Last Updated on May 3, 2023 by Will Sabel
Whether you are looking to tow a spare wheel for your car or SUV, or you’re an RV enthusiast who wants to have all the comforts and luxuries of a residential home by having a 5th wheel, you definitely need a quality hitch by your side.
Without a good product to support it, there’s no telling when your cargo will unhitch itself and cause a scene (potentially, a disaster).
A cheap alternative can make the entire act of parking bikes rather daunting. But, on the other hand, quality hitches can significantly improve your towing experience.
5th wheel hitches lock a 5-wheel trailer with your vehicle. The hitch locks with the truck bed. Set the truck up correctly, and I could tow a maximum of 30,000 lbs. of weight.
If we do things right, we’ll be able to minimize the swaying of our trucks and keep the fifth-wheel trailer secure in the process.
While E-bikes give you the best of both worlds by allowing you to either have a complete physical experience or a pleasant battery-powered ride, transporting it from one location to another can feel like conquering Mount Olympus.
Let me be honest here. It’s not as hard as it seems. The only issue is that you have to do some research AND math! The hitch type you’re using, its load capacity, the setup system – all of these factors put together make the best fifth wheel hitch for you.
But hey, don’t lose hope yet. I’ve considered all the golden nuggets in the back before coming up with my list of best fifth-wheel slider hitches. But, trust me, you don’t have to do the heavy lifting.
I must warn you, though, that I’ve done the grunt of the work here… looking out for the compatibility, budget, and warranty is on you.
So, let this article work as a blueprint as you figure out which fifth wheel slider hitch you need to get.
Top-Rated Fifth Wheel Slider Hitches — My Picks
If someone tells you, this is the Top-of-the-line Fifth Wheel Slider Hitch,” don’t believe him. Truth be told, you won’t find a particular product that’s “Absolutely” a cut above the rest. Instead, things are relative. You should consider multiple alternatives depending on your needs. Then, choose the best one that complements said needs.
Don’t worry. You’ll not have to go through the hassle at this point. As it stands, I’ve used quite a few of these things and did my research as well. Hence, I can give you the top-rated bike slider hitches in one article without you having to spend hours on the internet.
Interested? Let’s jump in!
B&W Companion Slider 5th Wheel Trailer RV Gooseneck Hitch Adapter RVK3405
Let’s look at the first product we have on our list — the B&W Companion Slider gooseneck to fifth-wheel trailer hitch adapter offering dual jaws and a 20,000-pound capacity.
The B&W Companion hitch will be the seamless solution to have the best of both worlds. This is designed to work with the B&W gooseneck. First thing I thought when I saw this is that when not in use, I can have it empty and in an “Open-Bed” form.
Moreover, if I wanted to haul a gooseneck trailer, I could just flip that ball over and be able to connect to that. And if I need to tow my fifth-wheel camper, this looks like it can easily slide in and bolt right down to the under-bed gooseneck.
Another selling point that interested me is how it comes right out of the package. If I order one and receive it, the base comes assembled. So we need to adjust the keepers only.
By that, I mean the polyurethane keepers. You’ll find them along the bottom part of the trailer. Don’t worry, everything we need… comes square-shaped from the factory itself. That means it will take little to no effort to get this moving when I go from the locked to the unlocked position.
Comparing this to other setups where the base is not already squared up and not going to come pre-assembled will save me quite a bit of time and effort. Also, since this has a slider setup, I don’t have to worry about the camper contacting the cab, even with a short bed truck.
With this companion model, there is a total of 12″ of travel, and that’s some of the longest spans I’ve seen out of any type of slider hitch. It will help in reducing cab-to-camper contact risks.
I liked a particular aspect of this model. That is, in fact, the lever used to operate the slide. I can tell it will be easily accessible from outside the truck from how high it sticks up.
By lifting this lever into the unlocked position and pulling away from my camper, once it gets into the locked position, the arm will automatically come down. There is no need for any pins or another type of release mechanism through the lever.
It feels like a nice and simple system, and you know what they say about simplicity being the best among all.
