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Old 10-08-2009, 12:10 PM   #1
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Question Toad Brakes: To use or not?

I have recently met and talked with several Motorhome owners that tow a vehicle without a toad braking system. The people are RV veterans and most have logged 10's or even hundreds of thousands of miles (One man John has logged 350,000 miles). All have owned several motorhomes and have been traveling for many years.

ALL... told me they do not use a toad braking system and wouldn't want it. Too many bad stories, etc from people with one.

Thought:
Additional wear-n-tear on the towing vehicle's braking system is no more than the same weight in cargo onboard. A 3,000 lb toad or 3,000 lbs of cargo? Are you still under the Gross Combined? Way under?

Your Thoughts?
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Old 10-08-2009, 12:28 PM   #2
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Towing a car without auxiliary brakes is against the law in some states. Check http://www.towingworld.com/articles/TowingLaws.htm for state by state requirements.
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Old 10-08-2009, 12:36 PM   #3
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It's not worth the potential liability in the event of an accident not to have auxillary breaking system. I have towed my vehicles about 100,000 miles and have not had a problem...that's not to say I won't.
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Old 10-08-2009, 02:11 PM   #4
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Your motorhome brakes may be able to stop the toad under most circumstances, but they won't help a bit in the event of a breakaway. I recommend an auxiliary braking system with a breakaway feature.
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Old 10-08-2009, 04:01 PM   #5
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True... I read (here I beleive) of a serious fatal MH accident. Reports showed that if the MH's toad had brakes, the MH would have stopped one foot shorter, and the accident would have been avoided.
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Old 10-08-2009, 04:22 PM   #6
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All of those folks are misguided, mistaken or both.

IMHO, it's negligent to tow without supplemental toad brakes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Batman_777 View Post
I have recently met and talked with several Motorhome owners that tow a vehicle without a toad braking system. The people are RV veterans and most have logged 10's or even hundreds of thousands of miles (One man John has logged 350,000 miles). All have owned several motorhomes and have been traveling for many years.

ALL... told me they do not use a toad braking system and wouldn't want it. Too many bad stories, etc from people with one.

Thought:
Additional wear-n-tear on the towing vehicle's braking system is no more than the same weight in cargo onboard. A 3,000 lb toad or 3,000 lbs of cargo? Are you still under the Gross Combined? Way under?

Your Thoughts?
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Old 10-08-2009, 05:56 PM   #7
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3000 pounds of gravitational push is the equivalent of 9000 pounds. You can multiply what you are towing by 3 for your final answer.

I would never tow without supplemental braking.
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Old 10-08-2009, 07:48 PM   #8
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Due to the increase of RVing over the last several years and due to laws being what they are nowadays, I would not tow without additional braking. With that said, except for the breakaway issue. I don't think there is any problem towing without it. I towed a jeep for 15 years behind a MH and a few years behind a 5th wheel without additional braking with no problems, in fact you couldn't tell it was back there, up hill or down, and/or braking. But like I said earlier, nowaday's, yep, add the brake. The world has changed.
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Old 10-08-2009, 07:58 PM   #9
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It would do everyone to read this thread on the Physics of Towing. Dinghy brakes may allow you to stop a foot or two shorter and that may mean the difference between no accident and being two feet into the vehicle in front of you.

Tow bars do break and you will never know if yours will be the one. The brakes can prevent the dinghy from creating more damage. If they towing without dinghy brakes and bragging about it, they are not very responsible RVers.

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Old 10-08-2009, 08:11 PM   #10
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Here we go again on one of the most emotional subjects I have ever read on these forums. A whole lot of opinions on what is legal, moral, etc.. Basically, it is a personal decision like a whole lot of other issues in life and the individual has the right to make his own choices IMHO. That said, he must also be willing to accept the consequences of those decisions.
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Old 10-08-2009, 09:49 PM   #11
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Laws very from state to state however here in Michigan I looked up the law on towing trailers.. Now your friends who are begging to talk to a savvy attorney about reckless engangerment will tell you "IT IS A CAR, NOT A TRAILER" and they are 100% WRONG under Michigan law.. Which clearly states if it's being towed, 4-down, it's a trailer (The law says any vehicle designed to carry passengers or cargo designed to be towed so the weight of the vehicle does NOT rest on the towing vehicle, So a car on a tow truck, be it a flat bed or "On the hook" is not a trailer (Weight is on the towed vehicle) but a car behind my motor home, 4-down. is) it also said "With or without motive power"

Again laws very from state to state but any trailer over xxxx pounds MUST have brakes.. That's the law


SO if one of those "I don't need on steenking towed brakes" types rear ends me and takes out MY towed (Which by the way has brakes) I"m going to call up Dewey, Cheatum & Howe (Fictional law firm from the 3-stooges used in this case to represent a real law firm) and turn 'em loose. I'll be asking for at least 2 commas.
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Old 10-08-2009, 10:09 PM   #12
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people tow boats/large boats without trailer brakes and i've never heard of any being fined even though most state laws say anything over 1,000 lbs.????? i understand why someone would want the brakes and why some misght not. just my thought..
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Old 10-09-2009, 08:43 AM   #13
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We have a small enclosed trailer for our motorcycles. When I bought it the weight rating was 999 lbs. Seemed strange so I asked the dealer why. He told me that 1000 and over required brakes(NY state). The boat trailer we have is 4000 and sure enough it has surge brakes.

What gets me is that I am supposed to have it inspected. No brakes so if it has safety chains, tread on the tires and the lights work it should pass. Really don't need a trained mechanic to figure that stuff out.
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Old 10-09-2009, 09:34 AM   #14
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The people who tow without auxiliary brakes are the same ones who don't use seat belts or motorcycle helmets, etc. They are not considering all of the issues involved. Legal or moral liability as mentioned in prior posts are one consideration. The other consideration in my opinion is my own experience. I have towed two different cars behind two different motorhomes. In both setups I felt that I could stop just fine without the auxiliary brakes. Then I drove with the brakes installed. I COULD STOP IN A SHORTER DISTANCE! That was the end of the discussion as far as I am concerned. Why would anyone want to drive a setup that stops in a longer distance?
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