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Author Topic: Towing a "Toad"  (Read 1922 times)

ELeland

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Towing a "Toad"
« on: January 23, 2018, 07:37:46 AM »
I'm getting my 2016 4x4 Tacoma set up for being towed and had a basic question:

How do you guaranty the steering wheel is absolutely straight when it is locked in position?  I could see peeling off a good bit of rubber on a long trip if it is off slightly.  Am I missing something?
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docj

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2018, 07:47:24 AM »
Most (if not all) vehicles with steering wheel locks require that a key be kept in the ignition in the ACC position so the front wheels are unlocked during towing.
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Greg Barker

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2018, 07:58:01 AM »
On my 2015, if the key is in the ACC position the odometer will log miles. I keep it in between off and ACC. This unlocks the front wheels and keeps from logging miles.
Greg & Kristina
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jagnweiner

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2018, 08:02:30 AM »
I assume when you say you're setting your Tacoma up for being towed, you mean towed with all four wheels on the ground as opposed to on a tow dolly.  As Doc said, you don't lock the steering wheel in position.  You absolutely don't want it locked.  The car needs to be able to "follow" the coach as it turns.  With the wheels locked, it would be dragged through turns.

Others can correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe there are some tow dollies where the front wheels can be locked in place, while others require the steering to be unlocked.
-Scott
2000 Itasca Horizon 36LD

NY_Dutch

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2018, 08:10:32 AM »
Are you having a drive shaft disconnect installed? According to Remco, both automatic and manual transmissions need it.
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ELeland

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2018, 08:25:40 AM »
Yes on the drive shaft disconnect.  The Tacoma has no key, it's one of those keyless push button thingy's.  If I push the start button without my foot on the brake, it goes into accessory mode.  I THINK it turns itself off after a period of non-use though.
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jagnweiner

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2018, 09:03:54 AM »
Yes on the drive shaft disconnect.  The Tacoma has no key, it's one of those keyless push button thingy's.  If I push the start button without my foot on the brake, it goes into accessory mode.  I THINK it turns itself off after a period of non-use though.

Interesting.  Does it definitely have a steering lock?  I have a Buick Regal GS that I am getting ready to set up for flat towing that also has the "keyless push button thingy" and it does not have a steering lock.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2018, 09:17:09 AM by jagnweiner »
-Scott
2000 Itasca Horizon 36LD

ELeland

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2018, 09:10:10 AM »
Interesting.  Does it definitely have a steering lock?  I have a Buick Regal GS that I am getting ready to set up for that also has the "keyless push button thingy" and it does not have a steering lock.

Yes it does have a lock.  I just went out and pushed the button to put it in accessory mode as I want to see if it does time out and shut itself off.

Edit:  It does time out and locks up.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2018, 09:46:43 AM by ELeland »
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jagnweiner

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2018, 09:46:40 AM »
Well, that's a conundrum.  You may have to talk to the manufacturer about a way to keep the steering wheel unlocked, although they may be reluctant to provide advice for liability reasons.  I did a little searching and it appears that some vehicles with push button start have steering locks (like yours) and some do not (like mine).  Without a key in the column, I'm not exactly sure how they lock.  I suspect maybe via a solenoid, so I wonder if disconnecting the battery would disable the steering lock.  (just thinking out loud)
-Scott
2000 Itasca Horizon 36LD

John From Detroit

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2018, 10:22:45 AM »
My Car the ignition has the following positions:  ACC-LOCK-OFF-ON-Start

I tow in the OFF, but not locked position.. Since I tow 4 Down and in neutral I have to be in the OFF position or I can not move the transmission selector out of PARK.  The Wheels track.

A Tacoma. .. Can that be towed 4-Down or did you modify it with a lube pump or Drive Shaft Disconnect?  IF you use a disconnect you tow in PARK, but once again, you must leave key in OFF, nto Locked

If you trailer it.. The above does not apply.
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ELeland

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2018, 10:28:57 AM »
Well, that's a conundrum.  You may have to talk to the manufacturer about a way to keep the steering wheel unlocked, although they may be reluctant to provide advice for liability reasons.  I did a little searching and it appears that some vehicles with push button start have steering locks (like yours) and some do not (like mine).  Without a key in the column, I'm not exactly sure how they lock.  I suspect maybe via a solenoid, so I wonder if disconnecting the battery would disable the steering lock.  (just thinking out loud)

Thanks for the reply.  I bought the whole setup through Just for Towing out of AZ.  They must have done other newer Tacomas because they called to question one of my drive shaft dimensions as it didn't jive with others they have done.  I called them and they said it can be done and will call me back with the "sequence" to achieve the free steering.  I will let you know what they say.
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jagnweiner

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2018, 10:43:10 AM »
My Car the ignition has the following positions:  ACC-LOCK-OFF-ON-Start

I tow in the OFF, but not locked position..
 

