Towing with a small car

Reply

  #1  
Old 10-14-14, 04:07 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 116
Towing with a small car

Would it be OK towing a trailer that weighs 800-900 lbs. fully loaded, with a Toyota Corolla? It's a 4' X 8' utility trailer that I use to haul up to 4 kayaks.

I currently use my mini van, but when I replace it, I'm thinking about going with a small car, such as a Corolla or Civic. Thanks.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 10-14-14, 04:48 PM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,019
Well, I'm sure it's not rated for towing, but anything CAN be done, just not recommended. Guy I know put a hitch on a 2008 Hyundai Elantra 4 cyl and flat towed a new Chevy Spark from here to somewhere in Northern WV. The Spark was already set up for flat towing, but I still thought it was crazy.
 
  #3  
Old 10-14-14, 05:54 PM
lawrosa's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 17,607
Its if you can find a hitch for it first..

Then what rating hitch can you find?

Then the tires carry the load so you need to know the tongue weight of trailer. Then check the max psi of tires and how much weight they can carry per tire...

Once you have all that info take the car to get weighed at a cat scale for individual axle weights.. One you have the weights check the axle weight rating on the drivers door tag and subtract them from scale weights..

This will tell you what the weakest link is and what you can tow... ( May need to upgrade the load range on the tires) If you can find a hitch..

What year car??? Model? 2 dr 4 dr?
 
  #4  
Old 10-14-14, 06:37 PM
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Canada (near The Motor City)
Posts: 611
Top 13 Best Cars for Towing for 2013 on Edmunds.com

Google gave me this in 12 seconds
 
  #5  
Old 10-14-14, 08:04 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 116
Wow. Is it really that complicated lawrosa? If a car can tow up to 1,500 lbs. and trailer is less than 1,000 lbs. fully loaded, I thought it was a no brainer.

Like I said above, I don't have the car. I'm just thinking about this for when we replace our mini van.
 
  #6  
Old 10-14-14, 09:24 PM
lawrosa's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 17,607
Wow. Is it really that complicated lawrosa? If a car can tow up to 1,500 lbs. and trailer is less than 1,000 lbs. fully loaded, I thought it was a no brainer.
Put 4 people in the car and luggage or gear and full tank of gas... You will be at your tire and load capacity. Your 1500 lb tow rating just went down to 100 lbs tongue weight say for example...

Because youll probably be over the GVW of the car...

You can tow it I am sure... But if you cause an accident and hurt someone and they weigh you, you may be in big trouble if you are overweight.

Just telling you the facts....
 
  #7  
Old 10-15-14, 03:41 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 44,034
I don't think I've ever towed a trailer with a car but one thing to remember is stopping power! A trailer twice that weight can push a full size truck when you apply the brakes. Since most things are relative, I'd be concerned about a 1000 lb load pushing a small car when it's time to stop in a hurry.
 
  #8  
Old 10-15-14, 06:27 AM
Member
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 6,421
Towing

Also check the towing capabilities of the transmission.
 
  #9  
Old 10-15-14, 06:36 AM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 258
Another thing to consider is Wind Resistance. Although 4 kayaks, by design, are pretty aerodynamic. If you had a standard box trailer, it would be like a parachute for your 4 cylinder Corolla.
 
  #10  
Old 10-15-14, 06:58 AM
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Canada (near The Motor City)
Posts: 611
Common sense would have to apply. Leave room to brake & accelerate in traffic.
You couldn't expect a Corolla full of people/gear to pull almost a 1/2 ton trailer down the Interstate in hilly terrain @ 80mph.
If I was going into run the Corolla close to it's advised limits I would install a transmission cooler (automatic, I assume) and synthetic fluid.
 
  #11  
Old 10-15-14, 08:54 AM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,019
Like I said...I don't think those car have any tow rating, unless they are equipped for it either new from the factory or with aftermarket parts.

