Richard, I read the Blogs on the website and noticed that most of them referred to RV towing. I would like to offer a couple of other viewpoints from my perspective.
I actually tow my wife's Corolla with my Toyota Highlander, which is equipped with a factory installed tow package and hitch, and is fully factory rated for towing 5,000 pounds. My wife loves her car and wants to be able to use it when we're south for the winter months.
When towing, I hardly know that the “EZE-TOW” dolly and Corolla is attached as Highlander, with the tow package, has great acceleration.
The fuel economy is about 18 mpg at Interstate highway speeds of 70 MPH. Normally, I would get 23 MPH without the dolly. That still makes it much less expensive then driving both cars, and we can share driving as well. For both vehicles to average 18 mpg, each would have to get 36 mpg, so I do save gas too.
Now for the best benefit. It would cost me $800 each way to have the Corolla transported from NY to FL each year. The tow dolly paid for itself in ONE year!! Also, we can use the Corolla for extra storage for the stuff we bring down for the season, putting two coolers in the back seat, for food and frozen stuff. (We use dry ice for that one).
In FL, the cost of storing a trailer, if used to transport the Corolla, is about $120/mo! The dolly stays right in the front of my driveway, saving that expense as well.
The Corolla uses a smart key ignition system. HOWEVER, a "dumb" key can be made for a few dollars and used to keep the steering column unlocked. A dumb key is also good for unlocking the door if your regular keys got locked inside the car. When I leave the Corolla hitched overnight, I remove the key just to make sure it's not causing battery drainage. I then put the key in front of the Highlander's speedometer, to remind me that I need to install it prior to restarting my trip.
When driving and applying the brakes, I can feel the “EZE-TOW” dolly brakes actually providing additional braking, which is very good. With the dolly brakes being applied a little more aggressively then the towing vehicle, it helps keeping the vehicle straight with no tendency to fish tail. I didn't see this mentioned anywhere in the Blog.
Lastly, to control surface rust, there is a product called Chassis Saver. It's designed to paint right over surface rust and comes in basic colors such as black and silver. I used it on my old chain-link fence and it's amazing even after a full year of upstate NY weather.
I also used it on thirty year old galvanized metal chimney exterior for my wood stove, and it made it look like brand new, even after a full year. (It's triple wall pipe with a stainless steel interior).
The Chassis Saver converts the surface rust as well as providing a protective coating so there's no rust bleeding through afterward. All that's needed is to use a wire brush to get rid of the loose rust and scale. The black product will eventually dull and they recommend an overcoat of standard enamel. It's not cheap stuff, but like any good product, you get what you pay for. The silver stuff is amazing on coverage since it has a very high percentage of solids, in the 90% range. It's primary market is for restoration of vintage autos.
Regards, Nick Abbatiello
The "dumb" key will turn the lock mechanism and open a door or trunk, but will not allow the engine to run (no ignition). The "dumb" key will allow you to turn the column lock mechanism so the steering wheel to the first detente position and will allow the wheel to turn freely.
In the first position, it only unlocks the column, the next position, activates the accessories such as the radio and will drain the battery if left on. I use the "dumb" key and place the column switch in the first position, which is detented and remains there as long as the key is in the lock. The key must be rotated counter-clockwise to the "off"
position to remove the key and lock the column.
The best part about being an RV owner is the ability to get to a new place without any hassles whatsoever—unless you pull into a beautiful seaside town swarming with tourists. Worst of all, there’s no place to park!
But there are hundreds of places in our scenic country that are both friendly to RVs and offer peace and solitude instead of herds of other people.
Here are a few of the best RV destinations in the U.S. you’ve never heard of.
Big Bend National Park
One of the most remote parks in the country, Big Bend hides way down at the southernmost tip of Texas. The 25-site RV campground offers full-service spots, 20 available by reservation and the remaining 5 for first-come first-serve visitors.
If you tow horses or kayaks, rafts or canoes behind your RV, Bid Bend is the perfect getaway. Hundreds of miles of backcountry wilderness await your mighty steed, as do miles of The Rio Grande that carved 1,500-foot canyons in the rocky soil.
