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Old 10-03-2015, 10:01 PM   #1
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Toad Breaking Systems - What's the law in your state??

We'll be towing a full size Chevy 1500 behind our Motor Home - a 42' 2003 Monaco Signature with a DD 500 HP. I don't anticipate any power problems since it is rated for 10,000 and my toad will max out at 6,000.

We previously toad a 1995 Chevy 1500 behind a 1999 Winne 38' with a gas Ford Triten V10. We had NO problems without any breaking system on the pickup.

So the question: It's my understanding that there are varying law/legal requirements now for towing vehicles behind motor homes and that they vary from state to state. Since we will be doing cross-country cruising, I'm interested in the laws - state-by-state. To profess this, I do not want to add a breaking system since I have had over 30,000 miles of experience NOT needing one. But what if I get stopped by a local officer???

What are the laws in your state?
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Old 10-03-2015, 10:03 PM   #2
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Well, you have to comply with each and every state you're in. WA, OR and CA go by a performance spec, stop in XX ft from XX mph and you're OK. But WA adds the requirement that the towed brakes be able to hold the vehicle in place for 15 min after disconnecting on any normal highway grade.

So, basically you are required to have brakes on the towed. I'm sure someone will be along and post a link to a chart but every one I've found is for trailers and some states (WA is one) do NOT classify a motorized vehicle being towed as a "trailer" and the laws are different.

Our rig, loaded weighs about 50,000#'s, even adding the Ody behind it we're still below or right at the GVWR and with all wheel disk brakes and 3 stage Jake I don't feel the need for add'l braking BUT, I have all the stuff already installed in the Ody and just need to finish the connection to the MH's brakes.
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Old 10-03-2015, 10:58 PM   #3
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Best resource I found

http://towingworld.com/towinglaws.cfm

I put brakes on mine to make sure I am legal everywhere, thus negating any reason my insurance company might refuse a claim.
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Old 10-03-2015, 11:22 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Just For Fun View Post
We'll be towing a full size Chevy 1500 behind our Motor Home - a 42' 2003 Monaco Signature with a DD 500 HP. I don't anticipate any power problems since it is rated for 10,000 and my toad will max out at 6,000.

We previously toad a 1995 Chevy 1500 behind a 1999 Winne 38' with a gas Ford Triten V10. We had NO problems without any breaking system on the pickup.

So the question: It's my understanding that there are varying law/legal requirements now for towing vehicles behind motor homes and that they vary from state to state. Since we will be doing cross-country cruising, I'm interested in the laws - state-by-state. To profess this, I do not want to add a breaking system since I have had over 30,000 miles of experience NOT needing one. But what if I get stopped by a local officer???

What are the laws in your state?
Well Sir,
While you may be proud of your accomplishment of not having toad brakes for over 30K miles, if you were to get into an accident and, whether it's your fault or not, and someone one on the other side is seriously hurt or killed, any decent lawyer will do all the necessary digging and find out you had NO toad brakes and, most likely were not in compliance with whatever law they can dig up.

This is not meant to be any chastising of your driving or towing capabilities. I too did not have toad brakes for many years. But, two different close friends one day brought me about three different articles about accident cases in which Motorhomes with toads were involved and, the lawyers found out that none of them had brakes in the towed vehicle. The outcome was not good, for all three.

So, while I too had not had any issues with braking for that amount of time, I just didn't feel like dealing with shyster lawyers, if and when anything should/could happen. So, I set up the braking on our toads, ever since.

Recently I switched from the Ready Brake setup to the M & G Braking system. I wish I'd have done that the second day after we purchased our present coach, an '04 Itasca Horizon 36GD with the C-7 330HP CAT.

If you ever decide that you would need or like to get auxiliary braking in your toad, the M & G system is seriously simple to install and, there's absolutely nothing inside the toad. All there is between the toad and the coach is a curly cue air line. It takes a whopping 3-4 seconds to put in place for towing.

