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Old 06-03-2022, 08:07 PM   #1
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White Knuckle Experience - Bridge Weight Limit - Geeezzz

2008 Tiffin Phaeton, 40', DP, towing 2019 Equinox
I recently traveled from Stroudsburg PA to Ogunquit ME. I planned the trip in detail and planned to stop in Sturbridge, MA for fuel. All went well so when I stopped I did a walk around the rig. I noticed the driver window on the Equinox wasn't all the way up so I got in to start it and raise the window .... nothing ... not even the door chime. I had shifted it to Park to start it but now that it was in park and there is no power it won't shift back to neutral. I wouldn't even be able to move it out of the fuel lane. I had a pocket battery jumpstarter that I put on the battery ... it wouldn't crank the car but it did let me move the shifter to neutral. Once I had fueled the RV I then pulled out of the fuel line to the side.

First I pulled out my battery charger and put on the battery. the Equinox original AGM battery wouldn't take a charge ... it was showing 6V. I asked and found someone with jumper cables and gave that a shot. It was enough to raise the window and put it into neutral again but thats all.

The prior week, I got the oil changed at a dealer and asked them about the battery, they said it was fine. I bought the car second hand and battery life is affected by whether it as been kept charged. Also a AGM battery charger, wont charge it if its below a given voltage. I assume the battery capacity is diminished and the brake buddy perhaps drained it. The car was set up to tow by etrailer and a battery charger was included. The Equinox has a pretty high parasitic drain but the latest models don't require any fuses to be pulled.

I called and found a battery at a NAPA about 4 miles away. My RV garmin plotted a course down a back 2-lane road then down Sturbridge's main street ... not my first choice but it was only 4 miles. I started down the road and before very long I saw a road sign "4 Ton Weight Limit" ... my rig is 16 tons. The RV garmin didn't pick this up. Right ahead was a bridge so I stopped in the road and walked back and looked at the sign. while walking back a tractor trailer was coming in the opposite lane. I flagged him and asked about the weight limit, he said he drives through there every day and doesn't pay any attention to the signs. After he left a very large propane tanker truck went around me and down the road.

I should say that I am generally risk averse but I figured if the two tractors came through and the garmin didn't flag it, I should be OK, so I drove forward. In less than a mile another sign said 11 ton limit but I pressed on. Finally got to the NAPA, got battery, installed it, despite difficulties parking to get to the NAPA. The parts store clerk told me the easiest way back to I84, so off I went to finish my trip.

I came to a roundabout and the garmin told me to go a different route than the clerk said was the easy way, but I followed the clerks direction. Immediately the Garmin started flashing red and said there was a 8 Ton bridge limit ahead. The garmin showed a river with the bridge over the river in Red. It told me to make some turns that my 40' RV couldn't possible do, ..... now there was only one last side road before the bridge, so I took it regardless. There was no traffic on it so I stopped to figure out what to do. I was spent from all the stress so decided not to finish the trip but to find someplace to stay there.

By happenstance on the small road to the NAPA store I passed a thousand trails park so I called them and went there for the night. The Garmin took me back on the same road that had the weight limit signs but there were no signs going the opposite direction on it .....

The next day I finished the trip and all went well. I researched the dead equinox battery and am running a direct dedicated #10 for the equinox charging.

I've never ran into weight limit issues. I check my routes with Roadtripper or Tripwizard ... then follow the Garmin's directions to avoid weight or height issues ... until this time off my planned route. Again I'm risk averse and plan thoroughly to avoid problems. I'm an engineer and wouldn't take chances on weigh limits. I don't recommend anyone ever proceed ahead if they see a weight limit sign. Its not worth the potential downfall ... literally.
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Old 06-03-2022, 09:57 PM   #2
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Wow, lousy situation…

Along the same line i often see streets with a picture of a box truck crossed out, and a sign stating “no trucks.” Yet, garmin uses them. I’ve driven down the streets and never see any reason a truck can’t take them.

What the heck are those signs meant to indicate?
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Old 06-03-2022, 10:20 PM   #3
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Wow, lousy situation…



Along the same line i often see streets with a picture of a box truck crossed out, and a sign stating “no trucks.” Yet, garmin uses them. I’ve driven down the streets and never see any reason a truck can’t take them.



What the heck are those signs meant to indicate?

Those neighborhoods have probably politicked to get commercial truck through traffic banned unless making a delivery to a resident. I run into it all the time in my work truck. Big fines if you get caught. But only commercial trucks need worry, not an rv.
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Old 06-06-2022, 05:09 PM   #4
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If your GPS has the proper settings for your rig it will not route you onto roads outside those settings, instead of waiting until you reach a violation.
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Old 06-06-2022, 05:47 PM   #5
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I flagged him and asked about the weight limit, he said he drives through there every day and doesn't pay any attention to the signs. After he left a very large propane tanker truck went around me and down the road.
Now there's a couple of 'professional' drivers !
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Old 06-06-2022, 06:16 PM   #6
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So what would one do if they came to a weight limit sign on a bridge that was to low for their capacity and there were no where to turn around except to back up a mile or more?
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Old 06-06-2022, 06:34 PM   #7
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So what would one do if they came to a weight limit sign on a bridge that was to low for their capacity and there were no where to turn around except to back up a mile or more?
Sometimes you got to do whatever it takes to get out of a situation, I had to back up over a mile on a narrow road with a few curves in it, through a narrow gate with a 24' enclosed trailer behind my motorhome. All because the guy at the campground told me that I could get to the highway using that road. Which I could have if it wasn't closed for culvert replacement that I guess he didn't know about. That was probably the longest mile of my life. lol
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Old 06-06-2022, 07:03 PM   #8
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So what would one do if they came to a weight limit sign on a bridge that was to low for their capacity and there were no where to turn around except to back up a mile or more?
A bridge with a 4 ton rating, and I'm 20 ton's.

I'm backing up till I can turn around!
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Old 06-07-2022, 08:22 AM   #9
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I agree. Maybe I go if I am about the same weight. 2X, 3X, 4X, 5X = NO, NO, NO, NO
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