Badlands National Park
Nestled in the South Dakotan shadow of one of the greatest American monuments, Mount Rushmore, Badlands National Park is a trail-less, constantly eroding, rugged, and extremely primitive experience. For these reasons alone it should be on every serious RVer’s bucket list.
There are no reservations here, which is why fewer RV drivers consider making the trip to the ethereal landscape of hoodoos and spires that jut out from a naturally carved sand sculpture of bronze, gold, red, and sage. Only electrical hookups are available, though there is a lodge with a full restaurant where you can dine on authentic Indian fry bread and even buffalo-meat tacos.
During the summer months (the busy season), there is a 14-day limit on how long you can stay. Once your time is up, head west toward Mount Rushmore and the Black Hills to re-enter civilization.
Lake Mead National Recreation Area
Just east of Las Vegas is the RV Mecca known as Lake Mead RV Village. Set alongside the southwestern bank of Lake Mead near the Arizona/New Mexico border, the RV Village features 115 sites with full amenities and laundry service, as well as numerous outdoor activities like Bocce ball, horseshoes, and BBQ pits.
Though Lake Mead RV Village is nearby a bustling metropolis and infinite recreational opportunities, the site is large enough that you aren’t crowded by others even during the busy season. However, you’ll still enjoy neighborly interaction with people from all over the country, and possibly even the world.
You’ll also be able to take your auto to the nearby Hoover Dam, Valley of Fire State Park, Red Rock Canyon and the Railroad Tunnel Trail. If you’re towing a boat with you, take advantage of the Willow Beach and Callville Bay Marinas, where you can access the deep blue lake and catch fish, sunbathe on 500 miles of shoreline or just drift along without a care in the world.
Huron-Manistee National Forest
This Michigan RV stop is way up north alongside the west bank, or the “pinky end” of the glove. In an area known for chilly temperatures in the winter, a summer RVer will find the calm and mild weather a treat.
There are no hookups for RVs in the forest, but that’s part of the appeal. If amenities are a must, there are several RV camps around the area that will satisfy your need for power. However, it’s worth the trip to spend at least a night in the serene woods alongside a relaxing lake, tossing a fishing line into the water and peering at rare birds through a pair of binoculars.
You’re also in rambling distance of at least a dozen state forests and forests areas, including Huron National Forest and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Horse riding and OHV riding are also possibilities, so put that tow dolly to use and haul your second favorite mode of transportation behind your RV.
No matter where you go or how much time you have to get there, spending summers in an RV exploring the best of our country’s destinations is a national pastime all its own. And finding these gems is why RVing in the U.S. is such a treasure.
These days, making a big purchase is more difficult than ever. That’s why you need to take care of the things you spend your money on.
Take your car tow dolly, for example. Performing routine maintenance on your dolly is paramount. Proper upkeep is the best way to ensure you are getting the most out of your money.
In the event that you’ve purchased a used car tow dolly, you’ll need to pay close attention to your dolly’s preventative maintenance needs. However, with vigilance and an hour’s worth of work every so often, you can keep your dolly like new.
And like most mechanical tools, it only takes a bit of simple maintenance to keep your investment running smoothly for a million miles. Here are a few tips for how to care for your car tow dolly without breaking the bank—or your back.
It’s hard to overestimate what an inexpensive can of WD-40 or other oil product can do, because they do so much. From rust-proofing to squeak-stopping, a thin coat of oil is all it takes to protect the areas of your dolly that are easily prone to dust collection, like in the nooks and crannies around wheels.
The hub itself only needs a maintenance inspection once every five years, though you should make sure you grease the bearings once in awhile depending on use. Thankfully, many mechanics can do this easily while they’re working on other areas of your vehicle.
Even though dolly tires can be extremely heavy duty, they still require attention to make them last. For example, each tire must maintain a pressure of 90 pounds per square inch. Perform a “cold” check and watch for any leakage. Ensure each lug nut is tight before loading a vehicle.
Even during short trips, wires can become lose or frayed by the elements and normal wear and tear. Check every visible inch of your wiring for frays or splits. Remember, you’re checking for potential problems in addition to existing ones. That way, you can take proactive measures to preventing a major catastrophe that could have been avoided.