Oh, by the way, while your 1500 weighs somewhere in the neighborhood of 5500 or more, that's not what it weighs WHEN YOU'RE TRYING TO STOP IT!! It's weight significantly increases with inertia as you're trying to stop it. The M & G Braking system is a mere $650 shipped to your door step. And, I think I've got a massive time of about three hours total for both the coach and the GMC toad part in installation time.

Now, I don't have to worry about ANY STATE I'm traveling in. I'm covered.
Scott
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Old 10-03-2015, 11:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzybeard View Post
Best resource I found

Towing World Official Website

I put brakes on mine to make sure I am legal everywhere, thus negating any reason my insurance company might refuse a claim.
Yep, and that one is wrong for WA and OR. They totally miss the fact that both WA and OR have the performance specification when towing a motorized vehicle.
If out of three states they've got two wrong, how many others are wrong?
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Old 10-04-2015, 03:38 AM   #6
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I can not under stand why anyone would not want the extra safety of having toad brakes. They not only help you stop quicker in an emergency they also will stop your toad if it breaks loose from your MH. My state doesn't require them but I have them for my safety and the safety of others on the roads I drive. JMHO
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Old 10-04-2015, 11:15 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wyorancher View Post
I can not under stand why anyone would not want the extra safety of having toad brakes. They not only help you stop quicker in an emergency they also will stop your toad if it breaks loose from your MH. My state doesn't require them but I have them for my safety and the safety of others on the roads I drive. JMHO
X2. I am not sure I would ask what the laws are in the various states on a forum, look at some of the threads, one person says this is, another says that. At the end of the day you probably need to call each state and ask. Is it a hassle to call each one? Yes, but at least you may be close to the right answer. Laws change all the time, all it takes is a vote and the legislature and a signature from the Governor. I am also not sure I would want to have to plan a trip around states I can't go in because I am not legal, I would rather go where I want and not worry about it. I realize you know there can and probably will be litigation, your choice, but anytime you post anything on a public forum, it can be discovered later, and used for and against you.
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Old 10-04-2015, 11:22 AM   #8
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Old 10-04-2015, 11:39 AM   #9
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Plain and simple, I towed my Element a few times and felt that it was fine, before I had the chance to put the Air Force One on it. What an eye-opener, I was wrong to wait. These coaches need every bit of braking power they can get. My coach stops MUCH better. In fact, I had a situation where I know that I would have plowed into a slowly merging car had it not been for my toad braking system. Knowing what I know now, I'd put one on regardless of what the laws are.
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Old 10-05-2015, 11:38 AM   #10
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No matter what your coach weighs or how good the brakes are it will stop sooner and in a shorter distance if the toad is equipped with a braking system.
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Old 10-05-2015, 06:00 PM   #11
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While laws vary from state to state ALL states require vehicles over 5,000 pounds to have towed brakes.. Now some fail to mention a care in tow (But require them on trailers) but if you read the definition of a trailer... A car in tow fits and I mean like a glove.

Also CIVIL law... If you run into someone without aux brakes.. Well you won't be happy.
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Old 10-05-2015, 06:33 PM   #12
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If your towing a toad with no braking system for it, and you hit me, I will own you.
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Old 10-05-2015, 06:49 PM   #13
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Whether or not you are braking the law is not the issue. Every chassis manufacturer requires supplemental braking systems when towing. By not following the recommendation of the manufacturer, you will most likely be found to be negligent, and therefore incurring liability. Supplemental braking systems are pretty simple to use. Why risk the aggravation and liability? There is enough evidence to show that more braking power will reduce "pucker factor".
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Old 10-05-2015, 07:44 PM   #14
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The law of physics is the same for every state. Without toad brakes will take longer to stop than with, no matter where you are. Lucky for first 30,000 miles does not guarantee being lucky for next 30,000 miles. I think having toad brakes is a good idea, whether required by the law or not.
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