From Headlight to Tailpipe

07 Feb 13 How to Remove Rust From a Truck Hitch

Rusty Trailer HitchRusted hitches are frequently a problem for trucks. A rusted hitch can be a real pain to deal with and sometimes it seems like rusty hitches are impossible to avoid.  However, there are things that you can do to ease getting rid of a rusty hitch and prevent rust from forming again. Follow the steps below to learn specifically how this is can be done.

Step One: Apply Penetrating Chemical to the Hitch

For the best results you should first find a penetrating chemical to apply the rusted hitch and mount. CRC Freeze Off is a great penetrating product. The chemical freezes rust and causes it to crack, loosening up stuck metal pieces. A can of CRC Freeze Off should cost around ten dollars or less. When using this product be sure to cover your hands with a good pair of gloves. You do not want any of this product to get on your hands or fingers as it can instantly freeze exposed skin.

To apply the CRC Freeze Off to the hitch first spray over the general area and concentrate on the opening where mount is lodged in the hitch.  To the greatest extent possible, you want the spray to attack the rust that is causing the mount to stick. After this initial spray over, use the straw that comes with the CRC Freeze Off can and spray in the tight spaces between the hitch and the mount. You want to try to spray as deep down in the hitch as possible so that the rust in it can begin to break down and the mount can be removed.

Step Two: Use an Air Chisel and Hammer Bit

Next you want to use an air chisel loaded with a hammer bit to dislodge the mount. Again be sure to put on gloves. Also wear eye protection as this process may throw rust particles and other bits of metal into the air. You can avoid inhaling the rust by wearing a face mask as well.

To use the air chisel and hammer bit to dislodge the mount simply load the hammer bit in the air chisel and hammer against the mount. Do this for about three to five minutes. If you do not feel the hold of the mount weakening then apply the CRC Freeze Off again and repeat. Eventually the mount should dislodge from the hitch.

If an air chisel isn’t a tool you have or wish to purchase, a properly wielded good ol’ sledge hammer could do the trick as well.

Step Three: After the Mount is Removed Maintain the Hitch

If you want to keep the rusted hitch then you can sand paper the rust off.  You may find that additional CRC Freeze Off is a good aid in this case. If you are able to remove all of the rust and the hitch is in decent condition then apply a coat of paint to the hitch. The coat of paint will protect the metal of the hitch from exposure to moisture. To maintain the hitch routinely examine the coat of paint for any scratches. When you see exposure of the metal of the hitch, apply another coat of paint. Sand paper off any minor rust formed on the metal.

You should also consider using a hitch cover. A hitch cover would lock out moisture and debris to help prevent rust from forming. Another preventive measure you can take is to get a mount made from material that does not rust. There are stainless steel and aluminum mounts for sale that don’t rust.

Follow these steps and you are sure to remove the rust from your truck hitch. Following the maintenance steps should also help you prevent rust from forming on your hitch in the future.

About Author:

Lauren Sawyer is a freelance writer living in Maryland. She often writes tutorials for different websites and writes E-books in her spare time. She loves to write on maintaining truck parts like winch ratchet tie down straps & grade 70 chain binder.

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