America and trucks, they just go together. Every year trucks get bigger, more powerful and smarter. New trucks and SUV’s coming off the line aren’t your granddaddies stick shift bare bones tow vehicles of yesteryear. 4-corner auto leveling systems are making an entrance on the towing scene and while the intentions are to make your towing experience better, they can cause some preliminary confusion.

Weight distribution is the concept of restoring balance to the tow vehicle. Weight distribution hitches act like a bridge that alleviates the load being put on the truck’s rear axle and distributes it to the trailer axles and back to the front axle of the tow vehicle. This action keeps weight on the front tires, which improves steering, braking control, and helps reduce stress while towing.

However, when auto leveling is engaged it causes a loss in weight distribution. In a series of experiments conducted by engineers from Equal-i-zer hitch, they found that 20-25% of the total weight distribution was lost after the tow vehicle auto leveled. Recommendations from those same engineers’ state that the weight distribution amount for vehicles with 4-corner auto leveling suspension should ideally be between 75-100%. This range accommodates for the lost weight distribution from the auto leveling system.

Every situation will be different, but the principles demonstrated through this experiment create a baseline of expectations that can be used by trailer owners to achieve the best weight distribution setup possible.


Weight Distribution with Auto Leveling Systems

Front Fender Measurements

Front Axle Weight Change from Baseline

Rear Axle Weight Change from Baseline

Trailer Axles Weight Change from Baseline

Final Weight Distribution %

Uncoupled/Baseline

39”

0 (lbs.)

0 (lbs.)

0 (lbs.)

N/A

Coupled

40”

-400 (lbs.)

1400 (lbs.)

0 (lbs.)

0%

Weight Distribution 50%

39.5”

-200 (lbs.)

1075 (lbs.)

125 (lbs.)

50%

Auto Leveled

N/A

-300 (lbs.)

1225 (lbs.)

75 (lbs.)

25%

Weight Distribution 100%

39”

0 (lbs.)

750 (lbs.)

250 (lbs.)

100%

Auto Leveled

N/A

-100 (lbs.)

900 (lbs.)

200 (lbs.)

75%