Liability and overweight towing (split from Towing 13' Scamp...) - Page 5 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-17-2014, 04:03 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by David Tilston View Post
In Alberta, it is possible to take someone to court, without a lawyer. The government publishes the required documents, in a fill in the blanks format, online:
Alberta Courts > Provincial Court > Civil (Small Claims Court) > Forms & Publications

I can, and have made Application to the court, and issued notice to attend. I was shocked to realize that these applications could be made for trivial purposes, like I don't like your hair cut. The judge would throw it out pretty quick, but you can drag someone to court anyway. Just going to court is a punishment enough.
Yes Small Claims court is in place to make it affordable to resolve issues without the need for a high priced lawyer to represent either party and can only be used to sue for money or the return of personal property valued up to $25,000.00
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Old 04-17-2014, 04:13 PM   #58
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Yes Small Claims court is in place to make it affordable to resolve issues without the need for a high priced lawyer to represent either party and can only be used to sue for money or the return of personal property valued up to $25,000.00
Not just small claims court in Alberta. They don't recommend going to the Court of Queens Bench, (federal) without a lawyer, but I have done it. Apparently I produce professional looking affidavits.
The entire provincial court system, in Alberta, can be done without a lawyer. Check out the link I posted.
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Old 04-17-2014, 04:36 PM   #59
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[QUOTE=RogerDat;453036]Bob you sort of make my point for me.
Your hypothetical example presumes:
  • Multiple towing capacity for vehicle depending on drive line.
  • Dealer installs towing hitch for wrong drive line
  • Dealer then tells the owner to go ahead and tow as if they had the higher rated drive line. (clip)
As I indicated in my experience with Dealer Service Manager, they are often clueless about anything more than a few years old because new cars are, basically, what they see the most of and towing is one of the issues they deal the least with.

Actually it can also happen in any number of other instances, some intentional, some accidental.

Say Joe buys a used 2010 Hupomatic Pick-up and he reads the sticker on the Reese hitch that sez "Max Tow weight 6000 lbs, Max Hitch Weight 750 lbs or whatever.

How many on this site have taken what's on the hitch to indicate towing capacity of the vehicle?

As Always: Follow the ratings in the manual for the specific vehicle.
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Old 04-17-2014, 05:32 PM   #60
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As I indicated in my experience with Dealer Service Manager, they are often clueless about anything more than a few years old because new cars are, basically, what they see the most of and towing is one of the issues they deal the least with.

Actually it can also happen in any number of other instances, some intentional, some accidental.

Say Joe buys a used 2010 Hupomatic Pick-up and he reads the sticker on the Reese hitch that sez "Max Tow weight 6000 lbs, Max Hitch Weight 750 lbs or whatever.

How many on this site have taken what's on the hitch to indicate towing capacity of the vehicle?

..........
To quote my own post "Characteristics of an individual do not apply to an entire group." Your service manager competent or incompetent has no bearing on any other service manager.

Again the hypothetical - "How many have read the hitch and taken that as vehicle tow capacity?" As far as I know not one single poster has asked "My hitch says 6000 lbs. so can I really tow that with my ...."

To support your opinion that the owners manual is the only authority. It may certainly be considered a primary source. While certainly not the only source.

If nothing else one can do an awful lot to safely increase tow and hitch capacity. Short list - brake size increase, rear end gear change, rear springs, shocks or air bag systems, WD hitch.

If the my service manager, or a couple auto shop owners I know suggested one or more of these options would yield the required capacity I would believe them. If they said don't do it I would believe them too.
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Old 04-17-2014, 05:39 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by David Tilston View Post
Not just small claims court in Alberta. They don't recommend going to the Court of Queens Bench, (federal) without a lawyer, but I have done it. Apparently I produce professional looking affidavits.
The entire provincial court system, in Alberta, can be done without a lawyer. Check out the link I posted.
Yes one can, but there are much higher court costs associated with going down that road vs small claims court or at least there are here in BC, but suspect as the Queens Bench is Federal its probable the same across the country.
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Old 04-17-2014, 05:40 PM   #62
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Yes Small Claims court is in place to make it affordable to resolve issues without the need for a high priced lawyer to represent either party and can only be used to sue for money or the return of personal property valued up to $25,000.00
In the US due to having a right to trial by jury either party can bump the case out of small claims court into district court by simply stating they wish a jury trial on the matter. Common technique used by some of the larger property rental companies when renters try to take them to small claims court. Renter may have a case but issue may not be worth hiring an attorney or they can't afford one so they are forced to drop the case.

On the other hand people sometimes win in small claims court simply because the other party does not show up, they then get a judgment and have to try and collect on it.