If you experience wire problems out on the road, reinforce the wires with heavy-duty electrical tape until you can return home or get to a mechanic. Especially in rainy or precipitous conditions, exposed wires can pose a significant danger to anyone operating the dolly.
When you don’t plan on using your tow dolly for a considerable amount of time, proper storage is required to prevent any rusting or depreciation through lack of use. Before you store your dolly, hose down and wash the surface like you would with any automobile.
Store it in a clean place as well. Don’t let it sit in puddles of oil or mud or where rats and squirrels like to make nests and chew wires and other vital components. Be mindful of the tires; given enough time, they’ll begin to dry rot like any other piece of rubber.
Once you remove your dolly from storage, do a good check of the electrical system and the joints and bearings before loading it up with thousands of pounds of automobile ballast. And then check the entire dolly again with while it’s under stress. You may find something you missed before.
Learn the Manual
Every Acme EZE-TOW car dolly ships with three users’ manuals. Within these books is the vital information you’ll need to keep your dolly in shape for years and years, including the best ways to handle the dolly. Even though it weighs less than competitors’ models, it’s still a few hundred pounds of metal and can injure you if you’re not careful.
Pay attention to the details and recommended maintenance schedule for the maximum benefit at the lowest cost.
Depending on how you treat your car tow dolly and what type of use it gets, you may not have to do such detailed maintenance. However, if you beat it up and use it weekly, there may be additional things you could to do keep your tow dolly running smoothly.
The gist of this advice is simple: take care of your investment and you won’t be spending extra money in the future on something you could have easily prevented.
When you’re cruising down the highway and making great time across the American plains on your way to a vacation in the Rockies, something terrible could happen: Your dolly could come unhooked or snap, sending your new Lexus or Hyundai into the ditch, effectively transforming it into a very expensive accordion.
So you’ll spend days in a hotel as they clean up the mess and you file claims with your insurance company. It’s too bad the whole thing is your fault, and your insurance doesn’t want to cover the damage you did to the power line on the side of the road.
Now you regret purchasing that used car tow dolly from a third-party seller.
As with any big purchase you make, you’re probably spending hours and hours researching the pros and cons of buying a used car dolly versus a brand-new one.
There are tons of things you need to look at; some are obvious, some not so obvious. To get the maximum safety and towing potential from your purchase, new is the best way to go. Read on to find out why buying a new car tow dolly is recommended over buying a used one.
Tow dollies don’t lose much in terms of quality over time, but they will start to depreciate if they aren’t taken care of—just like any other mechanical device. With that being said, you can never really be sure what the seller of a used dolly has done with theirs; you may be purchasing a piece of equipment that has never been oiled, cleaned, or maintained whatsoever until a week before you found the ad.
The same is true if the seller advertises a ‘hardly used’ dolly for sale. If you leave anything metal outside in the elements for years without use, it’ll soon be covered in rust and weeds (hardly used, though) and it makes a better planter than a tool to tow your expensive car with. If he says it’s been kept care of and indoors for years, it’s your word against his. But who stands to gain the most in that situation?
Purchase Cost versus Ownership Cost
With all that being said, you might get an outstanding deal on a used tow dolly. It’s hard to argue with a small upfront price—until it comes to maintenance. A used dolly that wasn’t taken care of will force you to incur more costs over the lifetime of the dolly than if you bought new instead.
When you purchase a brand-new tow dolly, you’ll know that salt, dirt, and water have not broken through its defenses and raided the bearings and joints, rendering them weak and ineffective. You’ll be able to conduct a successful maintenance schedule from the very first use, which will extend the lifetime of your dolly and cost you less money down the road.
With an Acme EZE-TOW dolly, that maintenance only needs to be once every five years. With the heavy-duty construction of the hubs, axle and tires, your dolly can tow a vehicle with a curb weight of nearly 5,000 pounds while staying rust-free and hassle-free as well.
Buying a used dolly means you won’t be privy to some of the new technologies that have emerged in this field. For example, the Acme EZE-TOW has mastered hydraulic disc brake technology to give you the best stopping power on the market today. And there are times out on the highway when you’ll need that stopping power, especially if you’re pulling a 2.5-ton metal box on wheels. It could save your Lexus from meeting that power line high in the Rocky Mountains.
