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2010 Equinox Trailer Harness



  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    The only piece you need to remove is little section of the bottom of the bumper cover. It's held in with two compression nibs that are part of the little door. You pinch the two of them and it pops right out. There's enough room on mine where I can replace the little door and completely hide the hitch.

    The hitch fits right under the bumper and if you buy the right hitch, it will be hidden except for the receiver.

    Curt MFG just came out with an after market harness that supposedly has the unique fitting to the wiring behind the driver taillight. Fits the Terrain also

    P/N CT56094. - -Kit_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQhashZitem27ac2b98c9QQitemZ170392262857QQptZMotorsQ5fCarQ5- - fTruckQ5fPartsQ5fAccessories

    There's one up on eBay for 19.00 and included both sections.
  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    smithpe -
    OK. I have a dealer installed hitch with a 1" receiver. Maybe the 2" receiver is rated for more than 1500 lbs.

    It's not the size of the receiver that determines the load, it's the design and construction of the hitch. A Class 3 hitch will be rated for 3500-4500 lbs, far in excess of the Chevy suggested towing capacity. What Chevy is saying is that the vehicle tranny and brakes are not designed for loads over 1500, and 100lb without trailer brakes.

    Just show the dealer the manual and tell him to forget the waiver.
  • geohovgeohov Posts: 23
    Thanks a lot.
  • fstumpfstump Posts: 10
    I purchased the wiring harness from Curt MFG and when it arrived it obviously was not the one that fits the unique connector behind the drivers side taillight. It consists of two TEE connectors that go between the taillight wire connector in both taillights and the associated wiring. I talked to Travis at Curt MFG ( 1-800-798-0813) and he confirmed that I had received the correct wiring harness and stated that it was not the type that fit the unique plug on the 2010 Nox but would work properly if the directions were followed. He emailed me a copy of the installation instructions which were much clearer that the page that came with the harness. I installed the harness according to the instructions, took about 15-20 minutes and it works perfectly. This does not require any dealer programming or the very expensive GM wiring harness.
  • Wow, Ya'll done this the hard/expensive way. I went on ebay found the cheapest 2 inch hitch and they have the plug and play wiring which plugs behind the tailights. Anyway I paid 143 bucks for the hitch & wiring delivered. They sent me a paypal invoice for 25 bucks cheaper than Ebay. Whole job took less than an hour. Also does not require dealer programing. If your tailights work the trailer lights will work.
    as fstump says its easy.
  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    Did you by-pass the Chevy connector?
  • To your question "Did you by-pass the Chevy connector? " the answer is yes/sorta
    The factory connector needs to be enabled/programed by the dealer to become operational. the system made by Curt tee's into each tailight plug and sell for 19-39 bucks on ebay. There is no need to go to the dealer. Whole job is a bout an hour. Tailight removal is easy. The 2 inch hitches start at 90 bucks.
  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    If you read your car manual and warranty, messing with the electrical system can void the warranty and may affect the ability of the airbag system to sense and deploy. It's pretty obvious, because of the requirement to have the factory harness programmed, the electrical system is a tad sensitive in these vehicles. By tapping into the electrical wiring, you are placing an unprogrammed load on the car power and since that load occurs while braking, a typical event pre-crash, it's not a risk some are willing to assume. I paid upwards of $30K for my Nox. It seems an added $70-80 bucks in the realm of things isn't unworthy for assuring the warranty isn't voided, particularly when there are some 15 different computers on board. In that event, good luck trying to extract recourse out of Curt.

    Regardless, enjoy your new Nox. Car and Driver may have preferred the Focus, but it's pretty obvious they weren't interested in overall vehicle utility. The Nox rolls right over the Focus as Car of the Year.
  • I just had the dealer do mine yesterday, as part of the "we owe" agreement made when I bought it, AWD LT1 with Pioneer System. They sent me to a local shop that put on the 2" Draw-Tite hitch and a 7 pin electrical outlet on it.

    Took out the little instert in the bottom of the bumper and it tucks right up under there, looks slick as can be. I did confirm with the shop that they did not have splice anything, they confirmed it would be plug and play and 100% compatible.

    My receipt shows my dealer ordering it and paying for it, so I am happy. Cost them $312 installed, and the harness showed as a $23 part.
  • I put on an after-market hitch and had my dealer program the factory connector to work. He did this for me before I actually had the cable. I bought only the half of the two-part cable that plugs into the connector in the back of the Nox, cut off the end that went to the second part of the factory cable system, and spliced on a standard four-pin cable and connector. It worked perfectly. I even have little test LEDs in my four-pin connector. The dealer was willing to do the programming, even though he had no cable to test it out with. I suppose some dealers would balk at this strategy.
    I doubt that splicing into the tail lights would affect air bag deployment. If this were the case, one could imagine a defective bulb or a burned out bulb causing an airbag malfunction. It hardly seems likely the engineers would have designed the system allow such a deadly situation to arise from such a trivial cause. If they did, they're going to get sued somewhere down the road, that's for sure. Still, I like to do things as the engineers intended, so I went with the factory connector system.
  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    I don't think the splice will have any impact. Many of the dealers program the trailer hitch without the harness in place.
  • The splice I made does nothing to the car electrical system; I simply put a standard 4-pin trailer connector on the end of the factory cable. The Nox harness is two-part, and I did not want the second section since it is made specifically for the factory hitch, which I did not buy. The first half of the cable is nice to have since it has the correct mating connector to plug into the factory Nox connector.
    As for the dealer, he was unbothered that the cable harness was missing, as you note.
  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    It continues to befuddle me as to why these vehicles aren't program from the get go. Initialy I thought it may be because they wanted to kick the model out early, but didn't have the program completed for production, but now there is a steady stream of production, yet they remain unprogrammed.
  • I know the 4cyl models aren't available with the hitch option, the 6cyl models are - as an option. What doesn't make sense to me is why the 4cyl Terrain gets the hitch option but not the 'Nox?? I will most likely put a hitch on ours for the bike rack or one of those metal platform carriers for extra cargo but don't plan on pulling a trailer any time soon.
  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    I know what you mean, before buying I read you could not tow with a 4 cyl. Turns out that is not true. A lot of folks around here have 4 Cyl with hitches that were dealer programmed.

