RV News RVBusiness 2021 Top 10 RVs of the Year, plus 56 additional debuts and must-see units → ×


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 03-25-2019, 03:21 PM   #81
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 2,328
Quote:
Originally Posted by JArry View Post
Of note: Factory engine (and trans?) cooling system is inadequate for long uphill grades. I wonder how common that is for Class II-rated SUVs.
Installing an auxiliary transmission cooler has traditionally been a recommendation for towing anywhere near rated capacity. I had planned to have the dealer install an aux trans cooler on my Hyundai Entourage minivan as part of the towing package. But the mechanic pulled me in and showed me the stock transmission cooler was a separate component, and 4 times the size of the aux unit he was looking at putting in. This matched some experiences I had seen on line, so the dealer agreed not to install the cooler and use the money towards installing the E2 WDH instead. Don't have a temp gauge on the transmission, but the coolant temp gauge has never moved from its normal spot while towing. But I do notice an air heat build up in the engine compartment when making a pit stop after some up-grade towing.

I have not evaluated the transmission cooler on the Kia Sorento that we will use as the tow vehicle when the minivan dies. But I am prepared to add an aux cooler if I think it is necessary. The Kia owners manual states to watch the temp gauge when towing, and if it rises above normal, pull over and idle until it cools again. It also states if the coolant temp is high, the transmission is also running hot.

Back in the old days, a trailer tow package from US manufacturers often included both a bigger radiator and an aux trans cooler. Unfortunately, I don't think any vehicle made in the past decade has the space to install a bigger radiator - at least not without some serious rework of the front of the engine bay. Usually, there is room for a small-to-medium aux cooler, and that's it.

Reading the referenced article, I see the overheating occurred with the turbo engine, and not with the V6. At Colorado elevations, a normally aspirated engine can't run as hot as at sea level, so there is some protection there. Turbos keep the air pressure up even at altitude, so you have the turbine compressor heat PLUS the heat of full power out of the engine PLUS thinner air to extract heat from the radiator.

Give that some of the Ford engineering (engine cooling) was marginal, I wonder if using higher octane would have reduced the overheating somewhat and/or allowed a little more usable power. Gas stations at altitude sell 85 octane "regular" gas because normally aspirated engines can't get hot enough for pre-ignition at altitude, even with the lower octane gas. But a turbo retains the need for higher octane, regardless of altitude. Modern engines have a knock sensor to throttle the engine back in the event of pre-ignition.

I'm also willing to bet Ford has increased the cooling on the newer Escapes, so the combination of increased cooling and using correct octane would likely prevent the problem. Before buying an Escape, I would also check the tow package contents or compare Escapes with/without the tow package for the differences. Then replicate those differences when setting up to tow.

Final comment: the referenced article cited a 17ft Nimrod TT. I'm willing to bet the frontal area exceeded the Escape tow specs.

Just my experiences and thoughts. I hope somebody else chimes in with real world Escape towing experiences.

Fred W
2019 Flagstaff T21TBHW A-frame
2008 Hyundai Entourage minivan
camping Colorado and adjacent states one weekend at a time
pgandw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2019, 03:29 PM   #82
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2019
Location: In a house in...
Posts: 86
Good point on cooling. Most towing packages include an engine oil cooler (if needed) and a larger or supplemental transmission cooler.

If you add a hitch to a vehicle that didn't originally come with the "towing package" then you are wise to find out what the towing package supplied and add those items. In my experience they always have at least additional cooling components for the transmission in those packages.

