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Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs

Q: Does your mobile service cost a lot more than service at a chain store?

 

A: Not necessarily!  Our mobile service means we don’t have the overhead of traditional brick and mortar stores, keeping our prices competitive. Why hassle with the drive and waiting around for service?  We save you time -- and money -- by coming to you.  And, you get personalized service not sold in chain stores.

Q:  What else do you do besides hitches?

A:  Lots!  All towing related electrical components including brake controllers, as well as running boards, roof rails, splash guards, and Jeep sunroofs.  Basically if it's an automotive accessory and can be realistically installed in your driveway, we're happy to do it! We're also happy to provide any needed accessories such as bike racks, cargo carriers and floor mats.

Q:  Do you install 5th wheel or Gooseneck hitches?

A:  No.  The parts are difficult to transport to the job site and the installations themselves are very time consuming, making it a job best performed at a traditional auto shop.  

 

Q: Is there anything I need to do to prepare for my installation?

A.  Yes.  Please clean out your trunk prior to our arrival, especially if it contains any heavy or fragile items.  If we'll be working in a parking lot, please park in a place out of the way of traffic.  It's also a good idea to let security staff know to expect us when relevant.  Please do not use "tire shine" in the week prior to our arrival, we'll be working very close to your tires and it's very messy for us and can get all over your vehicle as well.   

 

Q: Do you need access to electricity or a garage to provide my mobile service? 

 

A: No.  Our power tools are charged and ready to go, and we often work in driveways or parking lots.  A covered space isn't needed as long as weather permits. 

 

Q: Can you work in the rain or other bad weather conditions? 

A: If bad weather presents a safety issue or installation issue, we can discuss an alternate site, or reschedule.  Cold weather can increase the risk of damage to plastic so some jobs can not be completed in the open if it's under 50 degrees.  For safety reasons, we don't work directly in the open if the "real feel" temperature is under 40, over 90, or if it is raining.

Q:  If I buy my own parts will you install them?   

A:  Yes.  However, purchasing your own parts will not significantly improve how quickly we can schedule an appointment.  It's important to ensure that the parts you order are correct for your vehicle and did not get damaged in shipping because we charge a minimum fee for the site visit, even if we can't perform the installation.  We do not warranty parts that were not purchased through us.  

Q: Can you uninstall a hitch from my vehicle and install it on a different vehicle? 

A:  Sometimes., but typically only if both vehicles are a similar year, make and model.  Please contact us to determine compatibility. 

Q: How soon can I get a hitch or other accessories installed? 

A: Because each part is specific to your vehicle year, make, and model, we don't order parts until you place a deposit.. Once we receive the parts, we schedule your installation. We're typically booked out one to two weeks.  However, please let us know if you have an urgent need and we'll do our best to accommodate your request. 

Q:  Are you available for installations in the evenings or on weekends?

A:  For an addition fee.  Because our installers get 40 hours a week during regular business hours, we pass along the overtime costs to the customer for any job performed outside of regular business hours.  

Q:  Do you have parts in stock?

A:  No.  By nature of being a mobile service we can only perform installations by appointment and we can typically get parts quicker than we have an available appointment to install them.  This means it just doesn't make sense to keep parts on hand, which reduces our overhead, saving the customer money in the end.  

Q.  What is a Flat 4 or 7 way plug?  Do I even need wiring?

A.  Only for towing.  If you are exclusively getting a trailer hitch for a bike rack or cargo carrier, wiring isn't necessary unless your accessory has lights built into it, which isn't very common.  The 4-Way Flat Connector Plug (flat 4 plug) only works trailer lights and does not have the ability to provide brakes (except of course brake lights).  However, the flat 4 plug is far more common than the 7 way plug.  The 7 way plug give the ability to add a brake controller, auxiliary power for functions such as recharging camper batteries, activating a winch, powering interior lights in an enclosed trailer or powering a wireless brake controller.  With few exceptions, we almost always install either the flat 4 only or both the flat 4 and 7 way plug.  Do not assume that because a trailer is small it will have a flat 4 plug or because it's large it will have a 7 way plug.  Trailers of all sizes can have either plug and older or commercial trailers may have a different plug altogether, although that is very rare.   

 

The plugs pictured below show both the vehicle side and trailer side of each plug, which fit into one another when towing.

 

 

 

 

Q.  Do I need a brake controller?

A.  It depends.  As a rule of thumb, of course if you are towing a trailer that has brakes, they should work.  However, generally speaking, we typically only really insist on a brake controller if you are towing more than 5000 lbs or if what you are towing weighs more than what you are towing it with.  For example, if you are towing a 3500 lb trailer behind a vehicle that weighs 3000 lbs your towing vehicle probably doesn't have enough stopping power on it's own to come to a stop in a safe distance.  It's worth mentioning that Uhaul and other most other trailer rental establishments do not have brakes or  on any of their trailers, regardless of trailer size.  When brakes are present on these trailers, it's usually an inertia brake built into the trailer that doesn't require a controller inside the vehicle.  

Q.  Is a Wireless Brake Controller Safe?

A.  Absolutely.   We exclusively install wireless brake controllers in vehicles that do not have a factory 7 way plug AND plug in for a brake controller.  We prefer them because they are roughly the same price as a traditional brake controller but can be used with any vehicle with an existing 7 way plug, providing the customer with greater long term value than a traditional brake controller.  These brake controllers do not use wifi or internet to communicate.  The brake lights and actual braking are separate prongs within a 7 way plug.  A wireless brake controller is essentially a fancy "jumper wire" between these two prongs.  It uses bluetooth to adjust the settings and send notifications to the user's phone.  Once set up, the controller saves the user's settings automatically and rarely needs to be adjusted again.  We've even had customers who left home without their phones but still had working brakes on their trailers!  

Q.  I found roof rails/ running boards on Amazon that are much cheaper than the ones you're quoting.              Will you install those instead?  

 

A.  No.   We are aware of much cheaper options on Amazon, etc but these “knock offs” often fit poorly, are noisy and far less durable.  We've even had customer's tell us the Amazon rails blew off their roof!  For these reasons, we only install premium name brand rails and running boards

 

Q: Will you install OEM Running Boards?

 

A.  No.  OEM running boards aren't available at wholesale prices in the aftermarket and sometimes require special tools that are only needed for that specific job.  It is also difficult to find a "book time" on installing these, making a quote for installation labor a shot in the dark.  If using OEM parts is important to you, the dealership is your best option.  .  

 

Q:  How did Aiken Hitch Start?

A:  Aiken Hitch and Outdoor began as Aiken Brothers sometime in the 1960's.  The company was started by three brothers, hence the name, and sold automotive parts and commercial cleaning products.  The now well recognized brand Purple Power was a formula created by one of the original Aiken brother's.  Aiken Brother's offered services including snow chains, fender flairs, pressure washer sales and repair, and of course trailer hitches.  Justin Lawrentz began working at Aiken after college in the summer of 2016 and bought the company in 2019.  It was then that the company became a mobile service.

4-Way Flat Connector Plug
7-Way Trailer Plug
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