Deciding on which model for toad

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Debra17

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Apr 1, 2016
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Colorado
We have started the process of looking for a toad to pull with our MH. The hitch capacity is 5,000 lbs and the maximum load on the tongue is 500 lbs. The previous owner had installed a Roadmaster Hitch Mounted Spare Tire Carrier ( https://www.etrailer.com/Spare-Tire...5225.html#exp-productdetails=.all-description ). According to the information on etrailer.com, this carrier reduces the tongue weight capacity by 33%, which makes the tongue weight capacity 335 lbs. He was towing a 2013 Explorer, which has a minimum curb weight of 4,534 lbs per google and so was most likely exceeding the rated capacity. Would we need to deduct the weight of the spare tire also, which would reduce the tongue capacity even more?

When towing a vehicle 4 down, is the tongue weight a minimum of 10% of the vehicle weight, same as towing a trailer?

If so we need to look for a vehicle that would have a weight of around 3,000 lbs. Does that even exist??
The other option is to remove the spare tire and carrier. What do others do for a spare tire?
 

Isaac-1

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When towing 4 down the only weight on the tongue is the 40 or 50 pounds of the tow bar. As to weight of the TOAD, just because your coach is rated to tow 5,000 pounds does not mean that you have to tow a 5,000 pound TOAD. A 2,500 pound TOAD might be a lot easier to tow, our coach also has a 5,000 pound towing capacity, and when we are towing our 4,300 Jeep Cherokee, I can tell it is back there and it causes more fatigue than traveling without a TOAD drops my comfortable top speed by 5-8 mph.
 

Larry N.

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A 2,500 pound TOAD might be a lot easier to tow, our coach also has a 5,000 pound towing capacity, and when we are towing our 4,300 Jeep Cherokee, I can tell it is back there and it causes more fatigue than traveling without a TOAD drops my comfortable top speed by 5-8 mph.
Interesting... My rig is a bit larger and can tow 10K, but the only way I notice our 4700 lb Wrangler back there is in the reduced acceleration (of course I have to watch clearances, etc.) -- otherwise I'm rarely aware of it, in terms of the rig's handling, though I keep track of it in my rear camera, as well as seeing traffic back there. Braking differences, with the U.S. Gear braking system, is pretty much not noticeable, either, though it certainly would be noticeable without some such, as on all rigs.

Towing the TOAD is certainly not a fatigue factor for me, though as with all rigs there is an additional fatigue factor in just driving an RV vs driving a car or pickup. But the TOAD doesn't add to it.

When towing a vehicle 4 down, is the tongue weight a minimum of 10% of the vehicle weight, same as towing a trailer?
Absolutely not! As Ike says, the tow bar is the only tongue weight on the hitch from the toad*, since four down means the TOAD is carrying its own weight -- none of it on the tow vehicle. Now with the TOAD on a dolly or a trailer that's another story.

You might think of it as the difference between pulling a loaded 4 wheel wagon and pushing/pulling a wheelbarrow with the same weight.


* I even have a hitch extender that states it is for towing four down only, not for trailer use.
 
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Debra17

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Colorado
Thanks guys for straightening me out on the tongue weight. That does make sense. The Roadmaster tire carrier also says the hitch receiver is for four down towing only. We like the Explorer but think we should look for something lighter. We would be right at the max of 5,000 lbs the hitch is rated for.
 

phil-t

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Ogdensburg, NY
We tow our 2020 Buick Envision AWD 4 down. An easy hookup and no tow restrictions on the car. The Envision's weight is right at 4k lbs.
 

Debra17

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Glad to hear that. I’m going through the Dingy Guides now to see what other vehicles we might consider. We planned to look at the Envision.
 

Laura & Charles

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Could be anywhere. Originally from Ohio. Go Bucks!
Most folks stow stuff in their toad when underway so that should factor in. I have no doubt we add at least 500 lbs to our toad with a cooler and miscellaneous stuff packed in back as well as a car top Thule loaded and full tank of gas.
Honda CR-V’s weigh in under 3500 and are towable up and including model year 2014. (We have 10,000 capacity now, but bought our CR-V when we had our previous coach.)
 

UTTransplant

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Jul 20, 2014
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Cedar Falls, IA
I second the recommendation to consider weight inside the toad. We leave a pair of lawn chairs, water, a tool kit, and all kinds of miscellaneous stuff in our Grand Cherokee all the time.
 

Debra17

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Apr 1, 2016
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Colorado
yep we had already talked about this. If we are close to the limit we won’t be able to carry anything in the car. We will adjust according to the vehicle weight.
 

LarryinID

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Jul 16, 2021
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Idaho
When towing 4 down the only weight on the tongue is the 40 or 50 pounds of the tow bar. As to weight of the TOAD, just because your coach is rated to tow 5,000 pounds does not mean that you have to tow a 5,000 pound TOAD. A 2,500 pound TOAD might be a lot easier to tow, our coach also has a 5,000 pound towing capacity, and when we are towing our 4,300 Jeep Cherokee, I can tell it is back there and it causes more fatigue than traveling without a TOAD drops my comfortable top speed by 5-8 mph.

Huh. I don’t hardly notice my Cherokee is back there on MY F53 gasser (Ford V10). I think it actually helps on the rare occassions I am on Interstate and get passed by a Semi doing 80.

I don’t have a clue how it could cause fatigue. You might need to get your MH wheels aligned.
 
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