Deciding whether to buy an Andersen Hitch or 5th Wheel is a big decision — there’s no one size fits all. This is precisely why we’ve put together this in-depth guide where I compare and contrast these two types of fifth wheel hitches so that you can make the perfect decision for your needs.
What is an Andersen Hitch?
An Andersen hitch is a type of trailer hitch that allows you to tow your trailer without having to disconnect from your truck or SUV. It’s basically a ball and socket mechanism that allows you to connect two vehicles together without any extra parts or hardware.
The main advantage of using an Andersen hitch over a traditional 5th wheel hitch is that it makes hooking up easier and faster because fewer pieces are involved in the process. There’s no need for an adapter bar or any other piece of equipment — just use the same ball that came with your vehicle!
Andersen Hitches are suitable for light to medium duty applications, such as carrying boats or small trailers up to 3,500 pounds. They can be used with most types of vehicles: pickup trucks, sport utility vehicles (SUVs), vans, cars, and full-size trucks/vans.
What Is a 5th Wheel Hitch?
A fifth wheel hitch is made up of two main components — the kingpin and the fifth wheel. The kingpin is placed on top of the trailer while the fifth wheel sits underneath it (hence its name). This allows for an easy connection between your truck and trailer without any adjustments needed. When you need to unhook your trailer from your truck, there is no need to remove anything from either vehicle. Simply release the pins from their respective holes and pull them out by hand or use a tool to remove them completely from their respective holes in each piece of equipment.
A 5th wheel hitch is an excellent way to haul your trailer. It offers superior connection points and stability, which means you won’t have to worry about your RV pulling itself apart when you’re on the road.
Andersen Hitch vs 5th Wheel: What’s the Difference?
The first difference is how they attach to your vehicle. A 5th wheel hitch attaches to the rear of your vehicle while an Andersen hitch attaches at the chassis of your vehicle using a ball mount or tow bar (depending on if you want to tow with just one trailer or multiple trailers). This makes it easier for you to maneuver through tight spots without needing extra space behind your vehicle.
Another difference between Andersen hitches and 5th wheel hitches is how they attach to the trailer itself. A 5th wheel hitch connects directly to the back axle of a trailer, while an Andersen hitch connects directly onto the frame of the trailer (if there is no hitch on it).
Andersen Hitch vs 5th Wheel: Pros and Cons
Due to their different mounting points and designs, each configuration has its own advantages and disadvantages.
Andersen Hitch Pros:
- It is a lot easier to install and uninstall compared to 5th wheel hitches
- It is a lot cheaper than 5th wheel hitches
- Less weight capacity compared to 5th wheel hitches, but it is still sufficient for most campers and RV’s
- You can tow your vehicle using an Andersen hitch, but with a little bit of modification, you will be able to pull your camper with the same hitch as well, which means that you don’t have to buy another one for your camper
Andersen Hitch Cons:
- Less Stability – Because the Andersen Hitch uses only one ball joint to connect with your vehicle, it has less stability than a 5th wheel hitch that uses two ball joints for each connection point.
5th Wheel Hitch: Pros
- It has more towing power than a conventional hitch, and it can handle heavy loads
- Easy to tow and maneuver
- It can be used with caravans and motorhomes
- It’s more stable than any other hitch system on the market today
- A 5th wheel trailer is designed for towing long distances, which means it will last longer than most other trailers out there
5th Wheel Hitch: Cons
- It is more expensive than other hitches like the Andersen Hitch
- The biggest drawback of a 5th-wheel hitch is that it takes longer to hook up and unhook than other hitches.
How much weight can you pull with an Andersen Hitch?
When it comes to pulling weight, the Andersen hitch is not your best option. A typical Andersen hitch can only be used for up to 14,000 pounds of weight capacity. This does not mean that you cannot pull more than 14,000 pounds – it simply means that this type of hitch should not be used for any load weighing more than 14,000 pounds. If you are planning to pull heavier loads than this, your best bet would be to use something like a 5th wheel hitch instead of an Andersen hitch.
How much weight can you pull with a 5th Wheel Hitch?
The 5th Wheel Hitch has a gross trailer weight rating of 18,000 pounds and a tongue weight capacity of 4400 lbs., making it significantly stronger than the Andersen Hitch.
A 5th wheel hitch is designed to carry the weight of a trailer, not a truck. The larger the truck and trailer combination, the more weight that can be safely pulled by a 5th wheel hitch.
The weight capacity of your trailer will determine how much weight you can pull with your 5th wheel hitch. If you are pulling a smaller trailer (less than 8,000 pounds GVWR), then your 5th wheel hitch should have no problem carrying the extra weight.
How can you choose between Andersen Hitch and 5th Wheel?
For the most part, you should be able to use either hitch type to tow your trailer. However, there are some differences that you may want to consider before making your final decision:
-If you plan on using your trailer year-round, then an Andersen Hitch may be a better option because it’s easier to take off when not in use. This also makes it easier to store and transport than a 5th wheel hitch.
-If you want to tow multiple trailers at once, then a 5th wheel hitch would be the better option since they’re designed for this purpose (Andersen Hitches only allow for one trailer).