When a gooseneck hitch is already installed on your vehicle, but your fifth wheel trailer doesn’t fit just right, the best 5th wheel to gooseneck adapter is what will help you make the accommodation. Traveling with the entire family in the camper is a simple hookup, rather than a long frustrating process. Using a gooseneck adapter is going to save loads of cargo space that would normally fifbe taken up, as well as save you time and money that would normally be invested in the replacement of parts on your truck.
The 5th wheel to gooseneck adapter is a simple solution to a complicated problem. These fasten in easily with a pin and will stay in place for as long as you need them. When you need to remove it, the adapter will easily come off and can stay in the cab until the next time you find yourself hauling a fifth wheel. This is the best solution to any fifth wheel towing issues when you are working with a systems with gooseneck hitches.
Our Top 3 Choices
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The Convert-a-Ball Adjustable Height Adapter is our top pick for the best fifth wheel trailer to gooseneck adapter for a variety of reasons. The 51 pound weight comes from its high grade steel construction that makes it an incredibly safe option that also gives a large amount of stability when towing a fifth wheel. It includes cushioning to absorb shock and comes near the top of the list when talking about fifth wheel comfort even with the standard hitches. It requires little maintenance and does the job right with you in mind.
7 Best 5th Wheel to Gooseneck Adapters In 2020
1. Convert-a-Ball 12″ to 16″ – Our Top Pick
Out of all the fifth wheel to gooseneck adapters, this is our top pick overall looking at all of the best adapters out there today. The Convert-a-Ball gooseneck hitch adapter adjusts between heights of 12 and 16 inches, making it fit to every measurement you could need.
This gooseneck adapter bolts over the kingpin lube plate and is capable of towing 20,000 pounds with a maximum tongue weight of 4,000 pounds. The gooseneck adapter itself is a hefty 51 pounds, meaning a friend will really come in handy when installation time comes around.
The high grade steel construction makes the build quality of this gooseneck hitch hit the absolute top of the list. There is minimum shake and rattle on the gooseneck hitch due to the solid connection and immensely sturdy build. It uses interior cushioning to boost the smoothness of the ride on top of everything else. While standard fifth wheel hitches will reportedly come back as the most comfortable ride, this comes pretty darn close to the best. The bold statement of being a rust-proof gooseneck hitch to fifth wheel trailer adapter is another great feature worth remembering when thinking about buying this.
Bolts over the kingpin lube plate to fit gooseneck hitch, 20,000 pound towing capacity, maximum tongue weight of 4,000 pounds, adjustable from 12 to 16 inches, Dimensions – 19 x 12.2 x 19 inches
- Easy to install
- Super smooth ride for fifth wheel trailer with heavy duty build and interior cushion
- Adjustable height from gooseneck
- Rust-proof guarantee from the manufacturer
- Heavy weight
- Doesn’t fit on trucks with beds shorter than six feet
2. Eaz-Lift Gooseneck Adapter – Best Value
Next on our list is the Eaz-Lift Gooseneck Adapter 48500 for a fifth wheel trailer. This adapter bolts on over the king pin lube plate, providing a huge amount of stability, has a whole lot to offer. The towing capacity of this adapter for your fifth wheel trailer comes in at a whopping 30,000 pounds. Fifteen tons of carrying weight is a massive number that your fifth wheel trailer likely won’t hit. The maximum tongue weight is also impressive at 4,500 pounds.
One of the biggest draws of this fifth wheel trailer adapter is the price. It is relatively affordable when put up against other competitors, but still performs above the rest. If you are looking for something that can pull any weight you can imagine, this one should have you covered.
The only drawback to this product is the fact that it isn’t adjustable for a different fifth wheel trailer. You need to make sure you know the height of the fifth wheel trailer adapter you need before moving into the final purchasing position. This is however part of what makes it more affordable than the rest, so it could be worth the lack of adjustability. Reportedly, the installation has been difficult, but well worth the benefits that come with the adapter itself.
Bolts on over king pin lube plate, towing capacity of 30,000 pounds, maximum tongue weight of 4,500 pounds, 47 pound construction, Dimensions – 15.1 inches x 14.6 inches x 11.5 inches
- Incredible towing capacity of 30,000 pounds
- Large maximum tongue weight
- Stable and smooth ride of the fifth wheel trailer
- Much more affordable than some of the other options
- Reportedly difficult to install on a fifth wheel trailer
- Not adjustable so you need to get the correct size
3. Reese Goose Box Gooseneck Coupler – Best for Stability
Another adapter that bolts on over the kind pin lube plate. This style of adapter has truly proven to be the best option for the most stable ride for a fifth wheel trailer. The Reese 94720 Goose Box Gooseneck Coupler is the only option on our list with Original Equipment approval. This means that if anything were to happen, the warranty on your trailer is going to stand. On top of the OE approval, the coupler itself comes with a seven year limited warranty. This is a well-protected product.
