Installing Hitch Hooks and Anchors
Hitch hooks can be mounted on your vehicle on a variety of places, including the front and rear bumpers, the frame, or even the grille. You should use tow hooks attached directly to the frame of the car to ensure stability. It's not a good idea to connect tow hooks to anything flimsy or to anything that moves on the vehicle - radiators, tail pipes, brush guards and the like [source: Lewellyn].
Usually, mounting the hooks onto the frame underneath the car would do the trick. However, depending on the vehicle and where you want to mount the tow hooks, you may need to remove your front bumper. Don't worry too much, though: On some models, you can buy an entirely new bumper with hitch hooks already in place.
Let's look at installing hitch hooks on a Dodge Ram pickup. It's not a hard job if you have the right tools and some mechanical skills. In this case, you'll need 18 and 19-millimeter sockets and wrenches. You'll also need a screwdriver to remove the front air dam, slide the bracket over the exposed area, drill some extra holes in the bumpers, put nuts and bolts over the bracket, and install the hooks in the correct place [source: Pavement Sucks].
The order is a little taller on a Jeep Cherokee. This process involves completely removing the bumper and cutting pieces off the bumper bracket with a bench grinder to accommodate the hitch hooks [source: Jeep Horizons]. Other tow hooks can simply be bolted onto the vehicle in designated areas or by drilling small holes. If you're inexperienced, or if you don't have all the tools necessary to get the job done, it may be in your best interest to get your hitch accessories and towing equipment professionally installed.
Fortunately, hitch anchors are much easier to use. Most of them fit into designated pockets on your truck bed. They can include covers that pop off so the anchors can be inserted. Anchor points can also be installed on the bed, but when you're doing so, make sure you don't accidentally drill into the gas tank or electrical and drive train parts [source: eSsortment.com].
For more information on hitch hooks and anchors, please see the links below.
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More Great Links
- Curt Manufacturing. "Fold Away Rope Hook." (10/2/2008)http://www.curtmfg.com/index.cfm?event=prodetail&id=1 85&categoryid=51
- eSsortment. "Customizing your truck: installing pickup truck accessories for truck beds." (10/2/2008)http://www.essortment.com/hobbies/customizingtruc_sdvx.htm
- Jeep Horizons. "Jeep Cherokee XJ Tow Hook and Bracket Install." (10/3/2008) http://jeephorizons.com/tech/xj_hook.html
- Keeper Corporation. "Hand-D-Ring Installation Instructions." (10/2/2008)http://www.keepercorp.com/prod/br2.htm
- Lewellyn, Harry. "Towing Basics." (10/3/2008) http://www.4x4now.com/sf0100.htm
- Pavement Sucks. "Mopar Tow Hook Install." (10/2/2008) http://www.pavementsucks.com/tech/towhook.php
- Truck Toys. "Trailering Ratchet Tie Downs and Tow Hooks." (10/3/2008)http://trucktoys4less.com/112x7rattied.html