Towing weight advice... With a Mini Van

Discussion in 'Camper Pre-Purchase Questions' started by anothersmith, Aug 24, 2018.

  1. anothersmith

    anothersmith Member

    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2018
    Great info, thanks for all of the feedback. The research continues
     
  2. anothersmith

    anothersmith Member

    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2018
    So the search continues...... and I think I am getting a bit over my ski’s but want to double check my math here.

    I found a 2014 Forest River 2516G that would be AWESOME for me and the family.

    Dry weight is 2473 with payload capacity of 800lb and tongue weight of 292lb. I have seen this trailer shown as a weight of 3200 but that assumes it is loaded with its max of 800lb of stuff.

    IS this math right?

    8750-2473-1000-4595-292 = 395
    GCVWR-PUP-stuff-curb weight- hitch 395lb spare

    https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2014-Forest-River-Rockwood-Premier-2516G-5006255526
     
  3. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,040
    Likes Received:
    980
    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario
    If the trailers GVWR and tounge weight are within your loaded vehicles specs you should be good..

    There is an excel spreadsheet on the web that you just need to plug your vehicles specs into and it will give you weights of trailer you can tow..

    Google "towing worksheet" should get you to it..
     
  4. mattlreese

    mattlreese Active Member

    Messages:
    205
    Likes Received:
    57
    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2017
    Looks like it was already sold, but I would buy that unit for my minivan, and it only weighs 100 lbs more dry then my unit does. However be aware of a few things
    1. Adding AC will add 100 lbs to your unit.
    2. You are right at your max tongue weight. You will need to be very careful about how you load the front cargo unit as you could easily go over your tongue weight.
    3. If you have not already done so I would highly recommend rear suspension air bags for your van.
     
  5. anothersmith

    anothersmith Member

    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2018
    Matt. 1- I think that since the AC is factory installed it is included in the dry weight.
    2- yea noted, that would be easy to overload that box
    3- I had not thought about air bags, any idea how much they cost to get added? Would adding a towing weight distribution system have roughly the same impact?
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2019
  6. mattlreese

    mattlreese Active Member

    Messages:
    205
    Likes Received:
    57
    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2017
    1. For most popups the AC is not factory installed, but you would be able to look into that.

    2. Go to etrailer.com and plug in your van, that will tell you how much the air bags cost for just the parts. You may be able to install them yourself, if not the dealer where you buy the popup from should be able to. No idea what the install cost would be.
     
  7. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,040
    Likes Received:
    980
    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario
    Dry weight, is a fictitious number used by manufactures and dealers to sell trailers as being light weight, they use the weight of the base trailer in that line. Dry weight doesn't include things like ac, extra ac roof bracing, awning, propane tank(s), battery, spare tire, power lift, power tongue jack and anything that is an option (including those mandatory options). This is why you should use the GVWR of the trailer.. A few years ago manufactures started changing the way they do "weights" and some of them actually started using "as shipped weight" This would include any options done at the factory, but still wouldn't include the battery and second propane tank nor anything that is a dealer add-on.


    Before buying a WDH note that not all trailers or vehicles can use them, damage to the frames can and most often will happen.. So use google and research, research, research.. and remember, just because someone else does it "this way or that way" doesn't mean they should be, end of the day you have to do your own "risk assessment" and decide what your willing to live with..
     
    Sjm9911 likes this.
  8. anothersmith

    anothersmith Member

    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2018
     
  9. Dan Wilson

    Dan Wilson Active Member

    Messages:
    143
    Likes Received:
    108
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2019
    Location:
    Appleton, WI
    I tow a pup that weighs in around 3,000 with a Dodge Caravan. No problems to report.
     
  10. anothersmith

    anothersmith Member

    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2018
    Good to know Dan, is that 3000lb fully loaded or "dry"?
     