It also has tight tolerance in the sliding mechanism, from how it moves smoothly without any noticeable rattle. Polyurethane bushings also play a role in providing a rattle-free towing experience.
Also, once removed… you get a clean bed with no rails, and no mounting rails mean I can use the truck for more than just towing.
Finally, I noticed a few points that are not so great about this model. First, the base comes assembled, which is fine and good, but the weight is around 212 pounds. Means to remove or place it somewhere you need at least one more person to help you.
Additionally, the Companion Slider utilizes the B&W Turnover Ball under-bed mounting system, which is sold separately and does not work with all turnover balls, so one should check the fit before ordering.
B&W Trailer Hitches RVK3270 Fifth wheel Hitch
The first thing I noticed when I looked at this model was the Patriot’s 3/4″ thick jaw which is carefully machined to ensure a tight, secure attachment.
The rounded 2-piece jaw of this fifth-wheel trailer hitch, unlike slide-bar types, prevents noise and movement by firmly wrapping around your trailer’s kingpin, allowing for a more straightforward hookup and a safer, quieter ride. It has a towing capacity of 18,000 pounds.
Another thing I noticed is the robust polyurethane bushings built-in, in addition to the solid jaw, to provide a smoother, more comfortable towing experience. The pivot arms that support the fifth wheel head have these bushings on top of them.
The head can turn without clanking because it rests on a cushioned region. In addition, the head’s flexibility to pivot with the trailer, both front to back and side to side, helps reduce chucking that can occur with a more static hitch.
The Patriot’s dual jaw is controlled by a simple cam-action grip. This means that even on rugged terrain, I can swiftly and efficiently release the jaws on the hitch with this handle.
Even if the truck and trailer become stuck together, the jaws may remain closed even after moving the handle to the open position. However, because the handle is unlatched, the jaws are only held closed by the binding pressure.
As a result, simply driving the vehicle ahead will be sufficient to unlock the jaws. Having this sort of convenient feature is a plus point for me.
The pin and clip with the cam-action handle are used to keep it closed. A robust padlock can be used in place of the pin for added security. The diameter of the shackle on the lock you choose should be 5/16″, the height 3″, and the width 2-1/4″.
Finally, this 5th wheel hitch is built like a tank. In other words, it’s built to last.
It’s ideal for jobs that are rather heavy-duty in nature. However, this durability has one drawback: the hitch is somewhat heavy. As a result, it’ll likely require two people to complete the installation
B&W Companion 5th Wheel Hitch RVK3500
Let’s move on to the third product on my list of the best fifth wheel hitch for short bed trucks. Now, I must be honest with you here. I’m taking the cue from my friend on this one. He sang its praises to the moon and back. Multiple times, I must add. Hence, I decided to try this thing out.
I found out that with a hefty tow, the B&W Companion RVK3500 gives people the most comfortable (and jerk-free) ride they can imagine. It has a fully-responsive head. In addition, it pivots front-to-back and side-to-side when needed.
However, it lacks mounting rails. As a result, people can utilize the truck bed for multiple purposes. For example, you don’t need to use the truck bed only for hauling trailers anymore.
Even on an uneven parking lot, the B&W’s latch handle allows easy release. It has a towing capacity of 20,000 lbs. Gross Trailer Weight and 5,000 lbs. when it comes to Vehicle Tongue Weight
Your trailer won’t tilt whenever it starts or halts at a stoppage. You’ll have to thank the inch-thick, 360-degree wrap-around jaws.
To tell you the truth, I wasn’t surprised to find dual jaw settings similar to the RVK3270, allowing for smooth control of the jaws even on difficult terrains. It also features the same convenience of releasing the jaws by moving the vehicle forward.
I even took the measurements, and the center of the hitching post to the front edge (cab-side) of the hitch is 14.5″ (18.5″ for alternative post position for select truck models).
It offers three vertical adjustments from 16.25 to 18.25″ and 4″ of front to back adjustment with three coupler positions.
Additionally, all of this comes with a lifelong limited warranty for now. This means you don’t have to worry even if something goes wrong.
