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Old 03-26-2014, 01:27 PM   #91
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vermilye View Post
It depends on the year & model RAV4. Nothing in my manual for my 2010 Sport mentions not using a WDH.
I was just taking Baglo's information at face value. Of course, this can vary by year... but changing the receiver still changes nothing about Toyota's recommendation, as they are well aware that an aftermarket receiver can be used.

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Originally Posted by Vermilye View Post
I tow close to, but under the 350 lb tongue weight limit of the RAV4, and the few times I've towed short distances without the WDH bars connected, the front tires were so unloaded that is was unsafe.
Really? 350 pounds of tonque weight would remove about 140 pounds from the front axle, leaving at least a ton (2200 lb or 1000 kg) on the front axle... that's maybe 94% of the starting axle load, so I don't think it is meaningfully unloaded at all. It may be tilted nose-up, mostly due to almost 500 pounds of extra load on the rear axle, leading people to think that the front axle is unloaded. The driving feel may be undesirable, but again the front axle is still carrying lots of load.

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Originally Posted by Vermilye View Post
Both my dealer & I agree that the WDH is necessary with my combination.
Why? Is the rear axle overloaded? Is this a stability issue?
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Old 03-26-2014, 05:47 PM   #92
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As a non engineer, I can only go by experience. I have no idea what actual percent of the weight is taken off the front wheels, but without the WDH, they spin, forcing the vehicle into 4 wheel drive, the front wheels lock when braking, and the steering feels much lighter than normal.

Again, I wouldn't use my model of the RAV4 without a weight distribution hitch unless I was pulling a much lighter trailer.
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Old 03-26-2014, 06:10 PM   #93
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vermilye View Post
As a non engineer, I can only go by experience. I have no idea what actual percent of the weight is taken off the front wheels, but without the WDH, they spin, forcing the vehicle into 4 wheel drive, the front wheels lock when braking, and the steering feels much lighter than normal.
Thanks for the clarification, Jon.

The front tires would be much more likely to spin under acceleration with the trailer, even if there were no load transfer at all. Accelerating (or just moving, especially uphill) the rig takes much more force because the rig is much heavier than the RAV4 by itself, but there's no corresponding additional load on the front tires to help them stick, so traction is more of a problem. The same thing would happen if you pulled a trailer with no tongue weight... or an anchor or a parachute. Even a heavy load of cargo and passengers has the same effect. The front tires are not spinning because they are unloaded, but because they don't have increased load to go with the increased demand.
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Old 03-26-2014, 06:20 PM   #94
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Real world experience with particular equipment provided by a knowledgeable individual is much more valuable than speculative theory proposed by an individual that does not own the same equipment.
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Old 03-26-2014, 06:22 PM   #95
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Originally Posted by Rossue View Post
What I meant to say is that it is full-time 4WD Also, from a little more research it seems that no matter what Toyota marketing labels this it is really AWD.
Sure, because AWD is 4WD (in the case of 4-wheeled vehicles), and AWD is usually used to suggest that the 4WD system is active full-time, so there's no conflict between the terms at all. On the second-generation Sienna, the same system was used in every year, but in some years the badge on the back said "4WD", and in other years it said "AWD". It's all just marketing.

Thanks for the Edmunds descriptions; they are not bad.
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Old 03-26-2014, 07:37 PM   #96
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I've only driven a short distance towing without the WDH. Towing with the WDH feels much more comfortable and secure.
That's all I need to know, really.
As for Toyota "not recommending" a WDH, they warn not to steer excessively ( see pix from manual in previous post ).
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Old 03-26-2014, 08:37 PM   #97
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Originally Posted by gbaglo View Post
As for Toyota "not recommending" a WDH, they warn not to steer excessively ( see pix from manual in previous post ).
Umm... not quite. They warn of an overheating risk - a rational person might thus avoid rapidly turning to steering extremes while not moving, just as they would have avoided this when steering was manual. A rational driver might also consider what towing conditions are suitable for this vehicle (likely not working in a trailer dealership rearranging the lot). This is a real issue, and the reason that many vehicles with hydraulic power steering have power steering fluid coolers... sometimes as part of a towing package.

In the WD case, they say (in some years) that it is not recommended for the RAV4, but they don't say why. I have my guesses, but I assume they decided it isn't worth trying to explain. If you crank the WD system enough that the front tires (of a 2WD or AWD with only the front normally driven) never slip with a couple of tons of trailer attached, you will likely overload the front axle... my guess is that would be one of the reasons. Of course, if you use the WD properly (something Toyota certainly can't assume), there should be no problems.
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Old 03-26-2014, 09:08 PM   #98
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Yup. Toyota doesn't want to explain. I can confirm that. They don't even respond. And, there is nothing posted anywhere.
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Old 03-27-2014, 01:03 PM   #99
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Escape 19 Tow Vehicle

Back to original post on the Grand Cherokee and AZ Jack's comments, we had a 2011 Grand Cherokee V8 which we were very happy with but like all V8's it was pretty thirsty. We will be putting our deposit down shortly on a new 19 (given up waiting for used one with A/C & insulation) so traded the GC for a new Grand Cherokee Eco Diesel - could not be happier, tons or torque for towing, very smooth new 8 speed tranny and great gas mileage - recently drove from Salt Lake City to Phoenix on one tank (just)
With the V8 we would have to fill half way. This car should be an excellent TV.
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Old 03-27-2014, 01:51 PM   #100
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Looks very nice, a "torque monster". if I win the Lotto its my new TV; they run nearly $60K!
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