    In the manual, it states 4 cyl towing is limited to 1000 lbs capacity trailer, tongue and and load combined. The GM factory hitch is 1 1/4" style. If you want a 2" for a bike rack, then you need to get an after market hitch. There are plenty of 2" hitches around that fit the 2010 4/6 cyls. and they'll cost as low as $125 shipped.
  • pam71pam71 Posts: 5
    Looking for the best one to fit my 2010 FWD equinox. Don't want it to show under the bumper. The local trailer places all say they aren't sure if it will show because they haven't installed one yet and the web sites for their products all say "Visible" under bumper? Also, the dealer has one available, but they aren't sure if it's okay for FWD and/or if it is hidden?

    Please, any info will help.
    Just need it for bikes/ no wiring needed.

  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    You have a couple of options. You can add a trailer hitch on the FWD. GM recommends the towing capacity be limited to 1000 lbs and that includes the trailer if that is your intent.

    You have a couple of options for the trailer hitch. The GM model is 1 1/4 inch. Aftermarket versions are wither 1 1/4 or 2".

    The GM factory trailer hitch has a post for attaching the GM harness. You will see the pin attachment but no wiring. The hitch itself is fairly well hidden with just the receiver showing not the full bar. Some of the aftermarket hitches are also hidden.

    The bottom of the rear bumper cover has a little clipped in door. To install the hitch you remove that little door. On mine there is just enough clearance that if I want to replace the door to hide the receiver I can and no one knows I have a hitch.

    Mine has just enough cleaance tha
  • pam71pam71 Posts: 5
    Thanks for the you have the GM one? Or an after market?
  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    Not a bad price from gm-auto-parts - if they OEM. There are a couple of things you need to pay attention with a trailer assembly for an Equinox.

    The GM receiver is 11/4", not 2". If you have 2" equipment, you got to go after market for the hitch assembly.

    The 2010 Equinox must be reprogrammed to for the brake lights to work and only the dealer can do it. These vehicles have a finicky electrical system, so don't even think about splicing an aftermarket harness into the brake lights. I know of two dealers that refused to program the vehicle because the brakes electric had been spliced.
  • pam71pam71 Posts: 5
    Thanks for the info. I don't need the electrical system hooked up, I'm only getting the hitch for a bike rack. It's a 1 1/4 with a 2 " adjustment. I think I'll just go with the gm one, it will most likely fit the best and hide the best. the visual is my biggest concern...
  • sprakcsprakc Posts: 1
    Which hitch did you decide on? Any specifics you have would be greatly appreciated (website, brand, etc). I'm also looking just to carry bikes but I'm nervous that it will affect the look. I really like the idea of being able to replace the clipped door. Also, which Equinox model do you currently drive?

    Thank you.
  • pam71pam71 Posts: 5
    I drive the 2LT fwd. Since my bike rack that I bought, the x-port flatbed style ( 2 bikes), has the main metal part for a 1 1/4 and then the add on fits a 2" and because I don't anticipate needing the hitch for anything else, I have ordered the one that GM/chevy has (which is a 1/1/4). I am scheduled to have it put on next sat. (17th), so I can update you on the look then. I'm just having Chevy put it on when I go for my oil change. I know it's probally something my hubby or I could do, but it just sounds easier to do that.
  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    If you need the 11/4 then go for the dealer option. It shouldn't take them more than 45 minutes and they install the hitch while the oil is draining. (Unless this is a nimrod shop that requires to different mechs. Be sure to ask them if they programmed the harness before you leave.
  • pam71pam71 Posts: 5
    Just got back from the dealership. They installed the GM hitch (which I was charged $215 for). You can only see the "hitch" part from the back. The clip-on won't fit back on to cover it on my car ( 2LT). I didn't have them install the wiring because I'm only using for a bike rack. However, I did get to keep the part. The Labor charge was $60.00.
  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    Sounds like you are ready to roll on 4 and 2's. Hang on to that harness, it's worth about $125 retail.
  • kayakonekayakone Posts: 2
    I have an 2010 Equinox AWD LT 4 cyl.
    I installed a Curt 2inch receiver and there wiring harness.
    There is no programing needed for this installation.
    The only time you need programing is if you have a GM wiring harness installed.
    Hope this clears things up.
    The service technician told me himself.
  • jp0933jp0933 Posts: 5
    I'm looking to get a 2" hitch for my vehicle. I want to make sure it fits under the bumper and is hidden, except for the little cut out. Also, I want the cutout to fit back on when I am not towing anything.

    Will this hitch allow for this?

    Also, any other 2" hitches that will be hidden/allow the cutout to be replaced when not in use?

    Finally, for the wiring, what is the deal with the Curt Mfg harness? How can it not require any programming yet still be not a modification to the vehicle's wiring system? It seems like the GM harness is the only option as to not "illegally" modify the wiring and void warranty.
  • runoxrunox Posts: 156
    Not gonna happen. That little trap door has a curve to it. The receiver sticks out just enough to bump that curve, so it will not fit back on. All receivers will be seen where that door is removed the remainder will be hidden by the remainder of the splash panel.

    As far as I an tell you would need to bore new bolt holes in the frame to move the hitch back far enough, then use a receiver extension to maintain your turning radius with a trailer.
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