Finally, I have to add that it shares the same burden as its compatriots of being quite heavy. I don’t think I can handle setting the whole thing up independently, even though the procedure looks relatively simple and easy.
It is a two-person job — unless you possess herculean strength. This Companion 5th Wheel Hitch counter hitches that are sloppy. I’ve seen hitches that squeak, come apart, or even leave people hanging with broken parts while on a long journey.
This thing is different. It’s quiet on the road. It offers good cushioning during long hauls. The result is a quiet journey during your 9 – 12 hour drives. I can assure you of that fact.
It also works in conjunction with the B&W Turnoverball System, so it is a solid choice for someone looking for a premium 5th wheel hitch.
Andersen Hitches Aluminum Ultimate 5th Wheel Connection – Ultimate Connection Gooseneck Mount
The following product I will discuss is a different breed from the previous products.
It is one of the simplest and most cost-effective methods of connecting your trailer with a car or a truck. As a result, it undeniably deserves its place as one of the market’s most sought-after fifth wheel hitches.
I’m talking about the Andersen Aluminum Ultimate 5th Wheel Connection hitches that can tow up to a whopping 24,000 pounds (GTWR).
Let me summarize what I’ve learned from observing (I am a keen observer, mind you) and checking out the Andersen hitch. This hitch allows you to connect any two 5/16″ to a normal fifth wheel kingpin with a gooseneck ball.
The 5th wheel kingpin is connected to the coupler block adapter. The 35-pound pyramid base fits your current gooseneck ball, easing the effort of getting your 5th wheel hitch into your truck’s bed.
The ball is about three inches in diameter. It has an adjustable height and travels inside a greaseless coupler. It also has more swivels in every direction than any other 5th wheel hitch because it rides on a ball.
This also allows one to couple and uncouple the trailer easily on bumpy terrains, even on uneven ground. Another thing that I noticed is that no matter what kind of bed you have, short beds, standard beds, and long-bed trucks are all compatible.
That’s because they are all pin boxes (Rota-Flex pin boxes require Andersen part #3247, which is available separately).
Another noteworthy point is that the installation of a bolt-on coupler block adapter does not void the trailer’s warranty. Finally, for more effortless towing, secure connection points help the truck, and trailer suspensions operate together.
The ball, remote lock, and funnel make it simple to hook up and unhook.
This Ultimate 5th Wheel Connection is engineered to provide a jerk-free and silent ride. Its unique ball has nearly 3″ room for adjustability and sets itself up inside gear and a coupler.
The greaseless coupler helps reduce the mess from various things, including lubricant (unlike most fifth-wheel trailer hitches made for trucks with a short bed).
It has three height settings: 16-3/4″ at the bottom, 17-7/8″ in the middle, and 19-1″ at the top (from the bed of the truck to the top of the ball mount).
Finally, I also noticed that a unique remote latch/unlatch cable is included. The makers used this so that you don’t have to climb to the backside of your vehicle to detach the hitch from the trailer by supplying a remote cable tied to the coupler.
This point was quite attractive to me as it means less work. This specific hitch is hard to beat for a friendly budget.
CURT 16245 Q24 5th Wheel Hitch
While on my journey to find the best 5th wheel hitch, a friend suggested I check out the CURT 16245 Q24 5th Wheel Hitch. Although I was planning on checking out a different hitch at that moment, I still got this hitch, much to my disinterest, I might add.
From that day, I still don’t regret buying this beast of a hitch.
I was impressed that this specific hitch was tested and rated for 24,000 pounds of gross trailer weight and 6,000 pounds of vertical load. In addition, this 5th wheel hitch can also tow various 5th wheels compared to many of its competitors.
If you’re picky about this stuff, you’ll be glad to know that it is also tested to see if it matches the specifications of SAE J2638. It does! It’s also protected by a highly durable carbide powder coat finish, giving it a premium look.
This 5th wheel hitch is compatible with any industry-standard 5th wheelbase rail, including the CURT rails #16104 and #16204. In addition, it comes with three height adjustment positions to fit any vehicle bed.