John, Leland's issue is that there are no ignition positions because it is a keyless ignition.  In order to start, you just have to have the "key" fob in the vehicle and press the ignition button.  There's no place to actually stick or turn a key, and therefore no way to use the "key" to manually unlock the steering column.  In his case, the column unlocks when you push the start button.  In my case, the steering column never locks.
-Scott
2000 Itasca Horizon 36LD

ELeland

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2018, 11:20:50 AM »
I found this in the Manual:


Steering lock
After turning the engine switch off and opening and closing the doors, the
steering wheel will be locked due to the steering lock function. Operating the
engine switch again automatically cancels the steering lock.


It worked until I opened and closed the door to get out, then locked up again.
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kdbgoat

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #13 on: January 23, 2018, 11:24:17 AM »
Most likely the programming in the ECM can be hacked to defeat the door locks.
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jagnweiner

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #14 on: January 23, 2018, 11:39:15 AM »
Thanks for the reply.  I bought the whole setup through Just for Towing out of AZ.  They must have done other newer Tacomas because they called to question one of my drive shaft dimensions as it didn't jive with others they have done.  I called them and they said it can be done and will call me back with the "sequence" to achieve the free steering.  I will let you know what they say.

It will be interesting to see what they have to say.  Found this link to a thread on another RV forum with the same question:  https://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/28988100/srt/pa/pging/1/page/2.cfm.  Initially the poster says he heard of someone grinding down a pin in the steering column, which disabled the lock.  His final post provides a different solution, similar to the thought going through my head:

"I finally saw a message on a Truck forum from a new series Tacoma owner. He tried to get at the factory locking pin on the steering column but it is not easy. The bolts have no head. They break the head off at the factory after installation. He then tried the following: "I added a battery disconnect switch, so after pushing the starter button once to put the truck in accessory (unlocking the steering wheel) I just pop the hood and throw my battery disconnect switch. Steering stays unlocked until battery power is restored. A setting saver maintains most of my settings while the battery is disconnected.""

Sounds like a battery disconnect would work, but it would create an issue if you wanted to use a supplemental braking system like a "Brake Buddy" that relies on 12V power from the toad to power a compressor.  There could be workarounds to that too; just makes things more complicated.
-Scott
2000 Itasca Horizon 36LD

ELeland

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #15 on: January 23, 2018, 01:04:43 PM »
It will be interesting to see what they have to say.  Found this link to a thread on another RV forum with the same question:  https://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/28988100/srt/pa/pging/1/page/2.cfm.  Initially the poster says he heard of someone grinding down a pin in the steering column, which disabled the lock.  His final post provides a different solution, similar to the thought going through my head:

"I finally saw a message on a Truck forum from a new series Tacoma owner. He tried to get at the factory locking pin on the steering column but it is not easy. The bolts have no head. They break the head off at the factory after installation. He then tried the following: "I added a battery disconnect switch, so after pushing the starter button once to put the truck in accessory (unlocking the steering wheel) I just pop the hood and throw my battery disconnect switch. Steering stays unlocked until battery power is restored. A setting saver maintains most of my settings while the battery is disconnected.""

Sounds like a battery disconnect would work, but it would create an issue if you wanted to use a supplemental braking system like a "Brake Buddy" that relies on 12V power from the toad to power a compressor.  There could be workarounds to that too; just makes things more complicated.

I did the same search and found the thread you mentioned on Tacomaworld.com  Not the answer I was looking for, but it looks like it gets around the problem. 

https://www.tacomaworld.com/threads/towing-4-down-with-at.434159/ 
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grashley

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #16 on: January 23, 2018, 07:04:43 PM »
 ;D  ;D  Leave the window down, turn truck off, get out, reach thru the open window and turn the key!   ::)  :o
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jagnweiner

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #17 on: January 23, 2018, 08:21:47 PM »
;D  ;D  Leave the window down, turn truck off, get out, reach thru the open window and turn the key!   ::)  :o

Again, there's no key to turn.   :o
-Scott
2000 Itasca Horizon 36LD

Arch Hoagland

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #18 on: January 24, 2018, 01:12:28 AM »
What kind of supplemental braking are you installing in your Tacoma?

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ELeland

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #19 on: January 24, 2018, 07:11:35 AM »
What kind of supplemental braking are you installing in your Tacoma?

I have the SMI stay and play.  It's still in the box.  I may start tackling the installs on all the components this weekend.  anything I should watch out for?
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jagnweiner

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #20 on: January 24, 2018, 07:38:58 AM »
I have the SMI stay and play.  It's still in the box.  I may start tackling the installs on all the components this weekend.  anything I should watch out for?

