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Old 08-06-2008, 11:36 AM   #1
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Cool Hitch Rating on Forest River MH's

Currently, I am towing a Pontiac Sunfire on a Dolly. I am planning on going to flat-towing a pickup truck. So, I started checking out all the specs on my 2004 Georgetown. While it appears I can flat-tow a max of 5,000 lbs I am O.K. I went a step further and looked at the hitch. It's a Putnam hitch that's rated at 3500 lbs max. Why would Forest River put a 3500 lb. hitch on a MH that can tow 5,000 lbs? Anyone else have this situation, and is it a problem?

I know.............someone will tell me I should have checked it when I purchased it, but when you buy a motorhome with a hitch, you assume (yeah, I know what that means, too) that you can hook up a small car and start traveling.

Any input would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Barry
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Old 08-07-2008, 10:20 AM   #2
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I wonder if the hitch was factory installed or dealer installed?
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Old 08-07-2008, 12:54 PM   #3
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Richard,

I believe it was factory installed. I saw it delivered to MY dealer, but I'm not positive where it came from.

Barry
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Old 08-08-2008, 09:30 AM   #4
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Barry,

I don't know how conversant you are on the subject of hitches, so please don't take the following the wrong way. In simple terms, what is commonly called a "hitch" is made up of two parts - the receiver and the hitch. The receiver is the part that is permanently mounted to the motorhome, is installed at the factory and is part of the motorhome. The hitch is the part with the ball, or the part which slides into the hole in the receiver and locks in place with a pin. The hitch part is an aftermarket product and does not come with any motorhome that I know of.

In explanation: At some point the motorhome buyer informs the dealer that they want too be able to tow such-and-such a type of vehicle. Unless otherwise specified by the buyer, the dealer then selects a hitch which is appropriate to the task at hand and installs it. What the dealer installs may not be adequate for towing a larger vehicle. Yes, the dealer could have installed a larger capacity hitch - but then they would have had to charge more money for a device the buyer would not need for their intended use. I suspect this is what happened in your case.

Please check the receiver assembly on your motorhome. I strongly suspect you will find it to be rated for 5000 lbs.

I hope this helps resolve your issue.

Richard
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Old 08-13-2008, 09:02 AM   #5
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Richard,

As I stated in my original question, it is a Putnam "Hitch".....or as you say...receiver, and it's rated at 3500 lbs. The piece that slides in (ie:hitch) is rated at 5,000 lbs. The hitch was mine originally as I tow a motorcycle trailer, boats, jet ski's, etc. It's the Putnam "receiver" that I was questioning. I talked to the dealer that I bought the MH from, and, as usual......."They don't know nuthin' "

Thanks for your reply.......

Barry
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Old 11-25-2008, 10:50 AM   #6
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The hitch on my '04 359TS said it was 3500 lbs. I removed it and replaced it with a 10K lbs hitch myself. I went with the 10k ls hitch because of price.
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Old 11-25-2008, 12:08 PM   #7
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Bear52,

I would go with JLArnold and change the hitch out if you do not like the 3500. As far as flat towing a pickup truck and weight. Have you taken it to the scales? I found that most are over the 5000# mark when you have fuel, and gear in them. Just a suggestion, to be safe.
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Old 11-25-2008, 07:49 PM   #8
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One other thing to consider is the gross vehicle weight of the motorhome. If the added weight of the tow vehicle exceeds the GVW then the motorhome may be limited to 3500 pound toad capacity. The larger Georgetowns have a smaller towing capacity then the smaller (in length or number of slides) Georgetowns. Check the Forest River website for specs or Ford Motor Company and you'll see what I mean.( www.fleet.ford.com)
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