I asked my dealer to install a new hensley hitch on my new trailer and a prodigy brake controller. My vehicle already as a factory tow package.
Quote I got was:
$142 for the Prodigy
$41 to install the Prodigy
$246 to install the Hensley
Seems steep, but it would be much easier to have them do it so when I pick up the trailer I have the Hitch & everything. If I go to someone else (or do it myself) I still would need to get the trailer home.
Do the prices seem ok?
*This Message was edited on 05-Mar-03 03:22 PM by ph39*
Where are you located? Prices will vary with the region. What kind of tow vehicle and what kind of trailer? Even without knowing this info, the price does seem a bit steep. The Hensley Arrow takes a couple of hours to install, maybe another hour if you are starting from zero knowledge (has the dealer ever installed one?). That makes it $82/hour for labor plus tax (what state charges tax on labor?).
I suggest you consider installing the HA yourself. If the dealer has never installed one before, odds are he won't know how to set it up properly. You will have to learn how it goes together anyway to get it adjusted and the best way to begin this process is to install it (IMHO).
Alternatively, if the TT dealer is near home and you drive slowly, you could tow it home on the ball. Then install the HA at your leisure. If you live near me, I'll come over and help you.
If your truck has a brake controller plug-in, and came with a pigtail for it, all there is to installing the Prodigy is connecting the pigtail to it, plugging it in, and mounting it.
Unless you don't have any mechanical skills at all, I'd recommend having the trailer delivered (they don't do it free?) and installing the Hensley yourself. I used a floor jack to lift it into position.
I also would recommend installing the hitch yourself, its not that dificult, I am not the mechanical type and I have done it twice now. The instructions are fairly easy to follow, i'm not sure i would trust a dealer to do the install unless they have done it in the past. Good luck your going to love that hitch and brake controller
The dealer has installed several - but not a lot. He says he does about 2 year.
The $82 / hr is right on. He is charging me for 3 hours labor @ $82 / hr. I live in south eastern Michigan - in this area its my guess that this is not cheap, but probably not out of the ordinary.
I have a 2002 suburban with the standard tow package. It has the 7 pin connector at the rear of the truck, but I don't know if it has a "plug in" for the brake controller.
I don't mind installing it myself (I'm only so/so mechanically, but my father is a mechanic/machine repairman so I can get pretty good help when I need it) but I would need to get it home. Although its not that far (20 miles) I not looking forward to pulling it home just on a ball without sway or wt distribution. I haven't asked about delivery - but I'm sure its not going to be free (especially now, since I've already paid for the trailer, they are just holding it for me until I need it).
Any handy person could install a Hensley in 2 hours tops. If you've done it once you could do the next one in an hour easy. 3 hours labor is a ripoff, sorry. I took less than 2 hours and I scrutinzed every detail of the instructions to make sure I was installing correctly. If the dealer wants to get paid by the hour tell him you want to pay only for the time spent on installation or like the others have said, do it yourself. Its not hard to do. Even better, make a shout out on this forum to see if any members live near you and maybe they would be willing to come by and give you guidance. There are not that many tools required, ask the dealer if you could do the installation in their yard with your own tools.
*This Message was edited on 06-Mar-03 10:01 AM by NY CAMPER*
Carriage 31KS3 Cameo LXI.
2003 Ford F-350 Crew Cab, 6.0 diesel, short bed, 4x4 Prodigy
Just had my Hensley installed today as well as installation of Prodigy in my new F250. Total bill was $110. I love my rv dealer. Colemans Campers, Hartford, Il. (close to St. Louis)
2003 F250 V-10,
2002 Nash 26J
If this dealer does two installations per year, and is going to charge 3 hours labor, seems to me that they are slow learners, or taking you for a ride. If I were you, I would do it myself at the dealers lot and save myself some money. Which was alluded to in another reply to your post, you will feel better about it when doing it yourself. You will also become knowledgable about the HA, which will benefit you later.
I've installed my Hensley twice. I installed them on the dealers lot after signing the paperwork. First time took 1 hour and 45 minutes. Second time took just a few minuted over an hour.
It is not hard. All the needed tools are listed in the installation manual.
The Prodigy is a snap to install. Especially if you get the harness made for your make (GM, Ford, Dodge). It plugs into a plug on the firewall and the other end into the back of the Prodigy. The mounting bracket requires two screws. Or on a pinch you could use double stick tape as a temp fix. Total installation time less than 30 minutes (probably more like 15 minutes).
I would pocket the cash. Show up, inspect the trailer, sign the paperwork, install the Hensley and the Prodigy and hit the road.
Russell '12 GMC Sierra 3500HD SRW '13 Excel Winslow 34IKE
Check with the dealer to see if they have someone who will deliver your trailer to you. We did this when we took delivery of our TT. I then installed the Hensley at my liesure. The 2002 Suburban has a plug-in for a brake controller. It was a very simple installation. I mounted mine just to the left of the center console. You should have received a fuse and a wiring loom for the set up.
Good luck and have fun. Hensley also has the tech line you can call if you run into any problems.
'02 2500 Suburban 8.1 L / 4.10
'02 Wilderness 31G
Barker 3500 Power Jack