In the aftermath of a rear-end collision, there are many things to check. If you're ever rear-ended, you'll want to make sure everyone is alright and assess the damage to your vehicle. If you drive a lifted truck that has a drop hitch, don't forget to also inspect your hitch -- even if it seems like your truck otherwise is unscathed.
Drop Hitches Are Easily Bent in Rear-End Collisions
In a high-speed rear-end collision, there will be extensive damage to the back of your truck. In a low-speed rear-end collision -- especially if you were hit by a smaller sedan -- the damage might be much less severe. Even in a minor rear-end collision, though, a drop hitch can be bent.
When a lifted truck is hit from behind by a sedan, the nose of the smaller car is often driven down by the higher back bumper of the truck. Because the front of the sedan is driven down, it might not cause a lot of damage to the truck itself. If the truck has a drop hitch, though, the downward motion of the sedan's front end can drive the drop hitch down. After the collision, the two vehicles might only have minor scratches -- but the drop hitch could be severely bent.
Check Your Drop Hitch After a Rear-End Collision
Therefore, don't forget to check your drop hitch if you're ever rear-ended -- even if the collision seems minor. In the aftermath of an accident, it can be easy to overlook something small and close to the ground like a hitch. You don't want to find out that your hitch is unsafe to use when you go to tow something, though. It'd be better to find out immediately after the collision.
Checking your hitch will take just a moment or two. Simply look at it to see whether it's straight. The horizontal leg of the hitch, which the ball is on, should be parallel to the ground, and the angle of the drop hitch should be 90 degrees. If the horizontal leg is bent further than 90 degrees and pointing towards the ground, you'll either need to have the hitch repaired or look for a new drop hitch.
If your drop hitch is damaged and the person who rear-ended you is at fault, either they or their insurer should pay to either repair or replace your drop hitch. If you don't notice that your lifted truck's drop hitch is damaged, though, they won't know that you need a new drop hitch. Unless you check your hitch, you might not get them to help you repair yours or buy a new one from a dealer that has drop hitches for sale.
For more information about your drop hitch in general, or to buy a replacement, talk with companies that supply auto accessories, such as Geny Hitch.