Do I need vehicle specific wiring when fitting a towbar?

When choosing a towbar for your vehicle, many people consider the physical apparatus but don’t initially give much thought to the wired connection to the vehicle. Whilst not mandatory, more and more people are choosing vehicle specific wiring due to its additional benefits over basic universal wiring.

What is vehicle specific wiring?

Vehicle specific wiring is a wiring kit which connects your towbar to your vehicle’s onboard system, and which has been tailored to your individual make of vehicle. This allows various features which can enhance safety and ease of towing to be activated. This wiring is more complex than the basic universal wiring, which just ensures you will meet legal requirements when towing. The added complexity inevitably means it can cost a bit more to install but, with the added benefits, it is certainly worthwhile.

Activate towing features

A large benefit of vehicle specific wiring is that, since it connects to your car’s onboard operating system, it can activate any towing-related features that your car may have. One of the main features vehicle specific wiring enables is your car’s trailer stability control function. This ensures that your towed load – whether that’s a caravan or a trailer – is steadier and, therefore, safer whilst you are travelling, particularly when going round corners. What’s more, with vehicle specific wiring your car can automatically trigger convenient alterations such as turning off rear fog lights and parking sensors when you’re towing.

It is worth bearing in mind that to activate the features that vehicle specific wiring can offer, it is sometimes necessary to update the vehicle’s software. For the large majority of cars, your towbar installer will be able to do the update as part of the installation; however, a few models will require the car to be taken back to the dealership for features to be activated.

Vehicle warranty

Using vehicle specific wiring when fitting a towbar is how vehicle manufacturers intend towbars to be equipped. For this reason, attaching a towbar to your vehicle with vehicle specific wiring won’t void your warranty as it is equivalent to the work the manufacturer would carry out themselves. This is not true of other methods, so if your vehicle is still within the manufacturer’s warranty it is important you choose this wiring option.

Towbar2U offer a high quality vehicle specific wiring service as part of our towbar installations. With a skilled and experienced team and a handy mobile towbar fitting service, you can rely on us for safe, efficient and competitively priced workmanship. Get in touch with our friendly team today with any enquiries – see our areas covered page to find your local fitter.

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