What is a Trailer Hitch Ball?
A hitch trailer ball [trailer ball] connects a trailer to a towing vehicle. Travel trailer hitch ball sizes differ depending on the size of the trailer. The trailer ball links to the ball mount to provide a connection from the trailer hitch to the trailer so it can move through different angles and turn freely when in motion. A hitch ball is an essential element in the rig setup. Read our article and find out 6 of The Best TRAVEL Trailer Bike Racks.
What Size Hitch Ball is Used for a Travel Trailer
2-5\16in [5.76cm] trailer ball is for towing most travel trailers. It is strong and durable to withstand heavy-duty towing. It is used on full-size trucks and SUVs. A travel trailer ball can weigh 6,000 [3,520kg] up to 30,000lb [66,000kg]. It provides a perfect match to travel trailers. You can pull a travel trailer ball using a distributor hitch.
2-\16in [5.08cm] also gives you the power that you need and tow with confidence. It has a nickel-chrome finish, stainless steel, and raw steel to protect it from elements. It features a ball capacity of 12,000lb [26,400kg], 1-1/4in [3.15cm] shank diameter, 2-5/8in [6.67cm] shank length, and 0-inch rise.
The Different Trailer Hitch Ball Sizes
There are different types of trailer ball sizes. 1-7/8in [4.76cm] trailer ball, 2in [5.08cm] trailer ball, 2-5/16in [5.87cm] inch trailer ball, and 3in [7.62cm] trailer ball. The diameter of the trailer ball determines the measurement of trailer ball sizes, the shank length, and the capacity of the towing system. Standardized tow ball allows easier connection of machines and towing.
1-7/8 Inch [4.76cm] Diameter Trailer Ball
This trailer ball is perfect for light-duty towing. It is for small vehicles such as passenger cars and minivans. 1-7/8 in [4.76cm] diameter ball has a chrome finish to protect it against corrosion and wear. It is the smallest trailer ball; it has the smallest diameter of 1 or ¾in [2.54 or 1.91cm]
Ball diameter: 1-7/8in [4.76cm]
Shank diameter: 1in [2.54cm]
Shank length: 3in [7.62cm]
Capacity: 3,500lb [7,700kg]
Torque: 250ft/lb [635cm/2.2kg]
2-Inch Diameter Trailer Ball
This type of trailer ball size is for medium-duty towing. A 2in [5.08cm] diameter ball is reliable and versatile. Its weight capacity ranges from 3,500lb [7,700kg] up to 12,000lb [26,40kg]. It is used on vans, trucks, and SUVs.
Ball diameter: 2in [5.08cm]
Shank diameter: 1-1/4in [3.15cm]
Shank length: 2-3/4in [6.96cm]
Capacity: 8,000lb [17,600kg]
Torque: 450ft/lb [1143cm/2.2kg]
2-5/16 Inch [5.87Centimeter] Diameter Trailer Ball
2-5\16 Inch trailer ball is for towing most travel trailers. It is strong and durable to withstand heavy-duty towing. Most full-size trucks and SUVs use it. A travel trailer can weigh 6,000lb [13,200kg] up to 30,000lb [66,000kg].
It provides a perfect match to travel trailers. 2-5/16in [5.76cm] also gives you the power that you need and tow with confidence. It has a nickel-chrome finish, stainless steel, and raw steel to protect it from elements.
Ball diameter: 2-5/16in [5.76cm]
Shank length: 1-1/4in [3.15cm]
Capacity: 14,000lb [30,800kg]
Torque: 450ft/lb [1,143cm/2.2kg]
3-Inch Diameter Trailer Ball
A 3-inches trailer ball is for gooseneck towing. It connects to the gooseneck hitch. The 3in [7.62cm] trailer ball is from raw, heat-treated steel for strength and durability.
Ball diameter: 3in [7.62cm]
Shank diameter: 2in [5.08cm]
Shank length: 3 3/4in [9.56cm]
Capacity: 3,000lb [6,600kg]
Torque: 4,550ft/lb [11,555cm/2.2kg]
Trailer Ball Table
|Ball Diameter||Shank Length||Shank Diameter||Weight|
|1-⅞in [4.76cm]||3in [7.62cm]||1in [2.54cm]||3,500lb [7,700kg]|
|2in [5.08cm]||2-¾in [6.96cm]||1-¼in [3.15cm]||8,000lb [17,600kg]|
|2-5/16in [5.76cm]||2-¾in [6.96cm]||1-¼in [3.15cm]||14,000lb [30,800kg]|
|3in [7.62cm]||3-¾in [9.56cm]||2in [5.08cm]||30,000lb [66,000kg]|
How to Choose a Trailer Ball
A trailer hitch is important, it pivots for you to get the right hitch ball. The trailer ball provides a connection from the trailer to the hitch ball. When choosing a trailer ball, first select the ball diameter by matching it to the coupler. There are things you need to consider when choosing a travel trailer ball.
