Subaru Outback pulling 13' Trillium - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-26-2008, 09:24 AM   #15
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Name: marvonw
Trailer: 1978 Trillium 13 ft
Great Lakes area-US
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Note to all responders on this topic: Thanks for all the good tips and discussion. I've had electric brakes and controller added (at my trusted dealer's recommendation I chose the DrawTite 5100); I also had them wire up my trailer's auto battery to the car so it will charge as I drive. Can't wait to get it on the road for a good test. We hope to join some of you at the Brown Co., IN rally next month.
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Old 09-26-2008, 09:36 AM   #16
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Trailer: 17' Casita
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I didn't realize this Outback could tow more than my S10 pickup.

2006 Outback
Max. Towing (lb) 2700
Torque ([at]rpm) 169 [at] 4400

My s10
2500 max towing
Torque 130
Might have to check into this. Subaru is a very good car.
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Old 09-26-2008, 11:21 AM   #17
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Trailer: 1976 Trillium 13 ft
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Yes, that is why we finally settled on a Subaru ourselves. Though our 1991 Toyota 4x4 truck is rated for 3500lbs the Subaru pulls far nicer off the start and cruises much more comfortably. I am also pretty impressed with the gas mileage of it as a daily driver. The only problem (very minor) is that it's a bit too narrow to see around the sides with the stock mirrors.
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Old 09-26-2008, 07:08 PM   #18
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In regards to using cruise control our 2003 automatic Forester also drops to lower gear and higher rpm's when I was using it pulling our 13" Scamp this summer. This happened while traveling about 60 mph on flat roads. I found it to be a little annoying and ended up not using cruise control in order to keep the transmission in overdrive. I am thinking about installing a transmission cooler next spring. I have looked into the by pass valve since we live in an extremely cold climate (-20 to-40 degrees or more at times) in January and still remain concerned about it make take longer to warm up the car in the winter with the cooler installed.

Is there anyone out there who has a tranmission cooler where it gets -20 degrees? Does it take longer for your car to warm up?
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:59 PM   #19
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Name: Rachel
Trailer: 1974 Boler 13 ft (Neonex/Winnipeg)
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I had a transmission cooler put on my Volvo wagon a number of years ago when I lived in northern Minnesota (below zero F temps not unusual) and I can't say as I noticed any delay in warm up. I did get one of the coolers with the bypass mentioned earlier in the thread. Also, as a data-point, I had no block heater on that car.

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Old 01-18-2009, 05:17 AM   #20
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Trailer: 1980 Trillium
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Hi Marv,

Like Cam I have electric brakes but no transmission cooler on our 2005 Subaru Forester, 1976 Trillium Combo. We did a return trip through the Rockies with a loaded trailer and 2 adults/2kids with no issues.... and like Cam I think the Subaru/Trillium combination is perfect. Our Subaru dealer has never installed a trans cooler but has installed a ton of hitches and brake controllers. I would HIGHLY recommend getting brakes and a good controller - I purchased a Tekonsha Prodigy and find it works excellent. We got a class II hitch and I would recommend getting one if you can. We are actually replacing our truck with an aluminum trailer for doing yardwork and the class II allows us to use the trailer fully loaded.

Trilliums Rock =)
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Old 01-18-2009, 05:22 AM   #21
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Thanks for this great website and discussion. I am the new owner a 1980 Trillium (which I found for sale on this website) and have a 2003 Subaru Forester, manual transmission. I think the two will be a good combo, and appreciate your comments. Can't wait to try it out. The trailer's in Portland and I'm in L.A. An independent shop inspected it for me, gave me the info I wanted, and I have just purchased it. They are doing the upgrades and repairs (brakes, etc.,). Can't wait to pick it up in a couple of months.

Thanks again,
Timathea
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Old 01-18-2009, 12:09 PM   #22
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In regards to using cruise control our 2003 automatic Forester also drops to lower gear and higher rpm's when I was using it pulling our 13" Scamp this summer. This happened while traveling about 60 mph on flat roads. I found it to be a little annoying and ended up not using cruise control in order to keep the transmission in overdrive. I am thinking about installing a transmission cooler next spring. I have looked into the by pass valve since we live in an extremely cold climate (-20 to-40 degrees or more at times) in January and still remain concerned about it make take longer to warm up the car in the winter with the cooler installed.

