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Old 01-10-2020, 03:22 PM   #1
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Towing a homemade teardrop

Hi all- new to the forum and towing world. We are looking for a used towing vehicle for a teardrop that weighs 900lbs dry. We would like to go with a Ford Expedition, or other larger suv. Does anyone have insight, advice, or recommendations for towing as far as ease and safety. We have a budget of $5000, possibly $8000 with a trade-in. Iíve read mixed things on some of the forums here about towing with and suv and would like advice as I am a novice to this world. Thanks
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Old 01-10-2020, 03:35 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum.

Iíll let others recommend a tow vehicle, but I will recommend a good weight distribution and sway control. Lots of folks believe a little trailer doesnít need but the small single axle units can be the biggest nightmare to tow. They like to bounce around. Anyway, I wish you all the best in your search, once the RV bug has bitten you itís terminal.

2012 Copper Canyon 273FWRET being towed by a 1994 Ford F350 CC,LB,Dually diesel.
Airlift 5000 bags, Prodigy brake control, 5 gauges on the pillar.Used to tow a '97 Jayco 323RKS.

Now an RVIA registered tech. Retired from Law enforcement in 2008 after 25+ yrs.
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Old 01-10-2020, 04:26 PM   #3
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Without doing some research I have no idea what you can buy for 5-8k in a used, larger SUV. What is your trade worth...realistically? Looking for a larger, good shape, SUV for that price may prove daunting.

900 dry. What do you plan on it weighing? What are the axles/tires rated for? Frame/tongue/coupler? 900 dry would mean, to me, that it might weigh 1500 with trailer essentials in it, but I just saw some folks stop in Vicksburg, MS with a homemade plywood teardrop (sort of) trailer with a couple and 4 kids, single axle, maybe 13" wheels....and they piled that thing high inside with all kinds of stuff along with the bedding etc. The little mini van was stuffed as well. So, knowing what you are going to put inside means a lot when figuring out the answers to the questions I asked above....and a lot to your safety.

Off the cuff, at 1500lbs. it won't be a big load if you have a decent tow vehicle in decent shape. What are you planning on putting in the tow vehicle? The payload on it, along with the shape of the suspension and everything else, will have a big bearing on what you do. Chuck mentioned the wdh/sway. The worst time I've ever had towing was with a single axle trailer.
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Old 01-10-2020, 07:13 PM   #4
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I'm not sure what you mean by a "large size SUV" since the "Detroit downsizing" occurred and Crown Vics/Caprice size vehicles became extinct and "large vehicles are the Taurus/Impala... A large SUV (in Detroit terms) is an Explorer and a mid-size SUV is an Escape. The 2008-2011 Escape V-6 WITH A FACTORY TOW PACKAGE is rated to tow 3500 pounds. They are selling in the $5000-$9000 range with limited mileage and in good condition.

If you're looking for a 7 passenger SUV, then good luck finding something in good condition for that kind of price.

As for a "small teardrop trailer" they typically weigh less than 3000 pounds fully loaded, so almost any mid-size or larger SUV should tow the trailer fairly well. The rub will be how many people and how much stuff you plan to pack in the SUV. Brakes on the trailer are a requirement in most states if the trailer weighs more than 3000 pounds and in some states that limit is even less. I don't know of any OEM towing package on a mid-size SUV that includes a brake controller or 7 pin wiring harness. Typically, a 7 pin harness is not included until the 5000 pound towing package and that's normally found on Explorer sized or larger SUV's.

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