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Old 07-15-2011, 12:28 PM   #1
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Towing an Overweight Toad

I have motorhome rated to tow 4000 lbs. I have a vehicle I'd like to use as a toad that weighs 4600 lbs. I have always believed in "respecting" ratings on products assuming that the mfg knows best. I hate the thought of buying a new vehicle just to be able to tow it when we have a perfect vehicle already. Perfect except the weight of course. A salesman wanting to sell me a tow system suggested the following. I am curious what others think of the following 2 points.

1: prime factor limiting towing capacity is braking ability. A good auxiliary brake in toad solves this issue.

2: Power to tow an addition 600 lbs can be offset if a concern by improving performance on the motorhome by boosting the horsepower to compensate. i.e. A Banks system or ?

Assuming the rating on the hitch is not a factor what do you guys think?

Thanks

Alan
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:30 PM   #2
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Power has little to do with tow rating. It's based on the chassis and hitch capacities. If the salesmans lips are moving he is probably lying. JMHO
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:59 PM   #3
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The ACTUAL tow rating of any vehicle is the GCWR minus the weight of the tow vehicle when ready to tow (loaded) or the hitch rating which ever is lower. So is that 4,000# the hitch rating? If so, change the hitch if you don't have a weight problem with the coach.
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Old 07-15-2011, 01:18 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kfalls View Post
I have motorhome rated to tow 4000 lbs. I have a vehicle I'd like to use as a toad that weighs 4600 lbs.
Assuming the rating on the hitch is not a factor what do you guys think?

Thanks

Alan
Do you have a DP or a gasser?
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Old 07-15-2011, 01:41 PM   #5
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In many cases of low tow ratings the limitation is the point of attachment between the hitch receiver and the frame of the coach. Many lighter duty gas coaches have had frame extensions added to the back end so the chassis can handle a longer coach. It's a cheap way to build, using a shorter wheel base chassis with a lightly fabricated extension behind the rear axle. If that's the case, the 4000 lb is a rigid constraint unless you have the back end of the coach frame beefed up. I would guess the receiver itself is already rated for 5000 lbs.

The GCWR is a limit too, of course, and so is the braking , which is geared to the GVWR.
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:01 PM   #6
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All good responses.

A) very true about sales pitches

B) good point about GCVR. I think I can adjust combined weight

C) It is a gasser. Safari Simba with 8.1 and 5 speed Allison. Seems well build with proper wheelbase.

Talked to MH repair facility I trust and they say it is plenty heavy and they would go through and inspect all welds and beef up as necessary. They thought it would be fine.
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
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Do you have a DP or a gasser?
J
His Profile shows a 37' Safari Simba. I don't think they made any gas Safari's so I'm kinda surprised that he only has 4K available for towing.
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:30 PM   #8
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His Profile shows a 37' Safari Simba. I don't think they made any gas Safari's so I'm kinda surprised that he only has 4K available for towing.
There are gas Safari's out there. Some for sale on the internet. Oh, he/she has one, 37ft is a huge gasser. Not much left for towing.
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:40 PM   #9
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Call customer service at the factory and get their input. They should be able to enlighten you. It's much better to ask those people who are or should be, knowledgable about the product they make
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Old 07-15-2011, 08:01 PM   #10
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I had a similar situation. A pick up and another car, both able to be pulled 4 down, but heavy. Beat myself up over making this call for quite a while, then decided I'd sleep better with a lighter toad. After more research tracked down an 03 CR-V that needed a little TLC and bought it very reasonably. Pretty much to try it out/see if we could live with it while on the road. As I'm a pretty good sized guy (6'2"/300lbs) I've never been a fan of foreign or compact cars. Well, we both love it - even when we aren't on the road. As it sits a little higher than her car, I have no trouble getting in and out at all. Bottom line, her car is going to be traded in on a newer CR-V soon...
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Old 07-15-2011, 09:02 PM   #11
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That Workhorse W22 has a GVWR of 26,000 and I'll bet that 37 foot body pushes the gross weight up fairly close to the 22k GVWR as well. But I'm thinking he based the 4000 lb tow capacity on the difference between the GVWR and GCWR, which is 4000 lbs. He needs to get the rig weighed and see what his actual weight is when ready for travel. That will give him a real estimate of available tow capacity, i.e. GCWR - actual weight. He may have the 5000 lbs he is looking for.
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:16 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary RVRoamer
That Workhorse W22 has a GVWR of 26,000 and I'll bet that 37 foot body pushes the gross weight up fairly close to the 22k GVWR as well. But I'm thinking he based the 4000 lb tow capacity on the difference between the GVWR and GCWR, which is 4000 lbs. He needs to get the rig weighed and see what his actual weight is when ready for travel. That will give him a real estimate of available tow capacity, i.e. GCWR - actual weight. He may have the 5000 lbs he is looking for.
Gary you are right. I think I will be able to adjust the load to get close to the 4600 + lbs I need. Safari also used a hitch rated at 4000 lbs that I can change to 5000+. I have had good feedback and talked with a few others today that make me think I may well be able to do this. I still have so more things to confirm, but will be very happy if I can use our Pilot.

Thanks all for your input.
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Old 07-18-2011, 02:25 PM   #13
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If you can keep the total weight under 26,000 and the hitch is rated for 5k, you should be ok.
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Old 07-18-2011, 03:20 PM   #14
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IMO you need to clarify the "rated to tow 4000lbs" you mentioned in the original post. Even if you can keep the total weight under 26,000 if the hitch is truly rated for 4k and you get into an accident pulling 4600lbs, your insurance company will more than likely deny your claim.

As Gary mentioned it could be a frame extension issue. I had a 37' MH with the W24 chassis GVWR 24K GCWR 30K but the hitch was only rated for 5k. I asked manufacturer about a larger hitch and they said no because the frame extension wouldn't allow it. Ended up trading what I wanted to use for a toad to a toad under 5k.
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