towing your Escape and using chains - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 09-12-2013, 11:00 AM   #1
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towing your Escape and using chains

Has anyone used chains on their Escape in the snow and if dual axles are 2 sets of chains needed or just one? thanks for any help.
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Old 09-12-2013, 11:09 AM   #2
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Never heard of putting chains on the towed trailer. Now on the tow vehicle that is a different story. Since the trailer is not part of the drive train I do not see any advantage and perhaps some disadvantage by having more to tow, that is, more rolling resistance created by the chains on the trailer.

The issue will be hills, usually going up. The tow vehicle would greatly benefit by being four wheel drive, depending on conditions it maybe mandatory to climb with the extra towing weight. Here chains can come into play on the drive wheel(s).
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Old 09-12-2013, 11:41 AM   #3
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I have towed many thousands of kilometers on snow and ice, and have never seen or heard of chains used on the trailer. Not much choice around here. On the tow vehicle yes, though I have yet to use them on a passenger vehicle for towing a travel trailer. I have used them on a 4x4 in deep snow, and on a big rig when towing on a highway. I do understand that there are some passes where it is mandatory to have them on any vehicle, though I have not encountered this myself.
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Old 09-12-2013, 11:52 AM   #4
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In California, it is the law that if you have chains on the tow vehicle, you must have chains on the trailer if the trailer has brakes. Also, if you are towing a trailer, the 4x4 exception (if you have 4 wheel drive, you do not need chains) does not apply. So, in California, if the road has chain controls (which happen with almost any amount of snow), you need 2 sets of chains, one for the tow vehicle and one for the trailer.

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Old 09-12-2013, 11:55 AM   #5
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Oregon State's minimum chain requirement states:
"When towing, chains must also be on one tire on each side of one axle of a trailer that is equipped with a brake."

Personally, I don't think I'd want to be towing anything in conditions that might require chains!
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Old 09-12-2013, 12:06 PM   #6
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Very interesting regarding tire chains on trailers in the US. This is good to know should this situation be encountered. Either that, or avoid the situation.

Do tractor/trailer combos have to do this too?
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Old 09-12-2013, 12:26 PM   #7
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I am not suggesting the above posts regarding the regulations are wrong, but i have never seen chains on the trailer only in the drive tires on the truck. I would be very cautious with chains on a escape trailer as they tend to fly away from the tire a bit and this would cause a very nasty outcome in the wheel well of a fiberglass traier.
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Old 09-12-2013, 01:31 PM   #8
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It's not surprising that most of us have never seen trailers using chains - I very rarely see trucks using them even on drive axles. Although chain use is legally required under some conditions, and "chain up" and "chain off" pullout areas are common on the climbs into and descents out of mountain passes in Alberta and British Columbia, conditions are rarely bad enough to trigger their use.

If a trucker is using chains on only drive axles, and not the trailer, I assume he's just getting unstuck and not continuing at any significant speed or for any great distance. Unchained braked trailer tires will slide under braking and cause a loss of lateral traction if conditions are bad enough... but so will the steer tires.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Bennett View Post
Very interesting regarding tire chains on trailers in the US. ...
Do tractor/trailer combos have to do this too?
Yes, the rules I've seen not only apply to commercial truck-trailer rigs, they are specifically written for them... but still apply to non-commercial trailers.
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Old 09-12-2013, 01:33 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dave macrae View Post
I would be very cautious with chains on a escape trailer as they tend to fly away from the tire a bit and this would cause a very nasty outcome in the wheel well of a fiberglass traier.
I agree - chains require significant clearance, and vehicle manufacturers routine specify if tire chains are allowed, and what specific designs are acceptable.

In British Columbia and Alberta, I would not consider chains on any vehicle; if I wanted unrestricted winter mobility I would use snow tires instead, including on the trailer.
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Old 09-12-2013, 01:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fudge_brownie View Post
Never heard of putting chains on the towed trailer. Now on the tow vehicle that is a different story. Since the trailer is not part of the drive train I do not see any advantage and perhaps some disadvantage by having more to tow, that is, more rolling resistance created by the chains on the trailer.
There are lots of disadvantages to tire chains on any axle of any vehicle. For trailers, the purpose of chains is braking traction.
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