Better yet, the entire dolly weighs only 405 pounds. Older, used models will weight considerably more and have inferior construction standards.
Peace of Mind
If you’re in the market for a tow dolly, you probably need it to pull exceptionally important automobiles, whether you’ve got an antique you show at local events or a Jeep that feeds your off-roading hunger. Instead of fearing if your used dolly will hold the immense weight or not, put your trust in a brand-new dolly that has no hint of wear and tear at all.
Besides, a used car tow dolly seller won’t give you a warranty you’ll get on a brand new one from Acme. Not that you’ll need it, of course. These dollies are built to last.
The biggest financial mistake you can make is putting your hard-earned money into an inferior product. That goes for everything from stocks to coffee to car tow dollies.
There are certain things that make a car tow dolly an inferior product, but none more so than the lack of hydraulic disc brakes. Having this kind of stopping power is an absolute necessity if you plan on pulling anything of value behind your truck or RV.
Read on to find out exactly why your car tow dolly needs hydraulic disc brakes, and how they can help save your investment from a crash—both financially and physically.
Disc brakes are highly superior to standard padded brakes and provide much more power to stop heavier loads. Here’s an article on the popular car research website Edmunds.com about the differences between disc brakes and drum brakes.
It says that while drum and disc brakes have both advanced greatly in the past twenty years, the disc brake is far and away the better of the two: “Today's front disc brakes are truly exceptional in terms of stopping power.”
And it’s more than the brake mechanism itself that requires high-quality components. You need a full brake system that meets the rigorous requirements of a car tow dolly laden with thousands of pounds of weight.
Hydraulic disc brakes are so advanced these days that you can rest assured of their performance. That performance includes the ability to evenly apply pressure to brake rotors, preventing them from wearing unevenly. It also enables both wheels to experience the same pressure; one wheel won’t get too much friction while the other wheel gets too little, an event that could overturn a dolly.
Because of these features, disc brakes have a decided advantage over drum brakes, especially when you’re towing thousands of pounds and don’t want to put that extra strain on your towing car’s brakes. In fact, you shouldn’t. Putting that much weight on your car tow dolly without an adequate brake system is a dangerous situation, and it could cause unwanted consequences.
The Acme Difference
The Acme Tow Dolly Company put forth hundreds of thousands of dollars to design and build the perfect tow dolly. Perhaps the biggest feature comes in the form of fully vented double vanes, which is a huge step up from standard flat-walled rotors. A vane design allows for maximum cooling under intense heat, without sacrificing stopping power.
Better yet, the design has put the brake pads in clear view so you always know exactly how they look under the heaviest duress. Plus, it makes brake replacement and cleaning much easier.
What Can Happen Without Hydraulic Disc Brakes?
If you’re still not sold on the positive aspects of hydraulic disc brakes, heed this example to learn how they can save more than a few feet of stopping distance.
Say you’ve hooked up your new car tow dolly to the back of your truck or RV and you plan on taking your Jeep Wrangler across the country to North Carolina’s Outer Banks. On the way you stop at Smoky Mountain National Park, among the busiest of all the national parks.
The road winds back and forth and up and down the mountainside, and it’s packed to the max with tourists piled in cars with luggage strapped to the top. The 35 mph road crawls at about 10 mph, since the road is so crowded. At one point, a bunch of cars pull off the road at a waterfall and you see an opportunity to get a bit of wind in your hair. The road turns suddenly, catching you off guard. You slam on the brakes to make the turn, but the pressure in your inferior dolly fails since the brake rotors have overheated from your miles of riding the brakes through the park. They weren’t double vented and double vaned.
This might be a dramatic scene, but it’s entirely possible. If you’re carrying too much weight for your brake’s capabilities, you could put yourself in a dangerous situation, especially in terrain where normal brake systems would be taxed extra hard.
Make the right choice and opt for hydraulic disc brakes over traditional drum brakes.
