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Old 07-16-2022, 08:33 PM   #1
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Car for Flat Tow - Advise

Hi. I'm looking for a used car to flat tow with my Alante 27A. None of my cars works for flat tow. Looking around here in Florida.. I found a CRV EX-L 2009 with 206k miles on it.. in very good condition.. only two previous owners and thinking of getting that one and doing the prep in order to be able to flat tow th unit... Seller wants $5600 for the unit.. I am not a car expert.. no mechanic.. nothing - nada.. Of course I will get a mechanic to check the car first but wondering if buying a car with that high of a mileage .. if it is good and also how much for getting the car ready for flat tow.

1. Tow Bar
2. Base Plate
3. Suplemental Braking System
4. Safety Cables
5. Tow Bar Wiring
6. etc


Thanks for the help.
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Old 07-16-2022, 09:16 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by embeleco View Post
Hi. I'm looking for a used car to flat tow with my Alante 27A. None of my cars works for flat tow. Looking around here in Florida.. I found a CRV EX-L 2009 with 206k miles on it.. in very good condition.. only two previous owners and thinking of getting that one and doing the prep in order to be able to flat tow th unit... Seller wants $5600 for the unit.. I am not a car expert.. no mechanic.. nothing - nada.. Of course I will get a mechanic to check the car first but wondering if buying a car with that high of a mileage .. if it is good and also how much for getting the car ready for flat tow.

1. Tow Bar
2. Base Plate
3. Suplemental Braking System
4. Safety Cables
5. Tow Bar Wiring
6. etc


Thanks for the help.
You might start by searching flat tow and toads because this site is literally full of previous threads on this topic, what equipment to buy and what works and what doesn’t.

This question is going to start another 10 page thread covering the same topics previously covered. Not that is a bad thing but it is redundant.

There are also web pages that list what brands and models flat tow and what does not.
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Old 07-17-2022, 05:47 AM   #3
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To bad your not closer (Virginia) we just sold our Georgetown and went back to a pull behind. We have a 2010 Jeep Liberty Limited with 128k we used for flat tow. Has "every thing" you need to flat tow including tow bar, braking system ect. for 7k.
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Old 07-17-2022, 06:18 AM   #4
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To bad your not closer (Virginia) we just sold our Georgetown and went back to a pull behind. We have a 2010 Jeep Liberty Limited with 128k we used for flat tow. Has "every thing" you need to flat tow including tow bar, braking system ect. for 7k.
Wow. Do you have pictures? You can DM me with them.
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Old 07-18-2022, 05:59 AM   #5
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Wow. Do you have pictures? You can DM me with them.

If this doesnt work, consider looking on rvt.com, I found my toad there already setup with everything. Tow bar, baseplate, braking system, cables, you name it... Sometimes it may not be the car you thought you would have. For us we found a 2008 Saturn Astra ready to go for $3500, and we didn't care what we pulled as long as it was dependable. 5-speed, working AC, blue ox tow bar and baseplate, RVi II braking system, spare parts, etc...

I've never setup a car from scratch to be flat towed, but if you price all the components separately and then the labor to install the baseplate (you said you were not a mechanic), you could easily be in the $4K range.

https://www.rvt.com/Saturn-Vue-XE-20...43261-UX258180

https://www.rvt.com/Honda-CRV-Specia...58576-UX473153


Bottom line is that finding something already setup that someone is getting rid of might be more economical and quicker, but then again if you want a specific vehicle, then this may not be the way to go.
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Old 07-20-2022, 10:37 AM   #6
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I called my RV dealer to see how much it will be to flat tow prep a car with them.. And they came with an outrageous price of 5800+TAX... using BlueOx / Patriot / etc. I guess the dealer is not the right shop to get that done.

Looking for advise.. I do have a 2008 Acura MDX that I can't flat tow nor use a dolly as per Acura/Honda. Question is.. using a small flat bed possible? I think I will exceed the 5k pounds that way.. not sure.. but also I think having the flat bed will be a hassle dealing with that on every destination.

Thoughts?
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Old 07-20-2022, 11:29 AM   #7
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I called my RV dealer to see how much it will be to flat tow prep a car with them.. And they came with an outrageous price of 5800+TAX... using BlueOx / Patriot / etc. I guess the dealer is not the right shop to get that done.

Looking for advise.. I do have a 2008 Acura MDX that I can't flat tow nor use a dolly as per Acura/Honda. Question is.. using a small flat bed possible? I think I will exceed the 5k pounds that way.. not sure.. but also I think having the flat bed will be a hassle dealing with that on every destination.

