Casita Sway Issues - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-09-2021, 12:57 PM   #1
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Name: Dani
Trailer: "Birdie" Casita
South Carolina
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Casita Sway Issues

Hi all!
I am towing my 2004 Casita Spirit 16í with my 2016 Toyota 2WD 4Runner.
I do have a sway bar installed but still notice quite a bit of sway when on the interstate and big trucks pass me which makes me nervous.
I donít have a weight distribution sway bar system in place, only a bar.
I try to keep my trailer weight distribution evened out and be mindful of tongue weight.
What is your experience with similar tow vehicle and sway issues.
Would the Anderson WDH be good for my tow veh?

Thanks!
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Old 11-09-2021, 12:57 PM   #2
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So what is your fully loaded weight and tongue weight?

How fast are you typically driving when you notice the tendency to sway?

Anderson is great, but it only masks the sway tendency. You really want to find and correct the cause of the dynamic instability.
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Old 11-09-2021, 01:09 PM   #3
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Name: Dani
Trailer: "Birdie" Casita
South Carolina
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Forgive me for not being as knowledgeable as I should..
I am thinking around fully loaded I am around 2,300 lbs in the trailer. I donít keep any water in the trailer except whatís in the hot water heater.
As far as tongue weightÖ it would be whatever is considered average I suppose. I do have the 2 propane tanks on the front and keep them full but otherwise no racks or any additional storage/generator on front or back.
I am going around 55-60 mph when the sway seems bad.
I donít want to fly down the road but donít want to be hit and pushed along at the same time.
Up until now Iíve only made short trips but want to venture out further but safely.
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Old 11-09-2021, 01:43 PM   #4
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Do yourself a favor and get it weighed at almost any truck stop. For about $15, you will know for sure.

On pull behind trailers you need to have a tongue weight of around 13%+/-. Many "experts” state 10% to 15%. Sway is often a symptom of other problems like light tongue weight.
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Old 11-09-2021, 02:55 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thrifty bill View Post
Do yourself a favor and get it weighed at almost any truck stop. For about $15, you will know for sure.

On pull behind trailers you need to have a tongue weight of around 13%+/-. Many "experts state 10% to 15%. Sway is often a symptom of other problems like light tongue weight.
I second what Bill is telling you. This Spring, I had a wind gust flip our trailer, and because of the WD hitch, the truck went with it. That is the sole reason, I now am driving a new truck, pulling a new (gooseneck, which puts the tongue weight in the bed of the truck) trailer. I also believe that there is something to be said for having a trailer that weighs less than the tow vehicle.
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Old 11-10-2021, 10:58 AM   #6
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Trailer: Casita Liberty
Virginia
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For me sometimes if I go above 65 I will notice some sway.
Lets us know what you find out.
Stupid question, is the tire pressure the same? and the sway bar tightened up.
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Old 11-10-2021, 11:25 AM   #7
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weight to far back, balance what you take.
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Old 11-10-2021, 11:42 AM   #8
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Name: Bob
Trailer: Casita - 2019 SD17
Idaho
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Anderson Hitch

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
Anderson is great, but it only masks the sway tendency. You really want to find and correct the cause of the dynamic instability.
I probably should not be weighing in on this post as I have a 2019 17 foot Casita which is different than the original post. I am posting because the original post mentioned the Anderson hitch. I have the Anderson hitch. So far, I am quite pleased with its performance. I have had no problems with sway or load leveling. I have at least 2000 miles of towing experience with the Anderson. I am familiar with the alternate sway system that Casita provides, though I have no knowledge of how well it works. What was described in the original post sounds as if it is the single bar that attaches to the side of the trailer tongue.

I would agree with the other posts that speak to tongue/trailer weight ratio and load balancing of the trailer as being important. Aside from that, I will leave the real answer to those who are far more knowledgeable about this than I am.
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Old 11-10-2021, 12:21 PM   #9
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Name: bruce
Trailer: Casita
Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danilovesbirdie View Post
Hi all!
I am towing my 2004 Casita Spirit 16í with my 2016 Toyota 2WD 4Runner.
I do have a sway bar installed but still notice quite a bit of sway when on the interstate and big trucks pass me which makes me nervous.
I donít have a weight distribution sway bar system in place, only a bar.
I try to keep my trailer weight distribution evened out and be mindful of tongue weight.
What is your experience with similar tow vehicle and sway issues.
Would the Anderson WDH be good for my tow veh?

