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Old 05-27-2015, 06:26 AM   #1
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Questions about towing a Toad

I have never towed anything with a motorhome so I am looking for sound advice from you the experts. I have a 2004 Fleetwood Southwind GVWR of 20,700, GCWR 25,700, workhorse chassis W22. I am thinking of towing a 2001 Chrysler Town and Country Mini van GVWR 2,541 with front GVWR 1,293. I would like to tow it using a car tow dolly with surge brakes since I already have the mini van and to purchase only a car dolly seems the cheapest solution to be able to tow a toad. All opinions, pro and con, are welcomed. Want to learn about this before I spend precious funds on a dolly and find out I purchased the wrong dolly or that this is not even possible. I don't recall seeing any motorhomes towing mini vans. I've seen lots of other stuff though.

Thank you
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Old 05-27-2015, 09:26 AM   #2
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Welcome to iRV2.

I flat tow my short wheel base 2000 Caravan Sport, empty weight of the van is 4,100 lbs. Using a Remco fluid pump on the transmission and Blue Ox tow bar. A tow dolly would have been cheaper to set up, but seeing the work involved to load & secure the vehicle on the dolly and the question about ; where do you park the dolly at your site ? I decided flat tow was for me.
Anyway that's not the reason I'm posting this morning . I'm seeing some confusing numbers and terms in your post, with regard to the T&C.
GVWR ( Gross Vehicle Weight Rating ) of 2541 ? Did you get the rating in kilograms off the door sticker ?
Same for the FAWR ( Front Axle Weight Rating ) I think you have the kilogram number.
Your coach is rated for 5,000 lbs , of trailer tow , and that's probably the hitch rating too. So very important to get the numbers right. I'd say take the van out and get it weighed , then you need the weight of any dolly you consider, added up those, two numbers need to be under 5,000 lbs.
IF and only IF, your hitch has a higher rating; there should be a tag on the hitch;, AND your coach isn't loaded to the max GVWR , can you go over the 5,000 lbs. of tow weight. So you should have your coaches weight ; loaded for travel too.
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Old 05-27-2015, 09:48 AM   #3
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You are right. The GVWR is 5600 and Front wheel is 2800. So as I read your post the mini van is to heavy to be towed with my Southwind. Is that correct?
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Old 05-27-2015, 01:22 PM   #4
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You are right. The GVWR is 5600 and Front wheel is 2800. So as I read your post the mini van is to heavy to be towed with my Southwind. Is that correct?
Tom, that's probably the case. Your Southwind likely has a 5,000 pound hitch. Do you know your hitch rating?
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Old 05-27-2015, 01:46 PM   #5
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Tom,

GVWR on the van is its total capacity, not how much it actually weighs empty. Curb Weight is the number you want to use and the best would be to put the van on a scales for a true number as Skip suggested. Even with the added weight of a dolly, I think you might squeeze into 5K.
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Old 05-27-2015, 03:58 PM   #6
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Hitch rating is 5,000. I will weigh the van to find out the true curb weight. If it turns out that I just squeeze by, is that still a good idea ?? Would just making the weight still be risky and maybe an accident waiting to happen? I really want to be on the safe side.

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Old 05-27-2015, 05:56 PM   #7
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Hitch rating is 5,000. I will weigh the van to find out the true curb weight. If it turns out that I just squeeze by, is that still a good idea ?? Would just making the weight still be risky and maybe an accident waiting to happen? I really want to be on the safe side.

Thanks all
Tom--you will get several differing opinions on this. Personally I'd prefer to stay within the manufacturer's recommendation. It's good that you are considering a supplemental brake to help safely stop the extra weight. There is an entire section of the forum that deals with towing and tow vehicles; you might find more info there. Toads and Motorhome Related Towing - iRV2 Forums
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Old 05-27-2015, 06:19 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Lopez View Post
I have never towed anything with a motorhome so I am looking for sound advice from you the experts. I have a 2004 Fleetwood Southwind GVWR of 20,700, GCWR 25,700, workhorse chassis W22. I am thinking of towing a 2001 Chrysler Town and Country Mini van GVWR 2,541 with front GVWR 1,293. I would like to tow it using a car tow dolly with surge brakes since I already have the mini van and to purchase only a car dolly seems the cheapest solution to be able to tow a toad. All opinions, pro and con, are welcomed. Want to learn about this before I spend precious funds on a dolly and find out I purchased the wrong dolly or that this is not even possible. I don't recall seeing any motorhomes towing mini vans. I've seen lots of other stuff though.

Thank you
We've towed Honda mini-vans since 1995. In '97 it was on a dolly and behind a 29' Type C, in '98 it was behind a 35' Santara Type A, in 2000 it was a Dutch Star DP (5,000# tow rating). Then we switched to Honda cars on a dolly behind the MH. Then went to a '02 40' DSDP (6,000# tow rating). In very late '04 we bought the present '05 Ody and towed it four down till Honda said not to. Did get Honda to pay for the towing gear we bought and got a Demco KK-460 dolly. Used it for a couple years then went back to four down towing. Now we're towing it with the Magna (15,000# tow rating). So, yes people do tow mini-vans with their MH's. We've also talked with several other Ody owners who tow theirs.


Yes, supplemental braking is required in many states and what your home state requires is of no concern since braking laws don't follow your vehicle, they are different in different states and you must comply with them when in that state.
Some dollys have surge brakes, some have electric brakes which would require a controller in you RV.
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Old 05-27-2015, 07:16 PM   #9
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Don't forget weight of tow dolly.
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Old 05-28-2015, 07:20 AM   #10
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Thanks everyone. You have given me much to think about and to study. I am now able to make an informed decision which will ensure our and everyone's safety."THANK YOU"
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