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Author Topic: Toad setup questions  (Read 297 times)

jphilsousa

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Toad setup questions
« on: May 16, 2019, 09:00:02 PM »
Still a few months away from buying a DP, but I'm trying to get my ducks in a row on a buying a tow vehicle.  I'm kinda liking the size and prices on 7 or 8 year old Ford Fusions and Chevy Cruzes.

Remco's site, for the Cruze, says "When towing for an extended period of time, start the vehicle as often as possible and allow it to run for five minutes to prevent battery drain."  Then goes on to say to follow owner's manual.  The owner's manual says to pull 4 fuses but nothing about starting the vehicle.

This leads me to several questions which I'm sure that those that are experienced in the subject can answer:

     1. If all 4 fuses are pulled, wouldn't the drain on the battery be nil, except for the braking system (Am planning on a Brake Buddy or RVI type system)?  So there should be no need for auxiliary charging of the battery, right? A fully charged battery would be enough for running the braking system for a day or 2?

     2.The fuses are labeled "Ignition/Electronic Key System", "Steering Column Lock", and 2 that say "Body Control Module".  The one that says "Cigarette Lighter" should still be live and therefore available to the braking system?

     3.The manual shows that the fuses are located right under a door on the dash so should be easy to get to.  I have read here that there are switches available for a single fuse to keep from having to remove it but is there such a thing as a device for 4 fuses?  Seems like 4 switches would be a little ungainly.

It seemed like I had a couple of other questions when going through this but they don't come to mind.  I'll let you folks answer the first couple, if you will, and I'm sure I'll have followups to ask.

Kirk

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Re: Toad setup questions
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2019, 07:25:31 AM »
Quote
3....  I have read here that there are switches available for a single fuse to keep from having to remove it but is there such a thing as a device for 4 fuses?  Seems like 4 switches would be a little ungainly.
It would require a switch for each fuse.
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John From Detroit

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Re: Toad setup questions
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2019, 07:56:14 AM »
I do not know of anyone who make a 4 pole fuse kit (Though I knwo how to make one) and the blasted RV dealers want way way way way more than I think a switch kit is worth for each fuse but.

YOu can get a device designed to tap in a 2nd circuit. this device plugs in in place of a fuse and it holds TWO fuses, it has a wire that comes off (one fuse may be "in-line" 

Or you can use What I call "Tab" connectors to replace the fuse (these are teh flat connectors that insert into a thicker flat connector.. You'd need 8 of those 

And a single switch FOUR POLE single throw.   (4PST)  3.99 at parts express. and the wire  to connect them of course.. Total likely under 10 definitely under 20 dollars.. And you do not want to knwo what an RV dealer woudl charge for this kit.

4PST Heavy Duty Switch at Parts Express

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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Toad setup questions
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2019, 08:30:34 AM »
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     1. If all 4 fuses are pulled, wouldn't the drain on the battery be nil, except for the braking system (Am planning on a Brake Buddy or RVI type system)?  So there should be no need for auxiliary charging of the battery, right?
Best I can say is "Maybe".  It's not clear that the car engineers always consider battery depletion when they define what fuses to pull - they are more concerned about disabling vehicle components that might cause damage or be damaged. Further, the owner manual info has been known to be inaccurate. I know somebody here who bought a new Cruze to tow some years ago and it ultimately turned out to be untowable and Chevrolet had to refund his money after replacing a couple transmissions. The fuse-pulling  info was wrong on my brand new GMC Acadia too - it took GM weeks to figure that out.

The more recent cars have a lot of electronic gear and some of it runs even with the key off. More of it runs if the key is in ACC to unlock the steering column. That can cause a surprising amount of battery drain - my Acadia was pulling over 10A when in ACC. GM finally decided that it should have one of its two main 50A fuses pulled to shut down all major systems while towing.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2019, 08:34:21 AM by Gary RV_Wizard »
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jphilsousa

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Re: Toad setup questions
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2019, 10:17:43 PM »
Thanks, guys, for the responses. 

John, I will refer back to this thread if I end up getting the Cruze and need to make that contraption.  May even need some clarification.

Gary, do you remember if the Cruze in question was automatic or manual?  I'm probably planning on a manual transmission so hopefully it wouldn't have that sort of issue.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Toad setup questions
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2019, 08:58:59 AM »
Only the automatics had a problem.
Gary
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billwild

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Re: Toad setup questions
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2019, 06:51:54 PM »
Have a look at the Honda  CRV. Only the ones built up to 2014 can be towed. Many people on this site use them as toads and love them. I know I sure did. Also, have a good look on EBay for towing gear. I found basically all mine on there, Brake Buddy, tow cables, tow bar, base plate, etc. at a reduced rate compared to new.


Bill

jphilsousa

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Re: Toad setup questions
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2019, 01:50:37 AM »
Good advice on both fronts, Bill.  Thank you.

And thank you, Gary, for the clarification.  I just figure I'll be safer going with a manual car in many cases.