The Hitch Ball Diameter
The ball diameter will determine the size of the coupler. The diameter size and the coupler size should match. Make sure your trailer and ball coupler connects properly before towing. Knowing the diameter hole will help you choose a trailer ball that will fit the shank diameter. Adjustments must be made before towing.
Match the Weight Capacity of Your Towing System
Weight capacity must always apply when choosing a travel trailer ball. The ball capacity is the weight rating of a trailer ball. Select a trailer ball with a capacity that exceeds your trailer.
Match the Shank to the Trailer Ball Hole
It is important to know the diameter of the hole so you can choose a ball with a matching shark diameter. The hole is where the trailer ball bolt mounts onto. You measure the hitch ball size starting with the diameter of the ball itself and then match the shank to the trailer ball hole.
How to Measure Trailer Ball
To have a safe and comfortable towing, your trailer should be as level as possible. A trailer that is at level minimizes straining on both the trailer and the tow vehicle. For your ball to fit, you need to measure the shank diameter and the length. Larger balls with larger shank diameters can pull more weight.
Trailer hitch balls have four main measurements; ball diameter, shank length, shank diameter, and rise.
The Ball Diameter
The ball diameter is the ball sphere itself. You measure the hitch ball size starting with the diameter itself. You can also measure the diameter using a ruler or a tape measure.
Use the diameter to match your trailer coupler. You need to measure the diameter of the trailer ball hitch to determine the accurate size for safe towing. The 2in [5.08cm] trailer ball is the most common. Most trailers have a 2in [5.08cm] coupler, making it a standard size.
|Class||Basic use||Size of Opening||Gross Trailer Weight||Tongue Weight|
|I||Light-duty||1.25in [3.175cm]||2,000lb [4,400kg]||200lb [440kg]|
|ii||Moderate–duty||1.25in [3.75cm]||3,500lb [7,700kg]||350lb [770kg]|
|iii||Versatile||2in [ 5.08cm]||3,500 to 6,000lb [7,700 to 13,200kg]||350 to 600lb [770 to 1,320kg]|
|iv||Heavy-duty||2in [5.08cm]||10,000 to 11,200 lb [22,000 to 26,400kg]||1,000 to 1,200lb [220 to 2,640kg]|
|v||Heaviest-duty||2.5in [6.35cm]||16,000 to 20,000lb [35,200 to 44,000kg]||1,600 to 2,000lb [3,520 to 4,400kg]|
The rise of the trailer ball is the distance from the top of the shank to the ball mount, it orients for greater coupler height. The height of the trailer ball will sit higher than the tow of the vehicle hitch receiver tube opening. This will ensure the bolt, the tow vehicle, and the trailer ballparks are on level ground.
You need to rise when the trailer rides higher than the tow vehicle. Many trailer hitch ball mount designs turn over in the receiver tube to allow necessary rise. The opposite of rising is drop.
Drop is the distance from the top of the shank to the top of the ball platform when the ball mount orients for lower coupler height.
How to Measure Rise and Drop of a Trailer Ball
The height of the coupler and the height of the hitch should have the same measurement for you to have a ball mount with the correct rise or drop. Steps to measure the rise of travel trailer ball.
Find Your Hitch Height
The tow vehicle should park on the ground, then measure the ground to the top hitch receiver.
Find Your Coupler Height
Measure the trailer lever from the ground to the edge of the coupler
Find the Difference
The difference between the two measurements will determine which has a greater height, the hitch or the coupler. The difference between the two measurements is the amount of rising or drop you need.
You use a ball mount with a drop when the hitch height is greater. If the height of the coupler is greater, use a ball mount of rising. If the measurement is negative, you drop the hitch height. If the measurement is positive, you raise the hitch height.
FAQ on Travel Trailer Ball Sizes
Are Weight Ratings Flexible?
Bal mount weight has two categories; tongue weight and gross weight. Tongue weight is the maximum weight a trailer can apply downward on a ball mount, and the gross weight is the heaviest loaded trailer a ball mount can tow.
If you want to tow, make sure the ball mount meets or exceeds the loaded weight of the trailer. The tongue weight capacity of the ball mount must also meet or exceed tongue weight.