Towing your car behind your RV is one of the best ways to travel because you get the comfort of the RV as well as the ease of driving a small vehicle anytime you need a quicker way around town. Driving a big rig can be a bit of a challenge, and towing a vehicle behind your RV may even seem daunting. Although you can't control everything about your road trip, you can take certain precautions to ensure the safety of your vehicle on the road.
1. Double Check the Lights
It is essential that you understand the exterior lighting system on your RV and make sure that all of your RV lights are working properly before connecting a tow dolly. After you have connected the lighting system on the tow dolly to the lighting system on the RV, it is essential to have someone stand behind the tow dolly and make sure that all of the lights are connected properly. This includes brake lights, tail lights and turn signals. Do not tow a vehicle of any kind on your tow dolly if the lights are not working properly. You may have to have a technician show you how to hook up the lights the first time if you are unfamiliar with vehicle lighting systems.
2. Don't Exceed the Weight Rating
Anyone who owns or drives an RV should know what the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of their RV is and take care not to exceed it. The weight rating is usually listed on a plate on the outside of the vehicle. You can look this information up online if the plate on your vehicle is missing. The plate will also list the weight of your vehicle when it is empty. You can estimate the RV's weight after it is packed for a trip, but it is better to take your RV to a truck stop where there are scales big enough to weigh your unit. Then you will know for sure if it meets the GVWR and you can make adjustments before you have gone too far down the road.
3. Check Hitches and Brakes
It’s important to check the condition of your hitch every time you connect it to a tow dolly and before each trip to make sure it is in good repair. Major accidents have occurred on freeways because a tow dolly was not properly secured behind an RV and managed to come loose while it was traveling down the road. Avoid major damage and injury to other motorists and their vehicles simply by checking hitches and brakes every time you gear up to travel.
4. Don’t Compromise on Quality of Tow Dolly Parts
If you’re going to invest in a tow dolly, do it right. Two important elements of a quality car tow dolly are disc brakes (instead of drum brakes) and sealed bearings (instead of unsealed bearings).
Disc brakes are superior to drum brakes for two main reasons. First, they stay cooler than drum brakes, even in situations like driving down a hill where you might need to “ride” the brakes for an extended period of time. Because of this, they last longer. Second, they repel water more efficiently than drum brakes, making them safer for unexpected weather conditions. Cool and dry brakes are safe brakes.
Sealed bearings are superior to unsealed bearings because they require less maintenance, last longer, and enable a smoother ride. With sealed bearings, lubrication stays in while debris and water stay out. Sealed bearings will need to be replaced every so often, but they work better for a longer period of time than unsealed bearings.
Disc brakes and sealed bearings aren’t only important for the vehicle you’re driving; they’re essential for your tow dolly as well.
5. Allow Extra Following Distance
Recreational vehicles that are towing vehicles behind them are some of the largest vehicles on the road. Large, heavy vehicles take much longer to stop than regular passenger cars and trucks. This means that anyone who is driving a motorhome should leave plenty of space in front of them so that they have time to stop without hitting anything if the vehicle in front of them stops suddenly. They should also pay close attention to the vehicles around them and make sure they have plenty of space and have given other drivers proper warning before changing lanes. Reduce road rage and potential accidents by staying in the slow lane. You’ll maintain better fuel economy that way as well.
It's always important to make sure your equipment is in good working order before each trip. It is also essential that you know your vehicle's weight rating and don't exceed it. Always leave plenty of space between your vehicle and the one in front of you and be extra cautious when switching lanes. By taking heed to these simple precautions you can avoid major accidents and create safe and secure travel every time you tow your car.
Some RVers are reluctant to tow another vehicle behind their already large motorhome, but having to take your four-wheeled home with you everywhere you go can be very inconvenient, especially for shopping and sightseeing. Towing your car behind your motorhome gives you an extra set of quick wheels to get you out and about town for less gas and with less luggage. The extra wheels make it easier to explore cities, attend events, and more. If your RV needs repairs, another great benefit of towing your car behind is that you can leave your motorhome at the shop for repairs and go to a restaurant or motel instead of being forced to sit and wait until your RV is back in tip-top shape.
