How to Tow a Car Behind an RV

You need to plan the car towing you will do behind the RV unless you are going to use a bike, rental car or motorcycle when you need to make stop. The ideal way of towing will depend on what kind of car you won.

Before you plan, verify first that you’re the Department of Transportation in your state allows it and what they require. There are a lot of states that require brakes on trailers that weigh over 1500. There are some that have issues with a tow bar used to attach the car. This is why you need to check with the authorities so you won’t have to deal with any trouble later on.

Tips you have to be aware of

It is not always best to use trailers

If there are 2-wheeled dollies and trailers with 4 wheels, the majority of vehicles are towable using an RV as long as the weight whatever it is used for towing does not go over the towing capacity of the motorhome. However, this kind of towing is not very popular because of some reasons.

There is the added expense of a trailer or dolly maintenance and the cost for storage when they are not being used is also paid for. The extra work needed for getting on and off the towing vehicle.

Use a flatbed or an enclosed trailer for the vehicle

Trailers can completely support the vehicle together with its brakes and light that is never against the law. The good thing about this is that you are not going to have additional mileage on the vehicle you are towing and almost any vehicle can be carried if you choose to do this.

You might want to consider the cost when you do this because it can be pretty big. This could have an impact on the mileage and if you combine the weight, it might exceed the motorhome’s limit. If you are only an average RVer, this is not a recommended option.

Using a tow dolly


It is a trailer that lets you tow using 2 front wheels or 4 wheels that are on the top of the trailer. This vehicle can be used to explore local parts of the area without having to take the RV with you. The tow dolly can be quite pricey and costs more than a tow kit.

The drawback of a dolly are the straps because they need to be constantly adjusted so the car can be hooked up to it. You will worry about the car falling off from the tow dolly and storing it can be quite difficult if you spend time in the campground for more than 7 days.

Using a tow bar

This is another option and it probably costs a lot less than the other options aside from it being easier. This kind of towing is normally called dinghy or flat-ground towing. It got its name because the 4 wheels of the car are all on the ground. The tires are going to wear all at the same time if this towing method is chosen. If you use a dolly, they will wear much faster. You can also choose to fold up the tow bar and put it on the back somewhere.

Base plates

Base plates are the connection point of the tow bar on the vehicle being towed. These connection points are normally specific to the type of vehicle and made by a number of companies. Base plates add up to the frame of the towed vehicle and a lot of vehicles need to be modified if you want to install a base plate.


If your car is not good for flat towing, you can use devices that include driveshaft decouplers and pumps for transmission lubrication that can be loaded to an automatic transmission vehicle so the job gets done.

The add-ons can be costly and hard to install and keep. If you fail to use them the right way, it can cause damage to the drivetrain components or the engine while you are towing the vehicle. This can cause problems with your warranty.

If you want to flat tow your vehicle, but it is not suitable, the majority of RV dealerships and centers for repair are able to carry and install decouplers for you, as well as lubrication pumps and other devices.

Look at the manual and check again

When you have found a vehicle that will suit your towing needs, you need to get a copy of the manual which can usually be found online.


You will find everything there is to know about towing the car or truck in different styles and this includes detailed instructions about the fuses you need to pull, the right position for the shift lever transmission. The switches you need to leave on and which ones you must turn off, and when you should run the engine for lubrication purposes.

Even if you can make the majority of the vehicle towable using aftermarket equipment, it is still better to use cars and trucks with a certification for towing.

Other considerations

According to the products you have selected, the hitching and towing of vehicles using your RV can be relatively easy. When you are buying equipment needed for towing, the costs will quickly add up and you might end up spending more than $1000 to have a complete towing system. It is best to have custom hitch modifications on the RV to handle a high front bumper on the jeep that adds a few hundred dollars for installation.

Remember to check every connection before towing the car to avoid problems. The parking brake should be off and check all of the signals, brake lights, and lamps to see if they are working properly. Look at the condition of the tires and if there is enough air pressure. You need to close the vehicle tightly so that no dirt will get inside.

Nancy McCoy

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