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what class trailer hitch?

tonydp

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i have the 4.0 V6. how dod i know what class trailer hitch it has. I just need to pull a riding lawnmower
 
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Limited02

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I believe if you have a 7-pin wiring harness, then you have the Class 3. Also should have a 3" opening for the Class 3. If it's a 4-pin and 2"? opening, then you have the Class 2?

Someone correct me if I'm wrong.
 
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RickM

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If you have the Class 2 hitch you can upgrade to a Class 3/4 with an aftermarket setup but keep in mind your trans cooling capacity, light wiring and tow weight capabilty.

CLASS I TRAILER HITCHES

- Class I tow hitches are weight carrying (WC) hitches rated up to 2000 lbs. gross trailer weight (GTW) with a maximum trailer tongue weight (TW) of 200 lbs.
- A Class I hitch usually has a 1-1/4" square receiver opening.
- A higher class drawbar does not increase the towing capacity of the hitch.
- Class I hitches usually attach to the bumper, truck pan or vehicle frame.

CLASS II TRAILER HITCHES

- Class II hitches are weight carrying (WC) hitches rated up to 3500 lbs. gross trailer weight (GTW) with a maximum trailer tongue weight (TW) of 300 lbs.
- A Class II tow hitch usually has a 1-1/4" square receiver opening.
- A higher class drawbar does not increase the towing capacity of the hitch.
- Class II hitches usually attach to the bumper or vehicle frame.

CLASS III TRAILER HITCHES

- Class III hitches are weight carrying (WC) and also are weight distributing (WD) depending on the vehicle and hitch specifications.
- Not all Class III hitches are rated to be both. See the specific hitch for that information.
- Class III hitches used as weight carrying are rated up to 6000 lbs. gross trailer weight (GTW) with a maximum trailer tongue weight (TW) of 600 lbs.
- Class III hitches used for weight distributing are rated up to 10,000 lbs. gross trailer weight (GTW) with a maximum trailer tongue weight (TW) of 1000 lbs.
- A Class III hitch usually has a 2" square receiver opening.
- A higher class drawbar does not increase the towing capacity of the hitch. To use this class of hitch for weight distribution requires a weight distribution system.
- Class III hitches attach to the vehicle frame only.

Credit to http://www.usa-trailer-hitches.com/hitchclasses.htm for hitch classifications and specs.
 
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tonydp

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Thanks. I have class2
 
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miker104

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I seem to see the V6's with class II hitches from the factory and V8's with Class III
 
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RickM

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I seem to see the V6's with class II hitches from the factory and V8's with Class III

I think the majority of Exps (at least for 2002 / 2003), V6 and V8, came with class II receivers.
 
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spotdog14

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I think the majority of Exps (at least for 2002 / 2003), V6 and V8, came with class II receivers.
Why is that? I cannot be that much more expensive to have all of them with the Class III. To me personally a class I or II is useless.
 
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miker104

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I think the majority of Exps (at least for 2002 / 2003), V6 and V8, came with class II receivers.

Guess it varies. Most I see around here are 2004's and up and if it has a Class III its usually a V8. Just my observation.
 
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miker104

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Why is that? I cannot be that much more expensive to have all of them with the Class III. To me personally a class I or II is useless.

I think its to match the hitch with the vehicle towing capacity. V6 is 3500 lbs max with a Class II. With the V8 it has a higher towing capacity, thus the Class III hitch.

Guess its a CYA, cause if they put a Class III hitch on a 3500 lb towing capacity vehicle, some people may think they are good to go with a 6,000 lb tow and want to blame Ford when their transmission or motor die from overload or get in an accident due to an overweight trailer.

Very few add on accessories available for the Class II so I understand your comment.
 
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RickM

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My observation is the opposite and it appears to be supported as Class 3 hardware was/is an option. I agree that Class 1 and 2 are very limited. When shopping for a new truck in '02 I visited several dealerships seeking a vehicle with Class 3 capabilities. The vast majority of trucks had Class 2 hardware. Further, of everyone I knew with Exps, the same held true....whether V6 or V8. One buddy wanted to upgrade (after his purchase) to a Class 3 receiver and he was told the only option was to bolt the Class 3 setup directly underneath the existing receiver...IMO, it was very unsightly.

Feature write-up for 2003 Exps (Same is true for '10):

"Towing capability comes built-in. The standard receiver hitch, which is part of the rear frame, offers Class II towing capability of 2,000 pounds to 3,500 pounds, depending on engine and drivetrain. An upgraded towing package provides Class III/IV towing capability of up to 7,300 pounds when properly equipped."
 
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spotdog14

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My observation is the opposite and it appears to be supported as Class 3 hardware was/is an option. I agree that Class 1 and 2 are very limited. When shopping for a new truck in '02 I visited several dealerships seeking a vehicle with Class 3 capabilities. The vast majority of trucks had Class 2 hardware. Further, of everyone I knew with Exps, the same held true....whether V6 or V8. One buddy wanted to upgrade (after his purchase) to a Class 3 receiver and he was told the only option was to bolt the Class 3 setup directly underneath the existing receiver...IMO, it was very unsightly.

Feature write-up for 2003 Exps (Same is true for '10):

"Towing capability comes built-in. The standard receiver hitch, which is part of the rear frame, offers Class II towing capability of 2,000 pounds to 3,500 pounds, depending on engine and drivetrain. An upgraded towing package provides Class III/IV towing capability of up to 7,300 pounds when properly equipped."
Same here, my wife fell in love with one that only had a class II hitch and I refused to buy it because of the stupid way to get myself a class III hitch. We ended up with an '02 V-6 that had the towing package. We are happy with it, but I think that 99% of the explorers that I see have the class II hitch on them.
 
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dfisher8871

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1997 xlt awd 5.0 v8
i got a 1997 mounty that came with a class 3 hitch it is v-8 awd
 
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amdmaddness

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My 2002 Mountaineer V6 has a factory class III with a 3.73 rear.. Some V6's do have class III's
 
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Donystoy

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Mine is a 2002 V8 and came with a class 2 hitch. When I installed the class 3 under mount hitch I ground off the original hitch and then ran a 3/4" bolt through the hole to support a bracket welded to the new class 3 hitch. I thought I would have to do more upgrades but was surprised to find a large oem transmission cooler already mounted. I have towed close 5000 pounds or more regularly for the last 8 years and it does it with ease. Waiting for the tranny to go:D. The Explorer only has about 80,000 miles as it is seldom driven in the winter and in the summer only for towing or as a second vehicle.
 
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