Traveling with Family
When more than one person is traveling in an RV, there may be times that everyone doesn't want to do the same thing. Having your car with you means that a couple of people can go off by themselves while others stay at the RV park. It also makes traveling with kids easier because you don’t have to round everyone up to run a simple errand—an adult can stay with the kids at camp while you run to get some hamburger buns or drinks.
Many people who have RVs travel across many states to visit family members and vacation spots. And families often want to do things together such as visit an amusement park or eat at a restaurant. It can become difficult to rely on family members to transport you from their home to wherever you are going and back again while you are in town. Having a smaller vehicle with you means that you don't have to rely on anyone else for transportation during your trip, especially if the places you are going cannot accommodate a larger RV.
Many people take day trips after they have reached their destination. Driving out to the beach or special attractions usually only takes an hour or two, but motorhomes are not very fuel-efficient and you may end up spending three times the normal amount of money on fuel if you drive the motorhome instead of a car. It can also be a hassle to disconnect the motorhome from power, water, and septic hookups if you are only going to be gone for a day and plan to come back to the same spot. A motorhome will get similar fuel economy whether or not you are towing a vehicle, so your fuel costs are not significantly increased when towing a vehicle and will even be reduced if you take day trips.
One of the most difficult aspects of traveling in a motorhome is that they are difficult to park and many cities do not have parking available for large vehicles. Attending a large event often means parking in a parking garage, which will not be able to accommodate a large motorhome. It would be a huge disappointment to have to miss a concert or sporting event because your vehicle is too big.
Even if you don't have to park in a parking garage, driving a large vehicle around an unfamiliar city can be stressful and dangerous. GPS units are helpful for navigation, but people still get lost in unfamiliar areas. You may end up accidentally going down a dead-end road and have trouble turning around your motorhome. Navigating in a car can save you this issue, because you can turn and switch lanes much faster than you can in a motorhome. Even if you go the wrong way and have to make a U-turn it’s not half as stressful in a smaller car.
Repairs and Maintenance
Maintaining your RV is a big part of being a responsible RV owner. If you have a car, one person can drive the RV to the shop while the other person follows. Then they can ask to be called when the repairs are complete. This leaves them free to spend time doing other things instead of being stuck at the shop waiting around for hours. Even if the repairs take longer than anticipated, people who have their vehicle with them can drive to a local motel and spend the night in town without worrying about how they will get to the places they need to go until the repairs to their motorhome are complete.
Towing a car while RVing includes many benefits, like getting around faster, saving gas, and even getting away from the rest of the group for a while. Although it may seem like a larger trial when you first set out on your travels, chances are you’ll find towing a car to be beneficial to your peace of mind and your pocketbook.
Each summer, millions of Americans hit the road in their RVs. They pack up the kids, the grandkids, the dog, the grill, and the GPS and get out on their chosen interstate with hopes of driving into a melting sunset en route to one of our beautiful and expansive national and state parks. It’s a worthwhile way to spend a summer.
But this dreamlike adventure can easily turn into a nightmare if you don’t prepare ahead of time. A lot of things can go wrong when you’re miles and miles away from any gas station. Put yourself in a good situation and plan against anything that could go wrong.
Of all that can happen, perhaps the biggest potential for disaster comes in the form of that sedan you’re pulling along behind—but not if you’ve got all the right equipment and know-how to keep your trip safe.
This list is filled with all the essential equipment you’ll need to tow your car behind your RV. It’s all the stuff you need to take to ensure you’ll make it to the Grand Canyon or Yosemite, even if you’re coming from the East Coast.
- The right dolly. You’ll need a professional-grade, easy-to-use, lightweight, and safe tow dolly to securely hold your vehicle. Well, you’ve come to the right place!
Our EZE-TOW car tow dolly features a fully welded frame, fully vented double-vane disc brakes and a total weight of 405 pounds. That’s less than 10 percent of the total weight our EZE-TOW can hold: 4,985 pounds.
A 12:1 capacity:actual weight ratio? That’s darn good.
- Spare tire and air pump. Make sure you’re bringing along an air pump. The EZE-TOW’s heavy-duty tires are rated at 1,650 lbs. each, so they’ll not easily buckle. Still, accidents do happen, and those dusty desert roads are strewn with rocks and debris. In fact, give yourself peace of mind and bring along a spare, too. You know how it goes—a spare is something you’ll probably never need while you have it; but if you don’t bring it, you’ll really wish you had.
