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grapeguy

Happy New Journey owner but crazy hitch question

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Quick question and need some serious help. Can't seem to find any info anywhere and the dodge service department wasn't much help either. Just bought a 2016 Dodge Journey with a 3.6L V6 DOHC 24V in the summer and love it. I have been driving it for two months now, and part of our buying deal was a hitch and install. Last week I finally got it installed, and as soon as I drove it off the lot, I noticed a big difference in how the vehicle felt and handle. I felt like it was pulling from the back and when I braked, I felt a shift of weight from the end to the front. I live on the side of a mountain, and it seems like its working hard to get up the hill, also seems pressure and weight on the breaks when I go downhill. In all honesty, it feels like I'm already towing something or like the e-break is on. When I brought this up to dodge service, they kind of looked at me funny but I swear I'm not crazy. My dad checked the e-break and seemed fine because it rolls on neutral no problem. I was getting something on the door fixed, and he checked everything over for me and seemed fine. Also said, there enough engine to tow so I shouldn't feel the hitch. 

 

Has anyone had this issue when installing a hitch after you've already been driving around with it for a while. I found it super "peppy" and controlled well; now it feels sluggish and heavy. Please tell me I'm not crazy.

 

Thanks!

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havent noticed that but i did seem to notice a drone noise when i gun it but that could be from the K-N air filter that i added 

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15 hours ago, grapeguy said:

Quick question and need some serious help. Can't seem to find any info anywhere and the dodge service department wasn't much help either. Just bought a 2016 Dodge Journey with a 3.6L V6 DOHC 24V in the summer and love it. I have been driving it for two months now, and part of our buying deal was a hitch and install. Last week I finally got it installed, and as soon as I drove it off the lot, I noticed a big difference in how the vehicle felt and handle. I felt like it was pulling from the back and when I braked, I felt a shift of weight from the end to the front. I live on the side of a mountain, and it seems like its working hard to get up the hill, also seems pressure and weight on the breaks when I go downhill. In all honesty, it feels like I'm already towing something or like the e-break is on. When I brought this up to dodge service, they kind of looked at me funny but I swear I'm not crazy. My dad checked the e-break and seemed fine because it rolls on neutral no problem. I was getting something on the door fixed, and he checked everything over for me and seemed fine. Also said, there enough engine to tow so I shouldn't feel the hitch. 

 

Has anyone had this issue when installing a hitch after you've already been driving around with it for a while. I found it super "peppy" and controlled well; now it feels sluggish and heavy. Please tell me I'm not crazy.

 

Thanks!

Hi grapeguy,

 

In an instance like this, it might be beneficial for you to request a ride-along with a tech at the dealership--that way you can drive them around and point out how the vehicle feels to you, and be sure they understand what you're talking about.

 

Kori

Dodge Social Care Specialist

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I'm curious, did the dealership install the factory harness for the trailer lights? If they put the factory harness on, they would have had to turn the harness on in the computer to power it. 

 

I installed the factory harness on my '15(it connects to a white plug located near the spare tire) and, while I have not noticed any issues like you are mentioning, my fuel economy went right in the toilet. The dealer claims that nothing they did for turning the power on for the harness would have changed this, but ??? 

 

 

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Tow hitches can be pretty heavy... since you have been driving it without the hitch you may just be noticing the difference. That being said, if they installed the actual Mopar/Dodge hitch they should be able to tell you whether it is the hitch weight or if something is actually wrong. We had ours put on at the dealership and I did notice a bit of a difference. Mostly it was because I came from a small car, and got used to the horsepower of a V6, then they added the hitch and I definitely noticed the weight addition. I would ask if the tech could drive a new DJ for a mile or two then drive yours to see how substantial the difference is. 

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1 hour ago, lmoore1436 said:

Tow hitches can be pretty heavy... since you have been driving it without the hitch you may just be noticing the difference. That being said, if they installed the actual Mopar/Dodge hitch they should be able to tell you whether it is the hitch weight or if something is actually wrong. We had ours put on at the dealership and I did notice a bit of a difference. Mostly it was because I came from a small car, and got used to the horsepower of a V6, then they added the hitch and I definitely noticed the weight addition. I would ask if the tech could drive a new DJ for a mile or two then drive yours to see how substantial the difference is. 

the tow hitch i bet doesn't weigh more than 40 lbs,so that wouldn't cause any difference

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7 minutes ago, 2late4u said:

the tow hitch i bet doesn't weigh more than 40 lbs,so that wouldn't cause any difference

 

In most cases it shouldn't but if you've been driving it without you may notice a slight bit of difference... especially if the vehicle is new, it is at the far rear of the vehicle so added weight at that point can be exaggerated during regular driving. 

Edited by lmoore1436

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6 minutes ago, lmoore1436 said:

 

The hitches themselves can weigh quite a bit... I'm not sure how much the OEM ones weigh, but I found several aftermarket ones that weigh 400lbs and up... especially if they can tow up to 4,000lbs they have to weigh quite a bit https://www.etrailer.com/Trailer-Hitch/Dodge/Journey/2017/C13201.html?vehicleid=201730099 

the 400 lbs is the tongue weight max for towing it weighs 37.5 lbs same one i put on my crossroad and mine is a class 3.....

Edited by 2late4u
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Just now, 2late4u said:

the 400 lbs is the tongue weight max for towing it weighs 37.5 lbs same one i put on my crossroad and mne is a class 3.....

You're absolutely right... I spoke too soon, had a few too many beers after the game tonight, and looked at the tongue weight, but it still may be noticeable given where the hitch is. We did notice the extra weight a bit just because it was at the very rear of the vehicle, unless it was in our heads. If it's extremely noticeable though they should take it to ensure it is mounted in the right position, honestly I'm not too sure what could have happened to make it feel "significantly" heavier during normal driving. 

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as i said above i did notice  a slight drone noise when i hit the gas didn't seem to hear it before the install of the hitch( thinking it might be from the hitch making a more solid connection at the rear between the frame) but i havent noticed any loss of power or such. now i did add a folding carrier that has a folding loading ramp for my wife's 3 wheel medical scooter and even with that didnt notice any loss of power. i avg about 22 mpg ( in town and some out of town driving) with or without the scooter loaded and  the scooter  weighs about 250 lbs, but on long trips on the interstate i still will avg about 23-25 mpg. happy with my Journey anyways....

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I don't know how the weight of a hitch could be noticable. I'd like to add one to carry bicycles and my wife's trike, or my small utility trailer for my riding mower and trips to the dump. I've carried a couple hundred pounds of stuff in the back already and barely notice any significant change in performance or braking.

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On 10/20/2017 at 11:42 AM, DodgeCares said:

Hi grapeguy,

 

In an instance like this, it might be beneficial for you to request a ride-along with a tech at the dealership--that way you can drive them around and point out how the vehicle feels to you, and be sure they understand what you're talking about.

 

Kori

Dodge Social Care Specialist

 

Thanks Kori! I will do that. 

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32 minutes ago, grapeguy said:

 

Thanks Kori! I will do that. 

I see you're in Canada--if you need any assistance with the dealership, please give Canadian Customer Care a call so they can help! They can be reached at (800) 465-2001.

 

Kori

Dodge Social Care Specialist

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On 12/11/2017 at 6:53 AM, 2late4u said:

did you run the wire to the front battery or get power from the rear?

I ran my wire to the battery as shown on the instructions. Having the dedicated fuse makes sense to me. I was able to run it through the rear wheel well just under the length of the doors and up through the front wheel well. All is hidden and works perfectly when towing. 

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