Is It Necessary to Grease Your Trailer Ball Hitch?

While we all know that vehicle maintenance is important, we often overlook the need to perform proper care on our trailer equipment as well. One step in that process that some people swear by is greasing their trailer ball hitch. So, just how important is it to perform that maintenance ritual? That’s been a debated topic in the RV world, but we think the answer is ultimately pretty clear.

The benefits of greasing your trailer ball hitch

Attaching a horse trailer to a truck hitch
Attaching a trailer to a truck hitch | Kurt Wittman/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Drivin’ & Vibin has taken a look at the pros and cons of greasing your trailer ball hitch, and we have to say, they make some pretty compelling points in favor of making this step part of your trailer hitch maintenance routine. 

The most significant benefit of regularly greasing your trailer ball hitch is that it can help prevent corrosion. Obviously, a corroded hitch is the last thing you need if you want to make sure that your trailer remains securely attached to your vehicle as you’re traveling down the road. Greasing your hitch regularly will help it have a long life, ultimately saving you money. 

Another reason to grease your trailer ball hitch is that it significantly cuts down on the terrible scraping noises that ungreased hitches can make. If you don’t want to annoy all your fellow campers on the campground, greasing your ball hitch is one easy step you can take in that regard. 

What will happen if you don’t grease your trailer ball hitch?

It doesn’t matter what sort of metal your hitch is made from. As Drivin’ & Vibin’ explains, even stainless steel hitches can suffer if not greased sufficiently. Corrosion can lead to dangerous situations on the road and possibly even cause an accident if your trailer should come loose. It’s always better to think ahead, and performing regular trailer ball maintenance is one way to do that. 

Of course, even with all the benefits of greasing your hitch, from reduced likelihood of corrosion to fewer awful scraping sounds, some people don’t want to perform this task. Whether it’s because they don’t enjoy the grease on their hands or because it can create a dirtier-looking ball hitch, these folks feel that the costs aren’t worth the benefit. We’re here to disagree, however. The consequences of not greasing your hitch can be severe, so it’s better not to let a little dirt dissuade you. 

Here’s how to easily grease your hitch

Greasing your trailer ball hitch isn’t hard. However, before you tackle the job, make sure to inspect your hitch carefully. Is it in good condition, with no dents, scrapes, or rust? If so, you’re almost ready to go. If not, it may be time to consider buying a new one. Still, note that if you see only a tiny amount of rust, it may be possible to remove it with some sandpaper before applying the grease.

One other step you’ll want to take before you begin the actual greasing process is carefully washing your trailer ball hitch. This is so you don’t get dirt and debris mixed in with the grease, which can create an unpleasant, unsightly mess. 

As for the grease itself, it’s simply a matter of coating the ball hitch liberally with the substance. Make sure to cover all of the surface area well. When you’re done, wash your hands. The last thing you want to do is start touching other possessions with your greasy hands. If you do, you could find yourself in a jam.

Greasing your trailer ball hitch is a quick and straightforward way to increase the lifespan of your hitch, which has benefits not just for your pocketbook but for the safety and comfort of all those around you as well. 

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