I once owned a Ford Expedition that had every option EXCEPT the towing package. I was able to add the supplemental transmission cooler and hitch without a problem and never overheated in mountains where I know for a fact I would have without the cooler. Luckily the Expedition (back then anyway) had a "combination" temp gauge that provided the condition of both the engine and transmission. Most vehicles only have an engine gauge (if that) which doesn't help AT ALL with the transmission temperature. And THAT'S the crucial one when towing. A supplemental cooler will help remove that concern because it fits in front of the radiator such that an increase in transmission temp will also cause a related increase in engine temp so at least it has some form of monitoring in that case. Better than nothing, anyway.
TrailerTexan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-25-2019, 05:50 PM   #83
Senior Member
 
JArry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Hancock (U.P.), MI
Posts: 331
Quote:
Originally Posted by pgandw View Post
Back in the old days, a trailer tow package from US manufacturers often included both a bigger radiator and an aux trans cooler. Unfortunately, I don't think any vehicle made in the past decade has the space to install a bigger radiator - at least not without some serious rework of the front of the engine bay. Usually, there is room for a small-to-medium aux cooler, and that's it.
Too bad the question as to whether the tow package included a separate trans cooler was not answered in the thread. Based on my research it appears the tow package only includes hitch, light/brake wiring, and sway control mode. Another question not answered was why a 2.0L not equipped with the factory tow package was only rated to tow 2,000 lbs. Maybe lack of faith that owners would install the correct (class II) aftermarket equipment.

I also find it interesting that the 2013 Ford towing guide rates it for 3,500 lbs with weight-carrying hitch specifically, and does not specify any rating with WDH, seemingly implying one should not be used - maybe due to the added tongue weight.

Quote:
Reading the referenced article, I see the overheating occurred with the turbo engine, and not with the V6. At Colorado elevations, a normally aspirated engine can't run as hot as at sea level, so there is some protection there. Turbos keep the air pressure up even at altitude, so you have the turbine compressor heat PLUS the heat of full power out of the engine PLUS thinner air to extract heat from the radiator.
The 2013 and newer Escape does not offer a V6 option.

Quote:
Final comment: the referenced article cited a 17ft Nimrod TT. I'm willing to bet the frontal area exceeded the Escape tow specs.
Towing guide does not specify a max frontal area, at least not that I could find, but I certainly would not myself attempt to tow a standard flat-front TT with it. That had to be a factor in overheating.

This actually increases my curiosity as to MPGs that could be expected with a fold-down. I imagine it would be several MPG higher than the approx 11 stated in the thread.

I think I will start a new thread in that forum to see if any other members will share their experiences.
__________________
2016 Flagstaff T12RBST A-Frame | 2017 Ford Escape SE AWD 2.0 Eco (starting 2021)

Nights camped in 2016: 37; 2017: 54; 2018: 47; 2019: 63; 2020: 53
JArry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-26-2019, 07:33 AM   #84
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 2,328
I was researching a used smaller SUV as a daily driver for my daughter. Came across carcomplaints.com. Very useful site for finding problematic models. Ford Escape EB 2.0 engines, starting in 2013, have a pretty lousy history with overheating and coolant issues. A recall for coolant sensors, lots of reports of coolant disappearing into the engine combustion, engine shutdowns for both valid and false overheating (apparently coolant sensor could give false overheating signal).

There are always some complaints, but I look at the overall numbers for a given model year plus the recalls and service advisories for patterns.

Fred W
2019 Flagstaff T21TBHW A-frame
2008 Hyundai Entourage minivan
camping Colorado and adjacent states one weekend at a time
pgandw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-26-2019, 10:09 AM   #85
Senior Member
 
JArry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Hancock (U.P.), MI
Posts: 331
Quote:
Originally Posted by pgandw View Post
I was researching a used smaller SUV as a daily driver for my daughter. Came across carcomplaints.com. Very useful site for finding problematic models. Ford Escape EB 2.0 engines, starting in 2013, have a pretty lousy history with overheating and coolant issues. A recall for coolant sensors, lots of reports of coolant disappearing into the engine combustion, engine shutdowns for both valid and false overheating (apparently coolant sensor could give false overheating signal).

