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Old 03-19-2013, 06:59 PM   #1
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Towing by Dollie vs. 4 Wheels Down

From experience, please share what you think is the best way to tow? What are the pros and cons? I have a 2004 Toyota Solara Convertible front wheel drive that I could tow but am thinking about buying a Jeep Liberty to tow 4 wheels down....Do I need the Jeep or is it just as easy to have a tow Dollie? I know you can't back up with either towing method.....Please help me decide....Thanks. OH....I am towing with a 2007 400 Cat DP Country Coach Tribute 260....Thanks
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Old 03-19-2013, 07:07 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Haleyjean50 View Post
From experience, please share what you think is the best way to tow? What are the pros and cons? I have a 2004 Toyota Solara Convertible front wheel drive that I could tow but am thinking about buying a Jeep Liberty to tow 4 wheels down....Do I need the Jeep or is it just as easy to have a tow Dollie? I know you can't back up with either towing method.....Please help me decide....Thanks. OH....I am towing with a 2007 400 Cat DP Country Coach Tribute 260....Thanks
Wouldn't you rather have a nice convertible to drive when you get to your destination?
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Old 03-19-2013, 07:09 PM   #3
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I've towed the same vehicle ('05 Honda Odyssey) behind the same MH both on a dollie and four down.
Prefer using the dollie even though four down is slightly less trouble. Last time I towed from WA to Phoenix I towed four down. Had a new battery installed in the Ody a week or so before we left, battery went dead three times. When we got back there were more rock chips in the paint, tires were worn and the Ody needed an alignment.
I think the less wear on the towed makes up for the slight inconvenience of the dolly, plus I can tow any front wheel drive vehicle with no extra cost.
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Old 03-19-2013, 07:21 PM   #4
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I see it both ways. BUT most auto builder are starting to VOID warranties because of 4 down. The dolly is some pain BUT you can tow any front wheel or rear wheel drive vehicle with easy. And also use it to recover a broken down car or truck without any cost. We have a 2002 Fleetwood and a 2008 honda accord toad. Also tow my Ford F250 superduty.
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Old 03-19-2013, 07:24 PM   #5
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We tow either our Buick on a dolly or our Jeep Wrangler 4 down. One is as easy as the other. The advantage of only towing 4 down is there's no dolly to store either at home or on the road. The advantage of a dolly is you can take almost any front wheel drive car with you without modifications.

Having done both to me it's a personal preference dictated by the type of vehicle you want to take along. In our case the Jeep can't be towed on a dolly and the Buick can't be towed 4 down.
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Old 03-19-2013, 08:01 PM   #6
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We have been towing a Jeep Liberty 4 down since 2002 and there are not enough words to convince me to ever tow with a dolly. Of course I am sure that you will find someone with a dolly to say the same thing - and that's ok and true for them. The choice of car and preferences are the driving factors as stated above. We bought the Liberty strictly so we could tow 4 down since I did not want to mess with storage of dolly and time and hassle to hook up.
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Old 03-19-2013, 08:16 PM   #7
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We purchased a dolly so we could immediately start towing a car after we purchased our DP and to allow some time to determine what vehicle and towing package we needed/wanted. Since we have a sebring convertible we are not in a hurry to make the change and, as more time passes, we are not sure we want to spend the $'s for one of the limited number of suv's that can be towed, along with the cost of base plate, tow bar, braking system and light wiring.

The flexibility is great, the dolly has surge brakes and tows as if its not even there. It takes about 10-15 minutes longer to hook up with the safety chains and having to use some 2x6's (to raise the ramps since the cowl on the sebring is so low) compared to four down. I timed it to against a neighbor in a campground one morning. Haven't had a problem with dolly storage at a campsite or our storage yard.

Based on the above, it will probably be some time before we go four down.
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Old 03-19-2013, 08:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GregOk80 View Post
I see it both ways. BUT most auto builder are starting to VOID warranties because of 4 down. The dolly is some pain BUT you can tow any front wheel or rear wheel drive vehicle with easy. And also use it to recover a broken down car or truck without any cost. We have a 2002 Fleetwood and a 2008 honda accord toad. Also tow my Ford F250 superduty.

Did you make this up about the voiding - the 2013 Guide to Dinghy Towing that just came out lists 92 various models that are towable.



