Bills Mobile Hitch & Tow Bar Installation


Tow Bar Types: Uses, Advantages, Disadvantages, And More

Is this your first time buying a tow bar? Are you unaware of the vast world of towing? Well, as a first-timer, finding the right one for your vehicle can be quite overwhelming. With so many choices, you may find yourself confused deciding which will be best for your vehicle. Will a flange be right for me, or would it be a swan neck? Should I go for a fixed one or a detachable one?   

Furthermore, besides the choices, you may also want to know which tow bar performs which kind of activity. Also, you would want to compare one tow bar with another before deciding on a suitable one for your car.

However, you can now relax, as Bills Mobile Hitch And Tow Bar Installation is here to help you find the perfect tow bar for your vehicle. Here, we have compiled a comparison guide for tow bar types with their benefits and drawbacks. So, let’s end your confusion with this helpful buying guide for the tow bar.            

Tow Bar Types: Different Kinds Of Tow Bars, Their Advantages, And Disadvantages

Also Read:- How Does A Gooseneck Hitch Work, And Where Can I Get It Installed

Firstly, you should know that there are five types of tow bars. Out of these, the two popular choices are the flange ball towbar and the swan neck tow bar. Talking about the flange, it comes with a faceplate and bolted tow ball. In comparison, a swan contains a one-piece neck with a tow ball attached to it.

Other than that, both of these options are obtainable as fixed and detachable. Furthermore, a swan neck tow bar even has a retractable option.

One more thing you should know is that these various types are not suitable for every vehicle. Therefore, before you purchase any available options, ensure they will work on your vehicle.

So, with a hint on these tow bar types, let’s discuss these various kinds more and see if they will suit your car.

Fixed Flange Towbar

Fixed Flange Towbar

So, for our towbar list, our first one is a fixed flange towbar. It is one of the most recognized and cost-effective options when it comes to towing. You can attach the tow ball to this bar using two or four 24mm bolts. One can use it with tow ball accessories such as bumper protectors, cycle carriers, etc. These are usually mounted between the ball and the towbar.                      

Advantages  Disadvantages
Can work with a vast range of vehicles The tow bar, as well as the electrics, are visible
You can use it with a variety of tow balls With so many tow balls choices available, the price difference can be significant
Can tow as well as carry cycles together at the same time (make sure you confirm the load limit of the tow bar and your vehicle)  

Detachable Flange Towbar

Detachable Flange Towbar

If we talk about this towbar, we would say that it has quite a bit of similarity to the fixed flange towbar. Also, it is one of the newest towbar types currently available. You can attach the tow ball to this towbar neck using two 24mm bolts. But know that this neck is removable if you use a lock and key. This device is compatible with standard tow balls as well as stabilizers.

Advantages Disadvantages
It is not visible when you don’t use it and looks better than fixed towbars You cannot alter the height of this towbar
Chances of injury decrease significantly when the neck is not there The device is limited when it comes to tow balls choices
Mostly compatible with all types of vehicles Compared to a fixed towbar, this device is more expensive
When it is not there, the reversing sensor will not activate  

Fixed Swan Neck Towbar                                                  

A Fixed swan neck towbar is quite a popular choice in the US. However, when it comes to their adaptability, they don’t have much to show compared to Flange tow bars. This is because the towbar is not usable with other accessories. Although a cycle carrier option is available with this towbar, you cannot use it while towing.

Advantages Disadvantages
Chances are quite low that it will trigger reversing sensors You cannot alter the tow ball height
Compatible with a vast range of cars A bit more expensive than a fixed flange towbar
Have a more subtle look compared to fixed flange towbars You cannot fit alternate tow balls
  It cannot fit with a bumper shield on

Detachable Swan Neck Towbar

Detachable Swan Neck Towbar

A detachable swan neck towbar holds quite a bit of similarity to a fixed swan neck. In fact, this device was the first detachable type to be available. Although not that popular in the US, one can use it with a cycle carrier. However, you cannot tow both at the exact moment.

Advantages Disadvantages
It is not visible when not in use and looks better than a fixed towbar      You cannot alter this towbar height
By removing the neck, you can reduce the risk of injury You cannot fit alternate tow balls
Suitable for most vehicles The price is significantly higher than a fixed towbar
Will not activate reversing sensors upon removal  

Retractable Swan Neck Towbar

Retractable Swan Neck Towbar

A retractable swan neck towbar will be the perfect choice for someone looking to use a towbar regularly and value their vehicle design. It is highly convenient and can be activated with one movement from your hand. Furthermore, there is no need for maintenance for a retractable towbar. 

You’ll find that the tow ball is always connected to the towbar sleeve, which is why there is no dirt around it. Besides that, a retractable bar combines the features of fixed and detachable devices, making it one of the best choices for the towing experience.

Advantages Disadvantages
It is not visible when not in use and looks much better than a fixed towbar You cannot alter the towbar height
Lessen the injury risk as you remove the neck It is not possible to fit the alternate tow balls
It is compatible with a vast range of vehicles Significantly expensive compared to a fixed towbar
Doesn’t activate reversing sensors when you remove it  


So, this was everything about towbar types, their advantages, disadvantages, and uses. There are five varieties of tow bars that come in fixed, detachable, and retractable versions. However, if you explore them more, you’ll find other variants of tow bars, including electric swiveling. Vertical detachable, compact detachable, horizontal detachable, pin system, nut system, etc. Choosing from all such types can be daunting, but you’ll be able to find one if you pick the right person for the job.

At Bills Mobile Hitch And Tow Bar Installation, we help customers find the right tow bar for their vehicles. We have a wide range of tow bars, hitches, and equipment to make your installation process convenient and fast. Furthermore, we have tow bar installation services included with the purchase of products, so you can just sit and relax while we do our job. Call (623) 210-5427 if you have product or installation service-related queries. You can also send your request on our contact us page.

Frequently Asked Questions

While choosing a towbar, knowing what you’re towing is essential. So, before picking a tow bar, confirm your vehicle’s towing capacity. Furthermore, you need to compare that towing capacity with the thing you will tow. After ascertaining how much load your truck can carry, the next thing will be choosing a tow bar that can easily handle the weight you will pull.

One of the most versatile and suitable choices for a tow bar in the flange. This device can handle tow ball-mounted accessories such as bumper protectors, cycle carriers, and various kinds of stabilizers. Furthermore, it is available in both styles, including fixed and detachable.

In the installation of a tow bar, it can take from several minutes to up to a few hours. In some cases, it can even take six hours to install this device based on the complexity of the vehicles and the tow bar getting installed. If you consider professional tow bar installation, this time can lessen significantly because of these experts’ expertise and available equipment. 

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