There are always some complaints, but I look at the overall numbers for a given model year plus the recalls and service advisories for patterns.
Yes, personally I follow Consumer Reports recommendations and data pretty closely, and there appear to be severe reliability problems in the 2013-14 Escapes, but these improved considerably for most of the later years of the generation. It is unfortunate that reliability of domestic models seems to swing wildly from year to year, whereas some of the foreign manufacturers are more consistent even though not perfect. I would like to think most of the kinks of the 2.0 have been worked out by now...
__________________
2016 Flagstaff T12RBST A-Frame | 2017 Ford Escape SE AWD 2.0 Eco (starting 2021)

Nights camped in 2016: 37; 2017: 54; 2018: 47; 2019: 63; 2020: 53
JArry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2019, 08:58 AM   #86
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by JArry View Post
I am starting to think about my next vehicle purchase.

Currently I own a compact car and my TV (Ridgeline). As both are quite high-mileage, I am considering selling both of them and purchasing a single newer "compromise" vehicle (high gas mileage + sufficient towing ability). Much as I'd like to continue owning a car and truck, as a single guy it doesn't really make sense.

I would probably end up with a mid-size SUV, and I believe most of those have a 3,500-lb towing capacity. My T12RBST has a dry weight of 2,100 lbs.

I am seeking opinions and reports from any A-frame owners towing with a vehicle in that specific category. Just as an example, I was looking at a Hyundai Santa Fe, which is rated for 3,500 capacity (haven't checked GVWR or other specs). But it has a 4-cyl engine, as I think many in this class do, and I can't really get my head around towing with that.

Also, I understand with this switch I would probably need to use a WDH, which currently I do not, and I am not excited about that.

I'd appreciate any input!
I tow my 2014 A122 with a Ford Explorer. As I start hauling more weight on longer trips, I felt the camper fighting the vehicle. I added a weight distribution system and now I donít even know itís back there! Took it on a trip from Ohio to Colorado, through the mountains and didnít have one issue.
mmanley1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2019, 09:06 AM   #87
Senior Member
 
JArry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Hancock (U.P.), MI
Posts: 331
In case anyone is interested, I decided to buy a new Corolla and also keep the Ridgeline for towing. It would in theory be cheaper to only maintain and insure one vehicle, but in the end I didn't want to risk ending up with an unsatisfactory compromise.
__________________
2016 Flagstaff T12RBST A-Frame | 2017 Ford Escape SE AWD 2.0 Eco (starting 2021)

Nights camped in 2016: 37; 2017: 54; 2018: 47; 2019: 63; 2020: 53
JArry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2019, 12:25 PM   #88
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Glendale, AZ
Posts: 33
I have the same F150 2.7 EcoBoost, i was wondering what is the heaviest you would tow.
ezsplace is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-23-2019, 05:31 PM   #89
Junior Member
 
FremontBob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluepill View Post
I have towed my T-12 over 15,000 miles with an Acura MDX. Basically the same as the Ridgeline and Pilot. I carry a generator on the front tongue and a motorcycle on the rear, so I am at about 3000 Lbs. total ( with a 375 lb. tongue weight). The V-6 has more than enough power in all conditions. I usually drive at around 62 MPH, and barely know the camper is back there. Normal MPG towing is 22 vs. 29 not towing. I do not feel the need for a WDH, even though I use one for my bigger trailer.


Big Trailer:




T-12:




Thanks for this information. Curious what type of Cycle Carrier you installed on the back of the A-FRAME, and how you got the extension past the rear/spare wheel thanks
FremontBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2020, 10:20 PM   #90
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Posts: 64
We tow our A122 with a ford escape 4 cyclinder and it tows great with no weight distribution needed. Very stark contrast to our prior Kia/Hyundai minivan that literally would sag with 200 lbs tounge weight on the hitch. even with the Kia having a v6 felt it felt very underpowered compared to the ecoboost 4 cylinder. Just make sure you stay within all specs of the vehicle. Our A122 weighs in at 2400 loaded with 325 tounge weight. Well within the Escapes 3500 tow rateing. We don't use a equalizing hitch because we are within the 350 tounge rating of the Escape. We haven't noticed any sway or porpussing which we did on the Kia minivan. We towed using both the Escape and the Kia over the rockies and cascades with the Ford with no equalizer or sway control performing noticeably better in power and control then the Kia with a equalizer hitch. My feeling is the suspension setup is better on the Escape to tow and the Engine technology of the Ford 4 cyl. Ecoboost far supercedes the KIA V6 in torque and horsepower. While we loved the Kia minivan and had no trouble with it, the Ford Escape surprisingly does a much better job towing.
bingraham66 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2020, 11:55 AM   #91
Member
 