Another big feature of the Reese Goose Box is the airbag system put in place to increase the stability needed for a smooth ride on the fifth wheel trailer. These airbags do however increase the amount of required maintenance that this coupler will need over the years. The airbags need to be inflated to 50 psi every time you put the fifth wheel trailer to work.
Even with the high maintenance, this is still a high performing adapter that does a great job giving a secure and smooth ride. It does take up a lot of space, and weighs in at 175 pounds meaning it’s time to start calling the friends to come over to help and may add to the cost with the need to buy them a pizza.
Bolts on over king pin lube plate and replaces pin boxes, 20,000 pound towing capacity, 4,000 pound maximum tongue weight, 175 pound construction, Dimensions – 46 inches x 18.5 inches x 17.2 inches, airbags installed for maximum stability in the ride
- High level of stability with airbags included in design
- Solid towing capacity and tongue weight
- OE (Original equipment) approval means you won’t void your trailer warranty
- Great seven year warranty for the coupler itself
- A lot of maintenance is required
- Incredibly heavy and large
4. T Built 15
The T Built 15 gives all of the necessities of a fifth wheel to gooseneck adapter without all of the fluff and excessive necessary installations in the cargo box of your truck. It works by mounting over the truck’s original ball and basically converts the trailer.
This adapter also features a 20,000 pound towing capacity like most of the others on our list. While this is named the T Built 15, it is adjustable between 12 inches, 15 inches, and up to a maximum of 17 inches. This makes it a great and simple choice for almost all sizes of adapters.
The T Built 15 gets rid of all the fluff and that does mean the advanced cushioning. It can give a pretty rough ride, but still stays secure with a self-centering locking plate. It is a more affordable option, but it shows in the build.
20,000 pound towing capacity, adjustable between 12 inches, 15 inches, and 17 inches, lightweight build of only 35 pounds
- Easy installation
- Lightweight construction
- Secure self-centering locking plate
- Simple and cuts away all of the excesses in the cargo box
- Doesn’t provide a smooth ride
- Doesn’t have very many extra features
The Convert-A-Ball C5GX1216 Adjustable 5th Wheel Gooseneck Offset Adapter is the best choice to give your truck a break and help to take some extra care of it. It uses poly-cushions to absorb shock and maximize cushioning that helps to provide an incredibly stable ride in addition to making for less wear and tear on your truck.
This adapter is on par with the others with a 20,000 pound towing capacity and 4,000 maximum tongue weight. The thing that really sets this one apart from the rest is its extreme level of cushion.
The four different levels of height adjustment make it easy to move between different trailers with the same adapter. This way you can tow a trailer for work and then hook up the RV for a weekend with the family without too much hassle. For a huge amount of comfort and security, this could be the best possible fifth wheel to gooseneck adapter for you.
20,000 pound towing capacity, 4,000 maximum tongue weight, durable cast steel construction, poly-cushions that absorb huge amounts of shock and give a great ride
- Poly-cushions give a huge amount of shock absorption for a stable ride
- Reduced wear and tear on your truck
- Able to tow different trailers of different heights
- Only reaches a height of 16 inches when some trailers demand 17
6. T Built 17
While the T Built 15 is a fantastic model, the T Built 17 was made to do just a bit more. It has almost all of the same features including the adjustable height and optional space for a padlock when you are away from the fifth wheel.
The T Built 17 comfortably adjusts to 17 inches from a minimum of 12 inches, which means it can fit almost any fifth wheel trailer you can want to put on it. The secure connection that is provided is certain to make you feel safe on the road.
The transferring between one fifth wheel trailer to another is made simple with the adjustability of this fifth wheel hitch adapter. It is a great option for those that have more than one fifth wheel and want an adapter that will fit them all with great ease.
20,000 pound towing capacity, adjustable height between 12 and 17 inches
- Can fit almost any fifth wheel trailer with the adjustable height
- Tows up to 20,000 pounds
- Comes with everything you need in order to do the installation, meaning no runs to the hardware store just to get multiple new, costly pieces to do the install on your fifth wheel
- Could be improved with an incorporated cushioning system
Made specifically for trucks with a recessed gooseneck ball, the Andersen Lowered Aluminum Fifth Wheel Connection is the best bet for you if your truck needs a recessed fifth wheel to gooseneck adapter. This aluminum construction makes the hitch adapter for your fifth wheel much easier to install on your own as the base only weighs 35 pounds.
