Trailer Life Magazine Open Roads Forum: Tow Vehicles: Towing with a minivan
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 > Towing with a minivan

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mkirsch

Rochester, NY

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Posted: 01/03/18 06:09am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I don't see any "sky is falling" anywhere in this thread. In fact the advice seems unusually logical and common sense for this site.

You can't realistically sit there and say that it makes sense to tow a trailer that STARTS at the minivan's maximum tow rating, and goes up from there.


Putting 10-ply tires on half ton trucks since aught-four.

hommer638

Northern Ontario Canada

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Posted: 01/03/18 07:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I would like to thank everyone for there honest answers. It just confirms what I knew all along that the sienna is just not built to tow anything more than a tent trailer which it does just fine. What amazes me is that I called four different rv dealers and every one of them told me that my van was more than capable of towing that model travel trailer.
I am now in the process of choosing a new tow vehicle so I will start a new post to ask your valued opinions on my choices.

BenK

SF BayArea

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Posted: 01/03/18 09:35am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Jeremiah,

Tongue weight in discussion is at a 'static' loading...that static load becomes much, much higher in a dynamic situation. Plus as you said...a single axle will have the weight tossed back and forth easier than multi axle trailers

Like in a whop-d-do, RR tracks, pot-hole, etc, etc A 400 lb static tongue might have a dynamic weight load hundreds or more

What it gets to is not easy to figure out. Even in a laboratory it would need tons is expensive and large equipment

Won't happen over night either. Those pictures are of failed spot welds that took a lot of time to get to the point where they gave up. The more over their design ratings...the faster/sooner they will fail

Why ask newbies how they drive, where they drive, etc that creates ever higher dynamic loads. Toss in compressing WD bars loading even more to exacerbate this whole loading situation during compression and the release of that compressed WD bar married with the TV Suspension release...

OP...glad you made a decision and posted back. Ask that either link this thread to your new purchase thread and/or post one here and then start your new thread

There are many, many lurkers who follow 'advice' here and can learn a lot from your thread...THANKS


-Ben Picture of my rig
1996 GMC SLT Suburban 3/4 ton K3500/7.4L/4:1/+150Kmiles orig owner...
1980 Chevy Silverado C10/long bed/"BUILT" 5.7L/3:73/1 ton helper springs/+329Kmiles, bought it from dad...
1998 Mazda B2500 (1/2 ton) pickup, 2nd owner...
Praise Dyno Brake equiped and all have "nose bleed" braking!
Previous trucks/offroaders: 40's Jeep restored in mid 60's / 69 DuneBuggy (approx +1K lb: VW pan/200hpCorvair: eng, cam, dual carb'w velocity stacks'n 18" runners, 4spd transaxle) made myself from ground up / 1970 Toyota FJ40 / 1973 K5 Blazer (2dr Tahoe, 1 ton axles front/rear, +255K miles when sold it)...
Sold the boat (looking for another): Trophy with twin 150's...
51 cylinders in household, what's yours?...

hommer638

Northern Ontario Canada

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Posted: 01/03/18 05:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

This whole thing was a real eye opener to me. I am happy that my RV did not come in on time for me to pick it up before there was too much snow on the ground for me to bring it home safely. This delay just gave me enough time to ask questions and get the answers I needed. I do hope this thread helps those in a similar situation and avoid a possible disaster and hardship on the road. Vacations and rving are supposed to be fun and nobody needs the hassles brought on by a bad setup. Next spring when I pick up my rv I will have a proper tow vehicle.

GKAbbott

On the road

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Posted: 02/11/18 01:50pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Unless you are absolutely dead set on that trailer, I recommend you look at A frame style pop-ups. We towed a 12 ft A-liner behind our 2012 Grand Caravan. Loaded weight was under 2500 lbs. Tongue weight was about 290 lbs. I installed a break controller and trailer breaks. Towed it over 20k miles before selling the camper. Still have the Caravan. Looking for another A frame style to travel in. It's more economical to change campers than tow vehicles. Of course, if you have already taken delivery of your camper, disregard this post.

RSD559

Central California

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Posted: 02/11/18 05:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Weight concerns have already been addressed so I won't go there. What I'd like to bring up is how miserable you will be, in the truck lane, doing 35-40 mph, peddle to the floor, while everyone else is doing 70, just to get to the other side of that mountain. You won't have little hecklers complaining about how everyone is passing you, including motorized wheel chairs, like we did. But it still is not going to be fun.
I second the transmission cooler suggestion. Some mini-vans don't have external coolers. My son's Honda mini-van didn't have one. He didn't notice it until he was in getting his transmission replaced. They suggested getting one.


2017 Highland Ridge Ultra Lite UT2704bh.Just right ++
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