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Old 12-01-2012, 05:32 AM   #1
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tips or tricks for towing on snowy roads

So far.. i have not towed ( a 34 foot 5th wheel) while driving on snowy roads ..i will do my best.. not to ...(wait a day or 2 ?? ) but.. if...it should become necessary.. any first hand experience/tips may be useful ..thank you
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Old 12-01-2012, 08:28 AM   #2
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I've never done it and and hope I never have to. If I did have to, I'd go slower then a snail on valium. Really though, I'd wait until the roads clear before I'd tow an RV on snow.
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Old 12-01-2012, 09:04 AM   #3
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I've never done it and and hope I never have to. If I did have to, I'd go slower then a snail on valium. Really though, I'd wait until the roads clear before I'd tow an RV on snow.
In my 40 years of driving on snowy roads here in Michigan..i have learned..dont attempt to drive if..the front bumper is pushing snow (especially in a car) getting stuck is NO fun..and usually 30 mph is plenty fast ...if there is 2-3 inchs on the road
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Old 12-01-2012, 11:17 AM   #4
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Compared to driving on a dry road.........
Drive 30-50% slower
Increase following distance at least 200%
Slow waaaaay down before turning and go easy on brakes!
If the trailer swings out on you, don't hit the brakes as it gets worse.
If the trailer swings out on you and you can, hit the gas going straight ahead. Accelerating straight ahead actually pulls trailer back in line with truck.
Driving at nite with a full moon is like driving during twilight. The snow is bright!

Spent 10 years dragging snowmobile trailers around in the winter. When you are done having fun in the snow, wash the road salt and grime off!!! That crap eats up your trailer lights connections and paint finishes. Granted RV is bigger/heavier than snowmobile trailer but the winter driving concepts remain the same.
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Old 12-01-2012, 02:11 PM   #5
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Put drag chains or cable "chains" on the fiver and on all drive axles of the TV.
Oregon DMV has diagrams for chain installations when traction devices are required.
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Old 12-01-2012, 04:16 PM   #6
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Oh ya, forgot to mention were I live is FLAT as compared to out west. Many moons ago when I was in Oregon, I ran accross Marathon Coach Luxury Prevost Bus Conversions Manufacture
Start with a Prevost and then raise the bar even higher. ChaChing!!!

Back to subject - winter driving.............Back in the 60's dad ran studded snow tires. Man did those tear up the roads as you just don't take those off like chains and straps. DMV didn't know any better back then. They eventually outlawed them.
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Old 12-01-2012, 05:29 PM   #7
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I have towed on wet clay.
Very messy and I was weeks cleaning the camper.
SLOW and STEADY.
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Old 12-01-2012, 09:52 PM   #8
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I have towed in the snow, you have to go slower, increase your distances for following traffic and stopping, as you go south it will turn to freezing rain and when that happens get off the hyway it's just not worth trying as you will have no control, also the other thing to be aware of is the huge increase in weight.
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Old 12-01-2012, 10:41 PM   #9
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I was with a buddy towing his 36' gooseneck race trailer from Deadwood to Rapid City, SD. There was some kind of hardpacked frozen crap on the road when we left Deadwood and that was one of the scariest moments of my life. I will never do hill country in the winter on less than dry roads.
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:05 PM   #10
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Move - No snow in FL!
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:32 PM   #11
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Quote:
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Move - No snow in Florida!
Ha ! wouldnt that be nice...until that happens...actually change my address (become a Florida resident) could be a option..in the not too distant future
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:40 PM   #12
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Three Hail Mary's and three Our Father's will help get you through the snow.
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:36 PM   #13
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I've only hauled equipment in the snow. But I turn the trailer brakes down, drive slooow and watch out for idiots in your mirrors. You have to really watch changing lanes and side road exits because of wind-row jerking.
And of corse have the truck in 4x4 high- makes breaking much easier as the rear wheels turning doesn't fight the front braking(or pop tranny into neutral on 2wd if not using the engine to slow down)
A quick prayer helps too!
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:10 PM   #14
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Move - No snow in FL!
No snow but hurricanes
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Old 12-06-2012, 10:26 PM   #15
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It really isn't a big deal. 18 Wheelers do it all the time & you can use them as a guide for speed. If they slow down it probably is icing up. Go practice in a big parking lot without the TT 1st & then decide if you can control your vehicle. If you are not comfortable, don't bother hooking up your TT until Spring.
.

