Liability and overweight towing (split from Towing 13' Scamp...) - Page 6 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-17-2014, 08:33 PM   #71
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Many of the Owners manuals I have seen specify maximum towing values as; "When properly equipped". I don't think that I have ever seen a dealer installed option mentioned that would increase that value.

And again, most manuals also include the warning that no one other than the manufacturer is authorized to modify any specifications as printed.
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Old 04-17-2014, 09:29 PM   #72
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Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post


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.....


Not being adamant about anything. Simple asking that you explain statements that "you" made directly in regards to my trailer and tug set up, that although you think they are clear to the causal observer they are not clear to me or my calculator.

The reason you are having to explain it is simple because you incorrectly suggest first off that I had towed a trailer 400lbs over the vehicle manufactures total towing spec and then to follow that up with the suggestion I had exceed the limits by several hundred pounds on some undisclosed limit (which still remains undisclosed) at both weigh ins, again totally incorrect.

Simple fact is that that 25% over 200lbs does not add up to several hundred pounds nor does being 0.5% short of a 10% tongue weight which I normally towed at translate to several hundred pounds - actually that amounts to the equal weight of about one flush of the trailers toilet. Being 40 to 45lbs over on the tongue weight which I have no problem admitting to doing the majority of time and any time on the highway also does not translate to several hundred pounds. Simple as that!

Perhaps in the future if you want to use a trailer as an example it would probable be more appropriate to use your own trailer & tug as an example as you most probable have a far better handle in regards to actual weights and specs than you do on other peoples.
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:12 PM   #73
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.................snip..............
Simple fact is that that 25% over 200lbs does not add up to several hundred pounds nor does being 0.5% short of a 10% tongue weight which I normally towed at translate to several hundred pounds - actually that amounts to the equal weight of about one flush of the trailers toilet. Being 40 to 45lbs over on the tongue weight which I have no problem admitting to doing the majority of time and any time on the highway also does not translate to several hundred pounds. Simple as that!
..........snip..........

.


It's really basic math, Carol: According to the folks that made your trailer (whose opinion in this matter is the only one that counts) you need 10% of total trailer weight on the tongue for stability.

Your trailer weighs just about 2500 pounds, m/l, depending. 10% of that is 250 pounds. You can't put 250 pounds on the tongue without exceeding a very important cast-in-stone manufacturer limit for the hitch weight allowed on the tug. That means your Scamp is 500 pounds overweight according to manufacturer specifications for both tug and trailer.

And as far as the whole point of this thread is concerned:
Are you, then, in Mortal Danger of having your pants sued off, as some in this argument maintain?

I don't think so.
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:04 PM   #74
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Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
Many of the Owners manuals I have seen specify maximum towing values as; "When properly equipped". I don't think that I have ever seen a dealer installed option mentioned that would increase that value.

And again, most manuals also include the warning that no one other than the manufacturer is authorized to modify any specifications as printed.
Do you think "when properly equipped" might mean with a hitch rated to that capacity?

Do you have access to a scanner or camera so you could post this "warning that no one other than the manufacturer is authorized to modify any specifications as printed." you say is common in most manuals?

I ask because a search of the pdf version of my ford owners manual (most recent 5th printing) does not turn up the phrase "specifications as printed" or "as printed" or "modified" I'm not sure your correct in making this statement.

I also do not find the phrase "properly equipped" as far as that goes.
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Old 04-18-2014, 12:34 AM   #75
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Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post


It's really basic math, Carol: According to the folks that made your trailer (whose opinion in this matter is the only one that counts) you need 10% of total trailer weight on the tongue for stability.

Your trailer weighs just about 2500 pounds, m/l, depending. 10% of that is 250 pounds. You can't put 250 pounds on the tongue without exceeding a very important cast-in-stone manufacturer limit for the hitch weight allowed on the tug. That means your Scamp is 500 pounds overweight according to manufacturer specifications for both tug and trailer.

And as far as the whole point of this thread is concerned:
Are you, then, in Mortal Danger of having your pants sued off, as some in this argument maintain?

I don't think so.
Good Lord never give up! Once again an interesting twisting of facts.


Your very correct that Scamps towing guidelines suggest 10% of the total weight as a good number to start with to achieve a nice solid tow, which is exactly as I have indicated more than once now, why I routinely added the extra 40 to 50lbs to the tongue. ;-)

As far as an increase in the odds of hurting another party by going over the vehicle manufactures tongue weight rating by 40 to 50 lbs while staying under the total towing capacity and well under the GVWR goes I will let you do your creative math to do the calculation on that risk. I am sure you will find a way to do the math to come up with the answer to justify whatever answer you might be after.