However, keep in mind that the rails and brackets are offered separately. Also, this product doesn’t go well with turret-style pin boxes like Sidewinder. This CURT 5th wheel hitch from the Q-series is designed to provide a silent towing experience.
It includes deluxe RV campers and oversized ones, and it has a revolutionary spherical axis ball-bearing system. It helps the head in moving in any direction people desire.
Instead of using rods to rotate the hitch head, the Q24 utilizes a spherical ball bearing system that allows it to pivot in any direction. In addition, its twin jaws provide 360-degree kingpin contact to prevent chucking noises.
Another feature that caught my attention is the 3-position indicator built into this hitch to show the hitch and trailer coupling status. It also indicates whether the 5th wheel hitch is connected, disconnected, or ready to tow.
Dual-locking jaws are also included in the CURT Q24 5th wheel trailer hitch. In addition, the Q-series 5th wheel head’s comprehensive, self-aligning design helps avoid errors when backing up to the trailer, resulting in less stress and time spent coupling.
This CURT 5th wheel hitch features a single, short-throw handle for quicker 5th wheel trailer coupling and ergonomic use. It also interacts with the kingpin automatically, making coupling even easier.
A noteworthy feature is that you can lock the handle for further safety on the road. This hitch comes with a pair of 5th wheel rails and brackets. Add to that standard-sized 5th wheel trailer legs. You can buy these separately as well. Just connect these with your truck bed, and you’re good.
It also comes with a polyethylene lube plate to prevent unpleasant grease deposits and three grease fittings that are easy to access for lubrication.
Overall, my opinion on this hitch is that for a 1000$ product, it felt like it could compete with any B&W fifth wheel slider hitch out there while still giving off a premium feel. Also, the easy mechanism to handle the thing is just icing on the cake.
Tips to Identify the Top-Rated Fifth wheel Slider Hitches
Let’s make one thing clear right off the bat! I’ve put all the fifth wheel hitches on my list after dedicated research, extensive usage, and my own experience with these products.
After some time, I found some common characteristics among the best 5th-wheel trailer hitches. I will outline the key concerns you need to address before getting a fifth-wheel slider hitch.
Check Manufacturer Support and Extra Features
The first thing you should check is whether the manufacturer is willing to stand behind the products they sell or not?
Looking up the warranty offered is a quick and easy way to address this question. A limited lifetime warranty is available on some models. Likely, you’ll never need to use the warranty in the first place.
But having one in your hand, on the other hand, ensures a restful night’s sleep. You’ll be able to sleep soundly knowing that the money you spent on that quality hitch was well spent.
Customer service is something else to keep in mind. Minor but irritating complications can arise when installing a hitch. The screw, for example, would not come out, or the lever would not get into place. In such instances, the support team will advise you or send you replacement parts.
Whatever the case, you will not be left stranded without assistance.
Be Mindful of Accessibility and Ease of Use
Accessibility and ease of use play a big part in choosing an affordable but quality fifth-wheel slider hitch. If it isn’t easily usable, it will not suit your purpose.
If I’m spending on a product, it should be convenient and easy to use. This is why it’s essential to check for features, how the setup procedures work, and if it’s easily doable for you or not.
Getting a heavy-duty fifth wheel slider hitch but finding out setting it up or detaching is a complicated and time-consuming process is not fun at all, that much I can tell you. The rest I will leave up to your judgment.
Take into account the towing capability and weight
This is a must before you hitch up your vehicle and a trailer together — or even select a product for your truck.
Towing capacity means the max weight our vehicles or trucks can haul. On the other hand, gross trailer weight represents our trailers’ total weight when loaded with cargo.
You should get a trailer hitch that goes toe to toe or slightly overboard when it comes to your truck’s hauling capacity. Don’t go for the lowest-rated components. They limit and, sometimes, bring down your trailer’s capacity to haul materials.
Find out how long your truck’s bed is
Got a grasp on the towing capacity of your vehicle? Great! Now you’ll have to measure your truck bed’s length. For the uninitiated, let’s use phrases like Long-Bed and Short-Bed. I don’t want to make things too complicated.
