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Old 03-02-2014, 08:50 PM   #1
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Best towing package for Winnebago Vista and Honda CR-V

I have a 2013 Itasca Sunstar 26HE (same as Winnebago Vista 26HE) and now a 2014 Honda CR-V which I will setup to be towed. I am confused by all the options. It seems Roadmaster and Blue Ox are very popular. What would be the best setup for this pair (RV and SUV)? I'd prefer to hear from those who have first hand experience. Thanks!
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Old 03-02-2014, 10:00 PM   #2
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I have a 2013 Itasca Sunstar 26HE (same as Winnebago Vista 26HE) and now a 2014 Honda CR-V which I will setup to be towed. I am confused by all the options. It seems Roadmaster and Blue Ox are very popular. What would be the best setup for this pair (RV and SUV)? I'd prefer to hear from those who have first hand experience. Thanks!
We have pulled a Honda Accord many miles with three different coaches and the same Blue Ox tow bar. No problems. Easy to hook and unhook.
Jesse
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Old 03-02-2014, 10:07 PM   #3
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It seems that you have three things to acquire: baseplate, tow bar, and auxiliary braking systems.

The tow bar and baseplate should be from the same company. The tow bar should permanently attach to the motorhome.

Auxiliary braking systems come in two major flavors ... portable or permanently mounted systems ... beyond that there are some systems that have proportional braking.

I have Blue Ox Aventa tow bar and Blue Ox baseplate. I have used a Brake Buddy for more than 10 years (it has been updated ... and it still works great)

The local RV shop that I use is a Blue Ox Dealer so that is what drove that choice ... and Brake Buddy was the best of the auxiliary braking systems when I started RVing ...

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Old 03-02-2014, 11:15 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info. It seems the Blue Ox has the most inconspicuous baseplate. If so, I'll likely go with blue ox for the baseplate and tow bar.

Still confused over the many brake choices and options for a CRV. There is very little room under the seats or in the engine compartment, so not sure an invisibrake or stealth would fit. I may just go with a brake buddy, too.

I would also like to find a way to get a little power to the CRV battery so I don't have to pull a fuse each time. Maybe there is a trickle-start like device that will get power from the RV to the car battery?
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Old 03-02-2014, 11:20 PM   #5
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Wow...looks like I answered my own question here...and it's called Toad Charge! :-)

http://www.rvpowersupply.com/toadcharge.htm
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Old 03-03-2014, 07:26 AM   #6
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We have a 2013 Winnebago adventurer,towing a 2013 honda crv. We are using a falcon 2 tow bar with road aster base plate. It is almost invisible when the bar is removed. In the wiring package we added a charging wire from the coach. We use the brake buddy and it all works very well. Hope this is helpful .
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Old 03-03-2014, 07:28 AM   #7
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Wow...looks like I answered my own question here...and it's called Toad Charge! :-)

Toad-Charge Towed Vehicle Battery Charger & Maintainer Kit - RV Power Supply
Here is a cheaper version that works just as well. I have been using this on my Jeep with no problems. Uses the ground connection created by the tow bar and the positive from your wired connection with the RV. Just run the wire (from battery maintainer) between the toad battery and connector attached to the toad base plate. I have a 6 way connector on my toad and the center pin on a 6 way will be 12v provided by RV.

If you only have a 4 or 5 way connector on your toad, you would then need to run a 12v lead from the RV or swap out your rv/toad coiled cable and the connector on your toad base plate. The latter is much cleaner and easier to deal with when connecting and disconnecting your toad.

BrakeBuddy - Towed Vehicle Battery Maintainer
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Old 03-03-2014, 09:03 AM   #8
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Wow...looks like I answered my own question here...and it's called Toad Charge! :-)

Toad-Charge Towed Vehicle Battery Charger & Maintainer Kit - RV Power Supply
My preference to maintain the toad battery is to simply pull the fuse and install a fused switch so that you can just flip the switch when towing. The switch kills power to the navigation which is the primary cause of battery drain. I mounted a rocker switch in a blank plate on the dash left of the steering column. You can make this yourself with common components, or buy a kit online. I've towed our CRV about 10k miles w/o any battery problems. FWIW - I previously had an older Roadmaster base plate and tow bar system on an older CRV, but currently use and prefer Blue Ox on our 12' CRV. I previously used the SMI stay-in-play brake system for our gas coach which worked very well and required nothing more than flipping a toggle switch when ready to tow.

cheers,
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Old 03-03-2014, 09:37 AM   #9
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H,

One question no one has asked is what is the towing capacity of your motorhome and what is the weight of the Honda? What is the hitch rated at?

