If you’re making a big cross-country move and want to stay independent and maybe even turn the experience into a road trip, buying or renting your own trailer is a great cheap alternative to hiring movers or shipping everything you own on a plane. Of course, you’ll need a good lock to make sure your trailer stays connected to your truck. You definitely don’t want to feel paranoid that things can go off the rails (literally) at any moment. Plus, a good lock will make sure that no ill-intentioned thieves can just connect your trailer to their truck in the middle of the night and be on their way with your belongings.
A good lock offers more than security. It offers peace of mind. That’s why we’ve made this list of the best trailer locks. We want to help you find the best trailer lock that will help you on your road trip or cross-country move, and we believe that by the time you finish our list, you’ll have found that perfect lock to help you sleep easy during your journey.
Carry on reading to see our full list of the best trailer locks, followed by a recap breaking down what makes each product on our list stand out. Or jump straight to our number #1 pick on Amazon here.
- What Should You Look For in a Trailer Lock?
- Here’s How We’ve Determined the Best Trailer Locks
- How Do I Set Up a Trailer Lock?
- Verdict: Your Best Trailer Locks
What Should You Look For in a Trailer Lock?
Since it’s not exactly a common grocery list item, I’m going to assume that you haven’t bought a trailer lock before, in which case, it’s important to talk about what makes a good trailer lock. Even if you’ve bought one before, it’s always good to hash out the details and have your priorities straight. That’s why we’re clearly laying out our criteria for the best trailer locks. After you’re done reading our criteria, you’ll be able to properly understand how we came to the conclusions we did on our list, and you’ll have the tools to conduct your own further research if you so desire.
Criteria #1: Security – I hope that this criterion is pretty intuitive. A lock that isn’t secure is no lock at all. Of course, discerning which locks are and aren’t secure is a little harder, but that’s what we’re here for. To start off, the two main aspects of security are the material of your trailer hitch lock and the locking mechanism it uses. If your lock is made out of weak material, well, it won’t really matter how secure the actual lock is if you can just smash it open with a hammer or crowbar. And on the other end of the spectrum, the toughest hitch lock in the world made out of diamond won’t really do you any good if I can jimmy the lock open with a bobby pin. There are of course other factors, but we’ll address those more as they come up in the specific trailer locks on our list.
Criteria #2: Durability – Even assuming you don’t have any break-in attempts – a decent assumption, as a lock is usually more than enough to deter most thieves – your trailer coupler lock will still be subject to the same wear and tear that any other possession is subject to, and we want a trailer lock that can handle said wear and tear. Trailer hitch locks are pretty cheap (more on this later), but that cheap price can really pile up if you’re replacing your lock a few times a year. Besides, going out and buying a new trailer lock is just plain annoying. The best trailer hitch locks will be able to last for years to come, and we want to help you find nothing but the best, high-quality trailer hitch locks out there.
Criteria #3: Size – This criterion isn’t a measure of objective quality in a trailer lock, but it’s still very important. The reason the size of your trailer hitch lock is so important is that trailer hitch locks, and trailer hitches themselves, are not one-size-fits-all. There are some locks that are a little more flexible in terms of which trailer couplers they’ll fit on, but don’t expect any trailer hitch lock to be universal. Before buying a trailer hitch lock, you will need to make sure that it fits your specific trailer hitch. To aid in this task, we will make sure to list the size of all of our best trailer hitch locks.
Criteria #4: Price – We’re not here to make you spend a ton of money for no reason. Meeting this criterion is less about being cheap and more about justifying your price. We’d rather buy an expensive product that’s cheaper than it should be than waste money on a cheaper product that isn’t worth the money and that will just break on you or not perform well. Luckily, even the more expensive trailer hitch locks are pretty affordable, so you really won’t have to worry too much about expenses even if you decide to splurge for the fancier options.
Here’s How We’ve Determined the Best Trailer Locks
We measured the specs of the top products on the market against our listed criteria to see how they held up and if they’re worth buying. We then checked customer reviews, blog posts, and “best trailer hitch locks” articles to see if the products on our list performed as advertised. We will also make sure to point out any extra features that may not fall squarely under any of our listed criteria. Plus, we’ll try to include a variety of different locks types of locks on our list so that everyone can find exactly what they’re looking for.
