We're Changing the way you think about 5th Wheel Plate Repair and Replacement.

We're Changing the way you think about 5th Wheel Plate Repair and Replacement.

Submitted by mbair on Tue, 06/25/2019 - 13:57
5th Wheel Plate Repair and Replacement



Inspection of a tractor trailer 5th wheel plate and kingpin is an absolute necessity for ensuring operational and road safety; however, this inspection is often neglected, overlooking rusted, corroded, or cracked parts that need repair or replacement.

85%-90% of 5th wheel plate failures are found during the DOT inspection.

In this video, Lead Service Technician, Larry Anders, walks us through our 5-point process and showcases what sets Utility Keystone Trailer Sales service team apart from the rest.

Utility Keystone's 5th wheel plate repair and replacement process:

1) Inspection Phase:

  • Check Kingpin and verify wear:
    A kingpin gauge is used to check for wear and tear. If damage found, the kingpin will be replaced. Larry explains, "a worn kingpin can be responsible for drivers experiencing a loose trailer hook up or sliding trailer, or even resulting in a runaway trailer. Greasing the 5th wheel can help prevent wear and your kingpin will last much longer

  • Check supports and look for holes/rust damage (inside check)

  • Check functionality of air and electric, noting nonworking components

2) Removal Phase:

  • Disconnect air and electric

  • Remove bottom rail rivets and cut floor screws

  • Plan rebuild/restoration

3) Rebuild Phase:

  • First, we replace all rusted vertical and horizontal support gussets on the approach plate. In rare occasions, we'll rebuild the entire plate from scratch with measurements and specs from the original plate. 

  • Then, the rebuilt approach plate is fitted to a new universal plate.

4) Reinstall Phase:

  • Test fit new 5th wheel plate and rerun wires and connections.

  • Test and replace any faulty connections.

  • Redrill new rivet holes

  • Finally, the newly rebuilt 5th wheel plate is installed using 3/8 stainless rivets, these help cover the workload of the floor screws that were removed. These 3/8” stainless rivets are much stronger than a bolt or steel rivet or aluminum rivet.

5) Test Phase:

  • Reconnect air/electric connections.

  • Test durability and reliability of plate.


Watch the video of our 5th Wheel Plate Repair Process for step by step process from inspection and removal, to rebuilding, installation, and testing.


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