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adamtoonarmy

Witter Detachable Towbar Advice

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I have one of the above on my Rav-4 fitted about three years ago. Perfectly happy with it and no issues so far. Last time I towed with it though I noticed I could move the detachable component slightly when it was locked in place. I tried taking it out and putting it back in several times but that made no difference. Its very slight but definitely there. Even though I've just noticed this I suppose it could have been there from day 1, or not as the case may be.

 

Can anybody tell me if this is normal/usual ?

Edited by adamtoonarmy

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I have a new Santa Fe with detachable bar Hyundai's own but I believe it's made by Thule. My bar is fine when inserted but by the time I reach my destination a very small amount of lateral play has developed. If you search the Caravan Club website you will find that the question has been asked before & they find that many of the cars they test have a small amount of play. Disconcerting though.

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If there wasn't a tiny bit of play you'd never get it in & out. As said above, I've noticed a fractional amount when I've arrived on site with both my present Witter and previous Westfalia & Witter towbars.

 

As far as I'm concerned providing it doesn't actually rattle about in the socket or clunk when the van is being towed it's probably OK.

 

If you are really worried then you'd need a Witter Fitter to give it a check over.

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When is the cars MOT as it is part of the test the clearance in detachable towballs ?

 

 

Dave

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They only check detachable towbars if the tow ball is present. If it's not then they only check the fixing points. There's no actual requirement to make the ball available for testing.

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They only check detachable towbars if the tow ball is present. If it's not then they only check the fixing points. There's no actual requirement to make the ball available for testing.

Agree with above, my car went in for its first MOT the other day without the Witter Tow Ball present. No comments or advisories from the MOT.

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I had the same issue with my Santa Fe and ended up speaking to someone at Witter. They said that it was quite normal for there to be some movement with a new detachable. The surfaces wear over time and then fully mate together so the neck is solid. However they also said that on an older detachable movement can be a sign of exessive wear.

 

As I am the second owner of my car and the towbar was already fitted to it I decided to purchase a new neck and receiver. Although I new the mileage of the car I had no clue how much of that was done towing a caravan (it had twin electrics). I have not noticed any movement in it since.

 

As yours in 3 years old I would guess that it is down to wear but that's not to say it is excessive and needs replacing. It really depends on how much movement there is. I would give Witter a call, they are very helpful. They will be able to advise you on whether the amount of movement you have is acceptable and within limits or not. In the end I just decided I didn't like it moving and not knowing the history of the car/towball I spent £130 on a brand new neck and receiver. Whether I really needed to or not is debatable. ..

 

Mark.

Edited by Markt1891

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When is the cars MOT as it is part of the test the clearance in detachable towballs ?

 

 

Dave

Only if the detachable part is fitted when presented for MoT.

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Only if the detachable part is fitted when presented for MoT.

 

Your choice if you don't want it tested or not by hiding it but you don't get a discount so why not get it checked for everyone safety .

 

 

 

Dave

Edited by CommanderDave

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I've had many detachable bars by different manufacturers. I'm on my third Witter vertical detachable and they all have had a little play but don't feel loose.

 

Lee

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Your choice if you don't want it tested or not by hiding it but you don't get a discount so why not get it checked for everyone safety .

 

 

 

Dave

On the two cars which had detachables, that was stowed away as always when not towing so it wouldn't have occurred to me to fit it so it could be checked.

 

Present car has a deployable-type and I doubt it'll occur to me to deploy that either.

 

Like many I'm sure, I check it's security EVERY time it's fitted/deployed so an extra annual check would add little.

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I don't see any play on my 2013 witter, but i do know the version before a horizontal type i believe? did have play, because a chap down the road checked mine out before he fitted one to his CX-5.

 

He found no play either which is why he fitted one.

 

However from what i have seen of the Witter design especially on my CX-5, the bar is the same and can be fitted with either a detachable flange, a fixed swan, or detachable swan, i'm unsure if a fixed flange can be fitted as i didn't intend to have one.

 

So if and when i do have problem i'll be fitting a fixed swann.

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I've had a Witter detachable for 5 years now, and towed our 1500Kg caravan with it for the last 2 years.

 

(Before you ask, I originally used it with a 4-bike carrier - now the bikes go on the car roof when I'm towing).

 

Once locked in place, there's no play whatsoever - so I'd say, get it checked, better safe than sorry :)

 

Keiron

Edited by Rolling Stone

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I've had a Witter detachable for 5 years now, and towed our 1500Kg caravan with it for the last 2 years.

 

(Before you ask, I originally used it with a 4-bike carrier - now the bikes go on the car roof when I'm towing).

 

Once locked in place, there's no play whatsoever - so I'd say, get it checked, better safe than sorry :)

 

Keiron

I also had a Witter detachable on our Ford Kuga for 5 years and didn't notice any play whatsoever. It was our first tow car so I was always quite wary and always jumped up and down on it after fitting it.

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Last towbar was Westfalia Detachable towed 10000`+ over the three years and had no movement in the bar whatsoever.

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