How to Install a Trailer Hitch on a (2011 -2019) Ford Explorer

To add a trailer hitch to a (2011 -2019) Ford Explorer you will need only a few tools, a Draw-Tite 76034 trailer hitch, and about 45 minutes to complete the installation. Follow these basic steps to begin hauling all kinds of hitch-mounted accessories with your Ford Explorer today.

About the Draw-Tite 76034

The Draw-Tite 76034 is a class 3, bolt-on trailer hitch designed for the (2011 -2019) Ford Explorer. The hitch has a max trailer weight of 4,500 lb. and a max tongue weight of 675 lb. No welding or vehicle modification is required for installation.

  • Safety glasses
  • 19mm and 18mm sockets
  • Torque wrench
  • Power drill
  • Exhaust pliers
  • 11/16 socket
  • Exhaust Strap
  • 5 in. socket extension

Ford Explorer (2011 - 2019) hitch installation steps

1. Support the exhaust

Use the exhaust strap and attach the exhaust to a sturdy engine component under the body, such as a cross-member. This allows the exhaust to be lowered without dropping too low.

2. Lower the exhaust

Use the exhaust pliers to remove the isolator rods from the rubber exhaust hangers. There is a rubber hanger near each exhaust on the driver and passenger sides, as well as in the center of the undercarriage. You may need to use soapy water to loosen the rods.

3. Remove the tow hook

Use the power drill fitted with the 18mm socket and 5-inch extension to remove the three bolts holding the tow hook in place. You will only need the extension for the bolts at the bottom. You can discard or save the bolts and tow hook but save the exhaust hanger.

4. Remove the passenger exhaust hanger

Once again, use the power drill fitted with the 18mm to socket remove the two bolts on the passenger side holding the exhaust hanger in place. You can discard or save the bolts and hanger rod but save the rubber hanger.

5. Attach the exhaust hangers to the hitch

Use the provided 7/16 carriage bolts, hex nuts, and conical washers to fasten the hangers to the hitch. Install the bolt at the perpendicular attachment hole on the end of the hitch bracket, then install the hanger, washer, and nut, and tighten using the power drill fitted with the 7/16 socket. Repeat on the other side of the hitch.

6. Feed the carriage bolt into the frame

Attach the provided ½-13 carriage bolt to the fish wire coil. Feed the bolt and spacer into the rearmost access hole on the frame on the passenger side and pull the wire so the threaded end of the bolt drops through the spacer and access hole. Leave the wire on the bolts for now.

7. Position the hitch

Using either a jack or second pair of hands to position the hitch so that the attachment holes all line-up. Thread the fish wire through the hitch attachment hole then remove it from the ½-13 bolt. Install the conical washers and hex nuts on all four existing weld nuts and tighten by hand.

8. Torque the hitch

Using the torque wrench fixed with a 19mm socket and 5-inch extension, torque the four M12 hex bolts to 68 ft. lb. and the carriage bolt to 75 ft. lb. You should hear a clicking sound after the correct amount of torque has been applied.

9. Raise the exhaust

Place the isolator rods back in the rubber hangers (three locations). Note that the rubber hangers are now attached to the hitch instead of above the exhaust mufflers.

You should now have your Draw-Tite 76034 trailer hitch installed on your Ford Explorer.

Whatever vehicle you drive, we have a trailer hitch for you. Don’t have the time to install yourself? Schedule a professional installation at and we’ll do the work. If U-Haul doesn’t have a hitch for your vehicle, nobody does!


How much does it cost to add a hitch for a Ford Explorer (2011 -2019)?

The price range of a hitch for a Ford Explorer ranges from $160 to $170 U-Haul carries several different classes of hitches and offers different sizes to accommodate both 1¼ to 2-inch receivers. U-Haul offers both installation services at local U-Haul service centers and will ship your hitch to your home.

How much does it cost to have a hitch installed on a Ford Explorer (2011 – 2019)?

Installation costs are normally under $100 but you should check with your local U-Haul Moving Center® as prices can differ based on location, the hitch model you are installing, and your vehicle. All U-Haul Moving Centers can install a hitch to your vehicle and with over 1,500 U-Haul centers throughout the country, you can have your hitch installed and be back on the road in no time.

All trailer hitches sold and installed at a U-Haul Moving Center® come with the option of a lifetime warranty plan guaranteed to replace your hitch with no limitation for any damage, including collision, corrosion, accidental overload, jackknifing, and vehicle theft.

Ford Explorer

How long does it take to install a hitch on a Ford Explorer (2011 -2019)?

Installation takes anywhere from 1 to 2 ½ hours depending on the hitch being installed and your vehicle. We recommend making an online appointment from our website to accommodate your busy schedule. In addition, U-Haul service centers offer an extensive line of towing accessories (Ball mount, Hitch ball, Pin, and Clip, Wiring) to help you safely tow your boat, camper, or trailer

Do you need a wiring kit for Ford Explorer (2011 -2019)

If you are planning to tow a trailer or camper with brake lights, running lights, and turn signal, you will want a wiring kit to power the lights on your trailer. The most common lighting harness comes in a 4 pin and 7 pin connector. The 4- way connector has basic lighting functions (running lights, brake lights, turn signal) while the 7-way connector adds a 12-volt circuit, circuit for electric trailer brakes, and reverse lights. U-Haul offers both 4-way and 7-way connectors. Find out which option is best for your Ford Explorer.

Wiring Kits for Ford Explorer

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