Zoinks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 66
We tow our 2019 A213HW with our 2015 Toyota Highlander and have no problems. The camper dealer recommended the WDH and we had that installed when we got the camper. I don't know what it feels like towing without a WDH but it tows great with it. The V6 has plenty of power and rev's 1000-2000 rpm higher when towing. It drops down a gear most of the time. MPG towing is in the 13-15 mpg range. Even with the WDH there is a slight sag of the rear but its hardly noticeable. Very smooth towing.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_3154.jpg
Views:	29
Size:	662.4 KB
ID:	229189  
__________________
2019 Rockwood A213HW
2015 Toyota Highlander Limited
Zoinks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2020, 12:23 PM   #92
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Posts: 64
I worked for Toyota in the past and will say with confidence If your trailer and Highlander where loaded correctly, you would be way under the Highlanders 500lbs. Tounge rating so you wouldnt need a weight distribution hitch which in and of itself adds around 100lbs of unnecessary weight and hassle to hitch and unhitch. Your max allowable loaded weight of the A213 is 3372lbs with max tounge weight of 15% being 505.8lbs. If you haven't already weighed your setup, I would highly encourage you to do so. You will find you don't t need the WDH... I remember a salesman told me I needed WD for 1800lbs. Tent trailer on my F-150. Purely a money grab. The Toyota would spec out a WDH if needed for the 500 lbs. They don't. My F-150 would tow 500 on the tounge. With no WDH and up to 1300lbs. With WDH. Clearly listed out in the manual. TOYOTA doesn't require or recommend it. Your need for WDH on your Highlander leads me to believe your trailer is either incorrectly loaded and or you exceeded the total cargo capacity of the Highlander once you hitch up or someone just sold you something you didn't need and a hassle to use. Just some thoughts that may help out.
bingraham66 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2020, 01:36 PM   #93
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 2,328
I experienced the porpoising when towing an A122 with my Hyundai/KIA minivan, and didn't like the sag. Took it back to the dealer who recommended an E2 Equalizer 600/6000 for $320 installed. Couldn't believe the difference in ride - the minivan rode very close to stock at all speeds (tested to 75MPH). Well worth the additional 4 minutes in connect time and 50lbs (not 100) in weight. The other benefit is eliminating hitch strikes on road dips. And the ride is good enough for DW to drive for a few hours on longer camping trips.

Previously towed a 2000 Coleman Westlake PUP with a 93 Ford Explorer, knowing nothing about weight distributing hitches. That was a horrible combination that would reliably start to sway at 62MPH. Got so DW wanted to drive separately on camping trips. And the Explorer didn't have enough power to maintain speeds on the Sierra and Rocky Mtn grades.

in 2018 we bought the T21TBHW (A213) A-frame. I ended up adding a washer to the E2 to redistribute the extra tongue weight, and restoring the ride to what I had with the A122. Some people are comfortable with 350-400lb dead tongue weight on their SUVs, but having experienced better with the WDH, I would never tow an A-frame without a WDH unless I had a half ton minimum to pull it with.

We are in the process of replacing the Hyundai with a 2020 Toyota Sienna, because minivans are such comfortable touring vehicles after arrival at the campsite.

