EPDM Coatings
rvupgradestore.com Composet Products Custom Yacht Interiors

Author Topic: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?  (Read 4055 times)

ugavet

  • ---
  • Posts: 31
Recently we traveled from Clayton, Ga to Logan, Utah to pick up our new motorhome.  We drove across country in a new 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual tranny.  In Logan, I had a Roadmaster All Terrain tow bar and plate installed to pull the Jeep back across country.  Once we started home the Jeep was attached with the tow bar.  I followed the Jeep Manual's instruction for flat towing by putting the transfer case in neutral and then placing in gear and testing forward and reverse to make sure transfer case was in fact disengaged.  I then put in forward gear which happened to be 1st.  2012 does not have steering lock so no key required. On our first stop home in Sidney, Nebraska at the Cabelas campground, we inhooked and went into town to eat.  On exiting the Jeep, I could smell what sort of smelled like overheating brakes or some internal mechanism that was overheating or not lubricating.  I looked underneath and saw nothing.  Raised hood and smell seemed to be stronger but could find nothing. Didnt really smell on trip back to camp, but did again when we arrived home and unhooked and drove Jeep up to house from the RV.  Despite being a 2012, this is a brand new rig as it was a left over that I bought a week before the trip.  It is due for an oil change now due to the cross country trip.  What should I have them look for when they change the oil?
Worried about transmission although driving seems ok, I really haven't drove it much since I got home.
Thanks
Brad

driftless shifter

  • ---
  • Posts: 2409
  • A Luddite with a stupid phone
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2013, 06:42:25 AM »
There is a big difference betweent the smells you get from drive trains and brakes/clutch. Hot oil smells pungent, hot brakes/clutch smell acrid and might make you catch your breath. Hot metal smells ...well, like hot metal. Anti-freeze smells sweet.
You say the smell occurs while driving not while towing. Are you using a toad brake system? Is it a box on floor vs an installed system? Installed may need adjustment? Why leave tranny in forward gear for towing, Jeep instructions? Maybe a piece of road debris (plastic?) got tangled up in exhaust, most of it melted away on ride to town and is now just a melty blob fused to exhaust pipe.
Just some ideas.

Bill
Bill & Nan
(o\_!_/o)
93 bounder 34, chevy chassis
couple of aircooled vw's, 1 fast(sold), 1 reliable(sold).  Dubless : (
USN '76-'80, 1 boat, USS Blandy, DD 943.
I'm an analog guy in a digital age.

zmotorsports

  • ---
  • Posts: 1676
  • Hardcore Gearhead
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #2 on: August 14, 2013, 07:52:17 AM »
Brad, what you are smelling is nothing out of the ordinary, kind of a burning rubber smell once you drive the toad a short distance after towing it a great distance.  It is caused by debris from many tens of thousands of other vehicles tires leaving a small amount of rubber on the interstates/highways.  When we are driving our vehicles the exhaust system as well as the hot engine will generally burn this debris up rather quickly before it has a chance to settle on anything.  When being towed and the engine not running this road debris collects on the exhaust.  Once started and running you will get the burning rubber smell for a short time until it is all gone.

I have also found it more pronounced on some roads than others, some dependant on the amount of traffic the road sees, other times I think it may have something to do with when the last time the road received a good downpour to wash the surface before we came along.

I have also found that giving the undercarriage of our Jeep a good blast of compressed air after we unhook and prior to starting the engine has greatly reduced the smell.

Mike.
2003 Monaco Dynasty Baroness
2008 Haulmark Edge 26'
2011 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
FMCA# F315002

Ken & Sheila

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 3657
  • Smokey 3
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2013, 08:11:11 AM »
We've had the same smell towing a Jeep GC, Cherokee, Chevy Blazer, Jeep Liberty and Saturn Vue. Mike is correct in the cause of the smell. More pronounced in some vehicles than others. Probably has to due with the air flow under the vehicle concerning how much of the "road dust" is allowed to settle on the vehicle.



Ken & Sheila
2009 Monaco Camelot 42 PDQ
2008 Jeep Liberty, 2006 Saturn Vue
Fur-ball kids: Ariel and Mia

captsteve

  • ---
  • Posts: 2350
  • measure with a micrometer, cut with a chainsaw!
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2013, 08:21:17 AM »
That's some good info! I'm gonna tow my new Wrangler to Moab in Oct. I think it would cause some concern if I didn't hear it here first.

