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Old 04-15-2012, 11:38 PM   #1
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Question crosswinds are scary!

Just back from a "shakedown cruise" with our new Apex 288BHS.. Camper was wonderful on site, but..Encountered strong gusting winds which really had me nervous on the way back.. Mileage in the explorer dropped from the meager 13 we usually get towing to about 7 mpg against the wind! Was wondering if perhaps filling my freshwater and grey tanks (30gal each)might help to cope with the wind.. The 288 is a sail in gusty wind, even with my WDH with separate swaybar.. Found my best immediate solution was to slow down when the buffeting got too much.. I'd appreciate any advice from the learned members on here.. Towing with a 2006 Explorer with 4.5L v8 with towing package and the aforementioned WDH and sway bar..

thanks
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Old 04-15-2012, 11:52 PM   #2
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We also camped this weekend(check out before a longer trip this week), with us narrowly missing the big storms coming in. Had very gusty winds going home, but I have 2 friction sway bars with my 28' TT. Did not feel any sway as we just got home just before it poured down(here in Missouri).
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Old 04-15-2012, 11:55 PM   #3
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That camper may not weigh an excessive amount, but it is HUGE compared to your tow vehicle. That is probably your biggest problem, the tail is wagging the dog!
I doubt that filling your tanks would help much, as it would just make the camper harder to pull, and depending where they are located, could make the situation much worse.
I think you'll just have to avoid high winds, as you may simply have too much camper for your tow vehicle.
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Old 04-16-2012, 01:19 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caziii767 View Post
JTowing with a 2006 Explorer with 4.5L v8 with towing package and the aforementioned WDH and sway bar..

thanks
the fact you're towing a 31' TT with a small v-8 Explorer, says it all!
soft suspension, under-powered engine, short wheelbase and a cheap friction bar for antisway.
i assume the dealer told you that you could "tow that".
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Old 04-16-2012, 01:45 AM   #5
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Man, I'm new at this, too... but we hit some substantial (30mph+) x-winds down around Liberal, Kansas this past March that were buffeting us directly from the side. Slowing down was all I could do to feel safe.
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Old 04-16-2012, 06:05 AM   #6
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Slowing down is the smart thing to do in heavy crosswinds. Adding water weight to the trailer is the wrong thing to do. Doing so will only add to the leverage your trailer already has on you and will decrease your MPG even further.
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Old 04-16-2012, 07:19 AM   #7
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I switched from a round bar style WDH with 1 Friction sway control over to an equalizer hitch.... night and day difference with how the set up handled cross winds.
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Old 04-16-2012, 08:12 AM   #8
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the fact you're towing a 31' TT with a small v-8 Explorer, says it all!
soft suspension, under-powered engine, short wheelbase and a cheap friction bar for antisway.
i assume the dealer told you that you could "tow that".
The explorer handles the trailer well. The trailer weighs in at 4580 dry and 7200 fully loaded. Explorer is rated to tow 7500 with the weight distribution hitch . It tows 5000lbs in class III. I have not had issues towing with it before. I think the length of the trailer and the fact that it is a sail are the problem.
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Old 04-16-2012, 08:26 AM   #9
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Thanks to all for the collective wisdom. I will attempt to plan my trips around the weather and will slow down, or pull off if necessary and wait it out. It makes perfect sense that adding 500 lbs in water weight will only have the effect of further diminishing the mileage and making the tow unstable. I was concerned about the vehicle weight ratios and researched the issue. I had my doubts about it as well, but the explorer towed it easily ( in calm weather) and my mileage dropped from the usual 19mpg (sans trailer) to about 11. (We had a 3500lb pop up previously which dropped the mileage down to 14.) I would definitely like to have more vehicle in front of it, but it is supposed to be up to the task.. Of course, the Titanic was supposed to be unsinkable ,too. Thanks to all.
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Old 04-16-2012, 08:30 AM   #10
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" the explorer towed it easily ( in calm weather) "
================================
Indeed. I could pull a fifty foot trailer "in calm weather", but would I?
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