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Old 03-31-2014, 12:46 PM   #1
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New to motorhomes and towing

We are new owners of our first motorhome, a 2014 Tiffin Allegro Open Road 31SA. We are towing a 2012 Ford Fiesta with a blue ox. Our dealer said we would not need tow brakes since our car is so light (2578 lbs). Reading some of the forums about tow brakes have me totally confused. Do we need them or not? We will be traveling across country this summer, Alabama to Utah. I don't mind spending the money if they are needed. If we are safe without them I'd rather not spend more money. We are finding that the purchase of the motorhome is just the begining of the expenses.
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Old 03-31-2014, 12:56 PM   #2
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Think of it this way - while you may or amy bot need brakes while going/towing forward.... what happens if for some unknown reason your TOAD becomnes disconnected from your MH while under way.... tow brakes would be the only think that could stop your TOAD somewhat gracefully... Just my two cents..
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Old 03-31-2014, 12:59 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SjCruises View Post
We are new owners of our first motorhome, a 2014 Tiffin Allegro Open Road 31SA. We are towing a 2012 Ford Fiesta with a blue ox. Our dealer said we would not need tow brakes since our car is so light (2578 lbs). Reading some of the forums about tow brakes have me totally confused. Do we need them or not? We will be traveling across country this summer, Alabama to Utah. I don't mind spending the money if they are needed. If we are safe without them I'd rather not spend more money. We are finding that the purchase of the motorhome is just the begining of the expenses.
Here's each state's towing laws:

Toad Brake Requirements
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Old 03-31-2014, 02:33 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gma-n-Gpa View Post
Think of it this way - while you may or amy bot need brakes while going/towing forward.... what happens if for some unknown reason your TOAD becomnes disconnected from your MH while under way.... tow brakes would be the only think that could stop your TOAD somewhat gracefully... Just my two cents..

I'm a little confused by your post. I didn't think a toad braking system has anything to do with stopping the toad if it breaks away. I thought it requires a breakaway system for that. Is there some kind of braking system out there that I don't know about that includes breakaway protection?
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Old 03-31-2014, 02:34 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SjCruises View Post
We are new owners of our first motorhome, a 2014 Tiffin Allegro Open Road 31SA. We are towing a 2012 Ford Fiesta with a blue ox. Our dealer said we would not need tow brakes since our car is so light (2578 lbs). Reading some of the forums about tow brakes have me totally confused. Do we need them or not? We will be traveling across country this summer, Alabama to Utah. I don't mind spending the money if they are needed. If we are safe without them I'd rather not spend more money. We are finding that the purchase of the motorhome is just the begining of the expenses.
I personally would never pull a toad without a braking system. JMHO!
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Old 03-31-2014, 02:39 PM   #6
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Good luck with getting all the facts to make your own decision.
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Old 03-31-2014, 02:43 PM   #7
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Old 03-31-2014, 02:46 PM   #8
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Regardless of the weight of the toad any increase in weight increases the stopping distance of the MH. For that reason alone I wouldn't tow without a braking system on the toad. If you are towing and the toad becomes unhitched (granted the safety cables will hold it in line) Guess what's gonna stop the toad when you hit the brakes? You can do mucho damage. Finally a lot of states require braking systems on towed vehicles. Just sayin'!!!
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Old 03-31-2014, 03:08 PM   #9
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My Brake Buddy has a breakaway switch. I think most toad brakes have that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MSHappyCampers View Post
I'm a little confused by your post. I didn't think a toad braking system has anything to do with stopping the toad if it breaks away. I thought it requires a breakaway system for that. Is there some kind of braking system out there that I don't know about that includes breakaway protection?
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Old 03-31-2014, 03:13 PM   #10
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My Brake Buddy has a breakaway switch. I think most toad brakes have that.

Thanks Mark, I learn something new here every day! Being new to MH'ing, the only braking system I have had experience with is the ReadyBrake. With it, the braking system and the breakaway system are two different animals!

With the Brake Buddy is there a cable attached to the MH that goes under the hood to the unit inside the car?
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Old 03-31-2014, 03:22 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MSHappyCampers View Post
Thanks Mark, I learn something new here every day! Being new to MH'ing, the only braking system I have had experience with is the ReadyBrake. With it, the braking system and the breakaway system are two different animals!

With the Brake Buddy is there a cable attached to the MH that goes under the hood to the unit inside the car?
The BlueOx Patriot comes with a Breakaway Switch that is mounted on the Base Plate. A wire from the switch goes inside the toad and plugs into the Patriot. There is a ring on the switch where you connect a breakaway cable (supplied with the Patriot) to the MH.
If the Toad separates from the MH for whatever reason, the cable pulls a pin on the switch which causes the Patriot to apply the brakes on the toad.
One of the reasons these systems cost a little more than some others. It is a complete system.
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Old 04-01-2014, 07:08 AM   #12
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^^^^^Ditto what dennis45 said.
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