The guy I related to you found a "guy" who was willing to fabricate/adapt a hitch to the car, but that doesn't mean it was safe or smart, esp for an 1800 mile trip towing a car that weighed as much as the tow vehicle with no type of brake control.

It must have had 200-300 lbs of stuff in the trunk and back seat, plus the guys personal stuff in his own car. The Hyundai was almost sitting on the springs in the rear.

Overloaded completely.

The kicker was, right in the manual, it said, it was not recommended to tow with.
 
  #12  
Old 10-15-14, 11:46 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 116
Thanks everyone for the help
 
  #13  
Old 10-21-14, 06:25 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 116
When the time comes, I'd like a vehicle that gets good mileage for all the time that I'm not towing the trailer also. Is a Camry or Accord not a good choice either? My other thought is a small SUV. Thanks.
 
  #14  
Old 10-21-14, 08:35 PM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,019
Well, I'll be darned. I have to eat at least some of my words.

Read this article for good info Cars with Unexpected Tow Ratings - Ford, Toyota, Volvo - Automobile Magazine

I can't believe a little car like the Corolla could actually tow that much.

Of course it can vary from year to year, so you'll need to check the actual model you are looking at when the time comes.

Or do the research and let some place like Car Max do the searching for you.
 
  #15  
Old 10-21-14, 08:47 PM
Handyone's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: U.S.
Posts: 5,451
This is more of a question than reply, But...
Towing obviously depends on suspension and braking.
Does anyone think maybe a plus for these small Toyota's towing ability is the quality of the transmission? I've always liked the Toyota transmissions.
 
  #16  
Old 10-21-14, 09:04 PM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,019
Could be, though they said the Corolla's brakes might be an issue (drum only I guess) and the engine wasn't real gutsy. Flat and slow might be OK, but you sure wouldn't want to tow in mountains.
 
  #17  
Old 10-22-14, 03:56 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 44,034
IMO drum brakes do a better job of stopping a trailer than disc. My trailer should have brakes but doesn't as there is a good bit of weight when I put my tractor on it. I used to have a bronco with drum brakes all the way around and it did a decent job of stopping the trailer but my F-100 with discs in the front requires a lot more attention when it's time to brake. A brake shoe has more surface area than a disc pad .... you just don't want to get them wet

I'd like a vehicle that gets good mileage for all the time that I'm not towing the trailer also. ...... My other thought is a small SUV
While some SUVs get better mpg than others, none will get the mileage that a comparable 2 wheel drive will. Do you have use/need for 4 wheel drive?
 
  #18  
Old 10-22-14, 07:16 AM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,019
Not all SUVs are 4wd Mark. Most of the smaller ones can be had in FWD only. I never saw the point, but with the dearth of hatchbacks and wagons out there, people just want a bit more room inside and a higher seating position I guess. It probably makes sense, since 4wd adds several hundred pounds and lower MPG usually.
 
  #19  
Old 10-22-14, 07:27 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 44,034
It's not just the added weight as there is also increased rolling resistance especially if the front hubs don't disengage. Since Jeep made their name with 4 wheel drive, I've never understood them making 2 wheel drive versions. IMO if they want to build a 2 wheel drive jeep they ought to rebrand it as dodge or whatever.
 
  #20  
Old 10-22-14, 07:43 AM
Gunguy45's Avatar
Super Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,019
Yeah, I agree a 2wd Jeep is kinda silly. For poseurs, I guess. Most of the smaller SUVs are FWD when not in 4wd. Then they electronically kick in the transfer case to the rear, either automatically from wheel slip or pushing a button on the dash to lock it. Did that once by accident in a dry parking lot, thought I had broken something from the wheel squeal and steering effort.
 
  #21  
Old 10-22-14, 09:03 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 44,034
IMO those aren't real 4x4s but then most folks don't live where I live
 
  #22  
Old 10-22-14, 09:49 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 116
I live near Milwaukee, WI. but I don't need 4 wheel drive. AWD would be nice though.
 
Reply

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


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes