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Author Topic: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem  (Read 2490 times)

BigD

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Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« on: May 28, 2018, 01:36:42 PM »
Hello everyone. And from one veteran to another Happy Memorial Day.

I bought a Andersen 5th wheel hitch when I bought my new truck. Here’s the problem. My hitch is turning, meaning the whole framework that attaches to the gooseneck ball. I torqued it per the instructions and it still is turning. Anyone know what the problem is? Thanks
« Last Edit: May 29, 2018, 04:11:37 AM by BigD »

Rene T

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2018, 03:13:22 PM »
Hello everyone. And from one veteran to another Happy Veterans Day.

Memorial Day?????

Call Anderson. Do not tow until you do.
I saw 3 different UTube videos and they gave 3 different torque values for the bolts.  40, 50 and 60 Lbs. Check your manual.  The most important step is to tighten the top bolt FIRST then tighten the side bolts. Are you doing it that way?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjTuq_kc9M
« Last Edit: May 28, 2018, 06:42:28 PM by Rene T »
Rene, Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

grashley

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2018, 07:45:03 PM »
Big D  Welcome to the Forum!
Thank You for your Service!

I do use an Andersen Ultimate hitch.

According to my manual, install the hitch, push as far forward as possible.  Torque top bolt to 50 lb-ft.  Drop FW on ball and retorque to 50 lb-ft.  Torque set nuts to 40 lb-ft.

I assume you are doing that.

My hitch is square when I install it, and is a bit skewed when I get home.  I have never noticed it move, but clearly, it did move a bit.  I did not consider it an issue.

One suggestion I have seen is to install a rubber bed mat under the hitch to both protect the bed and reduce any slippage.

Unfortunately, I have only pulled the FW on a couple of trips, and can be of no further help.  I have been very happy with how it tows.  I have had one occasion to call customer service at Andersen, and found the person I talked to very knowledgeable and helpful.
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS  Progressive HW50C
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4   TST TMS  Garmin 760
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
It's not a dumb question if you do not know the answer.

Joezeppy

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2018, 09:16:02 PM »
I have not experienced any twisting of the hitch but I met a guy last summer with the same problem you are having. He told me Andersen approved up to 100 lb-ft on the top bolt. We checked out before he did though so I never heard if it worked.
Joe & Kim
Upstate NY - Kuyahoora Valley
2010 GMC Sierra 2500HD - 6.0L
2017 Keystone Hideout 295BHS
Andersen Ultimate Aluminum 5th wheel hitch

UnclKracker

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2018, 08:21:44 AM »
I've been using the Andersen for some time now. I'm pulling a 36' Montana and have made a few dozen hookups.  I've never seen the frame move but there are other issues I'm disappointed with.

When disconnecting, the truck is drawn a few inches backwards as the trailer rises.  The ball connection means the trailer has to be raised much higher than a conventional hitch to draw the ball clear of the receiver.  As the trailer rises the pin box moves rearward.  On an uphill incline and the tow vehicle in park there is no slop in the transmission to allow it to follow the trailer.  The first time I disconnected like this the tension between the ball and receiver as the trailer rose and tried to pull the truck with it put stress on the landing gear.  I could hear the motor strain under the load.  I watched it lift the truck slightly even once the weight was off the truck. I should have stopped right there and evaluated what was happening.  When the ball cleared the receiver the truck dropped, lunged forward bouncing back up striking the plastic ball guide and breaking it.  Now, I block the front of the rear wheels and place the transmission in neutral so the truck can follow the trailer backwards, gradually moving the blocks along with the truck.  That still means the landing gear has to pull the truck uphill. I can hear a noticeable load on the landing gear motor compared to disconnecting on level ground.

Stability on the road is not as good as a conventional 5th wheel hitch either.  I can feel the trailer sway more in cross winds or from passing trucks than I did before the Andersen. Also, the ball allows the trailer greater side to side tilt.  That has resulted in the trailer contacting the bed rails on twisting terrain. This never happened with a standard hitch when I traveled over the same ground.  I'm going to look into something like the Curt X5 Goose-neck to 5th wheel adapter plate rather than a standard installation but am concerned with the torque it may put on the Goose-neck connection in the truck bed.  Suggestions?
2017 Ford F250 SRW CCSB
2017 Keystone Montana High Country 305RL
Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel. Gooseneck mount

steveblonde

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2018, 08:49:27 AM »
Interesting feedback, while in principle the anderson seems like a good idea - i am unfortunatly a traditionailist when it come to towing and i like my Curt 5th wheel hitch. But even it will pivot side to side but maybe not as much as the ball as ive never had it come in contact with the boxcaps. Good luck im sticking with my Curt
Cheers steve
2015 Voltage 3305 Toy Hauler - loaded
2014 F150 Ecoboost Reg cab (company truck) daily driver
2017 Black on Black F350 Diesel Dually loaded  5167lbs cargo/weight capacity
Selling truck parts for 15 yrs plus
" If you're not living on the edge you're taking up too much space"
From Canada Eh

Rene T

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2018, 09:01:17 AM »
Stability on the road is not as good as a conventional 5th wheel hitch either.  I can feel the trailer sway more in cross winds or from passing trucks than I did before the Andersen. Also, the ball allows the trailer greater side to side tilt.  That has resulted in the trailer contacting the bed rails on twisting terrain. This never happened with a standard hitch when I traveled over the same ground.

First welcome to the forum.
Sorry to hear you're having issues but I believe you are the first one in at east 2 years since I've been thinking about getting one.  I have a 6-1/2 ' bed but that's another story.

As far as stability, this hitch should be no different than a standard hitch. The pin box/king pin is sort of fixed to the hitch no matter which hitch you use. Swaying of the trailer should not be any different.
 
The issue about side to side tilt. If you never had this issue on the standard hitch, 2 things could be happening. First, if you're going over the same terrain, then you may have been putting quite a strain on the standard hitch because it wouldn't allow the trailer to tip anymore because the hitch reached it's end of  side to side tilt travel.
 
The other thing is do you have the same clearance between the truck bed side rails as you did with the standard hitch?  I'll bet your clearance is a little less. It doesn't take much. Just an half of an inch or so would make a huge difference when traversing uneven ground.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2018, 10:19:06 AM by Rene T »
Rene, Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

grashley

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2018, 07:40:31 PM »
Welcome to the Forum!

Sorry to hear of your problems.  I also broke the hitch funnel early in my use.  Andersen sent a free replacement under warranty.  I like your idea of blocking tires and lifting with the truck in Neutral.
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS  Progressive HW50C
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4   TST TMS  Garmin 760
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
It's not a dumb question if you do not know the answer.

Joezeppy

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2018, 08:34:54 PM »
I've only had the truck lift/lurch maybe twice but never enough to bounce back up into the hitch. The funnel is metal now though.
Joe & Kim
Upstate NY - Kuyahoora Valley
2010 GMC Sierra 2500HD - 6.0L
2017 Keystone Hideout 295BHS
Andersen Ultimate Aluminum 5th wheel hitch

UnclKracker

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #9 on: July 10, 2018, 08:44:18 AM »
I don't think I'll give up on the Andersen yet.  I went back to as many forums as I could find that have posts on the AUH.  Other than grashly's post, I couldn't find another one similar to my experience.  I did find that some have turned the adapter around moving the pin closer to the truck.  They say this helps prevent contact with the side rails in a turn?  Not sure I understand how.

The stability? I don't know, may be my imagination.  Until I towed with the AUH I didn't really feel much when a big rig passed by.  I had a Pullrite Superglide Auto slide.  Can't remember how much if any side to side tilt it allowed.

I agree with Rene T.  With the conventional hitch there was probably some twisting of the truck and trailer frames over the rough terrain.  Though I think only enough to spare the side rails. I was leaving the frame for the soft bed cover on and never had a problem.  With the Andersen there was just enough additional tilt to crush that frame, but no damage to the side rails.  I'm going to remove it from now on when towing.

As to the clearance before the Andersen. I had a 2016 F250 SRW SB (gas) when I had the Pullrite hitch.  Never checked the clearances but also never had an issue. We had a TT when I bought the truck then upgraded to a 36' Montana.  Ford specs. and the RV dealership said the truck could handle it.  But after a few trips into the mountains it proved to me they were both wrong.  I traded the '16 for a '17 Diesel F250 SRW SB.

The 2017 has 6" rail to trailer clearance with the ball in the lower position and trailer level.  I see a lot of posts about the 2017 being 2" taller than the 2016.  Some are changing out the 4" blocks above the rear axle for 2" ones.  I may do that too then either lower the pin box 2 inches or just raise the ball to give me 8 inches of clearance.  Before I do anything I need to get the truck and trailer on level ground and get some measurements.  Lowering the pin box may be best in case I encounter some serious terrain.  I've stopped and raised the ball before entering some campgrounds I knew to be a challenge. It's prevented contact between the side rail and trailer but in one campground with the trailer nose high the rear of the trailer scrapped the ground when climbing a steep hill. We like camping in State and National Parks. BLMs are nice too. Hopefully, I can get the 8" clearance and keep the trailer level.
2017 Ford F250 SRW CCSB
2017 Keystone Montana High Country 305RL
Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel. Gooseneck mount

Joezeppy

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2018, 09:21:05 AM »
I did find that some have turned the adapter around moving the pin closer to the truck.  They say this helps prevent contact with the side rails in a turn?  Not sure I understand how.


While it won't help with clearance OVER the bed rails, reversing the adapter block effectively shortens the pin box keeping the rear of the pin box further from the INSIDE of the bed rails in tight turns. I have mine set up this way. Even with over 6" of bed rail clearance when level, the design of my pin box is such that it hangs down lower than the top of the bed rails so in tight turns I can only turn maybe 60* with the adapter block in the standard position but maybe 75* in the reversed position (I'm guessing at numbers - I've never measured but never had a strike, either (knock wood!)). I hope that makes sense. The down side is that I can't lower the tailgate while hooked up.
Joe & Kim
Upstate NY - Kuyahoora Valley
2010 GMC Sierra 2500HD - 6.0L
2017 Keystone Hideout 295BHS
Andersen Ultimate Aluminum 5th wheel hitch

UnclKracker

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2018, 04:24:35 AM »
Sorry to hear of your problems.  I also broke the hitch funnel early in my use.  Andersen sent a free replacement under warranty.  I like your idea of blocking tires and lifting with the truck in Neutral.
[/quote]

Called Andersen.  An actual person answered the phone, nice.  She had customer support on the phone a few seconds after I explained the reason for my call.
CS said the funnel has a lifetime replacement. Just needed me to email a picture of the damage and my shipping address, didn't even check to see if I registered the hitch with them.  My only concern is I spoke with them 2 days ago and I haven't received a shipping confirmation.  He said the part was going out that day.  Did you get an email when they shipped yours?
2017 Ford F250 SRW CCSB
2017 Keystone Montana High Country 305RL
Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel. Gooseneck mount

grashley

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2018, 06:21:12 PM »
I did not receive notification when they shipped.  I actually received two, shipped one day apart.  Both arrived on the same truck.  I did take a few days, maybe 4 or 5 days.  When i reported the double ship, they said just keep it.
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS  Progressive HW50C
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4   TST TMS  Garmin 760
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
It's not a dumb question if you do not know the answer.

UnclKracker

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #13 on: July 13, 2018, 05:03:20 AM »
Someone can tell me their email is joe612 and I'll write down joe216.  ???
I sent another email and asked him to reply so I'd know he got my shipping information.  Got an answer a few hours later. "Got it and forwarded to orders department." Great!

FYI.  Just saw this.  Big Truck Big RV  https://youtu.be/1EgAbrX3JCU  His original review helped me decide to buy an AUH

2017 Ford F250 SRW CCSB
2017 Keystone Montana High Country 305RL
Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel. Gooseneck mount

Rene T

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #14 on: July 13, 2018, 07:52:24 AM »
Rene, Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

UnclKracker

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #15 on: July 14, 2018, 09:38:03 AM »
Here's another video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4xBBCFdj5w

  I watched that video last year.  That's when I decided to buy one.  Don't get me wrong. I like the AUH for a lot of reasons.  I only posted that link to the video because he addressed an issue I brought up in a previous post.  I understand why he has a problem with the large base on the Andersen.  He needs that room for equipment he carries.  I have very little in the bed when I'm towing so the base size is not a problem.  I do share his concern about the extra wear on the landing gear from having to raise the trailer high enough to clear the ball from the adapter.

 I've had the Andersen for a year.  The trailer is 2 years old.  On our last trip the front jacks on the Lippert Ground Control 3 system were giving me trouble.  I could hear the motor straining to raise the trailer and the jacks got noisier with every use.  The system would lock out from an error caused by one or the other front jack.  I called Lippert Customer Support but they were unable to diagnose the cause.  They felt it was a weak battery or a software issue.  The battery checked out, nothing I could do about the control software so I removed the jacks and disassembled them.  I found the grease had metal filings in both jacks and the jack screws are galled.  In my opinion the viscosity of the grease Lippert used was thin.  I cleaned them and applied Loctite extreme pressure grease and they're working much smoother, haven't had another control panel error.  There's nothing I can do about the galling, I don't know what kind of life is left in them.  I blame the grease for the wear but can't help thinking the extra travel needed with the AUH contributed to the problem.  With a conventional hitch your only raising it's full weight a fraction of an inch once the weight is off the tow vehicle.  The additional 3 inches needed with the Andersen may not sound like much but it's 11 more quarters of an inch of travel and what seems like forever to get there.

  I wish Andersen would offer a model that used a powered ram or mechanism to raise and lower the ball. You'd raise the trailer a few inches with the landing gear to take the weight off the truck then retract the ball to disconnect or raise it to connect.  3 inches of travel will do it.  I've worked on equipment used in the utilities industry that performs a similar function under much heavier loads than a hitch encounters.  It wouldn't be difficult to design a scaled down version of this.  Well, for me it would, shouldn't be for them.

Still a fan just hoping for improvements.
2017 Ford F250 SRW CCSB
2017 Keystone Montana High Country 305RL
Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel. Gooseneck mount

UnclKracker

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #16 on: July 19, 2018, 06:59:45 AM »
I did not receive notification when they shipped.  I actually received two, shipped one day apart.  Both arrived on the same truck.  I did take a few days, maybe 4 or 5 days.  When i reported the double ship, they said just keep it.

Just got my 2 replacement funnels delivered. Maybe yours wasn't by mistake after all. Could it be they anticipate future failures?  Before I contacted Andersen I called the Hitch House where I bought it.  That's where I learned it isn't uncommon for these to fail.  At least they stand behind their product. Lifetime warranty.

Interesting... PullRite makes a similar product.  An upside down version of the Ultimate.  The ball is mounted to the King Pin.  Everything is steel.  Hitch, ball and funnel.  I haven't looked to see if there's a thread on them yet.  I looks like getting the ball centered over the funnel may be easier.  Especially if your truck has the high mounted camera on the roof of the cab.  It is heavier though. about 20+ pounds more than the Aluminum. They go after the competition hard with an anti-aluminum approach. Fact or fiction?  I wonder what someone with a background in metallurgy would say?

« Last Edit: July 19, 2018, 07:02:07 AM by UnclKracker »
2017 Ford F250 SRW CCSB
2017 Keystone Montana High Country 305RL
Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel. Gooseneck mount

sworxx

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #17 on: October 02, 2018, 10:37:36 AM »
OK, so the past few times I used the AUH the "Pyramid" i.e. the frame/base has shifted in the bed of my truck. I spoke to a Rep at Andersen who suggested higher Torque 75 on the top nut and 50 on the side nuts and the mount still moves. In just a 3 hour trip the hitch move slightly in the bed of the truck and it did not feel like a very rough trip. The guy at Andersen said a company out of TX makes a sticky mat to put between the hitch base and the truck bed. Despite 3 phone calls and left messages, he won't call me back. I'm losing faith in this hitch, but am willing to try this miracle mat. Anyone else have this issue and know the source of this mat? Thanks.


grashley

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #18 on: October 02, 2018, 08:02:49 PM »
Welcome to the Forum!

I have an AUH.  A MINOR shift (twist) in the bed should not be a problem.  Lots of shifting - yes.

Any rubber mat or rubber bed liner in the bed should help hold the hitch in place.  Higher torque up to 100 lb-ft can also help.
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
09 Grand Junction 35 TMS  Progressive HW50C
Andersen Ultimate hitch
2013 F350 Lariat LB SRW Supercab diesel 4X4   TST TMS  Garmin 760
Nimrod Series 70 popup (sold)
It's not a dumb question if you do not know the answer.

Joezeppy

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Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #19 on: October 03, 2018, 07:09:16 AM »
This may be more than you would like to invest but FWIW I have a Line-X spray-in bed liner and have never experienced any twisting. It's quite rubbery to the touch.
Joe & Kim
Upstate NY - Kuyahoora Valley
2010 GMC Sierra 2500HD - 6.0L
2017 Keystone Hideout 295BHS
Andersen Ultimate Aluminum 5th wheel hitch

Senator

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    • No NonsenseLandlord
Re: Andersen Ultimate 5th Wheel Hitch Problem
« Reply #20 on: November 04, 2018, 08:49:42 AM »
OK, so the past few times I used the AUH the "Pyramid" i.e. the frame/base has shifted in the bed of my truck. I spoke to a Rep at Andersen who suggested higher Torque 75 on the top nut and 50 on the side nuts and the mount still moves. In just a 3 hour trip the hitch move slightly in the bed of the truck and it did not feel like a very rough trip. The guy at Andersen said a company out of TX makes a sticky mat to put between the hitch base and the truck bed. Despite 3 phone calls and left messages, he won't call me back. I'm losing faith in this hitch, but am willing to try this miracle mat. Anyone else have this issue and know the source of this mat? Thanks.

Depending on the gooseball, you may need a different riser for the hitch.  I have a Curt ball, and Andersen sent a different square riser.  It tightens solid now.  They also said a BedRug would solve it too.
2015 Keystone Alpine 3536RE
2017 Ford F350 Platinum, SRW, CCLB