Trailer Hitch Cost? - Subaru Forester Owners Forum
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post #1 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-27-2014, 01:11 PM Thread Starter
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Trailer Hitch Cost?

I just ordered a 2015 Forester and would like to get the dealer to install a 2 inch hitch for a bike rack.

The sales person said they will give me a price when the car comes in.
Is there someone who could give an idea as to what the dealer might charge for this?

Thanks - Rick

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post #2 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-27-2014, 01:43 PM
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$600

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post #3 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-27-2014, 01:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickcin View Post
I just ordered a 2015 Forester and would like to get the dealer to install a 2 inch hitch for a bike rack.

The sales person said they will give me a price when the car comes in.
Is there someone who could give an idea as to what the dealer might charge for this?

Thanks - Rick
The OEM Subaru hitch is a 1.25 in. Subaru doesn't make a 2 in. There are several aftermarket 2 in. hitches available but I wouldn't think a Subaru dealer would either sell or install one. Curt makes the most popular 2 in aftermarket one and you can get it for around $150 + installation at a body shop or hitch store.
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post #4 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-27-2014, 02:49 PM
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I realize you said you were interested in 2in and OEM, but just FYI, I had Uhaul install a 1.25in for $190 (including the hitch and labor). It is branded as Uhaul but the same part as a Curt.
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post #5 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-27-2014, 03:06 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info!

So, apparently Subaru does not make a 2 inch and the cost is about $600 from a dealer. That is really expensive considering the part is about $150 - $200 and the lbaor should be no more than 45-50 minutes, oh well!

I guess the bike carriers will work just as well off the smaller size hitch tube but I hoping for the 2 inch, bigger is better, at least for support!
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post #6 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-27-2014, 05:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickcin View Post
Thanks for the info!

So, apparently Subaru does not make a 2 inch and the cost is about $600 from a dealer. That is really expensive considering the part is about $150 - $200 and the lbaor should be no more than 45-50 minutes, oh well!

I guess the bike carriers will work just as well off the smaller size hitch tube but I hoping for the 2 inch, bigger is better, at least for support!
Well the Subaru OEM hitch is more like $360 for the part. And it's a more complicated install since you have to remove and trim the bumper; don't have the car yet, so I can't tell you how long it would take for a noob to remove the bumper, but I'm guessing it's more like a 90 minute install even for the dealer. Dealer told me $460 or something if I were to get it when I ordered it; I passed as the curt/uhaul is so much cheaper and can be had as a class 3; I might attempt the no drill install of the curt which requires removing the bumper; think someone else posted that it was a 4 hour job by himself.
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post #7 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-28-2014, 11:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickcin View Post
Thanks for the info!

So, apparently Subaru does not make a 2 inch and the cost is about $600 from a dealer. That is really expensive considering the part is about $150 - $200 and the lbaor should be no more than 45-50 minutes, oh well!

I guess the bike carriers will work just as well off the smaller size hitch tube but I hoping for the 2 inch, bigger is better, at least for support!
I was quoted $700 for parts and install, but that included about $100 for the wiring which, if you only plan to put a bikerack on it, you don't need. You can always put it in later if you decide to get a trailer.
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post #8 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-28-2014, 04:09 PM Thread Starter
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I really like the Curt 2 inch hitch and it sells for less than $200 with out the electric harness.
I was wondering if the dealer would install this part if I ordered it and handed it over to them?

I realize the muffler needs to be removed and replaced and the heat shield might permadently need to be removed, but at any rate, they should be able to do the insatll and charge me for two hours labor? $200 -$250 for the insatall and $200 for the part, does this sound reasonable?
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post #9 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-28-2014, 08:44 PM
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Thumbs up 2" Trailer Hitch

Quote:
Originally Posted by rickcin View Post
I just ordered a 2015 Forester and would like to get the dealer to install a 2 inch hitch for a bike rack.

The sales person said they will give me a price when the car comes in.
Is there someone who could give an idea as to what the dealer might charge for this?

Thanks - Rick
As others have already posted Subaru OEM hitches are only 1.25"

I just installed a 2" EcoHitch from Torklift Central on my 2014 Forester and am very happy with it, especially the hidden cross beam and high clearance. They aren't showing the 2015 Forester on their web site yet but I think they had one in the shop last Friday. If you call now they should know if the 2014 design fits or needs modification.

I did the no drill install and it isn't too challenging. Nothing is permanently removed from the vehicle except a tiny bit of the heat shield. The heat shield has to be slightly notched to provide clearance for one bolt; Living in the rust belt I was worried about doing this. On inspection the shield appears to be some type of aluminum alloy that doesn't look like it will rust or corrode very soon so that put my mind to rest.

