I asked this question to the Equal-i-zer web site and got this response.
Glad to help you figure a quieter way to tow. I'll just point out that
some of this noise is due to the fact that the Equal-i-zer is a
friction-based hitch utilizing four positive friction areas to
successfully combat trailer sway. It's going to make some noise, but it
doesn't have to screech and groan as loudly as it probably is right now.
New hitches should be allowed a break-in period, which involves more
noise than usual. Typically this lasts one travel season (from Memorial
to Labor day). How long it takes your hitch to "break in" depends on the
weights you are towing, how often you tow, how far you tow, and how
frequently you make turns (as opposed to mostly straight driving on an
interstate). One way to help the hitch break in more quickly is to take
the Scenic byways -- you get to see some beautiful country while making
lots of turns that will help the sockets break-in their movement zones.
This breaking in may produce some small metal shavings (which is normal)
until the sockets and head seat together in a smooth, shiny rotational
path. After this break-in period, the noise should naturally be reduced.
During this time and throughout the life of your hitch, it is good to
lubricate the Hitch Head on the friction areas that contact each other,
as described in the Maintenance section of your Installation
Instructions. It not only helps to reduce the noise and flush out the
metal shavings, but is essential to prolonging the life of your hitch.
These two points of the 4-Point Sway Control are the most powerful for
stopping sway, and also make more noise than the other two points on the
For lubricating the Hitch Head, we recommend using our Equal-i-zer High
Performance Lubricant (4 oz. squeeze tube, part # 91-00-4250), sold for
$9.85 plus shipping. It is similar to axle or bearing grease (both work
fine as substitutes), but it is a higher-grade blend that cleans up
easier and has less odor. You can order this directly from us by phone,
through our Online Store, here:
or request it through your local Equal-i-zer dealer. Avoid using
spray-on lubrications or anything of thin or runny consistency, as they
won't hold up very long. Lubricating the hitch will not effectively work
against the metal-on-metal friction that your hitch utilizes to
effectively combat trailer sway.
Lubricating the friction surfaces on the L-Brackets and Spring Arms is
optional to reduce some noise, but is not necessary for the proper
function of the hitch. There are also a few drawbacks to lubricating
these areas. As you make turns, the grease will spread up and down the
spring arms as they slide through the brackets. Not only does this make
it messier when handling and storing the Spring Arms, this will also
become a concern over time as the grease begins to collect dirt and road
grit. If these areas are not regularly cleaned, the build-up of dirt may
cause increased noise and wear. If you choose to lubricate the
L-Brackets, then you should plan to clean them off regularly to prevent
dirt from collecting.
Rather than always lubricating the L-brackets, I recommend that you try
it for one trip, and see if you like how the hitch performs. If you like
it, I would actually recommend you buy our Sway Bracket Jackets. These
are a plastic accessory item for reducing the noise in a much cleaner
way. They are made of high-density polyethylene/nylon that is black in
color. They basically sit on the flat part of the L-bracket and the bars
rest on top of them. They don't require any drilling in your L-Brackets
or any hardware changes, so you can easily attach them to and remove
them from your current L-Brackets. These Sway Bracket Jackets are sold
as a pair for $19.95 plus shipping. They can be purchased by calling our
toll-free number listed below and asking for Customer Support, they can
be purchased from our Online Store here:
or you can request them through your local Equal-i-zer dealer.
Changing the friction surfaces on the L-Brackets to steel-on-plastic
does help reduce the noise, but that is because it is also reducing the
friction. This in turn reduces the sway control, so it is a trade off
for what is more important to you: maximum sway control or less noise.
If you want the full benefit of steel-on-steel friction for maximizing
sway control, it is better to let the Spring Arms contact the
L-Brackets. Those customers that use the Sway Bracket Jackets tell me
that they enjoy them, and don't notice a difference in handling, for the
most part. For that reason, I would say try lubricating the L-brackets
to see if you like the effect.
It should also be noted that you may hear one or two "bang" or "pop"
sounds during slow turns. This comes from the bars shifting side-to-side
as you turn. They will shift until contacting either the side of the
L-Bracket or the L-Pin that secures the bars to the brackets, depending
on which way you are turning. This sound will might be reduced or
removed when using the Sway Bracket Jackets or when lubricating the
L-Brackets. This is a normal sound for the hitch, and should not cause
Customer Service Lead,
Progress, Mfg Inc.
Equal-i-zer® Hitch - The “American Original” with 4-Point Sway Control™ and Weight Distribution
/ Fastway Trailer Products - Home
I have one of your hitches on my Ford F-250 and 30' Airstream. It works
well but sure makes alot of noise when driving slow and making turns. Is
thereanything I can do to lessen or stop all of this creaking and
moaning? It is especially embarrassing when driving slow through a
campground late at night. Thanks-
Progress Mfg, Inc., Equal-i-zer® Hitch - The “American Original” with 4-Point Sway Control™ and Weight Distribution