- Gloves. Let that glovebox live up to its name. Our EZE-TOW system truly is complete with two plastic 7 lb. ramps rated for 8,000 lbs. which stow easily in the front when not in use. It’s the only way you’ll get your car’s tires positioned perfectly for secure anchoring in the dolly’s sweet spot. Gloves will give your hands adequate protection against heat or sharp edges that may result from road debris or other natural wear and tear. Besides, if you’re serious about maintaining an RV, you should already have a few pairs of heavy-duty work gloves in your toolbox.
- Extra lights. If you opt for the standard-style bulbs that the majority of vehicles use, make sure you have extra on hand. Through no fault of yours, they could simply burn out, leaving you in the dark. Or, you can get our LED upgrade and equip your dolly with a virtually infinite (100,000 hours/11 years—straight) bulb lifetime. LEDs are superior to old gas-filled bulbs in many ways, and they save you money.
- Extra security. Bring some extra ropes and straps with tightening buckles. If you’re towing a boxy vehicle like a Scion or something less than aerodynamic, you might want to think about bracing your lightweight ramps with extra straps. It’s a fact that America’s fruited plains are quite windy—especially in early summer. It’s always a good idea to be prepared and keep all your pieces together. You’d hate to look in the rearview mirror and see something spilling down the highway that you could have secured and protected from high winds.
The more preparations you make for your summer excursion, the better. Whether you’re headed to the Grand Canyon or just to Grandma’s house, it’s still a vacation, a time to relax, and a time to enjoy your family. It’s not a time for panic and dismay because you’re stuck out near Area 51 in Nevada with a flat tire and no means to change it.
Here at Acme Tow Dolly Company we’re committed to giving you the best experience you’ve ever had while towing your car behind your RV.
So you’ve decided to tow. Well, there are some things you should know before you go.
Towing your family vehicle behind your RV can be an infinitely rewarding decision. If you’re headed to an area with shoddy or compact road conditions, that decision becomes trip-saving as there are some places an RV just can’t go. Instead, you can hop in the old Jeep and make your way down routes that would make your RV rear up in fear. Plus, you’ll save on gas. We probably didn’t have to tell you that.
Having a regular vehicle on trips also gives you the freedom of running to the store, running out for coffee, etc. More and more, towns are becoming highway-centric, and bicycles may not be the safest or most practical option all the time. On a camping trip, you’ll probably need a smaller vehicle to make it to the trailhead of your planned hikes, too. This is when your car tow dolly comes in handy.
Still, towing a two-ton vehicle behind your 10-ton vehicle can seem daunting, so we’re here to give you a few helpful bits of information about dinghy towing.
- Use caution. It’s okay to be apprehensive about your first time towing. You’ll be in control of a lot of mass with a lot of momentum. You’ll feel more comfortable with a little practice, though. The EZE-TOW dolly is much safer and more secure than other models on the market. Remember, you don’t have to go quickly. You’ll get there eventually regardless of what your speed is, and the traffic behind you will get there too. It’s always safer to be in control of your vehicle than it is to rush so the car behind you will stop tailgating.
When you’re picking up your EZE-TOW dolly, bring your RV along, too. You’ll be able to get the feel for the extra length on your way home without the added vehicle weight. The dolly will bounce around a bit, but once you’ve got the weight of your car on it that will cease. Practice maneuvering around and get a feel for the dolly without a car attached. When you’re comfortable, add the car.
- Practice loading and unloading. Once you’ve mastered driving with the EZE-TOW dolly, it’s time to learn the ins and outs of loading and unloading your towing system. We provide three user’s manuals with our dolly; please be sure to read them all.
Locking up your vehicle is a two-man job: one to drive and one to spot. It’ll soon be an easy task driving your car onto the industrial-strength lightweight ramps that come with the EZE-TOW dolly. Always pick hard, level ground!
Once you’re locked in to the dolly, release the parking break and set the vehicle in the appropriate gear. Depending on your front- and rear-wheel drive options, you’ll have to pick a different gear (all this is laid out in the owner’s manual).
