48 AM   #10
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Ah ha! Yes, there is some play between the receiver and the bar! Never gave that a thought! Regardless of what your wife says, you really are a help! Thanks. I'll go find a wedge thingy.
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Old 02-12-2013, 10:49 AM   #11
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I don't grease the connecting points of the anti-sway bar, never gave those points much thought. I use a wire brush on the slide to keep it clean and tighten it for expwy driving.
This is correct for anti-sway bars. You don't grease them and should keep 'em clean.

As for the sound when going straight... I'm out of ideas. Good luck!
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Old 02-12-2013, 12:21 PM   #12
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This is correct for anti-sway bars. You don't grease them and should keep 'em clean.

As for the sound when going straight... I'm out of ideas. Good luck!
You are 1/2 correct,the ball sockets on each end should be lubed! Youroo!!
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Old 02-12-2013, 12:26 PM   #13
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You are 1/2 correct,the ball sockets on each end should be lubed! Youroo!!
Good point and I agree!
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Old 02-13-2013, 11:45 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by arjerram View Post
Ah ha! Yes, there is some play between the receiver and the bar! Never gave that a thought! Regardless of what your wife says, you really are a help! Thanks. I'll go find a wedge thingy.
Just out of curiosity, what is the tow rating for your MDX?

I think you are most likely on the right track that the hitch is moving inside the receiver. However, you should pay particular attention to your receiver and make sure there is no damage.

Finally, as Herk suggested, a picture is worth a thousand words.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:16 PM   #15
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The MDX

According to the manual, the towing capy is 5K. However, a mechanic told me it was good for 7K. I think our TT comes at the low 4K. No, we haven't weighed it loaded. But next trip out, I'll stop at a local granite quarry and ask if they'd be so kind.
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Old 02-13-2013, 11:23 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arjerram View Post
According to the manual, the towing capy is 5K. However, a mechanic told me it was good for 7K.
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Old 02-13-2013, 11:33 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arjerram View Post
According to the manual, the towing capy is 5K. However, a mechanic told me it was good for 7K.
I am guessing his shop is looking for work, or he could use the overtime pay.
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Old 02-14-2013, 07:49 AM   #18
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Towing capy

The mech who told me about the 5K vs 7K is an independent mech. His business is mostly minor repairs, tires etc.
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Old 02-14-2013, 09:16 AM   #19
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The mech who told me about the 5K vs 7K is an independent mech. His business is mostly minor repairs, tires etc.
Not to disparage your mechanic, but what proof did he offer that it is OK to ignore a manufacturer's limit?
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Old 02-14-2013, 09:43 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arjerram View Post
According to the manual, the towing capy is 5K. However, a mechanic told me it was good for 7K. I think our TT comes at the low 4K. No, we haven't weighed it loaded. But next trip out, I'll stop at a local granite quarry and ask if they'd be so kind.

Unless one of Acura's engineers in Tokyo appears on your doorstep and tells you that, I would treat it like a political commercial, 1% truth, 99% used car salesman BS. I am slightly less diplomatic than Herk...

Getting back to your MDX - you really need to find a CAT scale at a truck stop. Watch this video for the how to weigh:


It will give you the weight on your front (steer) axle, rear (drive) axle and also the trailer axles. Best $10 you will ever spend, I promise. Then take it back across and un-hook the trailer on the trailer pad, to get your unhooked and true trailer weights. This will also allow you to figure your tongue weight. All that for $1 more!

Come back with those numbers and the guys here can tell you a number of things.
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