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Old 09-11-2019, 01:34 PM   #1
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Hitch sticking

My Jay flight SLX is having a problem with its hitch. the ball hitch will go onto the receiver okay but then when I try to get it off it won't come off. I have an electric jack that raises the back end of the truck and it will not release no matter how high I raise it. I don't know what to do about this. I've tried to use WD-40 and that seems to help a little bit but I don't want to be out somewhere camping and not be able to get my truck off of the RV. Has anyone experienced this problem?
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Old 09-11-2019, 02:04 PM   #2
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This is common, especially if the trailer is fairly new. The coupler is not moving and releasing the ball because it's stiff. Don't stick your fingers in there, or even a tool. I simply stand on the hitch and gently bounce it to force the ball to move the coupler back and release the ball.

Our previous trailer's coupler stuck like this for maybe two trips. Our current trailer has always stuck. It's 6 years old now. We just returned from a trip Monday, and guess what? When I cranked the jack up the ball slid right out! It's never done that. I was elated!
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Old 09-11-2019, 02:21 PM   #3
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Are you sure the locking lever on the tongue that catches the ball is pulled back fully to release the ball?
On mine I have to put more trailer weight on the truck, so that latch will pull back, then lift the trailer back up off the ball.
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Old 09-11-2019, 03:42 PM   #4
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I have had the same issue with my last two TT when they were new. Went away after a few trips. Put a dab of grease on top of the ball. Seems to loosen it up. But be warned, your wife won't be happy when trying to get the grease off of your shirts after you rub up against the greased ball.
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Old 09-11-2019, 04:02 PM   #5
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It may be that the ball is pressed tightly up against the coupler latch at the back/inside the mount, typically happens when backing up a slight incline or trying to release on a slight incline that forces the ball to the back of the coupler.......while ensuring the sliding spring latch is in the full release position and it still won't release, sometimes all that's needed is the let the tow vehicle roll very slightly forward, an inch......sometimes just shifting to drive while your foot is on the brake then into park again is enough to roll it very slightly forward, that's enough to move the ball towards the front of the coupler allowing the latch at the back to release from the ball.
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Old 09-11-2019, 04:08 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abr61 View Post
My Jay flight SLX is having a problem with its hitch. the ball hitch will go onto the receiver okay but then when I try to get it off it won't come off. I have an electric jack that raises the back end of the truck and it will not release no matter how high I raise it. I don't know what to do about this. I've tried to use WD-40 and that seems to help a little bit but I don't want to be out somewhere camping and not be able to get my truck off of the RV. Has anyone experienced this problem?
Welcome to the forum.

As you've already read, it is a common issue and resolves with some grease and use.
If you search the forum, a few common tactics are...
- Be sure the latch is fully released.
- Try chocking your trailer tires, raise the tongue a bit and put the tow vehicle in Drive just to move the ball to the front of the receiver.
- Rock the tongue from side-to-side while raising the tongue or rock the hitch ball from side-to-side by using one of the weight bars.

WD-40 is used for LOTS of things, but the standard type really isn't a good lubricant.
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Old 09-11-2019, 04:38 PM   #7
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I agree with OldmanAZ. I had a lot of trouble but since I started using a high quality hitch grease and make sure it is well greased, we seldom have a problem. I have ruined 2or 3 pairs of pants on grease from that ball. Now I have a rubber cap the instantly goes onto the ball as soon as aimam in hitched!
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Old 09-11-2019, 05:43 PM   #8
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I haven't greased a hitch ball in 30 years with no issues to report.
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Old 09-11-2019, 07:09 PM   #9
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Welcome to the Forum from Western New York State!

I agree, it will loosen up a bit with use. But, I'm in the "I lube everything" club. I use the same grease I have for our Equalizer WDH for the ball and latching mechanism. I too have never had the hitch stick down. Just my 2 cents.