Only court I want to be involved with is courtyard by merriot
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Old 04-17-2014, 05:54 PM   #63
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[QUOTE=RogerDat;453057

Only court I want to be involved with is courtyard by merriot [/QUOTE]

actually this is the only type of Courtyard I want to hang out in
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Old 04-17-2014, 06:17 PM   #64
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Even these forums remind me of that new study from Georgia Tech on Terms of Service agreements really are difficult to read. "Of the 30 sites surveyed, an average reading level of college sophomore was required for comprehension of the TOS. To put it another way, around 60 percent of working age adults in the US (25 - 64) don't understand what they're agreeing to"
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Old 04-17-2014, 06:27 PM   #65
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Liability and overweight towing (split from Towing 13' Scamp...)

I'm not going to get into the legal side of this, or whether you should or shouldn't do it, but I think a big huge point has been missed by many people.

So what if the dealer says it's ok for you to tow something that exceeds limits? Unless you have a signed and notarized statement (that will NEVER happen), the first thing they're going to say when somebody asks "Did you tell Mr John Doe he can tow outside of the limits?" is going to be "who?".

Even if you do have the signed and notarized statement, the point will be quickly made that you knew it was outside of the limits in the manual.
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Old 04-17-2014, 06:28 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by RogerDat View Post
To quote my own post "Characteristics of an individual do not apply to an entire group." Your service manager competent or incompetent has no bearing on any other service manager.

Again the hypothetical - "How many have read the hitch and taken that as vehicle tow capacity?" As far as I know not one single poster has asked "My hitch says 6000 lbs. so can I really tow that with my ...."

To support your opinion that the owners manual is the only authority. It may certainly be considered a primary source. While certainly not the only source.

If nothing else one can do an awful lot to safely increase tow and hitch capacity. Short list - brake size increase, rear end gear change, rear springs, shocks or air bag systems, WD hitch.

If the my service manager, or a couple auto shop owners I know suggested one or more of these options would yield the required capacity I would believe them. If they said don't do it I would believe them too.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

For purposes of this discussion, one that is dealing with liability issues, and, as has been mentioned as being followed by some Canadian authorities, the manufacturers specifications are the upper limit. Yes, one can do things that may make it safer and easier towing etc., but the original number remains the governing number.

Anything beyond those specifications is fair game for hungry lawyers and, no doubt for you and me if we happen to be on the receiving end of someone who is exceeding them and causes harm/damage to us.

Although I knew otherwise, the dealer that sold me my Blazer, reading off of the sales sheet, pointed out that it "could tow up to 6000 lbs , it's right there on the factory hitch".

And my list of uninformed service writers and service managers from over the years can go on for pages. I only went to the mentioned dealer because I knew that the transmission required a special lubricant that others did not stock. Doing so had already proven that, after 150,000 miles, that the same transmission in my 2003 Sonoma was as quiet and shifted as it did when new.
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Old 04-17-2014, 06:37 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by RogerDat View Post
In the US due to having a right to trial by jury either party can bump the case out of small claims court into district court by simply stating they wish a jury trial on the matter. Common technique used by some of the larger property rental companies when renters try to take them to small claims court. Renter may have a case but issue may not be worth hiring an attorney or they can't afford one so they are forced to drop the case.

On the other hand people sometimes win in small claims court simply because the other party does not show up, they then get a judgment and have to try and collect on it.

Only court I want to be involved with is courtyard by merriot
Small Claims Court's rules and regulations vary by state.

In CA, when you use that court, you relinquish both trial by jury as well as right of appeal of verdict. It's a trade off to get direct access to the courts, at a low cost, and neither party is allowed to use an attorney in court.

I have used it several times, both to recover money as well as property.
I think that the limit in California Small Claims is currently $5000.
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Old 04-17-2014, 07:11 PM   #68
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Originally Posted by Jared J View Post
....
So what if the dealer says it's ok for you to tow something that exceeds limits? Unless you have a signed and notarized statement (that will NEVER happen), the first thing they're going to say when somebody asks "Did you tell Mr John Doe he can tow outside of the limits?" is going to be "who?".
.....
your receipt from the dealer and copy of trailer weight information you provided the dealer would document this fairly well. "Joe who?" would not be an option for the dealer.

It's not the dealer telling you it's ok, it's the dealer actually installing the equipment. If given the weight of trailer to be towed and they install the optional equipment to tow that trailer they will have provided that equipment as fit for the use intended.