In so far as this thread goes I will stick to my original position and that is a party running with a trailer over its total towing spec as well as loading it up with the kids, or grandkids and family dog or two and all the luggage that goes with those passengers are probable pushing the vehicle to its max if not over GVWR as a result, is IMO putting those they share the road with at risk and as such are putting themselves at a pretty high level of risk of loosing a lot more than what many here seem to believe they could loose in doing so.

As I said Francesca with all due respect it would be fair more appropriate to stick to using your own set up to justify what ever the point it is you are actually attempting to make. It might make for a far more interesting discussion & be more relevant to the topic of this thread.
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Old 04-18-2014, 01:44 AM   #76
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Old 04-18-2014, 10:22 AM   #77
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Originally Posted by RogerDat View Post
Do you think "when properly equipped" might mean with a hitch rated to that capacity?

Do you have access to a scanner or camera so you could post this "warning that no one other than the manufacturer is authorized to modify any specifications as printed." you say is common in most manuals?

I ask because a search of the pdf version of my ford owners manual (most recent 5th printing) does not turn up the phrase "specifications as printed" or "as printed" or "modified" I'm not sure your correct in making this statement.

I also do not find the phrase "properly equipped" as far as that goes.

"Exceptions don't make the rule"

Disclaimers are pretty much boiler plate, manufacturers don't want dealers, or anyone else for that matter, increasing their liability level. Witness that Owners Manuals used to be 20-30 pages long and now most run into the 100's, with my 2003 Blazer Owners Manual hitting almost 400 pages. And that's NOT to make customers happier, it's to cover the mfg's derriere.

A maximum trailer weight chart on age 4-53 of my 2003 Blazer manual lists 10 different combinations of Blazer chassis, drive lines and trim options and shows maximum trailer weights from 2000 lbs to 5,700 lbs. The last sentence in the introductory paragraph sez: "The following chart shows much your trailer can weigh, based on you vehicle model and options." (italics mine).

If you look up Subaru I believe that I recently saw the "When Properly Equipped" disclaimer used on that site. But again, boiler plate..... To even suggest that the opposite is true, is beyond the pale of reason.
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Old 04-18-2014, 11:18 AM   #78
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Originally Posted by RogerDat View Post
Do you think "when properly equipped" might mean with a hitch rated to that capacity?
As you know most/many of the vehicles have other requirements besides a correctly rated hitch in order to achieve their published tow specs. What "properly equipped" means to each manufacture and tug model will vary greatly.

Some of the manufactures may have a tow package that will include amongst other things a larger transmission cooler or they may state that the trailer being towed must have brakes if it weighs more than x so many pounds. Some may state that a WDH must be used on any trailer towed over x so many pounds others may state that a WDH should not be used. The towing capacities will also very depending on a specific transmission or engine size should it be the vehicle manufacture offers more than one type for the vehicle being discussed. One would have to read the manual for each specific vehicle and its specs and options to determine what "properly equipped" really means to each vehicle manufacture & the tug being considered.

I know that while shopping for my current tug it became very clear that while the manufacturer offered at least 3 different models of the same tug all with the same base total towing capacity (within the group that had the same engine size and differential) each of the models had a very different GVWR which could well result in someone hooking up a trailer that was within the total towing capacity & tongue weight rating for the tug but once they added a single passenger and a cap to the rear of the truck and nothing else, they could be over the total GVWR. The variance between models and years was as much as 500lbs. Which could mean the difference between bringing the family dogs with you on the trip or not I would suggest one has to read the manual and full specs on each vehicle to determine what "properly equipped" actually means to each vehicle manufacture.

The above is why it is IMO dangerous for people here who don't know the full specs & requirements on vehicles being asked about towing such and such a trailer to say "it should be fine" because my neighbour or bother in law pulls at trailer of that size with the same vehicle. Is it really the same vehicle? it may look the same on the outside but....
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Old 04-18-2014, 11:59 AM   #79
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Good points and well written Carol.

As I mentioned earlier, the towing limits for 2003 Blazers range from 2000 to 5700 lbs. Some one with the higher rated Blazer could easily tell a newbie, with a version of the lower listed Blazer, that "It's OK" to tow that 19' Bigfoot and they could be at least a ton overweight.....