Happy camping!
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Old 09-11-2019, 08:21 PM   #10
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Anytime I use a bumper pull ball hitch I grab an elastic band and a piece of waxed paper. 4*4 piece folded over the ball and use the elastic band to hold the waxed paper over the ball by the lower shoulder. Lubes the ball to hitch.. The wax on the paper. Never had issues with squeaks or hitching unhitching and no grease on the clothes!

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Old 09-12-2019, 07:13 AM   #11
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^^^^^^^^^^^ What a great idea!
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Old 08-11-2021, 07:06 AM   #12
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To protect my clothes, I take an old Gatorade bottle with an elastic tied to the bottle and wrap it around the ball.

Not trying to open up a can of worms, but what grease do you guys use on you hitch ball?
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Old 08-11-2021, 07:12 AM   #13
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I use 3-in-1 trailer lube for my travel trailer.
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Old 08-11-2021, 07:46 AM   #14
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Same grease I use on my wheel bearings. I cut a soup can and it fits over the ball perfectly.
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Old 09-29-2021, 07:33 PM   #15
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I have the same problem to the extreme. We have been doing this for 10 years - I have used WD 40, Grease, Jump up and down on the hitch, I use chock and do the forward / reverse dance. I have changed hitches, have a new ball on it. Still the same stuck ball.
We may spend up to a half hour doing any or all of these techniques before it releases. so if anyone has new idea besides cutting off and replacing the coupler I would appreciate it.
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Old 09-30-2021, 05:40 AM   #16
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It is really quite simple to take care of the problem. Center the ball under the hitch and it will come off easily every time.

If your tow vehicle is pushing or pulling against the hitch the ball will not want to come out of the hitch. There is literally tons of pressure preventing it from moving.

Instead of jumping up and down, prying or anything else simply get back into your tow vehicle and move just a fraction of an inch either back or forward. If that doesn't work do it again moving the other way. We are talking 1/2" of movement here not much at all. It sure beats trying to jump up and down on the hitch.

Greasing the ball decreases the friction and wear between the hitch and the ball. It also helps to grease the latch part so it slides up easier to release the ball.
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Old 09-30-2021, 06:15 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoadrunnerII View Post
Anytime I use a bumper pull ball hitch I grab an elastic band and a piece of waxed paper. 4*4 piece folded over the ball and use the elastic band to hold the waxed paper over the ball by the lower shoulder. Lubes the ball to hitch.. The wax on the paper. Never had issues with squeaks or hitching unhitching and no grease on the clothes!
Using wax paper is a great, yet simple idea! However I use one of those disposable plastic grocery sacks that I put around my hitch. This keeps the grease and dirt off of me and my clothes. When it gets a hole in the bag, just throw it away and get another plastic bag.
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Old 09-30-2021, 07:44 PM   #18
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It is really quite simple to take care of the problem. Center the ball under the hitch and it will come off easily every time.

If your tow vehicle is pushing or pulling against the hitch the ball will not want to come out of the hitch. There is literally tons of pressure preventing it from moving.

Instead of jumping up and down, prying or anything else simply get back into your tow vehicle and move just a fraction of an inch either back or forward. If that doesn't work do it again moving the other way. We are talking 1/2" of movement here not much at all. It sure beats trying to jump up and down on the hitch.

Greasing the ball decreases the friction and wear between the hitch and the ball. It also helps to grease the latch part so it slides up easier to release the ball.

This response is spot on: The problem and the correct solution. If parked on level ground simply putting the vehicle in “Neutral” will usually take the pressure off the ball enough to easily raise it without difficulty. If not, moving slightly in one direction or the other should do the trick.

If not on level ground might take a bit more movement one way or the other to free the ball from the hitch.

No matter where you park ALWAYS securely CHOCK YOUR WHEELS before starting to disconnect. Trying to stop a moving trailer with your hands will not work.
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Old 09-30-2021, 07:48 PM   #19
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Don’t put the truck emergency break on. This lets you rock the truck a fraction to release the hitch.
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