You know just on a whim I read the Ford 2005 towing documentation online. It lists weights with the word maximum all over the place, but never the word maximum safe. The only absolute I could find is not to exceed the GCWR with some less strong stuff on axle ratings. I'm going to do some math I think and find out if

curb weight + me - GCWR = tow rating
Will have to wait until I can get to the scales but I am curios if the numbers add up to the rating given.
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Old 04-17-2014, 07:32 PM   #69
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I forgot to ask Francesca what math you used to determine the above? I am puzzled by your statement:
"You exceeded the limits in both your cited cases by several hundred pounds."
Even though the actual loaded weights of my trailer were pointed out to you. When I say loaded I mean loaded - in one case the trailer was on an 8 week trip.

Just what limit do you believe I was over on? My dictionary suggest the world "several" means "more than two but fewer than many" So just what is "exceeding the limits" by at least 200lbs by your math?

A few important numbers one would need to to be aware of to make the calculation which you seem not to have are that the Subaru Outback from 2005 onwards have a total towing spec of 2700lbs or 3000lbs depending on the model. Secondly it has a tongue weight spec of 200lbs and the manual does state the tongue % can be as low as 8% with no mention of that only applying to boats. The GVWR is 4435lbs. Curb weight is 3330lbs.

As mention I know I took some risk on one of the weigh ins by running with a tongue weight of 240lbs which is 9.5% of the total trailer weight again within the % that Subaru suggests in their manual. So bottom line is the only thing I am guilty of and openly admit it in regards to not following the manufactures specs is having gone over the cars tongue weight spec by 40lbs.
I really don't understand why you're so adamant on this point- or so slow to grasp what is obvious to the most casual observer. Tow limits are governed by the weakest part of the system- in your case, hitch weight limit (no matter the brand). Subaru is very firm in that regards: 200 pounds total. Period. No exceptions. They even go so far as to repeat the stricture multiple times, here referring to instructions given beginning on page 8-16 at the specs for the 2010 models at this link.

As for your assertions that Subaru says 8% of trailer total tongue weight is A-O.K.- that's totally irrelevant since they're speaking strictly from the point of view of the tow vehicle. Trailer tongue weight for stability is determined not by the tug maker, but by the trailermaker. As I noted before, due to huge differences in design especially centers of gravity, boat trailers are often specified as low as five percent of total. E-Z loader specs.

Camp trailers are never spec'd that low- most mfr.s recommend between 10 and 15%.
One example: Escape Manual page 13;

Scamp specs are as follows, taken from this link :
Quote:
. Approximately 10% of the total weight of the trailer should be on the hitch for correct trailing.
That specification combined with the 200 pound constraint imposed by the vehicle maker on hitch weight-regardless of make- imposes a 2,000 pound upper "limit" on the weight of Scamp you can tow. You report the following weights:

Quote:
ITEM_LENGTH_MAKE_______MODEL________AXLE__TONGUE__ __TOTAL

33___16_____Scamp______Standard_____2280_____240__ ___25 20

37___16_____Scamp______SideBath_____2400_____200__ ___26 00
Those total weights call for a tongue weight of at least 250 pounds, 25% higher than allowed by your tugmaker. In the one case, you got it almost right for stability purposes but overloaded the hitch. In the other you went below safe stability numbers so as to relieve the hitch. Either way, you're 25% out-of-whack with SOME "manufacturer limit"., regardless of any perceived "compliance" with another.

Is that clearer?

Now I must toddle off and try to figure out why on earth I'm even bothering to explain all this since it's really completely beside the point of this thread.....
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Old 04-17-2014, 08:18 PM   #70
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I'm having a bit of trouble with this. If the manual is the authority on capacities how is it that "Subaru says 8% of trailer total tongue weight is A-O.K." something one can decide to ignore based on what one thinks their perspective is?

Subaru states "For vehicles with trailer brakes, the total tongue load exceeds 200 lbs. when calculated at 8% of the maximum total trailer weight" Which they state as 3000 lbs.

8% of those trailer weights in the real world is 201 lbs. 8% of the maximum is 240 lbs. So... if one were to actually follow the manufactures stated advice the "proper" tongue weight for those trailer weights cited would be the 201 lbs.

However if trailer actually handled better and was more stable at 240 lbs. than it handled at 201 I would go with the heavier weight that my own experience showed was better. Combined with a measure of the front wheel well with and without trailer to detect excessive lift on the front end. If excessive lift existed I would consider beefing up the rear suspension after getting a front axle weight. And confirming my rear axle weight was within limits.

Axle weight and GCWR are the key numbers in my opinion. Well that and how does it seem to work best. Of course that is just one old rednecks opinion and not legal in any court of law... unless you can buy an expert :-)
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