Is there anyone out there who has a tranmission cooler where it gets -20 degrees? Does it take longer for your car to warm up?
I was always told its NOT a good idea to be towing in 'overdrive' (or 4th gear) for a few different reasons. Isn't that why most vehicles have the on/off controller for towing/hauling purposes???
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Old 01-18-2009, 03:42 PM   #23
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Name: Rachel
Trailer: 1974 Boler 13 ft (Neonex/Winnipeg)
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I was always told its NOT a good idea to be towing in 'overdrive' (or 4th gear) for a few different reasons. Isn't that why most vehicles have the on/off controller for towing/hauling purposes???
Yes, this is true for most of my type of vehicle (4-cylinder station wagons of various types). For starters, they don't want the engine to be lugging (not good for it), and I also believe that the overdrive... well not "gearing," per se, but some parts of the transmission in overdrive ... is not as strong as a regular gear.

I do tow in overdrive sometimes, but in the opposite way to the poster above. I do it only when I am driving "smarter" than the car. In other words, I won't put in into overdrive and just make it stay there even if it doesn't want to be (what I undertand the poster above to be doing).

What I will do is let it be in overdrive on long, flat stretches where I can keep the rpms up, and where I am not "asking" anything of the car. In other words, no hills, no passing, no headwind, no awkwardly slow speeds where the rpms would droop. When the latter conditions are going to occur, I take it back out of overdrive. Also, I am only doing this when towing a trailer that is well below the rated capacity of the car (~1300 lbs on a rated 3500 lb capacity).

I also know that the transmission on my particular car is a fairly robust one, and I have a transmission cooler installed.

It's still a personal choice that is not what the manual strictly recommends; but then it's my car and I know that the manual is written to include people who are just going to "drive," without "customizing" the way they do so.

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Old 01-19-2009, 04:09 AM   #24
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Trailer: 2009 Trillium 1300 "Homelet"/2014 Subaru Outback "Rosie"
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We have a 2000 Outback. We haven't pulled our Trillium with it yet, but didn't feel we needed a transmission cooler. We have stick. I am a gentle driver so I look forward to a long relationship. We followed the recommendations of our Subaru owner's manual: Under 2000 lbs and electric brakes. Your newer Subaru may be rated higher. Check your manual, or if the manual is lost, check with your dealer.

I understood that automatics work better because of their torque converter.

Happy Trails to You.
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Old 01-19-2009, 10:46 AM   #25
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Generally I drive with the overdrive on during flat sections - the car never feels like it's straining. Subaru's stock 2.5l has been increasing in torque and horsepower every few years. I know ours is much stronger then the older foresters and the newer foresters have even more pep. Our tow capacity is 2400lbs, the newer foresters/outbacks are up to 2700lbs.

We purchased an automatic based on our mechanics recommendation - we have always been stick people but he felt that automatics were just better tower's nowadays.
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Old 01-19-2009, 11:05 AM   #26
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Trailer: 1974 Boler 13 ft (Neonex/Winnipeg)
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That's interesting. I was always given to believe that - in as far as it was easier on the component itself - manual transmissions were better for towing. I understood it that with a manual transmission it's just gears riding on gears (essentially), leaving out all the fluid, bands, and complicated etc. that is on an automatic transmission.

For boat launching/retrieving, I could see where unless you were quite handy with the clutch an automatic might be preferable though.

I would love to have a manual transmission in my car, but they're like needles in haystacks for my era Volvo.

Side note: I didn't think transmission coolers for manual transmissions even existed Or do they?

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Old 01-19-2009, 12:09 PM   #27
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Yes, automatic over manual seems counter-intuitive to me. However, the first time I had to back the trailer up a steep windy incline into a spot I was sold. The all wheel drive on these cars is pretty amazing, it's been a very bad winter road season in BC and the car handles it all.
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Old 01-19-2009, 12:32 PM   #28
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Trailer: '74 Trillium 1300
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What I hated the most about my manual transmission was constantly having to switch gears at every small little hill. Grows old pretty fast, especially in mountain areas, with a marginal tow vehicle.
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