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Old 08-13-2022, 07:13 PM   #1
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CarTowDolly/EZE-Tow Dolly Review, Feedback, Advice

Iíve pulled one of these about 10K miles; some with a light vehicle (2003 Chrysler PT Cruiser), but mostly with a heavier vehicle nearing the weight limit (2015 Toyota Sienna minivan). I have some thoughts and comments I want to offer.
Some history: I bought my dolly used (black frame version) and with some issues. The brakes didnít work, it had the wrong load rated tires on it, several wheel studs were stripped, and the lights were intermittent. I stripped it down to the frame except I did not remove the hubs, and rebuilt/fixed everything from there (including paint).
My feedback/thoughts:
1. They say to check the straps after a few turns and when you stop. This is required Ė they will stretch, more so with heavier vehicles. I suggest itís also wise to carry a second set of straps just in case Ė if you lose a strap it may be destroyed by the time you find out about it, and youíll be happy to have a second set. This happened to me.
2. Possible design issue Ė the vehicle sits on frame members rather than a pan or expanded steel. The issue here is bumps. The vehicle tire is sitting on a small surface area (frame member) that can be driven up into the tire when you hit a pothole or rough road. This can lead to a strap coming loose and/or your vehicle hitting the dolly. In my case, the oil pan got a pretty good dent in it from this situation.
3. Safety chains holding vehicle to dolly are a must. The possibility of losing a strap with this dolly is higher than I would have thought, even when all procedures are followed. Chain up and check straps when you stop.
4. This dolly is an incredibly value if you want to tow front wheel drive vehicles. Itís strong, tows straight with no sway, tracks well behind the RV, and it stands up for storage. Itís easily worth the money they charge new for it, and if I were to do mine over, Iíd start with a new one.
5. Itís not difficult to load. It takes me about 10 minutes to do it with help, or 15 minutes to do it by myself Ė I only have about an inch to spare on either side when I load it. It does require laying on the ground and climbing on the vehicle (I use magnetic lights on the vehicle too) Ė so if youíre not able to do ups and downs, the dolly approach probably isnít for you.
6. Itís heavier than it looks. Itís about 500 lbs, so it takes strength to move it around and to stand it up. Long term, I think this may be what switches me to no toad, or four-down. Itís not an issue for me yet though.
7. Shop around for parts Ė most of the parts are standard items that can be purchased for significantly less than from the manufacturer. For example, the lights can be procured from harbor freight for about 20% the price cartowdolly.com offers. Similar for straps, chains, wrench, wheels, tires, and more on amazon, tractor supply, northern tool, etc. Itís great that they use standard parts Ė I consider this a big plus.
8. Surge brakes are great, mostly. This is the first surge brake setup Iíve used and I like it. It took me a while to find any downside to them Ė they really work well. Long, windy downhill grades can cause excessive brake wear and thereís little to be done to mitigate that other than maintain your brakes. In my case it was coming down into Cody, WY; I checked the dolly brakes about halfway down and they were so hot I could feel them through the wheel standing next to it. I let it sit for an hour and cool Ė but ran into situations where that wasnít possible too. The brakes always worked well, but I went through 75% of a set of pads in 10K miles. Definitely something to keep an eye on.
9. Donít do turns greater than 90 degrees. OK, you probably can do such turns if you can go wide and slow, but definitely pull over and check straps immediately afterward. Youíll be putting strain on everything, especially your toad riding the dolly, by doing this maneuver. I avoid it Ė itís safer all around to find a series of 90 degree turns that can made more safely.
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Old 01-16-2023, 09:23 AM   #2
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Extremely Helpful

Found the write-up a few weeks back. Wanted to say that it has been extremely helpful. I currently purchased a Tow Smart Dolly. Very similar to the Car Tow Dolly. When you found out that the tire didn't have the correct weight rating did you stick to the 12-inch wheels and tires or did you go to a 14-inch? I ask because the 12-inch seems to fold when going around corners in a neighborhood. I do have the correct PSI in the tires but the tires on the dolly look very low when I load the vehicle up (2016 Chevy Colorado). Any other insight that you can share would be helpful =)

I can try and post a video of what I describe as the tire folding when taking a corner in the neighborhood if that would be helpful.
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Old 01-16-2023, 11:34 AM   #3
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So you bought the dolly without and past dolly experience and your giving it a good review.

I can do the same with my Stehltow dolly but it would be biased, since it's the only dolly I've ever used.

Surge disk brakes, with brake pads that fit a mid 90 GM car so easy to buy. Wheel bearing are the same as boat trailers so can be found everywhere , even Wal-Mart. The tires are standard ST14 inch trailer tires. My straps are 9 years old and still in good shape after 40,000 miles. Never had one slip off. I use safety cable thru the front tires so no fumbling under the car.
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Old 01-17-2023, 08:15 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeprechnADV View Post
Found the write-up a few weeks back. Wanted to say that it has been extremely helpful. I currently purchased a Tow Smart Dolly. Very similar to the Car Tow Dolly. When you found out that the tire didn't have the correct weight rating did you stick to the 12-inch wheels and tires or did you go to a 14-inch? I ask because the 12-inch seems to fold when going around corners in a neighborhood. I do have the correct PSI in the tires but the tires on the dolly look very low when I load the vehicle up (2016 Chevy Colorado). Any other insight that you can share would be helpful =)

I can try and post a video of what I describe as the tire folding when taking a corner in the neighborhood if that would be helpful.

I stuck with the 10 inch tires that came with the version of the EZE-Tow dolly that I have. The manufacturer changed to a narrower 12 inch tire for the current models, but mine is a few years older. I think it can take the 12 inch tires, but I went with the same size it originally came with.



I think I know what you mean about the tires folding -- that happens with this kind of dolly if you turn too sharp and end up dragging the dolly sideways a little. I think this puts strain on everything, so I avoid sharp turns and turns sharper than 90 degrees.
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Old 01-17-2023, 08:20 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twinboat View Post
So you bought the dolly without and past dolly experience and your giving it a good review.

I can do the same with my Stehltow dolly but it would be biased, since it's the only dolly I've ever used.

Fair criticism for sure, this is the only dolly I've used.


Quote:
Originally Posted by twinboat View Post
Surge disk brakes, with brake pads that fit a mid 90 GM car so easy to buy. Wheel bearing are the same as boat trailers so can be found everywhere , even Wal-Mart. The tires are standard ST14 inch trailer tires. My straps are 9 years old and still in good shape after 40,000 miles. Never had one slip off. I use safety cable thru the front tires so no fumbling under the car.

I agree on the brakes -- they are easy to find. I was able to find three different sets without much effort. Here are some details on how replacement goes, commentary, and part numbers. It's not a bad dolly to work on, but has its nuances.

https://www.irv2.com/forums/f85/cart...rs-590204.html
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