And without further ado, here is our list – tailored to your specific needs – of the best hitch locks.
#1: Master Lock 2866DAT (Best Value – All-Purpose)
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Our list of the best trailer hitch locks starts off with the Master Lock 2866DAT, and I promise you’ll see the Master Lock brand name on our list again if you keep reading. Master Lock really lives up to their name, and they’re one of the most trusted trailer hitch lock brands out there. The 2866DAT particularly is one of their most popular trailer hitch locks, mostly because this trailer coupler lock is both cheap and high-quality.
This heavy-duty trailer coupler lock features a locking hitch pin that fits in both 1/2-inch and 5/8-inch receivers, so you have some flexibility on which trailers you use this lock with. The 1/2-inch trailer hitch locking pin is rated up to 3,500 lbs., while the 5/8-inch trailer hitch locking pin is rated up to 10,000 lbs. Plus, the locking head rotates completely on a 360-degree axis so you don’t have to blindly fumble around any corners at an awkward angle to unlock your trailer.
You’re also getting a snap-on cover that gives this high-quality lock a weather-resistant cover and prevents dirt and moisture from entering the keyway. The Master Lock 2866DAT also comes with a simple push-lock locking mechanism that makes this trailer hitch lock one of the easiest-to-use locks on the market. Finally, this lock uses a receiver locking mechanism that will deter picking and other forms of theft.
As we said before, this Master Lock coupler lock is one of the most popular trailer hitch locks out there, and it’s been featured on multiple lists and blog posts, while also garnering plenty of support from the paying customers. The Master Lock 2866DAT has been reviewed more than 6,000 times on Amazon. Customers praised this high-quality trailer hitch lock for its versatility, waterproof cap, and its durable stainless steel build.
As a nice little bonus, adding to the value of this hitch lock, it comes with a spare key which you may very well need, as one of the only complaints about this lock was that the keys are a little flimsy. But if you want a cheap, simple, and versatile lock, the Master Lock 2866DAT is the best option available and the best value on the market.
#2: Master Lock 389DAT (Best Lock)
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I told you that you should get used to the Master Lock name, and I wasn’t lying. The popular coupler lock company managed to secure the top two spots on our list, with the second spot going to their 9DAT trailer hitch lock. This lock is a tiny bit more expensive than our number one pick, but it offers some features that the 2866DAT is lacking. If you’re willing to pay more for the absolute best product, there are a few reasons why you may decide to splurge for the Master Lock 389DAT.
Reason #1 to Choose This Product: Rust- and Corrosion-Resistant
The Master Lock 2866DAT has a cap that offers waterproofing and other weather-resistance, but the 389DAT is completely rust- and -corrosion resistant in its own right, so you won’t have an extra cap to worry about, and you can be certain that this trailer hitch lock will be able to handle the weather of any location you might end up driving through. You get the same amazing durability you would from the 2866DAT in fewer pieces. If you want the most weather-resistant lock on the market, you should get the 389DAT coupler lock for your trailer.
Reason #2 to Choose This Product: Bright Design
As we mentioned earlier, they say that the biggest reason to buy a trailer hitch lock is the statement. With most thieves, as soon as they see you have a lock, they’ll decide to leave you be and go prey on a less-prepared victim. The 389DAT has a neon-red color scheme that may be a bit gaudy, but everyone will be able to see from a mile away that your trailer hitch is securely locked in place, so nobody will be getting any ideas any time soon. That makes this trailer lock one of the best ways to stop break-ins before they happen. If you appreciate the value of a preemptive measure, then the 387 DAT is the perfect hitch lock for you.
On top of the weather-resistant design and the discouraging color scheme, this heavy-duty hitch lock comes with an anti-picking locking mechanism, and just like its predecessor, it features a versatile lock that fits on trailer couplers with a size of 1 7/8 inches, 2 inches, and 2 5/16 inches. No matter what trailer you have, you should be ready to go.
Just like our number one coupler lock, the 389DAT is featured on multiple lists, and customers praised it for being easy to install. If you want to pay a little more for the best option out there, buy the Master Lock 389DAT.