The tail lights and bumper cover come off along with the metal crush beam inside the bumper but everything is reinstalled after the hitch is up on the car. The Muffler has to be temporarily lowered to gain access to the heat shield and two of the hitch mounting bolts.

The ideal install, in order as well as I can remember:
  • Two bolts and one connector for each tail light
  • Two screws and eight pop fasteners for the bumper cover, two of which I destroyed but they only cost about $1.20
  • Four bolts and two nuts for the crush beam
  • Remove the 3 muffler hangers and lower the muffler onto a jack stand
  • Four screws to remove the heat shield
  • Notch heat shield and replace w/four screws
  • Fish four bolt/washer stacks using vendor provided fish wire.
  • Cut bumper cover using factory embossed guide
  • Lift and loosely attach hitch on four bolts just installed
  • Preliminarily attach bumper cover and center the hitch in the cutout
  • Tighten hitch and torque bolts.
  • Hang muffler on rubber hangers
  • Re-install crush beam
  • Re-install bumper cover pop fasteners and two screws
  • Reinstall tail lights w/connector and two bolts.
  • Done! unless you need wiring- that is another story.


The same afternoon I finished my install I went to the store. Just after I parked and was getting out another 2014 Forester in the identical color parked across the aisle. It had a hitch with a U-Haul sticker and was butt ugly by comparison! The cross bar hung way down below the bumper and the receiver was below that. The reduction in road clearance for this particular U-Haul hitch is substantial

Put a bicycle rack and two adult bicycles on mine last Wednesday evening and took it for a 500 mile spin over a long weekend. Everything is tight and working as expected.
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post #10 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-29-2014, 05:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickcin View Post
Thanks for the info!

So, apparently Subaru does not make a 2 inch and the cost is about $600 from a dealer. That is really expensive considering the part is about $150 - $200 and the lbaor should be no more than 45-50 minutes, oh well!

I guess the bike carriers will work just as well off the smaller size hitch tube but I hoping for the 2 inch, bigger is better, at least for support!
hahahahaha 45 minute install.


hahahahahahah



sorry, I installed a 2" hitch on our 2014 forester last weekend, it was a 2.5 hour install and I'm a pretty experienced mechanic.




2013 2.5x Base + 2014 FXT Touring
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post #11 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-29-2014, 09:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Blind View Post
hahahahaha 45 minute install.





hahahahahahah







sorry, I installed a 2" hitch on our 2014 forester last weekend, it was a 2.5 hour install and I'm a pretty experienced mechanic.




Yep...I installed the Torklift in about 3.5hrs, and I'm not exactly a rookie when it comes to tearing into my Foz...


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post #12 of 38 (permalink) Old 04-30-2014, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by High_Desert_Silver View Post
Yep...I installed the Torklift in about 3.5hrs, and I'm not exactly a rookie when it comes to tearing into my Foz...


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yep I did the torklift eco. Decent hitch, pretty involved install. The factory class1 1.25" hitch install looks the same other than you don't need to drop the exhaust and heat shields.

2013 2.5x Base + 2014 FXT Touring
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post #13 of 38 (permalink) Old 05-03-2014, 04:08 AM Thread Starter
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2 inch Trailer Hitch

Wow, lots of experienced people here are real mechanics but messing with a brand new car is not some thing I will attempt on my own.

The reason I wanted the 2 inch hitch is just so I could purchase a 1Up platform bike rack, since it appears to be the best rack available and it only works with a full 2 inch hitch. Also, I would only want to trust a new car to the dealer for the installion of the hitch, so based on all of the posts, I am inclined to go with the smaller hitch and then select a bike carrier based on the hitch size.

Not what I prefer but I really don't want a new car and be looking at a hitch that is low or extremly visible or installed by a shop that might not do the best job with the installation.

I did not want a hanging bike rack but I might have to reconsider. Just a lot of monet involved to carry two bikes between the hitch & the rack!
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post #14 of 38 (permalink) Old 05-03-2014, 11:25 AM
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FYI unless u get the HD 1up it is compatible with both hitch sizes. There's an adapter over it to make it 2".
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post #15 of 38 (permalink) Old 05-04-2014, 06:33 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fewl View Post
FYI unless u get the HD 1up it is compatible with both hitch sizes. There's an adapter over it to make it 2".
I think I will just have to pass on the 1Up bike rack and look at the Kuat NV or perhaps even a hanging rack since thta is my only reason for wanting the 2" hitch.

Need to do more rack research!

Thanks
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