Leaving the trailer hitched while parked? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-14-2017, 11:09 AM   #1
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Leaving the trailer hitched while parked?

Although I don't really see any problems doing this, thought I'd ask the question anyway. While at a campground, can the TT stay hitched to the car for a few days? Unless very uneven ground, does the trailer need to be level? When we camp in my friends Scamp, we tend to stay at the campground and often don't go anywhere. I hope to buy a TT with a cassette toilet so no black tank draining worries.
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Old 06-14-2017, 11:52 AM   #2
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Other than having a comfortable bed, the most critical need for level is the refrigerator. If you're not using the fridge, then it shouldn't be a problem.
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Old 06-14-2017, 12:05 PM   #3
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Why leave it hitched though? A few minutes and you have a nice stable trailer, and a vehicle to run around with it so desired.

But, as long as it is close the fridge would be fine. It does not need to be super close for sleeping either.
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Old 06-14-2017, 12:09 PM   #4
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Because I never stay at the same campground more than 1 night, I almost never unhitch the trailer. When hitched the trailer is slightly nose down, but tongue jack makes it level. On unlevel surface I use wood blocks under trailer' or rear truck's wheels.
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Old 06-14-2017, 01:02 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sokhapkin View Post
Because I never stay at the same campground more than 1 night, I almost never unhitch the trailer. When hitched the trailer is slightly nose down, but tongue jack makes it level. On unlevel surface I use wood blocks under trailer' or rear truck's wheels.
I am with you. Unless we are staying more than one night or staying hitched is not practical because of length or hilly ground, we always stay hitched. I use an Anderson level and lower the front jack and the rear Bal levelers for stability. We have a 12V Truckfridge so there is no need to be absolutely level. That makes getting on the road quick and easy.
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Old 06-14-2017, 01:11 PM   #6
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Depending on how your tow vehicle is wired, you could drain the battery in the tow vehicle. The wiring in my vehicle only supplies power to the trailer when the engine is running so I can leave everything connected, but that is not always the case.
I leave the trailer connected to the vehicle for long periods of time without any problem.
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Old 06-14-2017, 01:14 PM   #7
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I've left it hitched if only staying overnight but the fridge is the main thing.. running an absorption fridge when not level enough for too long can damage it (as well as spoil your food).

I have also heard that having the extra weight on the tow vehicle for extended times can be bad for the suspension. I don't know how true that is or how much it is dependant on the make and model of the tug. It could even be cow hockey since it seems illogical. I usually use the tongue jack to just take a little weight off the tug, without raising it to the point that it strains the coupler.

Also pull the 7-pin just to make sure you don't kill the tug's battery (if you don't have the charge line on a relay that is).
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Old 06-14-2017, 02:08 PM   #8
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I occasionally leave the Town and Country hooked up if the lot is fairly level.
We have a Compressor Norcold 704DE so the fridge doesn't matter.
I also installed a cutout relay in the wiring to the trailer at the battery just after the circuit breaker so draining the TV battery s not an issue.
Towards that end I also installed flexible 100 W. solar panel and controller for those times when we might park and tour a while during the day the battery will stay up.
It seems that the solar panel will pretty much take care of the fridge long term.
The side to side is the biggest problem for me since I need to take a good guess and stack the pads to level.
I installed Attwood type stands front and rear to level the trailer and use the Ultimate jack to raise the rig to level.
Since the trailer is slightly nose down it is sometimes easier to release the hitch and the TV in position and otherwise hooked up.
I lower the front, drop the rear jacks and the raise the front past level and drop the front Attwoods and lower to level.
The four jacks steady the rig pretty well, much better than the rear Attwoods and the jack.
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:09 PM   #9
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These are all good replies for most, but I believe the original poster has a Lil Snoozy which will either have a "dorm" refrigerator or a 12 volt dannfoss compressor (Truckfridge brand) refrigerator, so she will not deplete her tow vehicle battery in a couple of days, and she does not have to be level. We stay hooked up if just staying over night, and drop the tongue jack down to take the "bounce" out while walking around, and also set the parking brake on the tow vehicle to eliminate any rocking back and forth. I hope we have all alleviated your fears of staying hooked up while enjoying nature.
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:32 PM   #10
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These posts contain great information. Although I still don't have a Lil Snoozy, it is still my favored TT. Since I'll be traveling solo with my 2 big dogs, I've also been looking at Sprinter class B's but the price point is killing me! My primary concern is safety-can't just jump in the driver's seat and drive away with a TT. However, I've learned a great deal from the van conversion people about what can be used in the same size Snoozy. So much potential! Thank you all.
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:34 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by David B. View Post
...but I believe the original poster has a Lil Snoozy
Unless I am missing something, I don't know why you believe that (unless you have personal knowledge). The OP's profile says "still shopping" and in the post it says "I hope to buy a TT with a cassette toilet.." She also mentions that they camped in a Scamp, which comes with an ice box or an absorption fridge. We can only provide replies based on the information we are given. Hopefully everyone on this forum will update their profile as needed so we have better information with which to formulate our replies.