Again, always start with "The Book"
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Old 04-18-2014, 12:10 PM   #80
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Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
Some one with the higher rated Blazer could easily tell a newbie, with a version of the lower listed Blazer, that "It's OK" to tow that 19' Bigfoot and they could be at least a ton overweight.....
well it seems we have come around to what happened and the issues some here had with the original thread that started this one.... tow rating for the vehicle in question where very different in regards to what engine size the vehicle had.
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Old 04-18-2014, 12:15 PM   #81
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"Exceptions don't make the rule"

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Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
Disclaimers are pretty much boiler plate, manufacturers don't want dealers, or anyone else for that matter, increasing their liability level. .....
I also did a search of the PDF version of your 2003 manual and did not find the boiler plate text you have quoted in several posts. Same as I did not find it in my manual. Unless you can find and provide a way for me to confirm I remain skeptical.

I did find in your manual where the owner is directed to the Dealer for advice and information on towing. Which is exactly the suggestion I made to the OP as her best choice. Threads full of posts that deteriorate into debate do not help them, better to follow the manual advice to consult the dealer.





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A maximum trailer weight chart on age 4-53 of my 2003 Blazer manual lists 10 different combinations of Blazer chassis, drive lines and trim options and shows maximum trailer weights from 2000 lbs to 5,700 lbs. ....
It also says on page 4-53 a lot of other factors go into it. Including any special equipment. I think the dealer might consider a WD hitch special equipment and I would feel comfortable giving or following the advice in your manual to seek advice from the dealer on what "special equipment" options are possible to safely tow. Now you might take that to only mean the original special equipment, which is your right. Despite them using the term "optional equipment" to describe factory options. Others have a right to form their own equally valid conclusion.






Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Miller View Post
If you look up Subaru I believe that I recently saw the "When Properly Equipped" disclaimer used on that site. But again, boiler plate..... To even suggest that the opposite is true, is beyond the pale of reason.
Not finding the boiler plate you claim is there, not being provided with examples by yourself. I think my suggestion that there is not the industry wide "boiler plate" you claim is a well reasoned and not beyond the pale of reason.
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Old 04-18-2014, 12:33 PM   #82
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Originally Posted by Carol H View Post
Your very correct that Scamps towing guidelines suggest 10% of the total weight as a good number to start with to achieve a nice solid tow, which is exactly as I have indicated more than once now, why I routinely added the extra 40 to 50lbs to the tongue. ;-)
That's not a "guideline": or even a suggestion; it's a specification imposed by the manufacturer of the trailer for stable towing of the unit. Trailer maker specs are the ones that count in this department. Improper tongue-to-total ratio is the number one cause of trailer sway, the most common and dangerous safety issue associated with towing. One can compensate for such unbalanced loading by various means, especially speed reduction; but to simply dismiss it as insignificant is against not just the laws of physics, but the ideal of "protecting everyone else on the road" from one's folly.
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As far as an increase in the odds of hurting another party by going over the vehicle manufactures tongue weight rating by 40 to 50 lbs while staying under the total towing capacity and well under the GVWR goes I will let you do your creative math to do the calculation on that risk.
250 pounds is 25% more hitch weight than the very strictly stated capacity of the Outback's hitching point. For the "creative math" you require I suggest you refer to Subaru's engineering department since those are the folks that arrived at that number. Without knowing all of their reasons, still I'd hazard a guess that danger of over/understeering due to front end unloading is likely one- certainly a very serious safety hazard for everyone on the road including Grandma, Grandpa, and all the little kiddies.

I'm frankly puzzled that you seem to have so much trouble grasping this concept, especially given your rabidity per one "mfr. limit"; which number is only a maximum; actual final weights depending on compliance with all other stated limits however "low" they may be.
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Old 04-18-2014, 12:39 PM   #83
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Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post


I'm frankly puzzled that you seem to have so much trouble grasping this concept, especially given your rabidity per one "mfr. limit"; which number is only a maximum; actual final weights depending on compliance with all other stated limits however "low" they may be.
As I said Francesca Never give up

Now how about that Kia Sportage & Trillium combo you have
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Old 04-18-2014, 12:56 PM   #84
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Pistols at twenty paces, I say.
Now that would be more fun to watch than this thread!
Apparently, there would be little danger (except to bystanders!)

But then there's that whole thing of getting some bureaucrat to issue permits and proper training for the pistols!

You're right though, it was time for a little levity... the "tongue" weight was getting a bit above capacity!
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