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jarjour

Double check all weights when selecting a vehicle to be flat towed

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So we were looking for a new tow vehicle to pull behind our 2016 Winnebago View. Its hitch is rated at 5000 pounds. We settled on a 2018 GMC Canyon with the correct transmission/transfer case. According to FMCA's towing guide for 2018 the Canyon's estimated weight is 4140 pounds. We thought we were fine. That's not the case though. The actual weight of my Canyon (SLE crew cab, 6 foot box) is closer to 4600 pounds which seems fine until we delved further into the View's towing capacity. Subtracting the GVWR from the GCWR we are left with 4219 pounds. Now we have a problem as the Canyon's weight exceeds the towing capacity by almost 400 pounds. It pays to double check all weights. 

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Don't worry about it.  Your rated for 5,000#.  Your thoung (Never could spell that word) weight is about 460# if your towing 4 down!  If you insist on subtracting GVWR from GCWR, then use 460 lbs!

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8 hours ago, jarjour said:

So we were looking for a new tow vehicle to pull behind our 2016 Winnebago View. Its hitch is rated at 5000 pounds. We settled on a 2018 GMC Canyon with the correct transmission/transfer case. According to FMCA's towing guide for 2018 the Canyon's estimated weight is 4140 pounds. We thought we were fine. That's not the case though. The actual weight of my Canyon (SLE crew cab, 6 foot box) is closer to 4600 pounds which seems fine until we delved further into the View's towing capacity. Subtracting the GVWR from the GCWR we are left with 4219 pounds. Now we have a problem as the Canyon's weight exceeds the towing capacity by almost 400 pounds. It pays to double check all weights. 

Not sure your math is correct, although it might be.

You've got to use your View's ACTUAL weight, not the GVWR. The GCWR is the maximum combined weight of your coach plus the actual weight of whatever you're towing. You've got to use the actual weights of both vehicles when calculating this number.

The GVWR is the max allowed weight of your View - ideally you'll weigh in at less than the GVWR.

Have you had your View weighed? The weight you're looking for is with the View loaded as you would be when traveling down the road, including passengers, water in the tanks, propane, toys in the bays, food in the fridge, etc. Once you have that weight, you can determine how much you have remaining of your 5000 pounds tow capacity.

If you are flat towing, your tongue weight is not relevant here. That only comes into play when you are towing on a dolly or trailer, but it sounds like you're planning to tow the Canyon with four wheels on the pavement. While the tongue weight is not relevant, the weight of the hitch and tow bar are - you've got to include those in the GCWR when doing the calculations. The GCWR includes everything that you will be rolling down the road, including the bits & pieces that hold the two vehicles together.

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Thanks Richard. I used the GVWR from the Winnebago sticker in the motorhome and the GCWR from Mercedes Benz literature. I weighed the motorhome at two different certified scales and, not surprisingly I guess, the weights were the same. Winnebago will only comment on the weight rating of the hitch but they did provide a link to an interesting piece - https://www.lichtsinn.com/blog/how-much-can-a-motorhome-tow/. The bottom line for me is that we would either be over the max or very close. 

With the diminishing number of vehicles that are towable four wheels down we decided to abandon that approach and buy a smaller front wheel drive vehicle and get a tow dolly. In that case we will be towing just over 3,000 pounds.

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I would not recommend a dolly!  You are well within the 5,000# using the 4 wheel down approach...the weight of the hitch is already accounted for, so the only thing your adding is the weight of the towbar!  Also, the rear axle has a stamp on it, with the weight rating...that's why WB would not comment...

With a car at 3,000# & a dolly at 800+# & tongue weight...you'll be close to the GMC and a lot of hassle in driving & where to put dolly when not in use.

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5 minutes ago, manholt said:

I would not recommend a dolly!  You are well within the 5,000# using the 4 wheel down approach...the weight of the hitch is already accounted for, so the only thing your adding is the weight of the towbar!  Also, the rear axle has a stamp on it, with the weight rating...that's why WB would not comment...

With a car at 3,000# & a dolly at 800+# & tongue weight...you'll be close to the GMC and a lot of hassle in driving & where to put dolly when not in use.

Curious how you're calculating this?

The 5000# tow rating assumes that one has 5000# available in the GCWR after calculating the weight of the coach itself. Just because a tow hitch is rated to pull 5000# doesn't mean that the coach can safely do so, especially if it would put the combined weight over the limit. The weight rating on the rear axle is not the only factor in play here - also have to be concerned about the ability of the coach to pull the total combined weight, handle the load at speed, and to safely stop. That's why the vehicle weight rating is often lower than the combined limits of the individual axles.

Unless I missed it, we still don't know the ACTUAL weight of the coach, or the GCWR of the rig.

Jarjour - could you please fill us in on the specifics (actual weight of coach and GCWR of coach)? That would help greatly.

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14 hours ago, richard5933 said:

Not sure your math is correct, although it might be.

You've got to use your View's ACTUAL weight, not the GVWR. The GCWR is the maximum combined weight of your coach plus the actual weight of whatever you're towing. You've got to use the actual weights of both vehicles when calculating this number.

The GVWR is the max allowed weight of your View - ideally you'll weigh in at less than the GVWR.

Have you had your View weighed? The weight you're looking for is with the View loaded as you would be when traveling down the road, including passengers, water in the tanks, propane, toys in the bays, food in the fridge, etc. Once you have that weight, you can determine how much you have remaining of your 5000 pounds tow capacity.

If you are flat towing, your tongue weight is not relevant here. That only comes into play when you are towing on a dolly or trailer, but it sounds like you're planning to tow the Canyon with four wheels on the pavement. While the tongue weight is not relevant, the weight of the hitch and tow bar are - you've got to include those in the GCWR when doing the calculations. The GCWR includes everything that you will be rolling down the road, including the bits & pieces that hold the two vehicles together.

Excellent presentation of the correct approach.Many, many View's are at or over GVWR.

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On my trip to Canada this Summer, with 23 other coaches, a lady had the WB View, pulling a Jeep Rubicon 4 door, 4,700+#, no problem.  M&G brake, 10,000# Blue Ox!  We covered all the Maritime Province's, 4,000+ miles in 61 days, she lives in Oregon.  She had to show the weight paper work to the Wagon Master, before we left Montreal.

Brett, your right.  A lot also depends on how many are traveling in unit.

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