But that is why I specified "absorption fridge" in my reply. The fridge is the first consideration and a bed level enough for sleeping another important one. If the fridge does not exist, or does not need to be level, then move on sleeping comfort.
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Old 06-14-2017, 11:28 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by David B. View Post
so she will not deplete her tow vehicle battery in a couple of days like a gas absorption style would,
Dave & Paula

The propane refrigerator is the lowest draw on the system you can have. What do you mean "deplete her tow vehicle battery in a couple of days like a gas absorption style would"?


A three way fridge, if that is what you mean, must be run on propane when camping, and not 12 volts. A gas refrigerator uses very little, if any 12v power.
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Old 06-15-2017, 03:23 AM   #13
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Sorry if you took offence Gordon, your advice was spot on. I really thought that she had a Lil Snoozy on order.
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Old 06-15-2017, 04:45 AM   #14
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If its overnight only, and it's a level site, we have sometimes left the trailer hitched up. If there are hookups, we do disconnect the trailer umbilical and connect to shore power.

Even if it's still hitched up, I still drop the stabilizers to keep from rocking.

In most cases, even a 1 night stay, I unhook. Doesn't take alot of time to hook back up, and even on one nighters we have often needed to make a quick trip to the store or whatever with the tow vehicle.

As a side note, we generally dislike overnight stops. If its a one nighter, we are either on the way to our destination or returning.
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Old 06-15-2017, 05:55 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by David B. View Post
Sorry if you took offence Gordon, your advice was spot on. I really thought that she had a Lil Snoozy on order.
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Certainly none taken, I was just confused. Her post two minutes after mine cleared things up.

If I am using it, the fridge is one reason that I tend to avoid using Cracker Barrell, rest stops, etc. for a short overnight stop . It's hard to get it level at many of those places unless you unhitch and that is frowned upon. A fridge that does not need to be level does have its advantages.
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Old 06-15-2017, 07:04 AM   #16
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So far I have never unhooked my TT from my TV. I do unhook the 7 pin cord from my TV though. Even if hooked up to the electric at the campsite I found that leaving the 7 pin cable hooked up to the TV will still drain the TV's battery.

As a meet-up this past weekend a wise woman (who's career included working in the RV industry) told me that for the sake of the doors, always level.
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Old 06-15-2017, 07:15 AM   #17
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I find folks worry way too much about getting level for the sake of your fridge. While it is important to be relatively level, there is no problem having some slope. I have read anything from 3-6° is acceptable. Even at only 3° with a 13' trailer that is just over 8", with a 16' it is 10", and 21' is 13". Width wise allowing for 7' you could be off level by 4 3/8". Not too many rest stops are that bad.
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Old 06-15-2017, 07:38 AM   #18
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Since ideally you may have a little slope towards the front of the camper anyway, for towing/tongue weight, it makes sense to use the tongue jack when you park. It takes some weight off your tow vehicle suspension, and provides more stability in the trailer so you aren't feeling your vehicles suspension move when you walk around.

I've left mine hooked up before when I'm only parking for one night, and that's exactly what I do. Even if your trailer is perfectly level when towing, you can just drop the tongue jack enough to take some weight off the hitch and provide stability.
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Old 06-15-2017, 07:48 AM   #19
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When I leave the trailer hitched, I do unplug the seven pin cord from my truck. I do not want to get up in the morning with a dead battery. I also put down the rear stabilizers, biggest risk is pulling out in a hurry and forgetting to plug in or leaving the gear down, I always take a walk around the rig before pulling out making sure I didn't forget anything and test lights.
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Old 06-15-2017, 08:01 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Jim Bennett View Post
I find folks worry way too much about getting level for the sake of your fridge. While it is important to be relatively level, there is no problem having some slope. I have read anything from 3-6° is acceptable. Even at only 3° with a 13' trailer that is just over 8", with a 16' it is 10", and 21' is 13". Width wise allowing for 7' you could be off level by 4 3/8". Not too many rest stops are that bad.
I think one reason people might obsess about how level is level, is because of the vague wording in the Dometic manual, "... vehicle [aka trailer] needs to be leveled so it is comfortable to live in (no noticeable sloping of floors or walls)." The user manual that I got in 2015 does not give any figures for acceptable degrees of slope.

Another reason is that older units are more sensitive to degree of slope, and more easily damaged if not level enough.

And of course, not all fridges are in the same plane of level as the floor or frame, which can add or subtract from the amount of slope.

The Dometic service manual, available on this site in the downloads section, is well worth a read and has information beyond the user manual about leveling the fridge.
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