Using Your Car to Tow a Camper or RV

Towing a Camper or RV with your vehicle

One of the most memorable and exciting family activities is taking the entire family camping. Having a camper or RV to take to the campsite allows a family to move their base of operations to the wild, while still having a comfortable place to sleep. These vehicles also provide some amenities that you just can’t get in a tent, like a bathroom, kitchen and recreation areas that make life in the wild acceptable to even the fussiest family members. These camping homes on wheels are great but you still have to get them to your campsites. They are designed to be towed, but it takes a little bit of knowledge to tow your camper or RV safely and efficiently, avoiding any major mishaps along the way.

Getting Started Traveling with a Camper

Traveling with an RV or Camper in tow is not a complicated process, but there are some steps that need to be followed to ensure a safe trip. The first prep-work takes place before you move one inch from where you started. Make sure that all of your gear is packed safely and securely inside the trailer. Otherwise, there may be items falling over or crashing while you are traveling. There are going to be sharp corners and quick stops. The overall weight of the load should be well balanced and appropriate for the vehicle. If the items are not balanced than it could lead to a trailer tipping on a sharp turn. The same could happen if there is too much weight. The vehicle towing the trailer may have issues if the weight is too much for it to tow around. The type of vehicle used for towing will also determine the weight the trailer should carry. The rule of thumb is the bigger the vehicle, the more weight you can put in your trailer. A smaller vehicle should tow a lighter load.

Attaching the Trailer

Once you are confident with the weight of the load, the distribution, and that all items are securely in place, then it is time to hook on to the trailer. The vehicle is backed up to the trailer hitch so that the towing ball is located directly under the towing hitch of the camper/RV. It is always easier to do with someone guiding you from behind. Then you use the lowering crank of the trailer to lower the hitch onto the towing ball of your vehicle. There are a couple of considerations here as well. You need to make sure that the towing ball is the right size for the trailer that you are towing. Then you also have to make sure that the towing apparatus you have is compatible with carrying the weight of the trailer. Making sure that these two are appropriate for each other will ensure a hitch that will last the whole trip. It will allow you to avoid losing your camping palace on the way to paradise. Many travelers use a stabilizing bar to help stabilize the trailer and minimize the risk of an accident.

The size of your vehicle and the type of camper is going to determine the type of hitch you will need. If you have a question about this you should contact a qualified expert towing service to get you headed in the right direction.

Final Preparations for Towing

Once the trailer is properly attached to your vehicle there are a couple of final steps to go through in order to hit the road safely. First, double-check the hitch and make sure it is secure to the vehicle with any safety chains or devices that the hitch requires. The next step is to make sure the lights of the trailer are attached and synchronized with your vehicle. This means that all of the brake lights and blinkers are working appropriately. This is a simple thing, but can lead to an accident if they are not functioning on the open road.

Ready to Go Camping

Now you are ready to head out on your camping trip, to enjoy a safe and fun vacation with the whole family. Remember to drive extra carefully with a trailer behind you. The turning radius and stopping distance that you use need to be increased. Also, speed should be managed much more closely than usual. It is not a good idea to speed while towing any trailer because it will increase the likelihood of an accident or breakdown. There are also other features that you might like to look for to enhance your safety, like a break system for your camper or RV, which will increase your stopping power.

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