When our trailers and trucks are joined together by the hitches, the exact length of the truck bed matters. It determines the clearance or space we’ll get. A long bed means you’ll have more clearance to deal with. You already know what a short truck bed means, right? Yes. This determines whether your product requires legs or a sliding system to mount it.
Check to see if the truck bed is equipped with a puck system
A Puck is what you call a built-in mounting platform. It comes by default with vehicles nowadays, especially for people who work in factories and haul heavyweight loads. So we get a gooseneck hole at the center and a series of points where we can anchor the hitch. This is what a “Puck” is.
Puck systems are available for various vehicles, including trucks and cars. Nissan, Ford, Ram, Chevrolet, etc., are just a few.
The puck allows our 5th wheel trailer hitches to slip into our truck beds. It’s fast, secure, and provides effective results when it comes to towing. Trust me, you won’t need to drill extra buckets or use other gears for the setup process.
Finding the Balance Between Performance and Price
The final bit of advice I have for you is to find a proper balance between what you’re looking for and how much you’re willing to spend. It’s not wise to spend too much and get a fancy hitch you will never use to its total capacity.
Similarly, it’s an even worse idea to stint on the cash and get a subpar fifth wheel slider hitch that might land you in serious trouble anytime. For these reasons, balancing performance and price is essential to find the best hitch suited for your purposes.
At this point in the article, I know for a fact that your minds are brimming with questions. I’ll be attempting to answer a few of these below. Naturally, I’ll update this section as more and more questions pop up in your minds. Don’t worry; I’ll be answering them in detail.
What is the definition of a fifth wheel hitch?
A 5th wheel hitch connects a trailer to its towing vehicle. The hitch is mounted in the truck’s bed. This type of hitch can pull up to 30,000 pounds with a properly equipped truck.
When towing, a 5th wheel hitch gives a more secure connection that eliminates trailer wobble.
What are the different types of hitches?
One of the most typical 5th wheel hitch setups is a kingpin hitch. Many 5th wheels are equipped with a factory-installed kingpin hitch. RVers use a pin box and a kingpin to link their truck and trailer, similar to semis attached to trailers.
For the driver and passengers, the pin box and kingpin give a quieter and more stable towing experience. Depending on the truck’s size or trailer, there are different kingpin hitch designs available.
You should select the appropriate hitch based on your truck’s size and the trailer you’ll be hauling.
A gooseneck hitch is basically a hitch-to-ball connection system in bumper pull trailers. These are considerably less expensive hitching alternative that also takes up less space in the bed.
Hauling goods with a hitch is comparatively less stable when you consider taller trailers. Although, the hitch connection is rather accessible and secure to boot.
Don’t be shocked if it’s a touch noisier than the “Kingpin” hitches. These are commonly found in farm machinery and flatbed equipment carriers.
Fixed vs. Sliding Hitches
A 5th wheel hitch delivers the best towing experience, but it might be tough to navigate abrupt turns or manage. During tight maneuvers, it’s typical for vehicles like trucks, especially ones with a short bed, to collide their cabin or even the window at the front with trailers and their front caps.
Sliding hitch systems allow the products to swing back off-center of the axle at the rear to get more turning radius than usual. Their “Fixed” cousins aren’t adjustable and stay in position covering the axles. A sliding hitch isn’t required if you have a truck with a long bed.
If you own a truck with a short bed, I’d advise you to get a “Sliding” hitch. It’s better to own one as insurance and not use it.
I admit that understanding how different hitches work and suit different situations can be a little tricky. Especially with the best fifth-wheel trailer hitches.
However, decent knowledge of the topic will help you make a better decision when purchasing something now or in the future.
And there you have it. If you can’t find the perfect one from the products I’ve discussed, try to be mindful of the buyers’ guide when looking for a new product. That way, you will at least know what to look for and which parts to be careful about.
If you’ve read it thus far, I thank you for your time and hope this article on the best fifth wheel slider hitches has helped you choose the best fifth wheel hitch for you.