trying to decide - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-16-2014, 07:50 AM   #1
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Name: Nancy
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trying to decide

Hi,
I have a 4-cylinder subaru outback (2010) and was only looking at aluminum travel trailers until I saw the 15B Escape. It seems that I may be able to use my subaru to pull it. Does anybody have any experience or advice?

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Old 11-16-2014, 08:26 AM   #2
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As is oft repeated, check your towing specifications in your vehicles owners manual and the Real World Trailer Weights list in the General Chat forum.


Unfortunately many Subaru's have lop sided towing vs hitch weight limits, meaning that you can't carry the amount of hitch weight you need for the maximum towing weight specified.


Also check here on the Escape forum where there is some discussion about the 15b getting a tad heavy on tongue weight, not a good thing for the Subaru.
15b tongue weight - Escape Trailer Owners Community


There is also another thread hereabouts concerning driveline wear in a Subaru that was seen as related to towing at or near those limits.


In short, you might want to think smaller.


BTW: What "Aluminum" trailers were you considering? I doubt if any weigh less than an FGRV
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Old 11-16-2014, 08:36 AM   #3
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Nancy, welcome to the forum!

I owned a Subaru for 14 years and 205K miles ('93 Legacy wagon, great car!) but never towed anything bigger than a utility trailer. There have been a number of discussions on this forum about the suitability of Subarus as tow vehicles. Quite a few people use them to tow 13'ers, but they have some limitations when it comes to larger trailers.

First I'd read everything your owner's manual says about towing. There's a lot more to it than just the total weight of he trailer- things like tongue weight, brakes, hill climbing, etc.

Second, check out the thread Trailer Weights in the Real World. There is a very handy downloadable spreadsheet in post #297. Manufacturer's published dry weights are often deceptively low. These are actual, loaded-for-camping weights.

Third, you can search for the previous discussions by going to the blue task bar near the top of the screen under your log-in information. Click on "Search" and scroll all the way down to the Google site search at the bottom. Something like "Subaru towing" should give a number of hits.

Good luck with your research!
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Old 11-16-2014, 08:57 AM   #4
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I wouldn't tow a 15B with an Outback. Specs from the ETI website:
Attached Thumbnails
15b.jpg  
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Old 11-16-2014, 10:01 AM   #5
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I pulled a very lightly loaded 16' scamp trailer with an Outback that also had the 200lb tongue weight limit as such I would suggest that the 15' Escape is going to give you as much of a headache pulling a 15' as I got from towing the 16' scamp. Impossible to keep the tongue weight of it loaded to within Subaru Spec of 200lbs on the tongue and get a nice solid/safe tow. You will need to exceed Subaru's tongue weight spec. Subaru does not recommend the use of WDH on their all wheel drive system so thats not an option as a fix.

IMHO if your going to pull with the Outback best to stick to a 13' trailer and it will do just fine.
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Old 11-16-2014, 10:12 AM   #6
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Escape does not list a 13' on their website, but I believe they will build one for you on request. Of course, there are always the 13' Scamps and Casitas being built, and other brands pre-loved in 13'.

Carol is right, the 200 lb. hitch weight limit is the big problem.
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Old 11-16-2014, 10:30 AM   #7
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Nancy, only a couple months ago I was debating the same thing, I had a nice new 2014 Outback. Once I saw this on Escapes site under FAQ I knew my beloved Subie would die a quick death if I tried pulling either of the 15'ers:

Do I need a truck to pull an Escape?
No. On average, most Escape customers carry about 800lbs – 1,000lbs of cargo with them when they travel and add about 200lbs – 300lbs of options to their Escape Travel Trailer.
Therefore, the
• 15′ Escape, Plan A with a dry weight of 1,600lbs will travel fully loaded at about 2,600lbs.
• 15′ Escape, Plan B (Bathroom) with a dry weight of 1,750lbs will travel fully loaded at about 2,750lbs.
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Old 11-16-2014, 01:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Magee View Post
Escape does not list a 13' on their website, but I believe they will build one for you on request.
Mike, when I contacted ETI in September they told me they no longer offer the 13'er.
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Old 11-16-2014, 03:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OneOleMan View Post
Nancy, only a couple months ago I was debating the same thing, I had a nice new 2014 Outback. Once I saw this on Escapes site under FAQ I knew my beloved Subie would die a quick death if I tried pulling either of the 15'ers:

Do I need a truck to pull an Escape?
No. On average, most Escape customers carry about 800lbs – 1,000lbs of cargo with them when they travel and add about 200lbs – 300lbs of options to their Escape Travel Trailer.
Therefore, the
• 15′ Escape, Plan A with a dry weight of 1,600lbs will travel fully loaded at about 2,600lbs.
• 15′ Escape, Plan B (Bathroom) with a dry weight of 1,750lbs will travel fully loaded at about 2,750lbs.

Those loaded weights clearly show the problem with pulling with an Outback and it 200lbs tongue limit...... impossible to keep it under 200lbs if you plan to use the 10- 12% tongue weight rule in order to get a stable/solid tow at highway speeds.
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Old 11-16-2014, 04:15 PM   #10
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I tow a 13' Scamp with a 2008 Subaru Legacy Sedan with no problems (see my avatar and photos on my registry page). You can read my previous FGRV entries by running a seardh. I think my next car will be a Subaru Outback or Forester as they have higher ground clearance. California law says you may drive no more than 55 mph when towing. We follow this advice in other states as well.
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Old 11-16-2014, 05:29 PM   #11
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Another consideration, Nancy, is where you plan to travel. If you come up to the PNW you’ll find there’s no such thing as flat, what we call hills others call mountains, you’re either going up-hill working the engine and transmission, or going down-hill working the brakes.
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Old 11-16-2014, 07:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nancy L View Post
Hi,
I have a 4-cylinder subaru outback (2010) and was only looking at aluminum travel trailers until I saw the 15B Escape. It seems that I may be able to use my subaru to pull it. Does anybody have any experience or advice?

I have a 17 ft Casita dry weight 2400 lb. I pull it with a chev. s10 4 cylinder 5 speed. I don't know the tongue weight off hand (I have a 2inch receiver hitch) and I use a load leveler that has sway bar control (friction type). It drops the truck 1 inch. I believe I can make another adjustment to where it will be zero drop. It really made a difference with it. With all of that it really pulls great. However, I don't go in the mountains with it. Am down south usually going to Gulf Shores from Birmingham.
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Old 11-16-2014, 08:26 PM   #13
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I hope you are not suggesting your towing arrangement to others.

A 17' Casita will weigh about 3000 lbs going down the road and I believe that the 4 cylinder/5 speed S-10/Sonoma is rated to tow 2000 lbs, at least my 2003 model was, which is why I sold it to get a TV with a higher capacity so I could start looking for a 17' Bigfoot. The V6 with automatic is rated higher, but not the 4 cylinder/5 sp version
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Old 11-16-2014, 08:58 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nancy L View Post
Hi,
I have a 4-cylinder subaru outback (2010) and was only looking at aluminum travel trailers until I saw the 15B Escape. It seems that I may be able to use my subaru to pull it. Does anybody have any experience or advice?

I didn't mention earlier that with the 4 cyl. Chev s10, the truck in addition has a brake control and the trailer does have electric brakes which I keep hooked up. Sure does come in handy.
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