Thoughts?
For one the dealer is likely going to sub the work out and his cut is where the extra $1500-2000 comes in. For two, that vehicle is about 4K lbs. so the only kind of car hauler you can maybe sneak in with to stay at or about 5K would be an aluminum w/6K single axle. They are however significantly higher priced than a comparable steel hauler. You'll also need a receiver hitch on your MDX so you can move the empty trailer. Unless you get lucky you're looking at 10k+ or so for a used aluminum car hauler. Just for comparison a Steel U-Haul tandem axle car hauler is 2700 lbs. But they're built like a tank.Good luck with it anyway.
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Old 07-20-2022, 12:29 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by embeleco View Post
I called my RV dealer to see how much it will be to flat tow prep a car with them.. And they came with an outrageous price of 5800+TAX... using BlueOx / Patriot / etc. I guess the dealer is not the right shop to get that done.

Seems a bit steep, but then again you have about 3500-4000 in components, and the baseplate typically requires some pretty intrusive disassembly of the front end of the car to install.


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Originally Posted by embeleco View Post
Looking for advise.. I do have a 2008 Acura MDX that I can't flat tow nor use a dolly as per Acura/Honda. Question is.. using a small flat bed possible? I think I will exceed the 5k pounds that way.. not sure.. but also I think having the flat bed will be a hassle dealing with that on every destination.

Thoughts?

I have not used a dolly or flatbed for my toad, but I have seen many people struggle with them during my travels. Like other facets of RV'ing, I would say it depends on how you plan to camp. If you're moving around alot, the dolly and the trailer will be more of a pain than flat towing. If you're a snowbird and move locations twice a year, probably not as much of an inconvenience. Consider buying a toad that is already setup, especially since your existing vehicle is not flat tow capable.
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Old 07-20-2022, 01:02 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by embeleco View Post
I called my RV dealer to see how much it will be to flat tow prep a car with them.. And they came with an outrageous price of 5800+TAX... using BlueOx / Patriot / etc. I guess the dealer is not the right shop to get that done.

Looking for advise.. I do have a 2008 Acura MDX that I can't flat tow nor use a dolly as per Acura/Honda. Question is.. using a small flat bed possible? I think I will exceed the 5k pounds that way.. not sure.. but also I think having the flat bed will be a hassle dealing with that on every destination.

Thoughts?
I went through the same price shock when setting up my Jeep Wrangler to flat tow. The cheapest I found was $4,800 from a shop that had experience installing everything needed. This is in Southern California where labor is not that cheap.

If you can find a used vehicle already setup that would be a wise choice.
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Old 07-21-2022, 09:00 PM   #10
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This is part of the reason I went with a tow dolly, well I had a camo Kar Kaddy SS tow dolly giving to me, so it's a no brainer.
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Old 07-23-2022, 07:17 PM   #11
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You may find an owners manual for the Honda on line which SHOULD tell you whether the car can even be flat towed and what preparations are required to do it.

We got lucky with the 2015 Ford Edge we already owned. It is a 3.5 AWD with the correct transmission.
All we have to do is hook it up, start the car, put it in Neutral, shut it off, set up the braking system, shut off the power in the car and hook up the power cable from the RV.

I set up the Roadmaster tow bar, baseplate and tow wiring system myself.
About 4 years ago all the miscellaneous Roadmaster parts, including electric bits, were about $ 1500, as I recall. The braking system was around $ 1200 ?
The car's front end plastic mask as well as the rear mask, had to be removed.

You are supposed to check the front end plates mounting bolts every 3,000 miles for tightness. An impossible task without removing some front end plastic pieces.
Not a job you want to do on the road .

We have about 15,000 miles on the set-up so far. All still working, fingers crossed.
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Old 07-27-2022, 06:52 AM   #12
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Looks like they stopped updating;

https://images.goodsam.com/newmotorh...yGuide2020.pdf

We tow 2020 Equinox, Blue Ox flat tow kit and RVi 3 Brake system. Works fine.
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Old 08-03-2022, 12:59 PM   #13
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jeep wrangler with NSA ready brake