The aluminum construction doesn’t sacrifice strength for towing your fifth wheel like you may think. Fifth wheel to gooseneck adapters made out of steel aren’t even as strong as this lightweight aluminum one that Andersen has designed and built. This adapter can tow up to 24,000 pounds and has a 4,500 pound maximum tongue weight. This puts it ahead of most of the competitors in these two areas of towing and weight capacity.
The patented remote latch and unlatch cable is a great extra addition to this product making it simple to put your fifth wheel into a secure position as well as remove it. This isn’t found on many of the other fifth wheel adapters as it is patented to Andersen. They have been making great quality hitch adapters for years and are a great brand to trust with your fifth wheel.
24,000 pound towing capacity, 4,500 maximum tongue weight, adjustable height between 12 and 17 inches, designed for recessed gooseneck ball, remote latch and unlatch capabilities
- Higher towing capacity
- Incredibly lightweight without sacrificing strength
- Simple installation because it attaches directly to trucks rails
- Could be improved with an incorporated cushioning system
- Aluminum can be prone to corrosion
While a high price tag may start to push you away from this purchase, it’s important to look first at what you’re really buying. A piece of metal that is critical to your attachment from fifth wheel to truck, and is the main point of attachment, is well worth the investment and by no means is something to cheap out on. A high price is usually simply an indicator of a high quality adapter that will give you a better ride quality on the road and protect both your truck and RV trailer more than those that claim to just be affordable.
Installation is simple for the most part, but it can help to have someone there with you. These massive pieces of iron are heavy and for a quicker installation, a friend to support the gooseneck hitch adapter as you guide it will save valuable time. For the most part, it can be on with an RV attached within the hour.
The first thing to start thinking about before the big buy is your budget. The level of the adapter is going to either be fixed or adjustable, but the adjustable versions will be on the higher end of the price bracket. The smoother, safer ride often is worth the extra chunk of change. Decide your budget, and then it’s time to look into further specifications on each adapter.
In order to buy the best fifth wheel to gooseneck adapter for you and your truck, you need to have the correct measurements and be absolutely certain about them. Noone likes returning items, especially when paying the price of shipping a gooseneck hitch adapter that weighs 100 pounds.
In order to measure accurately for your fifth wheel and not have to worry about getting the wrong size and having to adjust your vacation plans, follow these simple instructions to get the right measurement.
First, line your truck up underneath the trailer you are going to be pulling. Once it is positioned perfectly, level the trailer and measure from the top of the ball hitch to the bottom of the king plate on the camper. Suggested adapter sizes are as follows:
With a measurement taken of 11 or 12 inches, buy a 12 inch adapter. 13 and 14 inch measurements will take a 15 inch adapter, and 15 or 16 inch measurements will take the 17 inch adapter.
Remember though, these are only the measurements for a fixed height adapter. The option to get the adjustable one is still there. Nothing is off the table.
Now that you know the correct size, you can move on to other areas of deciding the right purchase.
Just like any other piece of equipment on your fifth wheel, there is going to be a required amount of maintenance for the gooseneck hitch adapter. For some, there is a heavy amount of maintenance required, some require a small amount of infrequent maintenance that allows it to be left alone for long periods of time.
Most fifth wheel hitch adapters will require greasing every so often in order to reduce the amount of friction happening between all of the moving parts. It helps to remember this is a moving system that tows your RV trailer or another fifth wheel. Some adapters feature an airbag system that helps to provide a high level of stability, but also increases the amount of required maintenance. Every time you hitch or un-hitch the fifth wheel, these airbags will need to be re-pressurized which can be annoying to have to do all the time. If you don’t have an air compressor, it means a trip to the gas station just to use theirs every time.
Type of Setup
There are three different ways to set up a fifth wheel to gooseneck adapter hitch that differ in the way they are installed. The stability of the trailer is going to be greatly affected by the type of adapter you choose, so this is also a big decision.
The three types of adapters are as follows:
An adapter that completely takes the place of the trailer pin box. This is easily the most secure connection that you can get with fifth wheel to gooseneck adapters. It is also incredibly easy to install, but there is much more maintenance needed over time.
The second adapter only replaces the fifth wheel hitch in order to be compatible with the gooseneck. This gives an incredibly secure connection, but takes up a lot more space meaning you must have a six foot, minimum, truck bed.