Thanks all!!!
Capt Steve has the Conn, Trina navigator ( Admiral )
2004 American Revolution 40c (aka Fat Girl) **Sold**
2017 Ram 1500 (Future Toad)
Piper Archer II  (Where the RV money goes)

Marsha/CA

  • Former Staff
  • ---
  • Posts: 4533
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2013, 11:33:47 AM »
Quote
I then put in forward gear which happened to be 1st.

Just a thought.  I also have a manual transmission on our tow car, but not a Jeep Rubicon.  My instructions call for putting the manual into "neutral".  If you are pulling in 1st, I'm wondering if that is correct. 

No insult meant....just double checking.

Marsha~
2017 Heartland Mallard IDM231 Travel Trailer....Small but mighty.

zmotorsports

  • ---
  • Posts: 1676
  • Hardcore Gearhead
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2013, 11:40:50 AM »
You should put the manual in gear rather than neutral.  In neurtral there is a scenario called viscous coupling whereas the transfer case shaft could turn from the output shaft "dragging" fluid around.  When/If this happens the transmission output shaft and related gears/bearings is not getting lubed.  By putting the transmission in gear it merely ensures that the transmission output shaft will not be turning while being towed.

Mike.
2003 Monaco Dynasty Baroness
2008 Haulmark Edge 26'
2011 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
FMCA# F315002

Marsha/CA

  • Former Staff
  • ---
  • Posts: 4533
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2013, 12:05:53 PM »
Quote
You should put the manual in gear rather than neutral.

Mike, I'm thinking your info maybe correct for newer standard transmission vehicles.  I have a 2006 5 speed Hyundai Tucson and have towed it for over 50,000 miles and it has 53,000 miles on the odometer from driving with no problems.  My manual clearly states it should be in neutral. 

Not changing anything at this point.

Marsha~
2017 Heartland Mallard IDM231 Travel Trailer....Small but mighty.

zmotorsports

  • ---
  • Posts: 1676
  • Hardcore Gearhead
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2013, 01:34:42 PM »
Mike, I'm thinking your info maybe correct for newer standard transmission vehicles.  I have a 2006 5 speed Hyundai Tucson and have towed it for over 50,000 miles and it has 53,000 miles on the odometer from driving with no problems.  My manual clearly states it should be in neutral. 

Not changing anything at this point.

Marsha~

OK.  However, the title of this thread is Flat towing a 2012 Jeep and as far as Jeeps go the information I gave is 100% accurate.  I was not referring to your Hyundai in which you are towing.  If the manaul says to put in neutral then by all means do so.  Most of the vehicles on the road from the late 90's to current do not lubricate the transmission from the output shaft as in older vehicles so this is why I encourage people to look at the dingy towing guide published for the year vehicle they are looking to purchase and follow the owners' manual.

Mike.
2003 Monaco Dynasty Baroness
2008 Haulmark Edge 26'
2011 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
FMCA# F315002

ugavet

  • ---
  • Posts: 31
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2013, 06:23:02 PM »
Thanks Mike and others. I will stop worrying.  Mike, I hope all is well.  Made it home but ready to go again.

Lou Schneider

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 7640
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #10 on: August 15, 2013, 02:08:56 AM »
Quote
I then put in forward gear which happened to be 1st.

Just a thought, but I'd make a habit of putting the transmission in High gear instead of 1st.  Either way the engine compression will keep the transmission from turning while the rig is going down the road (the intended result).

But someday you may be in a hurry and forget to put the transfer case in neutral.  If that happens, accelerating to highway speed with the transmission in 1st gear will seriously overspeed the engine.  In high gear, the engine will still turn, but even at highway speeds it will be turning at normal speed, so it won't be damaged - you'll just burn more fuel from the increased drag on the motorhome.

zmotorsports

  • ---
  • Posts: 1676
  • Hardcore Gearhead
Re: Flat towing 2012 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited 6 speed manual, smell?
« Reply #11 on: August 15, 2013, 10:39:00 AM »
Thanks Mike and others. I will stop worrying.  Mike, I hope all is well.  Made it home but ready to go again.

Brad, glad you made it home safely and are enjoying your new rig.  It was sure good to meet you and your wife and be able to spend some time getting to know you.  We hope to meet up with you guys again on the road somewhere.

Mike.
2003 Monaco Dynasty Baroness
2008 Haulmark Edge 26'
2011 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
FMCA# F315002

 

Hosted by Over The Network