Although some models have
withdrawn for 2013 (see sidebar, “Where
are they now?”), the demand for more fueleffi
cient cars has expanded the fi eld of dinghy
offerings. Examples include vehicles by Dodge,
Ford, Hyundai and Subaru, which will suit a
variety of needs and lifestyles.
You’ve probably noticed that there are
Although some models have
withdrawn for 2013 (see sidebar, “Where
are they now?”), the demand for more fueleffi
cient cars has expanded the fi eld of dinghy
offerings. Examples include vehicles by Dodge,
Ford, Hyundai and Subaru, which will suit a
variety of needs and lifestyles.
You’ve probably noticed that there are
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Old 03-19-2013, 09:36 PM   #9
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When I investigated the options for towing our '03 Kia Sedona, I was surprised by the costs involved. Unfortunatley, the Sedona's curb weight is 4800 pounds. We have a 5000 pound hitch, so a dolly that could carry a vehicle that heavy was (a) hard to find - most are limited to 4000 or 4300 pounds and (b) if you could find one, they were very expensive and heavy, running our towed combination several hundred pounds over our hitch limit.

When I looked into flat towing, the total for all the gear (transmission lube system, auxiliary braking system, base plates and tow bar) added up to more than the Sedona is worth.

Right now we're managing without a toad, but it is limiting what we can do. I'm considering getting an old, much lighter clunker to tow on a dolly, since you can get dollies new for around $1500 or sometimes used for a good deal less. I'm thinking a Geo Metro or an older Camry (we had an '85 that was one of the best cars we ever owned) and just using it as a toad so we don't put a lot more miles on it.

Since we may bow out of the RV hobby all together at the end of the 2014 season, we may just make do without a toad and rent when we really need a second set of wheels.
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Old 03-19-2013, 11:22 PM   #10
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This thread is currently discussing the same tpoic, check it out.


Tow dolly vs. 4 wheels down

.
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Old 03-20-2013, 05:23 AM   #11
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Which are better Chevy or Fords? If you can answer that question for everyone, you can answer the OP's question. We started with a dolly for convenience. Took our time, picked out a car that could be towed down, got all the stuff needed used (base plate, tow bar, lights, brakes) to keep cost down and now tow four down. I like towing four down for convenience. Still have my dolly in case I have to tow another vehicle.
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:14 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Haleyjean50 View Post
From experience, please share what you think is the best way to tow? What are the pros and cons? I have a 2004 Toyota Solara Convertible front wheel drive that I could tow but am thinking about buying a Jeep Liberty to tow 4 wheels down....Do I need the Jeep or is it just as easy to have a tow Dollie? I know you can't back up with either towing method.....Please help me decide....Thanks. OH....I am towing with a 2007 400 Cat DP Country Coach Tribute 260....Thanks
We have a 2008 ( 2nd generation ) Solara, SLE that we towed on an acme eeze-tow. It is certainly a great car to have while traveling, and with the top down the scenic drives are even more scenic, plus you don't have to get out of the car to take pics.
As far as towing it on a dolly here are the issues we had, the SLE has 17" rims with 215x55's which are tightly squeezed into the wheel wells, making it very hard to get the straps straight on the back of the tire, in fact we had one fail in Las Vegas, thank goodness we had the safety chains tying the car too the trailer, which we had to run thru the rims as there is shielding underneath so the chains can't be attached to frame. We also had an issue with tension being built up on the passenger side wheel, maybe something with the auto-stick tranny, who knows. Our issues had more to do with the Solara than the dolly. We ended up getting a Wrangler to tow 4 down, with a soft top to keep the view. We also kept the dolly for possible trips to resorts areas.
if you Solara is a stick, it can be towed 4 down.
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Old 03-20-2013, 05:43 PM   #13
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Tow dolly allows flexibility in towing multiple different vehicles that allow this. I didn't care for it because I had to get on ground to secure safety chains from dolly to vehicle.

4 down you are limited by vehicles you can tow 4 down but much quicker and convenient to do than dolly.

I had front end pitting using both methods even taking precautions.

You need to look are your situation and determine which is best for you, dolly is lower cost than 4 down for me, but you will see what your requirements are because it may not be in all cases.

I currently use an enclosed trailer, plenty of information on this site for pros and cons. Good luck!
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Old 03-26-2013, 11:18 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rream View Post

Did you make this up about the voiding - the 2013 Guide to Dinghy Towing that just came out lists 92 various models that are towable.

Although some models have
withdrawn for 2013 (see sidebar, “Where
are they now?”), the demand for more fueleffi
cient cars has expanded the fi eld of dinghy
offerings. Examples include vehicles by Dodge,
Ford, Hyundai and Subaru, which will suit a
variety of needs and lifestyles.
You’ve probably noticed that there are
Although some models have
withdrawn for 2013 (see sidebar, “Where
are they now?”), the demand for more fueleffi
cient cars has expanded the fi eld of dinghy
offerings. Examples include vehicles by Dodge
Ford, Hyundai and Subaru, which will suit
variety of needs and lifestyles.
You’ve probably noticed that there are
just try to get warranty work done if you tell the warranty shop that you were towing 4down behind a motor home .
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