#3: Bolt 7018448 5/8″ Receiver Lock (Best If You Hate Clutter)
If you’re like me and you just hate having one more key to worry about and hate wasting time flipping through your keyring, then there’s no coupler lock for you except the Bolt 7018448 5/8″ Receiver Lock. Why is that? Well, the Bolt 7018448 5/8″ Receiver Lock has one absolutely incredible feature. If you have a compatible truck, you can unlock this coupler lock with your car keys and save yourself the trouble of having one more key rattling around in your pockets.
That amazing feature would be enough on its own to earn a spot on our list, but this lock also features a stainless steel 5/8-inch diameter pin that’s compatible with hitch receivers from 2 inches to 2.5 inches in diameter. It also has an auto-lock feature that causes it to lock automatically whenever the key is removed, making it perfect for anyone who’s a little more forgetful. On top of that, you’re getting a locking shutter to keep out dirt and moisture, a plate tumbler sidebar to prevent picking and bumping, and a double ball bearing locking mechanism that’s nice and secure.
The Bolt 7018448 5/8″ Receiver Lock is definitely on the more expensive end of things as far as coupler locks go, but it’s still more than affordable. It’s very well-reviewed, and, of course, for some customers, that convenience just can’t be beat.
It is important to remember that you will need to get a model of this lock that’s compatible with your specific car, but the widget on the Amazon page makes it quick and simple to check compatibility. Also, this lock is only compatible with trucks from Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Ram. Unfortunately, if you have a different brand then you’re out of luck. But if you do have a truck from one of those manufacturers, and you want to keep your pockets a little lighter, then the Bolt 7018448 5/8″ Receiver Lock is the perfect heavy-duty coupler lock for your trailer.
#4: CZC Auto Black Trailer Hitch Coupler Lock (Best Low Cost)
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I’ve mentioned several times already that it’s pretty easy to keep things cheap and stay within a budget when you’re buying coupler locks, but for some people, that’s not enough. And that’s okay. If you’re looking for the cheapest of the cheap, then the CZC Auto Black Trailer Hitch Coupler Lock is the perfect trailer tongue lock for your trailer while you zoom across the country.
This affordable lock is made out of hardened steel to resist break-in attempts, and as a nice bonus, it’s incredibly small and light-weight, so you don’t have to worry about it weighing you down when you’re not using it to keep your trailer fastened in place. Adding to the value of this cheap lock even more, it comes with a 30-day, money-back guarantee for any reason and a 12-month warranty for quality-related issues, so you’re getting the same financial security that usually only comes with more expensive products.
This lock features a design with a 1/4-inch diameter tongue lock pin with an effective length of 3/4 inches. The small size may restrict the use of this lock to very specific trailers, so it’s a good idea to be absolutely certain that it’s compatible with yours before purchasing the CZC Auto Black Trailer Hitch Coupler Lock. Aside from that, and despite its cheap price, customers were incredibly happy with this product, and praised the CZC Auto Black Trailer Hitch Coupler Lock for being a strong and reliable lock.
#5: Andersen Hitches Stainless Steel Lock Set (Most Durable Lock)
If you’re looking for a lock that’s more than just a message, then you’ll need a lock that will make a whack or crank from a crowbar feel like a gentle nudge. If that’s what you’re looking for, the heavy-duty Andersen Hitches Stainless Steel Lock Set is just perfect for you and your trailer. This hardened steel lock can resist the most intense attacks, and it’ll make your trailer tongue more secure than Fort Knox. The Andersen Hitches Stainless Steel Lock Set features over 30,000 pounds of sheer strength, so you can go ahead and watch a thief try to break in. Nothing’s getting through this bad boy.
On top of its heavy-duty design, this secure stainless steel lock set comes equipped with a receiver pin that fits all standard 2″ and 2 1/2″ receivers, so you have some flexibility in terms of which trailer you use. The key also uses a “push-to-lock” design that will guarantee you’re never unsure of whether or not you properly locked your trailer. On top of the durable and strong lock, you’re getting two heavy-duty keys that are reversible, so you won’t need to play that guessing game every time you unlock your trailer.