We have used Wranglers as toads for many years. Our supplemental lighting is done with a set of magnetic towing lights zip tied above the wrangler tail lights. We just run the wires through the inside of the cab and along the hood to the connection on the motorhome. Use zip ties - don't trust the magnets!
Supplemental braking is provided by an NSA Ready Brake (some installation needed, but once in place it is not in the way of anything, unlike some of those expensive systems).
We paid the big bucks for a Blue Ox baseplate and had it professionally installed. Our tow bar is a Blue Ox Avail (purchased that one because some of it is aluminum and slightly lighter and easier to handle).
If you can find a Wrangler TJ with a soft top and half doors, that will give you a fun ride with many options.
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Old 08-03-2022, 03:43 PM   #14
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Embeleco.....I have a 2011 Honda CR-V, which I flat tow. Your proposed purchase of the 2009 CR-V can be also. 2014 and later cannot be flat towed. If the proposed car has all maintenance records included, it might be a candidate. Yes, getting these critters set up to tow removes a considerable sum from any family inheritance! I had CW do mine, but I had also found a used Roadmaster tow bar. The amount you were quoted does not seem to be out of line these days, with everything included. Be sure to have a fuse disconnect switch installed on the dashboard. Another option is to check with dealers who sell used RV's on consignment. Often they take in rigs with toads, and can sell the toad separately. Having a toad is a good way to enjoy RVing, because it adds convenience to exploring destinations. Best wishes.
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Old 08-03-2022, 04:10 PM   #15
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let me get some pictures together for you.
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Old 08-03-2022, 06:34 PM   #16
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Advice: I did some of the work, like the base plate, myself. The only part I subbed out was the electrical taillights because he Jeep JL is a different animal than the earlier models. My total came to something under 4K which was, I thought more than reasonable. I like the fact that it takes about 10 minutes to set up and even less than that to unhook and configure for driving the Jeep. Flat tow is the only way to go in my book. I would hate to have to deal with a dolly, trailer and other inconveniences once I arrived. Just getting the hookups done on the RV is more than enough. Dealing with a tow vehicle would put me over the edge.
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Old 08-04-2022, 01:21 PM   #17
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Advice: I did some of the work, like the base plate, myself. The only part I subbed out was the electrical taillights because he Jeep JL is a different animal than the earlier models. My total came to something under 4K which was, I thought more than reasonable. I like the fact that it takes about 10 minutes to set up and even less than that to unhook and configure for driving the Jeep. Flat tow is the only way to go in my book. I would hate to have to deal with a dolly, trailer and other inconveniences once I arrived. Just getting the hookups done on the RV is more than enough. Dealing with a tow vehicle would put me over the edge.
I did the wiring on my jlu for integrated lights and it wasn't too bad once you get past the idea of splicing into your new jeeps electrical systems. With the right tools it is easy to find and verify the correct wires before splicing. I also installed a new front bumper (with integrated tow eyes) and the nsa ready brake (and emergency brakes). Works great and as.mentioned 5 minutes to hook/unhook with no visible towing components (it is my daily driver as well). I am not a mechanic, but can follow directions and aside from sinking probably double the time a professional would need, it was quite easy. I am pleased with my setup and only out the cost of the components and a weekend of effort.
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Old 08-04-2022, 05:22 PM   #18
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Hi. I'm looking for a used car to flat tow with my Alante 27A. None of my cars works for flat tow. Looking around here in Florida.. I found a CRV EX-L 2009 with 206k miles on it.. in very good condition.. only two previous owners and thinking of getting that one and doing the prep in order to be able to flat tow th unit... Seller wants $5600 for the unit.. I am not a car expert.. no mechanic.. nothing - nada.. Of course I will get a mechanic to check the car first but wondering if buying a car with that high of a mileage .. if it is good and also how much for getting the car ready for flat tow.

1. Tow Bar
2. Base Plate
3. Suplemental Braking System
4. Safety Cables
5. Tow Bar Wiring
6. etc


Thanks for the help.
A few months ago we purchased a 2008 CRV as it is conducive to being flat towed. It had 136K miles and cost was $7400. Add to that another $5200 to set up flat towing equipment by Blue Ox. I share your concern about the mileage. I will say that I see many, many 1st generation CRV's on the road; those are the ones with the spare tire on the hatch lid. If you are uncomfortable with that mileage, look around some more. good luck.
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Old 08-04-2022, 05:43 PM   #19
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I did the wiring on my jlu for integrated lights and it wasn't too bad once you get past the idea of splicing into your new jeeps electrical systems

I can read pretty well too but messing with the wiring on a 60K new vehicle, still under warranty was something that, in my many years of shade tree work I was not comfortable with. I subbed it out to a mechanic who is a "Jeeper" and I trusted to do the work.



It is all what you are comfortable with even if you are "experienced" with the job.
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Old 08-04-2022, 05:47 PM   #20
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I can read pretty well too but messing with the wiring on a 60K new vehicle, still under warranty was something that, in my many years of shade tree work I was not comfortable with. I subbed it out to a mechanic who is a "Jeeper" and I trusted to do the work.



It is all what you are comfortable with even if you are "experienced" with the job.
Agree...and apologize if I came across that way. As I mentioned I did have to get comfortable myself with the task by purchasing a set of wire taps to double check/verify I had the correct wires.
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