Trailer Life Magazine Open Roads Forum: Towing a Rav 4 Auto Trans
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 > Towing a Rav 4 Auto Trans

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moisheh

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Posted: 04/22/18 08:04pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Of course we all know that Toyota never recommends towing one of their vehicles with an Auto Trans. My wife has a cherry 2001 Rav with 80,000 km. I was considering a Remco lube pump. I was glancing through her owner's manual and there was a chapter on Dinghy towing. One paragraph explains how to tow this vehicle behind a MH. Simple. Put it in neutral and turn the key to ACC. DONE!!Limited to 250 miles and then just stop and run for 3 minutes. I think it was also 55 mph.max. Being a doubter I called Toyota to verify. Yes my manual is correct. I asked if they were sure. Response was that if the manual says it is OK then it is OK. Yet a 2002 cannot be towed even though it is the same model transmission. I wonder why the discrepancy? Could it be that they approved but had some problems with the transmissions? Or did Corporate just decide it was a bad idea? I called Remco and they had no record of the car being towable. I am goiung to order a baseplate later this summer and try it in the fall. Could be a $2000 mistake?

Moisheh

Dutch_12078

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Posted: 04/22/18 08:10pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I installed a Remco pump on our 2002 RAV4 and towed it trouble free for about 30,000 miles. Then I moved the pump to our then new 2011 RAV4 and have towed that one for another 20,000 miles, all with no mileage limits or special prep besides turning on the pump control at the coach dashboard. Oh, and the 2002 is still pretty much trouble free serving as a our spare car that we leave at our upstate NY vacation cottage.


Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
Bigfoot Automatic Leveling System
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox baseplate


maddog348

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Posted: 04/23/18 10:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Have 2003 Rav4 installed Remco pump as soon as we got it. There were 2 diff Trans. used similar models diff part# diff dates of mfg. I worked Toyota Dealership parts ~ I called Toyota research, gave them Vin# & bunch of other info & they verified my Rav4 OK for pump. So with Toyota's Ok got Remco to install pump.

The little guy has followed a '89 Catalina ClassC or 2007 Sunova 26P Class A ever since. No trans problems. Still our daily driver when not being a 'Toad'

~~~ JM2ยข ~~~ YMMV





moisheh

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Posted: 04/23/18 01:53pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I think you both misunderstood my post. I do not need a pump. My manual states that it can be towed behind a MH with no pump required!

Moisheh

Nick-B

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Posted: 04/23/18 05:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Is your RAV4 AWD or FWD. I think that may make difference. Does the manual make any statement either way?


Nick
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moisheh

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Posted: 04/23/18 08:05pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The manual only specifies an Auto Trans. It is AWD. I was really shocked when I found that in the manual. Toyota does not often refer to dinghy towing. They just say you cannot tow the vehicle 4 wheels down in an emergency. The manual gives specific instructions: tranny in neutral, key in Acc ( even notes that this is very important to keep the steering wheel unlocked) Then goes on with miles limitation and max. speed. Almost like Toyota thought they could increase sales but the following year decided it was not worth it.

Moisheh

maddog348

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Posted: 04/23/18 08:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

OK ~~ on the reverse of my answer to your question, Were looking at a2002 that could be towed 4 down naked. Then the 2003 came out and had to go thru what I posted earlier. Was told Toyota changed it as TOO many Big Rigs were driving too many miles ~ too many hours. Would be OK if travelled 200=225 miles ~ Stopped put on the brake and ran it thru the gears. Lost the 'umbilicus on a steep drieway and screech alarm came on Lights etc etc worked just the pump detached 'local yokel' wzs not someone wanted working on our stuff. Called Remco installer he called Remco ~ Told us same thing 200-225 stop & run the gears. Heck the dogs had to stop anyway. Worked for us. Sometimes the alarm goes a little screwy so we un doit and do the 200-225. Over 14 years & no problem to date. Give it your best. K

Covered.Wagon

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Posted: 08/24/18 05:14am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Be very careful! After lots of research using the FMCA Dinghy Towing guides and reading owners manuals, I bought a 2011 Ford Escape XLT (4WD) to tow behind my Winnebago Sightseer. The owners manual says that for "Recreational Towing" I have to lower the trans fluid, unlock the steering, put it in neutral and start it every 6 hours to circulate fluid and cool the transmission.
In May 2017 my wife and I made a 2600 mile trip with no problems with the dinghy. IN August 2017 we went 300 miles and the transmission started slipping. I was towing it back home when the transmission started smoking, and the engine wouldn't start! It may be that the transmission was just ready to fail anyways. I got it rebuilt ($33oo with 3 yr unlimited warranty)) and didn't tow it again until last week. NEVER AGAIN!
Last week I only made it 200 miles from home when another car on the hwy let us know that the car was smoking! The trans was smoking again, locked in neutral and would not start. I called the trans shop that did the rebuild and called a tow truck to take it to a local trans shop in Springfield IL for warranty. DL Transmissions in Cape Girardeau MO is refusing to honor the warranty because it was being towed. They say that they have documentation from Ford that says it can't be dinghy towed. My owners manual says it can!

* This post was edited 08/24/18 09:20am by an administrator/moderator *

JohnG3

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Posted: 09/01/18 11:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

What is the Toyota RAV 4 transmission number that allowed you to travel thousands of miles without problems?


John and Elaine. Furry ones, Bubba, Buddy, Barney and Miss Chevious
2017 Tiffin Allegro Bus 40 SP
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tatest

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Posted: 10/04/18 08:14pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Car models that were once considered by manufacturers as towable, and then not towable in a later model year even though there were no engineering changes, the policy change had to do with frequency of drivetrain warranty claims and associated costs to the manufacturer (this drove Honda to finally say CR-V only, although most model lines shared the same automatic transmission).

At 17 years old and 80,000 km, you no longer need to worry about anything you do towing it making the warranty invalid, all the risk is yours. From a financial viewpoint, that risk is minimal, because of the low market value.


Tom Test
Itasca Spirit 29B


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