How To Install Travel Trailer Sway Bars

Last Updated on November 4, 2022 by Douglas

Installing sway bars is a simple and easy task. It can be done by anyone who is willing to do some DIY work.

Sway bars are installed on the front of a trailer to reduce the amount of movement it has when driving on bumpy roads, or when turning sharply. Some sway bars also have the ability to dampen the impact of body roll in turns.

When installing sway bars, you’ll need a few basic tools, including a socket wrench set and a ratchet set. In addition, you’ll need roll pin punches and an air compressor. You can find these tools at most hardware stores or online at or Harbor Freight Tools.

How tight should a sway bar be on a travel trailer?

You would make it about as tight as you think it needs to be and then tow the trailer to see if it needs to be tighter or looser. If you made it as tight as you can then you would not be able to move the bar by hand but the force of the trailer pushing it around can move it.[1]

Do I need 2 sway bars for my travel trailer?

Helpful Expert Reply: Basically, one friction-style sway control can be used for trailers with up to 6,000-lb GTW. If your trailer’s GTW is between 6,000 lbs and 10,000 lbs, you will need two sway-control units, one on each side of the trailer. You will also want to use two units if your trailer is 26 feet or longer.[2]

How tight should sway bar links be?

Tighten the bolt down until you see two threads sticking out from the bottom of the nut after it is installed on the vehicle.[3]

Can you backup a trailer with sway bars?

Friction sway control bars are designed to work fine going forward when turning or not but not designed to turn when backing up (backing up straight is fine). It can and likely will damage them because apparently the force being applied to them is different when going in reverse.[4]

Can you put too much tension on weight distribution hitch?

If you have the spring bar tension set up too high you can see ride issues. Typically it’s a very harsh ride quality but sway is possible too. The best way to pick out a weight distribution system is to base it off of the loaded tongue weight of the setup when it is loaded and ready to tow.[5]

How do you stop an RV from bouncing while driving?

Shocks absorbers prevent the front of the vehicle from constantly bouncing up and down (porpoising) as we drive over bumpy roads. Not only do the shocks help prevent the vehicle from suddenly diving down, but also from jumping up.[6]

What happens if weight distribution bars are too tight?

If it is too loose, it won’t be able to offset the pressure in the front. If it is too tight, it won’t give much leeway towards movement in the front, leaving the trailer stiff. Despite this, the weight distribution bars serve to prevent a ton of problems for both your vehicle and trailer.[7]

Is a weight distribution hitch the same as a sway bar?

When it comes to bumper pull hitches weight distribution is not the same as sway control but the two features often go hand in hand. Many weight distribution hitches will have built-in sway control but a stand alone sway control bar cannot distribute weight.[8]

Is it safe to tow a trailer without sway bars?

You do not need sway bars to tow a travel trailer unless the travel trailer’s center of mass is behind its axle. Also, some smaller trucks may need sway bars if they aren’t strong enough to resist the natural sway of the travel trailer.[9]

What size trailer do you need sway bars?

If your trailer has a GTW of 6,000 lbs or less, a single friction-style sway control can be used. If your trailer’s GTW is between 6,000 lbs and 10,000 lbs, you will need 2 sway-control units (one on either side of the trailer). You will also want to use 2 units if your trailer is 26′ or longer.[10]

What is the best sway bar for travel trailer?

Best: EAZ LIFT Elite Kit. Runner Up: CURT Trailer Anti-Sway Bar Control Kit. Budget Option: Ultra-Fab Ultra Sway Control. Easy Install: Pro Series Value Friction Sway Control. Passenger Side Mounted: EAZ LIFT Screw-On Sway Control.[11]

Can you over tighten a sway bar?

Expert Reply: Typically over tightening a friction sway control unit won’t cause sway. If anything, under-tightening it will cause it.[12]

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