Lessons from the RV Tow Dolly

On our initial RV Trip, we chose to use a RV Tow Dolly. You may have seen a car being dragged with all four wheels touching the ground… this is NOT a tow dolly. When you use a tow dolly, just the back wheels are being dragged. The tow dolly looks like this…

It’s a little intimidating to tow something. My RV is 36 feet long and then you add a whole car length plus a few feet. This makes for a REALLY long ride. Here are a few quick lessons that I’ve learned from my first tow dolly experience.

As much sense as it make to run your hazard lights on the vehicle you’re towing, DON’T DO IT! I made this mistake thinking, “How much battery could possibly be used by those little flashing lights?” The answer is A LOT! After a six (plus) hour drive with the hazard lights running, I went to back the car off the tow dolly. I turned the key to hear the infamous ‘click, click, click’. That’s right… dead battery. Don’t run those hazard lights… it’s not worth it.

Make sure the lights are working and invest in some extra lights too. When I first hooked up this tow dolly, the lights didn’t work. After a visit with my electrician friend, we were good to go. The one thing that I wished I had was a little extra light. They sell lights that can magnetically stick to the car that you’re towing. They look like this…

I think that I’ll be picking some of these up before we start the cross country trip. If you’re planning on any serious towing, I would suggest picking some extra lights up and sticking them to your car. 

Check and double check the tow straps. I talked about this yesterday, but can’t stress how important this is. Every time I checked the straps, they were looser than when we started. This is normal because of the motion of the trip, but one that could end up catastrophic if you don’t check them out. Tighten these babies up each and every time you stop.

Even though it is a little more work to use the tow dolly, it is well worth it. After driving the six hours, it was so great to hop in my car (after I had to have my new RV neighbor jump it. How’s that for a first impression!) and drive. Take the extra time to learn the car dolly and appreciate the freedom that comes from bringing a car.

Till next time,


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