Interesting.  I've researched a lot of different braking systems, but was not familiar with that one.  I scanned through the instruction video and it looks like it hard wires to the battery rather than running off of switched 12v power, so you should be OK if you have to go the battery disconnect route for the steering lock.  If you do end up using the battery disconnect, you would need to make sure the 12V tap is located before the disconnect.
-Scott
2000 Itasca Horizon 36LD

ELeland

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #21 on: January 24, 2018, 11:05:10 AM »
Interesting.  I've researched a lot of different braking systems, but was not familiar with that one.  I scanned through the instruction video and it looks like it hard wires to the battery rather than running off of switched 12v power, so you should be OK if you have to go the battery disconnect route for the steering lock.  If you do end up using the battery disconnect, you would need to make sure the 12V tap is located before the disconnect.

Understood.  I like the idea of the battery disconnect in lieu of the other alternatives to disabling the steering lock.  That one is fool proof and I have a brand new marine disconnect on the shelf left over from my boating days.
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jagnweiner

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #22 on: January 24, 2018, 11:51:02 AM »
It's pretty fool proof; I'd make sure that each time after you disconnect the battery that you go back and make sure the steering is unlocked.
-Scott
2000 Itasca Horizon 36LD

Alfa38User

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #23 on: January 25, 2018, 11:16:00 AM »
Many newer vehicles do not have a key as was mentioned above. Mine simply has a push button that will switch from Aux. to Ignition and Start is achieved by pushing the button while stepping on the brake pedal. It requires a pendant or remote that has the  door lock/unlock function on it to be very close by before anything will function. (I leave mine in my pocket at all times.) I believe that the pendant cannot be left in the vehicle when the doors are locked but I have yet to prove what might happen should I try it. It does scream and yell at me should I walk away with the pendant while the engine is running!!!! Not sure if what will happen either should it be put in drive by another driver once the engine is running without the pendant present. (Stall maybe??) Looks like I have some interesting experiments coming.

All this to say, how would towing this kind of vehicle be accomplished, other than on a trailer??  (2017 Dodge Journey)
« Last Edit: January 25, 2018, 11:17:47 AM by Alfa38User »
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Cdmrj999

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #24 on: January 25, 2018, 12:22:47 PM »
Is a 2007 Jeep Liberty Limited 4 wheel drive automatic transmission capable of towed all 4 wheels down?
Thanks, Craig

Arch Hoagland

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #25 on: January 25, 2018, 10:19:28 PM »
Cdmrj999 asked "Is a 2007 Jeep Liberty Limited 4 wheel drive automatic transmission capable of towed all 4 wheels down?"

Yes according to Remco.  No modifications required.

http://www.remcotowing.com/Towing/Store.php   

« Last Edit: January 25, 2018, 10:21:25 PM by Arch Hoagland »
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Joezeppy

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #26 on: January 26, 2018, 08:05:18 AM »
Not sure if what will happen either should it be put in drive by another driver once the engine is running without the pendant present. (Stall maybe??) Looks like I have some interesting experiments coming.


We visited with friends a couple of years ago - we met them at their house and then drove to the beach in separate cars for the day. As we were getting ready to head home my buddy says "Can you give me a ride home? My keys are on the kitchen table." Apparently he started the car, went back in the house, and for some reason emptied his pockets. The car did not care that the key was nowhere to be found. Not sure if all push-start vehicles work this way but we had a good laugh over that one!
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ELeland

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #27 on: January 26, 2018, 09:36:30 AM »

We visited with friends a couple of years ago - we met them at their house and then drove to the beach in separate cars for the day. As we were getting ready to head home my buddy says "Can you give me a ride home? My keys are on the kitchen table." Apparently he started the car, went back in the house, and for some reason emptied his pockets. The car did not care that the key was nowhere to be found. Not sure if all push-start vehicles work this way but we had a good laugh over that one!

My Tacoma works the same way, which surprised me.  I was at a car wash when I left the car running and walked away.  The attendant drove it through the wash and then had to find me for the fob when he shut it off.  I thought the vehicle should go into anti-theft mode if you try to move it without the fob.  I learned that day not to leave it running when I run into a store.
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John From Detroit

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #28 on: January 26, 2018, 10:53:55 AM »
Caution on the Jeep Liberty.. They have at least two different transfer cases.. The version with Full Time 4-Wheel drive,, (as opposed to manually selected 4WD) per JEEP can not be towed,, though that was a 2313, not a 2017.  Rented one for a weekend after my wife died.  Had way too much round running to do that week (fri-sat-Sun-Mon) nice ride, would not mind having one with a manual transfer case.
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wackymac

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Re: Towing a "Toad"
« Reply #29 on: January 26, 2018, 03:45:27 PM »
How does the drive-line disconnect work with 4WD.  Do you need one for the front also?
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