The third is attached over the king pin lube plate. This is the smallest version of adapter there is, and only gives you a moderate level of security and safety.
A good question to ask before buying is if this adapter is going to void the warranty of your trailer. Some of the top brands in RV and trailer manufacturing state that the use of an adapter does, in fact, void the warranty that they put on the system. It makes sense though, to void the trailer warranty that can cost money due to another company’s fifth wheel to gooseneck adapter.
This does mean that the damage to the trailer would need to be caused directly by the gooseneck adapter itself in order to void the trailer warranty. When it gets down to the legal nitty-gritty, the trailer manufacturer would need to do an extensive investigation to be able to prove what happened and what company is at fault in the entire situation.
There are some gooseneck adapters for a trailer that are OE, original equipment, certified meaning that it won’t void the warranty no matter what happens. These gooseneck adapters have been approved to be fully safe to use with the trailer and are reliable even to the trailer’s manufacturers.
Safety and Security
One of the additional features to take into consideration when buying your fifth wheel to gooseneck adapter is the ability to lock up and feel safe with the connection to the trailer. The fifth wheel adapter hitch itself is going to be expensive enough to want to protect it from possible theft and a lock will be the only thing stopping them aside from the sheer weight of the gooseneck adapter itself. There are different trailer adapters that have the space for a padlock. This way storing your vehicle and trailer overnight won’t keep you up thinking about the possibility of someone taking it off.
In order to fully maximize the stability and smoothness of your ride with the fifth wheel trailer, some adapters will incorporate cushioning into the system. These cushions will work to absorb shock and decrease the rattling that naturally comes from moving down the road with a huge load strapped onto the back of the truck. Attaching something via a fifth wheel hitch minimizes the points of contact between the trailer and your truck. Cushioning can be a great option to help you get the best out of the adapter you purchase.
Another huge thing of note is the wear and tear towing a fifth wheel trailers can have on your truck. Gooseneck adapters that have a solid amount of cushioning built into them helps to get rid of the energy that is going to be overloaded onto your truck and trailer frame. When this is absorbed by the gooseneck hitch adapter, rather than transferred into your truck and trailer frame, both your pickup truck and fifth wheel trailer hitches will take less of a beating. This is going to result in a much longer life of your truck, the fifth wheel trailer hitch, and the gooseneck adapter that you have chosen to buy.
Chance are good that the fifth wheel to gooseneck adapter will haul the load you want, but it only hurts to assume. Double check the towing capacity of each fifth wheel adapter when going over what you may end up buying. If you are planning on hauling a massive fifth wheel trailer load, this is going to be incredibly important to ensure your safety on the road.
Most of the adapters for your gooseneck are going to boast a towing capacity of around 20,000 pounds. There are only a few on the list that can put more weight on your truck bed and allow for the fifth wheel to be loaded to up to 30,000 pounds. The price will however be reflective of the towing capacity for the fifth wheel hitch, as the build quality needs to be much higher for a gooseneck adapter that will pull more trailer weight.
Maximum Tongue Weight
Another important spec you need to take into consideration is the maximum tongue weight of the hitch adapter. This is the measurement of the maximum downward force put onto the pin box of gooseneck hitches when towing, which is affected by the maximum weight the trailer tongue can put out. In order to not overload the pin box in your pickup truck bed, you must look for the proper hitch adapter that can support that weight. Overloading the pin box with a poor quality, low price, fifth wheel hitch adapter will be incredibly dangerous to have on your tow vehicle.
Confusing this number with the towing capacity can be easy to do, but it is generally 10-20% lower than the towing capacity. The best way to load an RV trailer, or any 5th wheel trailer, is to put 60% of the weight on the hitch and in front of the axle. The proper weight distribution is going to maintain a level balance of the RV trailer and your truck to provide a higher ride quality. The right gooseneck hitch adapter is going to help make this a simple process for your fifth wheel without really needing to worry too much about overloading your truck bed. Our recent blog about low profile jack might also interest you.
Fifth wheel to gooseneck adapters have a lot of engineering that go into them in order to give you the safest and most comfortable ride while towing a massive load. Doing your research and getting the best fitting one for your truck is going to take care of your work or your family in the best possible way. Fortunately, there are a lot of good options out there on the market and these are only some of them. These seven are however tried and true to be some of the best fifth wheel to gooseneck adapters out there today. When you are on a road trip, having slider hitches is also very useful. Read our recent blog about best fifth wheel slider hitches for short bed trucks for your reference. And if you’re heading out on a boat trip, our post about best SUV canoe carriers is a must read for you.
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