If you have oversize tires on your TV, don't drive it on snow. They are better for off road and/or dry pavement. You need narrow tires & some weight to help them get a good grip through the snow.
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Old 12-07-2012, 03:14 AM   #16
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I do run studded tires on my 4wd SUV in the winter (legal during approved time frame) The roads take a beating but the tires sure do work..road repairs are on going in the spring and summer months where traffic is heaviest. Winter driving and negotiating the moutain passes of eastern Washington, Idaho and Montana - studded tires definitely help me stick to the road. For years I had all season tires that were siped and worked fine but a few years ago I decided I wanted to try studded ones...and I havent looked back...I still run all seasons on the truck, as I prefer the smaller SUV for daily winter driving. If I drove the Titan in the winter, Id invest in studs...
The best advice to pass along is to drive slow, allow plenty of distance for braking, use your signal and watch for the idiots who roll thru their stop signs on the side streets...it never fails, they can be seen if you look for them - they are a danger if you miss 'em...making you brake to avoid collision and on icy surface will be a moment one is not likely to forget.
Haha - I have pulled out of my driveway too fast (less than 5 mph) only to slide into the ditch in front of my house...DH was not happy as I proceeded to get firther stuck in snow bank and walk back in house to admit I couldnt get out...argh. Same winter he slid into the neighbors ditch a few houses up and got stuck...ROFL...I got to pull him out...redemption for my driving skills.
Winter driving (where it tends to ice up) is just plain scary...snow not so bad - its the ice that challenges me...go slow and allow plenty of time to arrive to your destination. The goal in winter is to arrive alive.
The photos show typical winter snow overnight on the vehicles...the poor Mustang got left outside that year...and the photos show the only road I travel everyday to get to work......its a 2 lane highway that curves around a lake and up to a small town 'mountain' community...beautifu area, great community, peaceful
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Old 12-08-2012, 02:28 AM   #17
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It really depends on what is out there - attached are the roads when we went out for thanks giving weekend here - the drive out was primarily a tail wind so I kept stopping distance triple what I thought I needed acceleration was slow and steady to a speed that I felt safe at - with just me and the kid in the truck we took our time with a safety first attitude. 100km (~60 mile) trip approx 90min
Note had the truck is 4x4 I had the front hubs locked and 4wd switched on at any indication of slippage (needed a couple of times)
Moral of the story - slow and steady will win the day - if you are comfortable driving in snow having the trailer should not change that - if you are not comfortable in snow without the trailer IMHO the added stress of a trailer is not worth the effort
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Old 12-08-2012, 07:12 AM   #18
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One day i hope we can leave in mid November.. or ..right after Thanksgiving
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Old 12-08-2012, 07:19 AM   #19
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Old 12-09-2012, 02:11 PM   #20
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After living in Eastern Washington State for my entire life, I can say I'm used to snow and towing in it. But consider the following:

The 3-second rule for a car on normal, dry roads, DOES NOT APPLY. Your stopping distances increase by more than a factor of 2, which means a 6-second rule for a standard car doesn't apply either. Remember that you are hauling something behind you which probably weighs at least as much as your tractor, probably more.

Mass in motion tends to stay in motion, and that mass moves in a straight line.

So, your vehicle and stuff continues to move even though you apply the breaks or turn the tractor and it want does not want to turn or follow.

Review distances established by the State Patrol. They have specifics on just what the proper distances should be, where your chains should be placed, and how many you should place.

You also must be aware of the opposing drivers-- or those within your space. You know, the guy behind and to the side of you as well as oncoming traffic? Just because you are attempting to drive safely doesn't mean the other guy is. He's got bald tires,is driving too fast or too close, and he's even drunk or on drugs-- illegal or otherwise. He also fell asleep because his exhaust entered his cabin which purged the O2.

This question begs an answer-- why drive if you don't have too?
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