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Old 01-01-2012, 10:26 AM   #1
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Do I need auxillary braking?

I have a Holiday Rambler 40 ft diesel pusher. I am going to be towing a 2012 ford focus. It only weighs 2920 lbs, and I will probably get a very substantial tow bar for it. I've read many posts on this site supporting the virtues of aux braking systems, but with such a light vehicle being towed by something so big, is this necessary? If so, what will happen if I don't?
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Old 01-01-2012, 10:38 AM   #2
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Probably nothing will happen, but are you ready for the possible consequences of not doing so? Its like not having insurance, its not necassary until something happens.
Be safe, use a braking system!!!!
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Old 01-01-2012, 10:50 AM   #3
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Some states have laws requiring auxiliary braking in towed vehicles. The extra braking is also helpful during emergency stops and when towing in the mountains, reducing stress on the hitch/tow bar/base plate and front end of the towed vehicle.
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Old 01-01-2012, 10:51 AM   #4
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Being SAFE and not SORRY is always a good consideration. However, so long as you don't exceed the manufacturer's fully loaded Gross Vehicle Weight - including the weight of your toad figured into the total weight, you should be able to safely tow your toad without auxiliary braking.
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Old 01-01-2012, 10:51 AM   #5
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I guess the issue would also be, aux braking can provide "break away" braking vice a runaway going where ever till colliding with another object.
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Old 01-01-2012, 10:52 AM   #6
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Required by law in almost every state. Required by common sence in my mind.
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Old 01-01-2012, 10:56 AM   #7
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Most states require auxiliary braking on anything towed above a certain weight. Maybe someone will come along with a chart. I believe in Nebraska that is 2000# and 2500# in Iowa.
Your insurance may be a problem if you have a accident and the tow vehicle was over the weight limit for towing without brakes.
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Old 01-01-2012, 11:07 AM   #8
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Here's a chart on what various states require for auxiliary braking.
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Old 01-01-2012, 11:12 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RJay
Here's a chart on what various states require for auxiliary braking.
Looks like I am on the "cusp" of most states requirements, so I guess it would be wise. Thanks for finding that chart!
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Old 01-01-2012, 11:22 AM   #10
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Excellent choice.
I was amazed at how much difference the toad brakes made when I was involved in a panic stop-----it made the difference between stopping and not. The laws of physics are in play in every state.
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Old 01-01-2012, 11:29 AM   #11
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I'm a cheap (insert term of choice here) but I still invested in toad brakes. Loaded with fuel/water and a weeks worth of supplies I have enough CCC to tow my Cherokee and still be under GVWR (barely).

If I ever have an accident I'm not only worried about being legal, I want to KNOW I did everything possible to avoid having it in the first place. This means having supplementary braking IMO.
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Old 01-01-2012, 12:08 PM   #12
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Do you need an aux brake system:

If you have "All wheel breaking" then the stopping distance for all vehicles on any given stretch of road, once you do all the math, is the same for the same speed, But if you have any wheels that do not break, it becomes much farther.

So, so long as your front end does not impact anyone's rear end, no you don't need an aux system... but if it does, and you don't have one, and the "Victim" knows physics, the phrase "Reckless endangerment" may be spoken in civil court and the numbers can be quite large.
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Old 01-01-2012, 12:52 PM   #13
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This question gets recycled every few weeks, and I really have to ask why the posters don't do a bit of searching the prior posts, and research first?
At any rate, tow without brakes if you dare. Just don't expect to stop safely or quickly in every situation or guarantee your hitch and tow equipment to stay intact. A panic stop with a 3,000 pound toad without brakes could put double or triple that force on your hitch (is a 3g stop possible?). Add more excitement if your tow bar is not level and the front of the toad lurches up or down. And how much will that extra 3-9k pounds of forward thrust extend the coach's stopping distance? Possibly enough to hit the idiot who pulled in front of you? I have had an 8-wheel lockup stop and avoided a collision. The only damage was to reset the stuff in the cabinets and calm ourselves down. Oh yeah, how confident will you feel coming down a 7% mountain grade and eyeballing a 10 mph hairpin curve ahead?
To me, it's a no-brainer to have a reliable aux. braking system. Go ahead, think you're saving some money and take your chances. Just please don't drive within 100 miles of me.
Hope this didn't seem too opinionated.
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Old 01-01-2012, 05:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by two2go
This question gets recycled every few weeks, and I really have to ask why the posters don't do a bit of searching the prior posts,
Hope this didn't seem too opinionated.
Since You have to ask, I'll answer. I'm the op, and before I ask a question, I do search posts by put in key words. Numerous posts come up, and many of them are titled otherwise. Then you do a search, and everyone gets into wordy arguments about which system is the best, some threads are 10 and 12 pages long after 5 or six pages of who likes what rather than why you should, I just figure I'll start the thread and get a straight answer. I'm sure the answers are in those threads but I guess I'm just not patient enough to keep searching for the answers.

Don't get me wrong, the other threads were very informative on which system to use, all the choices, how to save money installing it. In fact looking for a product in this site is great.

I was trying to "cut to the chase" so to speak, and I really appreciate everyone's input, it helped me make my decision to put the aux brakes on.
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