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stonybirch
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We need some information about towing our Lumina with a tow dolly. Our RV has a 5000 lb hitch with a 3500 lb receiver. The car weighs about 4400 lb so we are concerned about the weight of the receiver. We have never towed anything other than our boat with the RV, so would like some input from those of you who more experienced than we are. Your comments are much appreciated. ohmy.gif
campinggirl1964
Hi Stonybirch: I can't give you any advice, but you might want to also post this question on the rv.net forum, or even read old threads that may have covered this topic already.

Good luck with your search!
John Blue
I think you have a problem here. If the car has a weight of 4400 the tow dolly will add 800 more lbs for 5200 lbs. You need a 8000 lbs tow bar to start with. I do not understand the 3500 lbs receiver. A class 3 receiver is rated at 3500 lbs. with a 2" hitch bar. The hitch that tied to rear of motorhome are rated at 5000, 8000, 10,000, and 15,000 lbs. Some buss's have more lbs. Need to read model numbers on hitch and found out what it will pull. The ones that are made into frame will pull more weight than ones that bolt on. Bolts are a weak link in system. Also need to keep the tow around 6" under hitch to stop "ride up". This will damage your equipment over time and will break it down.

Our motorhome has a 10,000 hitch with a 8000 lbs tow bar and we tow wheels down with a weight of 3100 lbs. You can see we are good to go.

Hope this will help you.
BigRigger06
Hey StonyBirch,

We have gone through all the options including a flatbed trailer, tow dolly, and finally a four down tow-bar setup. The four down tow is much better than any other solution. I see a listing for a Chevy Lumina on this fit-list of base plates.

http://www.remcotowing.com/fitlist.pdf

You will need a base plate to fit your make/model of car, a tow-bar that attaches to the RV hitch receiver, a brake light wiring kit, and optionally a brake system. You might also need a electric pump installed on the tow vehicle that circulates the transmission fluid and keeps things cool while being towed. Or a drive shaft dissconnect installed.
We have a 40' RV towing a Mercedes ML 320 SUV, they said it was not possible to tow this vehicle since it is all wheel drive and not able to disengage the transmission from the wheels. I saw another member on this forum uses the same setup with a ML-320 and so I knew it was possible. A small nightmare getting it installed because there are a few difficult things that have to be done, like plumbing the electric pump into the transmission pan, and getting a 12+ signal on the brake by installing a switch on the brake pedal. BUT, After all the problems it is the best system for sure. You can stop and disconnect your towed vehicle in minutes and re-attaching is also quick and easy. No tow dolly to worry about, no extra trailer to have to park, no extra license plate and costs. I opted for the Blue-Ox braking system, it will stop the vehicle in an emergency, like if it disconnects from the RV or if you need to stop really fast. Maybe more than you want to spend but it is cheaper than a flatbed trailer, and more convenient than a tow dolly. Good luck on finding the right solution for you.
Butch
The weight limits that you speak about do seem to low to safely pull your 4400 lbs vehicle. Double check the system to see if the figures are correct. You may want to speak to the service personnel at your local RV dealer about the problem.
You will find that everyone has an opinion has to what is the best as to the "proper" way to tow a vehicle. We use a tow dolly, with brakes, and have not had any problems. Has we have three vehicles, the best way out for us was the tow dolly, as the cost to outfit each one of the three for "four down towing" would be very expensive. We can hook and unhook, ( load & off load), the car about as easy and quickly as anyone towing four down. We do have to deal with the tow dolly at the campground, but I have the ability to back the tow dolly and motor home, as a single unit, into a camp site if the site is deep enough. In New york State we do not have the cost of plates, as the dolly is considered a single purpose vehicle, as are towed air compressors; electric welders, well drilling units, etc, and plates are not required. Numerous opinions pro & con exist as to which is the best, but the answer is, use the system that safely fits your needs and pocket book.
Texasrvers
I can't help you with all the technical stuff, but I can say without a doubt that we have found it much easier to tow 4 wheels down rather than using a tow dolly. A tow dolly may be right for some people, but switching from it surely saved our marriage!! We found it very difficult to get the car correctly situated on the dolly (it usually took us several tries to get it right) and even more difficult to get it tied down. We finally bit the bullet and bought a 4 wheel drive Jeep that can be towed flat without any modifications to the transmission. Now all we do is hook it to the tow bar, set the transmission to the correct setting and we're off. Soooo much easier. I do understand the need to use a tow dolly in some situations, but I highly recommend towing flat if at all possible.
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