Fred W
2019 Flagstaff T21TBHW A-frame
prev 2014 Rockwood A122 A-frame
2008 Hyundai Entourage minivan
camping Colorado and adjacent states one weekend at a time
last trip: Trinidad Lake SP, Colorado (March)
next trip: Black Hills
pgandw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2020, 02:14 PM   #94
Member
 
Zoinks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 66
I'm way under the max loaded weight and the max tongue weight. I also put lot's of effort into evenly distributing any weight too. Yes, I knew the salesman sold me more than I probably needed at the time we purchased the camper. I had read enough before hand to know some of the pluses and minuses. I've never towed anything and neither has my wife. I intentionally went the conservative route since I wanted to ensure things were really stable when my wife drives. I've backed off on the WDH adjustments and the WDH definitely does improve the stability in all conditions. Much more stable passing and in cross-winds. I would think at 500 lbs hitch weight the nose would be up a lot on a Highlander and you would get folks complaining more than they already do that your lights are too bright at night. And yes, you are correct, the weight of the WDH is a pain along with the logistics of the rig and derig but I think it was worth it for a bunch of rookies. For me, it was a conscious decision to pay more for something I probably did not need. Thanks for the thoughts.



Quote:
Originally Posted by bingraham66 View Post
I worked for Toyota in the past and will say with confidence If your trailer and Highlander where loaded correctly, you would be way under the Highlanders 500lbs. Tounge rating so you wouldnt need a weight distribution hitch which in and of itself adds around 100lbs of unnecessary weight and hassle to hitch and unhitch. Your max allowable loaded weight of the A213 is 3372lbs with max tounge weight of 15% being 505.8lbs. If you haven't already weighed your setup, I would highly encourage you to do so. You will find you don't t need the WDH... I remember a salesman told me I needed WD for 1800lbs. Tent trailer on my F-150. Purely a money grab. The Toyota would spec out a WDH if needed for the 500 lbs. They don't. My F-150 would tow 500 on the tounge. With no WDH and up to 1300lbs. With WDH. Clearly listed out in the manual. TOYOTA doesn't require or recommend it. Your need for WDH on your Highlander leads me to believe your trailer is either incorrectly loaded and or you exceeded the total cargo capacity of the Highlander once you hitch up or someone just sold you something you didn't need and a hassle to use. Just some thoughts that may help out.
__________________
2019 Rockwood A213HW
2015 Toyota Highlander Limited
Zoinks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2020, 02:52 PM   #95
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Posts: 64
No worries... but know your ride height will not be affected by squat if the load is within spec for both the trailer and car. My guess is with your trailer trunk loaded, your exceeding the 15% hitch distribution weight on the trailer. I have done it so I know first hand how quickly the tounge weight goes up with trunk loaded, full propaneand two batteries. . Also, be aware that your toyoata trailer sway algorithm may be adversely affected by the W.D.H. Im not trying to imply you did anything wrong or made a bad decision at all but rather the swarmy salesmen that push things we don't need when we are trusting them for solid advice.
bingraham66 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2020, 03:15 PM   #96
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Posts: 64
From Toyota directly:

Thank you for your most recent correspondence.

We would like to take this opportunity to mention that most hitch manufacturers only recommend weight distribution when towing over 5000 pounds; the Highlander has a maximum towing capacity of 5000 pounds. Weight distribution hitches put a great deal of strain on the frame of the vehicle to achieve the distribution of the weight. Unibody vehicles are not built for this type of strain; the Highlander is a unibody vehicle that does not have a full frame, it is not recommended for use with a weight distribution hitch.

Please be advised that weight distribution hitches are common on trucks that have full frames. Toyota vehicles that have full frames are the Tundra, Tacoma and the 4Runner.

We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused. We hope this information is helpful and thank you agair
for taking the time to write.

Sincerely,

Stewart Mcmillan
Customer Interaction Centre
Toyota Canada Inc.
bingraham66 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
a-frame, frame, towing

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Forest River, Inc. or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:49 PM.