Thanks!

You need more tongue weight. I moved the spare tire on my 16 from the back to on the tongue. Made a big difference. If your fresh water tank (at the rear) is full and your gray and black tanks (at the front) are empty, that reduces tongue weight a lot. If it is going to be a windy drive, fill the gray water tank with clean water. Then drain it when you get to camp.
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Old 11-10-2021, 01:17 PM   #10
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Name: Alex
Trailer: 1999 Casita 16' "Snufkin"
California
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Check the balance

Casita 16' is very tongue light (as opposed to Casita 17' which is tongue heavy), therefore it is important to make sure your trailer is balanced.
We had sway issues just when we got our 16' and they were remedied by making sure we have a proper height hitch and don't put heavy items in the back of the trailer. We load all the items up front. It is amazing how much difference it makes. Once we upgraded to 15" tires from original 13", it became even better. Even though we bought the weight distribution device we have never used it because issue was corrected.

We tow with Toyota Sienna and I towed a few times with a 4Runner 2WD which is a MUCH more solid tow vehicle. You really should NOT experience any swaying with a 4Runner if your trailer is properly balanced.
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Old 11-10-2021, 03:32 PM   #11
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As for weighing the trailer, you can often get this for free at your local friendly landfill weigh scales.

Jennifer
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Old 11-10-2021, 05:04 PM   #12
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Name: Dani
Trailer: "Birdie" Casita
South Carolina
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Thanks!

Thanks so much for all the input.
I will consider all these things and work with them.
And this is why I love this forum!
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Old 11-10-2021, 06:47 PM   #13
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Sway can be VERY DANGEROUS. Be careful. Many trailers are not naturally balanced. Its something you have to check.
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Old 11-10-2021, 07:41 PM   #14
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Name: Eva and Kirk
Trailer: Casita 17 Spirit Deluxe
Virginia
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Check out episode 82 Luv Subbin on YouTube on how to measure tongue weight with a bathroom scale. I did it with the cheapest scale Walmart had that wasnít digital. Combine this with a weigh in at a Cat Scale and youíll know where you stand.
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Old 11-10-2021, 08:15 PM   #15
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The 16' Casitas have a standard tongue weight lower than the 17'. It's fairly easy to have too much weight in the back which makes the tongue weight even lighter.
As others have said, you really need to weigh your camper loaded for travel, and then confirm you have at least 10% tongue weight.
You didn't mention if you have a rack on the back or carry bikes on the back. If so, they are both issues identified by many as causing excessive sway, especially on the 16' Casita.
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Old 11-11-2021, 03:15 PM   #16
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Name: Ed
Trailer: Casita 17 ft SD
Colorado
Posts: 159
Trailer Sway

Everyone has been talking about hitch weight. They are correct about the hitch weight it has to be in the 10 to 13 percent range. The other issue I don't see here is the trailer being level front to back or just below level at the hitch when fully loaded for camping. If the hitch is too high or above level the trailer will sway at higher speeds.

Concerning sway when a semi is passing, you have to learn to anticipate that movement. My 17 ft SD is locked down very tight and I still get sway when being passed by a semi.
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Old 11-11-2021, 08:20 PM   #17
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Name: Jann
Trailer: Casita
Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danilovesbirdie View Post
Hi all!
I am towing my 2004 Casita Spirit 16í with my 2016 Toyota 2WD 4Runner.
I do have a sway bar installed but still notice quite a bit of sway when on the interstate and big trucks pass me which makes me nervous.
I donít have a weight distribution sway bar system in place, only a bar.
I try to keep my trailer weight distribution evened out and be mindful of tongue weight.
What is your experience with similar tow vehicle and sway issues.
Would the Anderson WDH be good for my tow veh?

Thanks!
No one has mentioned the axle. Could it be bad. Are your tires balanced?
We tow our 17' Casita with just the little sway bar and tighten it 1/4 turn past hand tight. You don't want it to tight or to loose. We've never had any sway towing it at 55-60MPH. We've towed with several vehicles including smaller Chev Blazers. We've towed it to TN, GA and AZ from CO in wind and rains without any issues. If all else fails check to make sure the tongue is in alignment. An axle shop can measure it for you without charging you. Our tire was wearing and our tongue was not aligned properly.
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