To decide the amount of weight you are pulling, it is important that you mustn’t estimate. If you have a 2in (5.08cm]) ball rated 8,000lb (3,600kg) you can only pull 8,000lb (3,600kg) and not more than 8,000lb (3,600kg). Do not stretch how much weight your ball can tow.
What are the Different Sizes of Travel Trailer Hitch Balls?
There are four different travel trailer hitch ball sizes, 1-7/8 inch [4.76cm] diameter trailer ball, 2in (5.08cm]) trailer ball, 2-5/16in [5.76cm] trailer ball, and 3in (7.62cm) trailer ball. The size of the ball determines the diameter of the trailer ball.
The 1-7/8in [4.76cm] ball is for towing light-duty vehicles and small cars. Its weight capacity is 3,500lb [7,700kg].
The 2in [5.08cm] ball is for medium-duty towing. It is versatile and reliable and is used on everything from vans to SUVs and full trucks. Its weight ranges from 3,500lb [7,700kgs] to12,000lb [26,400kgs]
2-5/16in [5.87cm] ball is for towing travel trailers, its weight capacity range from 6,000 [13,200kg] to 30,000lb [66,000kgs]
The 3in [7.62cm] ball is for gooseneck towing, it is strong and durable. It Has a weight capacity of up to 30,000lb [66,000kgs]
What is the Standard Ball Size for a Trailer Hitch?
There are four different types of trailer balls:1-7/8 inch [4.76cm] diameter ball, 2in [5.08cm] diameter ball, 2-5/16in [5.87cm] diameter ball, and 3in [7.62cm] diameter ball.
The standard ball hitch size is a 2in [5.08cm] trailer ball. Most trailer balls have a diameter of 2in [5.08cm], making the 2in [5.08cm] the standard ball size, but the diameter size differs depending on the trailer ball size.
Should the Ball Hitch and the Coupler be the Same Size?
A trailer ball needs a ball that perfectly matches the size of the coupler. The diameter of the trailer and the opening of the coupler should be the same for you to have safe towing. You can measure the opening of the coupler using a tape measure or a ruler to know the size of the trailer ball you need.
You should make sure the sizes are the same; the coupler opening should match the diameter of the trailer. Different sizes can create unsafe towing situations and cause disconnection of the trailer vehicle.
What is the Most Common Size Trailer Hitch Ball?
The most common trailer hitch ball is the 2in [5.08cm] diameter ball. It is versatile and reliable; most popular trailers use it. It has a wide range of 3,500 to 12,000lb [7,700 to 26,400kgs]. The design of a 2in [5.08cm] ball is for easy use and is strong.
Different sizes of Tow Balls?
There are four different sizes of tow balls, 1-⅞in [4.76cm] 2in [5.08cm], 2-5/16 inch [5.87cm], and 3in [7.62cm]. They are of different diameters, and their capacities are different. One size of a trailer ball will not fit all trailers.
How to Measure Hitch Ball Sizes
You should measure the diameter, shank length, shank diameter, and the ball’s rise. You can measure using a tape measure or a ruler, then match this measurement with the coupler.
The ball diameter is the diameter of the ball itself, shank length is the distance of the threaded stem, shank diameter is the diameter of the thread, and rise is how the trailer ball sits on its base.
What is the Smallest Trailer Hitch Ball?
Hitch ball sizes are different 1-⅞in [4.76cm] balls, 2in [5.08cm] balls, 2-5/16in [5.76cm] balls, and 3in [7.62cm] balls. Each size has a different design for different trailers and towing applications depending on the ball sizes and weight capacity of the trailer hitch.
The smallest hitch ball is the 1-7/8in [4.76cm] ball. It has a capacity of 3,500lb [7,700kgs]. This hitch ball is for towing light-duty vehicles such as passenger vehicles and minivans. It has the smallest shank diameter of 1in [2.54cm] or 3/4in [1.91cm].
For you to have a safe towing, you should know the weight capacity, ball diameter, and shank diameter of the trailer ball. The opening of the coupler and the diameter of the trailer should be the same. There are different trailer ball sizes, 1-⅞ in [4.76cm], 2in [5.08cm] 2-5/16in [5.87cm], and 3in [7.62cm] diameter balls.
A 2in [5.08cm] ball trailer hitch is the standard hitch size for most trailers that have a 2in [5.08cm] diameter. 1-⅞in [4.76cm] ball is the smallest trailer ball with a 1in [2.54cm] or 3/4in [1.91cm] diameter.
You can measure the opening of the coupler to know the size of the ball you need. Travel trailer hitch balls differ depending on the size of the diameter. When towing, you should ensure the trailer is loaded and on level ground.
Choose a trailer ball that fits the size of your coupler.