Towing with V6 Ford Escape question

Discussion in 'Tow Vehicles, Hitch & Towing' started by smokeum, Apr 25, 2010.

  1. smokeum

    smokeum New Member

    7
    0
    Apr 24, 2010
    Hi everyone what a great forum here.
    I just got a used 2003 Coleman Santa Fe camper and was looking for so input on the weight that I will be towing. My Escape has a tow capacity of 3500 lbs. I added a after market Reese class 3 hitch and I believe it has a tranny cooler already. When I looked at the title for the camper it says that it has a Unladen weight of 1870 lbs. (Is this what my camper weights empty).
    The sticker on the side of the camper says i have a GVWR of 2550 lbs. and a GAWR of 2200 lbs. My question is, am I in a safe weight range with the camper to be towing with my Escape.
    Thanks for any help.
     
  2. jim1999

    jim1999 New Member

    So long as you don't overload your camper you will be fine.

    The GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating/The max your camper can safely weigh with all of accessories and gear onbaord) is almost 1000 pound less than the tow capacity of your vehicle. Most class III hitches are good up to 5000 lbs direct tow or 6500 lbs with a weight distributing hitch so there is no issue with your hitch being able to handle the load.

    If your camper has electric brakes you will want to have a brake controller. If there are not any brakes on the camper I suggest adding them though. The only type of trailer brakes you won't need to add a controller to are hydraulic surge brakes.

    Once you have your camper loaded up take it and weigh it. Truck stops, places that sell bulk sand/rock, grain companies (the places where farmers go to sell their crops), some scrap yards all have vehicle scales you can use. Also state scale facilites (those places along the interstate the weigh semi trucks) may allow you to weigh your rig too, just ask before doing so.
     
  3. erich0521

    erich0521 New Member

    696
    0
    Sep 29, 2006
    I think you'll be fine as well.

    I have not yet prepped my Escape to be our tv as we will probably keep our Jeep about 1 more year.

    Double check about the tranny cooler...the Escapes w the very small hitch and what Ford calls the tow package doesn't include a tranny cooler. you can get an aftermarket one pretty easy to install from etrailer or such. That's what I plan to do. I will also need to wire for our brake controller and install a good hitch.

    3,500 lbs capacity pulling in my case a GVWR camper of 2,350 lbs should be fine. I think there are some folks who pull a similar weight camper as ours perhaps they'll chime in.
    best of luck to you.
     
  4. Gumbias

    Gumbias New Member

    358
    0
    May 25, 2008
    According to NADA the Weight: 1845. The way I understand it is this is the weight out the door at the factory w/o any of the extras. Depending on your equipment that you have added by the factory above could account for the 25# difference.

    GVWR, GAWR, GCWR, CCC - What Do all those Acronyms Mean?
    GVWR: Gross Vehicle Weight Rating
    The MAXIMUM ALLOWABLE WEIGHT of the fully loaded vehicle, including liquids, passengers, cargo, and the tongue weight of any towed vehicle.

    GAWR: Gross Axle Weight Rating
    The MAXIMUM ALLOWABLE WEIGHT each axle assembly is designed to carry, as measured at the tires, therefore including the weight of the axle assembly itself. GAWR is established by considering the rating of each of its components (tires, wheels, springs, axle), and rating the axle on its weakest link. The GAWR assumes that the LOAD IS EQUAL ON EACH SIDE.

    GCWR: Gross Combination Weight Rating
    The MAXIMUM ALLOWABLE COMBINED WEIGHT of the tow vehicle and the attached towed vehicle. GCWR assumes that both vehicles have functioning brakes, with exceptions in some cases for very light towed vehicles, normally less than 1,500 pounds. (Check your chassis manual or towing guide.)

    CCC: Cargo Carrying Capacity
    Equal to GVWR minus each of the following: UVW (full fresh potable) water weight (including water heater), full LP gas weight, and SCWR.


    Hope this helps. It actually helped me a bit an a few questions. So thanks for the question.
     
  5. rabird

    rabird Howdy!

    6,128
    86
    Mar 3, 2006
    TX
    You can safely tow a fully loaded 03 Santa Fe with an Escape that has a Maximum Loaded Trailer Weight of 3500 lbs.
    Each ounce of passengers and cargo reduces the 3500 lb max. And leave room some weight for the tongue weight.

    Ford manuals often suggest the brakes are rated for GVWR and not the combined rating, get brakes.
    Many manuals also shows graphics of weighing the trailer, might as well weigh the TV also to make sure the axles are not overloaded.

    The Safety Compliance Certification Label is located on the structure (B-Pillar) by the trailing edge of the driver’s door or the edge of the driver’s door.

    Ford tow guide and manuals
     
  6. Gumbias

    Gumbias New Member

    358
    0
    May 25, 2008
  7. smokeum

    smokeum New Member

    7
    0
    Apr 24, 2010
    Ok. since I have a unladen weight of 1870 and a gvwr of 2550 on the camper does that mean that I can add up to 680 lbs
    of weight to the camper itself?
    So, I should be under weight by 1000lbs of my 3500lbs towing capacity right?
    The options on the camper include AC, fridge,heater,stove and sink. I don't have the water heater or the potty.
    As far as breaks, there is a square box on the camper tongue with a long cable attached to it. The guy I bought it off
    of must not of used it so I have no idea how to set it up. I have a 4 pin on my Escape and had to buy a pig tail to convert
    it to the round connector to plug into the camper harness.
     