The Andersen Hitches Stainless Steel Lock Set is the most expensive product on our list, but that’s a relative term, and this hardened-steel lock isn’t exactly going to set you back on your budget. It’s reviewed very well, and when it comes to true theft-deterrent, it might be the cream of the crop. The Andersen Hitches Stainless Steel Lock Set is the best coupler lock when it comes to true security that can handle a few hammer blows.
How Do I Set Up a Trailer Lock?
How exactly you connect your trailer and lock to your truck will depend on the specific lock and locking mechanism you have, and unfortunately, I have neither the time nor the expertise to explain every single locking system. I will say that it’s usually relatively intuitive, and there will be one end that connects to your truck and another end that connects to your trailer.
The lock itself will usually have a bar that acts as the fastener, which you will remove with the key. It’s really that simple. Your trailer will be nice and secure before you know it. If you still need some help, there are plenty of YouTube videos that are a little clearer than any amount of text can be.
Verdict: Your Best Trailer Locks
We’re reaching the end of our list, and you’re hopefully starting to get a good idea of which of our products is best for you. But if you haven’t made up your mind yet, not to worry. We don’t want to rush, and we know how important it is to make sure you’re getting the lock that’s perfect for you. That’s why we’re going to recap all of our locks and focus on their standout features. This way, you’ll be able to really know what each lock has to offer you.
If you want the best value for your money, pick the Master Lock 2866DAT.
Master Lock is the king of the hill when it comes to trailer coupler locks, and the 2866DAT is one of their most popular products. This handy and reliable lock fits a wide variety of trailer tongues, and it has a complex locking mechanism that makes it hard to pick or break. The lock itself is nice and sturdy, and depending on which size you get, it features a range of up to 10,000 pounds. This popular lock also uses a push-to-lock design that will always leave you certain that your trailer is nice and secure. On top of everything, this product is nice and cheap. That quality-to-price ratio makes it just about the highest value product out there, and that’s why the 2866DAT trailer hitch lock is our number one pick.
If you need the most convenient option, pick the Bolt 7018448 5/8″ Receiver Lock.
Keys, keys, keys. Between your apartment, your car, your trailer lock, and whatever else you may own, it can feel like you’re just carrying around a hundred keys wherever you go. If you really don’t want another set of keys ringing around in your pockets, then the Bolt 7018448 5/8″ Receiver Lock is the only way for you to secure your trailer. Assuming you have one of the many compatible trucks, this amazing trailer lock lets you use your vehicle’s keys to operate it, so you don’t have to have another key to keep track of. It’s by far the most convenient option on the market and the perfect choice for anyone who wants to keep their pockets light.
If you want to keep the spending cheap, pick the CZC Auto Black Trailer Hitch Coupler Lock.
If you don’t feel that a trailer hitch lock is something you really need to spend a ton of money on, then you’ll definitely want to keep things cheap with the CZC Auto Black Trailer Hitch Coupler Lock. Just having any lock at all on your trailer will usually be enough to discourage a thief, so why spend all that money on some high-tech lock? Besides, the CZC Auto Black Trailer Hitch Coupler Lock will still get the job done and more. This affordable lock is made out of hardened steel so it can take a few hammer blows or crowbar cranks. It’s incredibly small and light-weight so it won’t be a hassle, and it’s able to fit in your pocket. Keep things cheap with the CZC Auto Black Trailer Hitch Coupler Lock and spend your hard-earned money elsewhere.
That finally brings us to the end of our list. We hope you’ve started to make your decision. If the highlighted options above weren’t quite what you’re looking for, you may be more interested in the loud and bright red 389DAT from Master Lock, which will tell everyone for miles around that your trailer is safe and secure. Or, you may want the Andersen Hitches Stainless Steel Lock Set, which will leave you feeling safe no matter who comes for your possessions.
If you’re having trouble deciding, remember that it may be helpful to think about which traits are most important to you in a trailer lock. Once you have that in mind, you may realize that even the more popular items don’t quite have what you’re looking for.
That’s all for now. We wish you happy and safe travels, and we hope that your lock never has to be tested!