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Old 05-02-2019, 11:57 AM   #1
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Toad weight importance/sensitivity?

Hi
We're new to RV-ing, even newer to the idea of a toad. I've been looking around a bit, made some offers on suitable vehicles but haven't yet successfully purchased anything.

Yesterday I ran across a vehicle that would fit our needs well. But . . . my DP has a towing capacity of 5000lbs and this one is 4900. Adding any fuel, plus the tow equipment and/or anything else will definitely put me over the 5000.

So a couple of questions:

First--is there any way to increase my towing capacity a bit? I know this is a longshot, but figured it was worth asking.

Second--if I got stopped or had an accident with a slightly overweight toad, what would they do to me? I'm quite confident that the coach won't notice the few hundred pounds difference, but I'm loathe to put my future financial picture at risk just because of a toad. I know the chances of being caught are slim, but any chance is more than the zero chance of being compliant.

FWIW, I will have the full setup including braking equipment installed.

Thanks,
B
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Old 05-02-2019, 12:08 PM   #2
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Is it the chassis or the hitch that has the 5K limit. My GUESS would be that it's the hitch. If that's the case, and the chassis can haul it, then you might be able to swap hitches to something heavier duty.
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Old 05-02-2019, 12:11 PM   #3
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Only the completed vehicle manufacturer can legally answer your question under Federal Law. They have the final say.
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Old 05-02-2019, 04:38 PM   #4
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Check with your coach manufacturer. My 2013 coach came with a 10,000# hitch. The 2015 model on the same chassis came with a 15,000# hitch. Tiffin said that I could change the 10K for a 15K and sold me the hitch which I put on. I could not see the difference between them. You might be able to do the same. I would put my trust in the people who built your coach before taking the word of any of the "Experts" on the internet.
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Old 05-02-2019, 04:40 PM   #5
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Except GCWR is not a legal constraint. It's a warranty constraint.

For Q2, you could be sued in civil court if there's an accident where you're possibly at fault. Which will likely happen regardless... but their lawyers will do a happy dance when the numbers are added up.
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Old 05-02-2019, 04:58 PM   #6
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My coach came from the factory with a 10k hitch. But it is limited to 5k towing. The reason? The transmission.
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Old 05-02-2019, 05:06 PM   #7
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IMO (and I am not a lawyer) it would depend on what caused the accident as to whether your toad was the reason. They would have to prove that your toad being a few hundred pounds over the coaches rating was a contributing factor that caused the accident. That would be hard to do if you had an adequate working aux brake system. If the accident was caused because you were speeding, what difference would the weight of the toad make? If you failed to yield right of way, it wouldn't matter what the cause was. You would be liable for damages. An overweight toad can't make you more liable. If your hitch broke, you wouldn't be any less liable with a lighter toad. You would still be liable for any harm caused.
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Old 05-03-2019, 11:13 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BDubya View Post
Hi
We're new to RV-ing, even newer to the idea of a toad. I've been looking around a bit, made some offers on suitable vehicles but haven't yet successfully purchased anything.

Yesterday I ran across a vehicle that would fit our needs well. But . . . my DP has a towing capacity of 5000lbs and this one is 4900. Adding any fuel, plus the tow equipment and/or anything else will definitely put me over the 5000.

So a couple of questions:

First--is there any way to increase my towing capacity a bit? I know this is a longshot, but figured it was worth asking.

Second--if I got stopped or had an accident with a slightly overweight toad, what would they do to me? I'm quite confident that the coach won't notice the few hundred pounds difference, but I'm loathe to put my future financial picture at risk just because of a toad. I know the chances of being caught are slim, but any chance is more than the zero chance of being compliant.

FWIW, I will have the full setup including braking equipment installed.

Thanks,
B

B,
Your "DP" has a 5,000 lb. towing capacity? May I ask, what is:

Year/make/model/chassis/engine of your "DP"?
Scott
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Old 05-03-2019, 02:19 PM   #9
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Remember in case of an overweight accident, it is not your fault that the fresh water tank low point drain valve got bumped, wink wink
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Old 05-03-2019, 10:27 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by FIRE UP View Post
B,
Your "DP" has a 5,000 lb. towing capacity? May I ask, what is:

Year/make/model/chassis/engine of your "DP"?
Scott
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Old 05-03-2019, 10:47 PM   #11
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Thanks for points made.

I believe that with more research I've found my answers: Yes, a hitch with higher rating can be installed. But, that doesn't change the GCWR figure. So I need to have the coach weighed to get my GVW first, then subtract that from the GCWR. That, in turn, becomes the actual maximum toad weight (loaded) that I can pull.

In effect, this means that we might be able to tow the heavier vehicle if we keep our coach load far enough below its maximum.

Now I'm off to find a scale.
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