  8. bud121156

    bud121156 Western North Carolina

    4,649
    12
    Apr 15, 2007
    North Carolina
    [​IMG]
    I think you will be OK .
    I have been towing a 2100lb (empty) Westlake model with an 07 Escape. I also have the Class 3 hitch, brakes and friction sway control. Several times I figure we have been pushing the weight with supplies,firewood, and times, kids and grand kids.
    I think the confusion over the transmission cooler on the Escapes is because the Escapes appear to have an external mounted cooler.I traced the lines one day thinking I was gonna add an aux cooler, but there it was. I don't know if thats the only transmission cooler or a second one, but it is definitely a smaller cooler mounted outside,below and in front of the radiator.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Gumbias

    Gumbias New Member

    358
    0
    May 25, 2008
    According to the Coleman brochure your CCC is 600# And I do believe that puts you 1000 under. The A/C was not standard on the model so that will take about 100 or so pounds off the 600. I just had to add the pig tail to my Explorer. Is the square box a battery box maybe?? Breaks are not standard on that model either so it may not have any unless added by previous owner. If it does not have them I would add them with such a small vehicle. My friend pulls his 05 Seapine with his 05 Hyundai Santa Fe which is close to the same size as an escape. And I know some of the smaller SUV's have car breaks on them which his does.
     
  10. jim1999

    jim1999 New Member

    If by cable you mean a braided, uncovered wire that has a big loop on one end and the other end goes to a small box that is a break away switch cable. You attach that cable to your tow vehicle and if the trailer should come unconnected while in transit the brakes will activate (assuming the battery the switch is connected to is charged).

    The switch and cable will look something like http://www.etrailer.com/p-HM20010.html

    If you have one of these then you most certainly have trailer brakes already installed and you will need to install a brake controller and the correct wiring plug on your TV to match the one on the trailer.

    If you don't have one of these switches the easiest way to check is to climb under the trailer and look for a wire (usually blue) leading to the wheel. There will be one going to each wheel.
     
  11. smokeum

    smokeum New Member

    7
    0
    Apr 24, 2010
    jim1999 i looked and it is a break away switch like you said. I was a little concerned with the weight of the camper and towing it with my Escape but I see that others on this post have no problem towing there camper with there Escape. That was my biggest question. I feel a little better that I have around 1000lbs less than my 3500 lbs tow capacity.
    I will have to look into the break controller but I might have to have my TV rewired since I only have the 4 pin flat connector coming from my TV.
     
  12. Gumbias

    Gumbias New Member

    358
    0
    May 25, 2008
    I have a suggestion for you. If you look under the TV where the 4 pin it attached to the bottom of the bumper, and follow the line to where it connects to the TV.

    This my Explorer looking at the 7pin I installed. The 4 pin followed the same path.

    [​IMG]

    Here is where the plug connects to the TV on the plastic plate. This is located on the passenger side just below the tail light. If this is the case you can add it for about $100, and no wire tapping. You can probably contact your dealer for the actual part. Hope this can help.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. RayT38

    RayT38 It's easier to ask forgiveness than permission

    303
    0
    Jun 9, 2006
    Glenburn, Maine
    Hi Smokum, and Donnie, I looked on the Ford Forum, since I did not want to harm my Escape pulling a camper, and all Escapes have a Trans cooler installed. What boosts the tow rating for Escapes is an oil cooler. Look just ahead of the oil filter, and if it's installed, you're good to go. Just add hitch and wiring and you are good for 3500 lbs. I also use a reese mini 350 WDH. I also agree with those that say if it doesn't have brakes to add them. My camper is 1510 dry, and the Escape pulled it up here from Mass. when we bought it like it wasn't there. I am going to add one more suggestion, get a set of clip on tow mirrors, the Escape's mirrors while adaquate need a little help to see around a camper.
     
  14. rabird

    rabird Howdy!

    6,128
    86
    Mar 3, 2006
    TX
    Get the vehicle wire for a brake controller and get a brake controller.

    The 3500 max trailer weight is only with a single driver and no passengers or cargo.
    If that is how you tow then yes, 1000 lbs below the max trailer weight.
    With passenger and cargo you will not be 1000 lbs below!

    "Maximum Loaded Trailer Weight – is the highest possible weight of a
    fully loaded trailer the vehicle can tow. It assumes a vehicle with only
    mandatory options, no cargo (internal or external), a tongue load of
    10–15% (conventional trailer) or king pin weight of 15–25% (fifth wheel
    trailer), and driver only (150 lb. [68 kg])."
     
  15. bud121156

    bud121156 Western North Carolina

    4,649
    12
    Apr 15, 2007
    North Carolina
    Good deal, RayT38!
     
  16. wildpony

    wildpony Be Prepared!

    Well thanks everybody in this and other threads, for great info. After much reading and thinking, tomorrow we pick up an '08 Escape w/factory tow pkg. Looking forward to much camping!
     

Share This Page