  11. Dan Wilson

    Dan Wilson Active Member

    Messages:
    143
    Likes Received:
    108
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2019
    Location:
    Appleton, WI
    The dry weight is 2,750.
     
  12. Halford

    Halford Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,563
    Likes Received:
    558
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2011
    Location:
    Santa Clarita, California
    I had 1996 Ford Windstar with 3.6L engine. I killed the engine and transmission from lots of popup towing. I enjoyed the Windstar.
     
  13. Dan Wilson

    Dan Wilson Active Member

    Messages:
    143
    Likes Received:
    108
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2019
    Location:
    Appleton, WI
    There is a reason they don't make the Windstar anymore.
     
  14. anothersmith

    anothersmith Member

    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2018
    Some folks have mentioned overdrive. Is that a reference to manually changing gears? There is no overdrive function on my Routan, as far as i can see. But i do have the ability to change gears manually which i would think would be good to stop the gearbox shifting all the time..... I grew up in UK and learned to drive manual so know how to control a gearbox.
     
  15. Halford

    Halford Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,563
    Likes Received:
    558
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2011
    Location:
    Santa Clarita, California
    Everyone who is shopping for a popup, please look for GVRW, not the dry weight. After you buy this popup, then look at dry weight depending on the brand (some manufacturers do not weight popup with A/C, awning, propane tanks) to determine the starting weight and weight the stuff you add to until the GVRW is reached. (you do not have to reach all the way up to GVRW). This weighted stuff (includes food in popup) are called Carrying Cargo Capacity (CCC).

    I believe it is best to weight your empty popup at the CAT weighting station and determine the dry weight with loaded accessories (A/C, awning, full propane tank/s) so you can know how heavy you can add afterwards (chairs, pots n pans, etc etc). then go back to CAT weight station to weight your fully loaded popup to make sure that you are under or at GVRW. This is for safety, liability and peace of mind.

    I usually carry food in my TV, not in popup. No room since that the Niagara has slideout dining area. Clothes are put in TV during tow as well. The popup is stored at a storage lot so I do not put any stuff in the popup before camping. All the stuff are already in the popup while in storage. If I have a house with large and tall garage, I would take out stuff and put in garage so I can know what I would be using at campground and carry exactly what I would be using. Since that I do not have this luxury, I just leave all the stuff in the popup but under the GVWR limit.
     
  16. Halford

    Halford Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,563
    Likes Received:
    558
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2011
    Location:
    Santa Clarita, California
    Yes, people weren't buying vans as Ford expected. Now same with cars, so Ford is about to focus on SUV, CUV and trucks.
     
  17. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,040
    Likes Received:
    980
    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2007
    Location:
    Ontario
    FYI...the hilighted text above would no longer be a "Dry weight". It would be closer to an "as shipped weight".. As for the rest.. Bang on..
     
  18. Dan Wilson

    Dan Wilson Active Member

    Messages:
    143
    Likes Received:
    108
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2019
    Location:
    Appleton, WI
    Nothing provokes discussion like a question about towing capabilities of various vehicles. I have towed trailers off and on for 50 years and have come to the conclusion towing is more about the profile of the trailer rather than the its raw weight. Pulling a high profile trailer is the equivalent of a thousand pounds extra weight compared to a popup of the same weight. Other factors are a single or double axle and having a sufficient tongue weight to properly trim the towing profile.
     
  19. rabird

    rabird Howdy!

    Messages:
    6,662
    Likes Received:
    285
    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2006
    Location:
    TX
    Dan, common sense is not allowed in towing threads.
    Some of those high profile trailers have a relatively high center of gravity also! So do big trucks!
     
    Sjm9911 likes this.
  20. Rusty2192

    Rusty2192 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    861
    Likes Received:
    325
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    Check your owners manual. It should say what to do while towing. For example, our Sienna says to use the manual shifting to 4 to lock out 5th and 6th, both of which are overdrives on the Sienna. But it will vary for different manufacturers and vehicles.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.