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Old 03-05-2013, 11:33 AM   #1
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Towing Backwards

Anybody have experience in towing car with tow dolly by rear wheels?
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:37 AM   #2
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Welcome to IRV2. I'll put this thread into the Toad and Motorhome related towing forum to reach more members. Cliff
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Old 03-05-2013, 12:52 PM   #3
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I've seen a lot of rearwheel drive auto trans cars towed backwards for short distances. Not recommended for long distance because the front wheel caster and camber are designed to move forward. Long distance would increase tire wear and also wear on suspension components. Wouldn't think it was a good idea.


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Old 03-05-2013, 01:06 PM   #4
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All the dollies I've looked at specifically say not to do it. But that doesn't seem to stop people from doing it.
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Old 03-06-2013, 09:10 AM   #5
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Hi Brian McRAE,
I towed this way for about 10 years and several rear wheel drive cars. I never had a problem. All cars are different. I never had any problems with front end tire wear or front end chassis components. For me, I'd do it again with no concerns. Just make sure the front wheels of the towed car are locked in a straight position.
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Old 03-06-2013, 10:34 AM   #6
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Both the dolly makers and the auto manufacturers say "Don't Do IT!". That doesn't mean it cannot be done successfully (see GaryKD's reply), but you need to know the vehicle and the technique really well or risk serious damage. Some of the problems that have occurred include: broken steering column lock, worn tires, front suspension damage, and a dolly that thrashes around uncontrollably. Some of these things occur over time, so may not be readily evident.
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Old 03-06-2013, 10:37 AM   #7
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I've never seen a backwards tow
I never hope to see one
But I can tell you anyhow
I'd rather see than do one
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Old 03-06-2013, 10:50 AM   #8
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Ive seen it a few times over the years but see to much risk vs bonafide methods. IMHO
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Old 03-06-2013, 11:11 AM   #9
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Used to tow small pickup backwards on a dolly. It can be done, but the problem I had was there was two much weight behind and off the dolly. Since the dolly pivots, I found it wandered a lot. After I went to FWD on the dolly, it was much easier. I think it truly depends on the weight distribution.
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Old 03-06-2013, 12:59 PM   #10
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I would expect it to do serious harm to the steering system, particularly the power steering pump and the column locks, unless some form of locking the steering close to the wheels were possible.
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Old 03-06-2013, 01:07 PM   #11
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Good thread. Wish I knew all this before selling my car... LOL
We had a BMW 3 series convertible and thought of towing it backwards but was talked out of is. So we traded it in for a 2012 KIA RIO Hatchback that also weighs about 800 pounds less so for us it turned out to be a win win scenario. Personally I feel if the steering wheel is locked and secured in a straight position it could be done. IMHO
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Old 03-06-2013, 01:22 PM   #12
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We also have a 3 series BMW with an automatic and I have considered towing backwards on a dolly as well. I have read on other forums the trick is to secure the steering wheel and not depend only on the ignition lock. Since the 3 series has mostly 50/50 weight distribution it should not cause any sway issues due to hitch loading. Having said all that I still haven't bought a dolly yet and continue for now to tow my motorcyle in a small trailer. I'll keep thinking about it and my eye peeled for someone doing this.
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Old 03-06-2013, 01:48 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rumrunnerxx View Post
We also have a 3 series BMW with an automatic and I have considered towing backwards on a dolly as well. I have read on other forums the trick is to secure the steering wheel and not depend only on the ignition lock. Since the 3 series has mostly 50/50 weight distribution it should not cause any sway issues due to hitch loading. Having said all that I still haven't bought a dolly yet and continue for now to tow my motorcyle in a small trailer. I'll keep thinking about it and my eye peeled for someone doing this.
Why not get a trailer and safely haul both?
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Old 03-06-2013, 02:22 PM   #14
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My neighbor tows a Dodge Charger backwards on a tow dolly. He has not had any problems. I know he has towed it from GA to Utah and back.

Jon
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