Read our how-to for detailed instructions on how to load a car onto your dolly.
- Know your weight. In some small towns and more remote areas of the country, you may find bridges that won’t hold your weight. Don’t chance it; go somewhere else. Plan your route thoroughly with your GPS before you leave, and have backup routes in case you encounter excessive construction or hazards, like old bridges.
In addition, there may be some trailer parks that won’t be able to accommodate the size of an RV with a full car in tow. Unless you’re staying at a site where you know you’ll fit, it’s best to call ahead with your dimensions to assure you’ll be welcome.
There are tons of online forums where you can get information from other RVers about road conditions and the best places to stay overnight.
Here’s a tip: all the most popular national parks will require you make a reservation during peak season anyway, so call way in advance to lock up your perfect vacation spot in Yosemite or Yellowstone.
Now that you’ve got dinghy towing down to a science, you’re ready to head out on the big open road. We’ve laid out a lot of things you need to be careful and mindful of, but don’t forget to have fun! With a great RV comes great responsibility, as you know, but it also comes with great times and great memories.
Acme Tow Dolly Company is here to help you make those memories.
I wanted to give you a review of our Eze-Tow dolly… It arrived in Arizona, where we winter from Canada. I was extremely impressed with the packing and the shipping by Conway was excellent. The dolly was a snap to set up and the construction is excellent in every way. I just towed our 2012 Dodge Grand Caravan for the first time and was very impressed with the performance.
As we operate a Mobile RV Service business in Calgary, Alberta, Canada during the summers, we have operated many vehicles for our business. We have used full-size vans, 4WD pickups and other heavier vehicles. I have setup many, many vehicles with towbar baseplates, transmission lube pump systems and braking systems and so did our own vehicles as well. On our last vehicle, a 2010 Chevrolet 4WD pickup, flat towing with our Diesel motorhome was really felt… the weight along with turning the 4WD drivetrain caused poor fuel economy and performance.
A number of years ago, we operated small minivans for our business and the size of the vehicle, fuel economy and performance fits well for our business. I had heard alot of very good reports and reviews on the 2012 Dodge Grand Caravan and decided to try this for improved fuel economy and driveability. I am extremely happy with this van and now will use them moving forward.
I had contemplated outfitting the van for flat-towing but after a transfer-case problem while flat-towing our 4WD Chevrolet pickup, decided to go with a tow dolly to eliminate the costly setup (parts only as I install all the systems). Also, the labour for the installation of the necessary equipment to flat tow was going to approach $4500.00 for a new braking system, transmission lube pump system and towbar with baseplate and the necessary extra's to make it complete. I looked at other dollies in the marketplace but the construction was less than appealing and after seeing your website, I knew I had found the right unit for our needs.
In towing our Grand Caravan for the first time, without the drivetrain resistance of our previous pickup, it is absolutely amazing! The motorhome performs as though it is not towing a vehicle at all… probably in part to all wheels are "free-wheeling" with no drivetrain in the equation. In our milage calculations, I estimate that we are getting about 4 miles per gallon better than towing our former pickup… Impressive!
Also, on the rear of the van, we have a bikerack for our 2 mountainbikes. I was thinking that as with most dollies, the bikes couldn't be transported this way however, with the low deck height, this is not a problem… the bikes ride perfectly on the back of the van.
The only unfortunate thing for us is the Grand Caravan won't accept the ASRS chain system due to sensors and brake lines in the way. The ASRS straps however secure the van perfectly to the deck and do not allow any movement at all.
After the disc brake anti-corrosion coating had burned off, I tried a "panic stop" and was extrely impressed with the braking… smooth and stable characterize the stopping power of the dolly with our van. I had an industry-leading supplemental braking system in our pickup and thought it braked well… this system is every bit as good and is built-in.
Being from Canada, we needed the necessary documentation to clear the border and register the unit in our home province. Everything needed was in our package and should be a breeze to bring into the country and register.
So once again, thanks for making an awesome product which, in my opinion, "kicks all your competition in the pants". It has been a great purchase and we look forward to trouble-free towing our new Grand Caravan!
RVMD Mobile RV Service
Calgary, AB, Canada