I agree that when towed four down you need some sort of braking system.

Enjoy!
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Old 03-03-2014, 09:52 AM   #10
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I have used a Blue Ox Aventa II (10k) towbar with two Odysseys for over 60k miles. I prefer the design and hookup to what I have seen from Roadmaster, though they make great towbars also. My aux brake is a Roadmaster Brakemaster w/breakaway.

I had some run down battery problems with the 05 Odyssey until I installed a Toad Charge system. I like the monitor lights that tell me what it is doing, and the built in circuit breaker along w/the "brain" that only charges the toad battery when needed, doesn't over charge it, and doesn't allow back feed. If you install one, I WOULD recommend you get the kit without connectors. I found them kind of flimsy, and got two-wire towing connectors to use on my umbilical cord.
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Old 03-03-2014, 10:27 AM   #11
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I have a 2013 Itasca Sunstar 26HE (same as Winnebago Vista 26HE) and now a 2014 Honda CR-V which I will setup to be towed. I am confused by all the options. It seems Roadmaster and Blue Ox are very popular. What would be the best setup for this pair (RV and SUV)? I'd prefer to hear from those who have first hand experience. Thanks!
I have a BlueOx Aventa tow bar and BlueOx Base Plate. Hook-up and disconnect is very simple. When the pins are removed from the Base Plate, the connection is barely visible unlike some of the other popular brands. Great Equipment.
I use the Patriot Brake and it works Very Well on the CRV. I got mine at a real good price as "New out of the box". If I were looking today, I might consider some of the others on the market that are smaller in size, maybe.

I have a 7Pin to 6Pin connection from the MH to CRV. In addition to lights, it also has a Charge Line that connects the MH Battery to the Toad to prevent dead battery issues on the toad. There is an Auto-rest breaker at both ends of the charge line to prevent short circuit issues.

In addition, thanks to a post by another Irv2 Forum Subscriber, I have a "Blank Key" that I got from my Honda Dealer which allows me to turn the Ignition off and lock the doors without having to remove the Patriot and shift into Park when we are stopping for lunch or a quick overnight stop. The Blank Key will only start the car momentarily and shut off because it has no programing. This was the only knock I had toward the CRV over my previous Taurus. With the Blank Key, problem solved.
P/S, we love our CRV.
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Old 03-03-2014, 04:27 PM   #12
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I have a 2013 Vista 27N and a 2013 CRV. I use a Blue Ox base plate and a Ready Brute Elite Tow Bar. The Ready Brute incorporates a surge brake system. One time after towing a couple of days without disconnecting the CRV I had a dead battery. I am having a charge line run as I don't want to have to bother pulling the fuse.
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Old 03-03-2014, 05:02 PM   #13
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I use the blue ox setup and a blue ox Patriot brake system...works just fine and it comes with a monitor for the dash. I also used the battery post in the 7 pin plug to charge the battery of my jeep as well as the brake and signal lights. i just ran a hot wire from the Bat post to the jeep battery. I also installed a diode and a fuse to keep the MH from discharging the Jeep battery . I also installed a separate set of tail/brake lights in the Jeep so i will always have signal lights etc. regardless if the Patriot is hooked up.
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Old 03-03-2014, 05:31 PM   #14
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AFChap is correct. You need a system that monitors each battery system (chassis and car). I believe the other individuals are talking about merely connecting the hot wire from the chassis. This works fine until one of the batteries goes bad. Then a lot happens. One system over charges the other system or one system will drain ALL the batteries. The only system that I know really works is the Toad Charger but take the power (and ground) off the umbilical cord. Like you said blue ox is the better looking system.
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Old 03-03-2014, 05:39 PM   #15
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I just put a blue ox base plate and tow bar on my toad. I have a Vista26he just like yours I had to get a 10 inch drop receiver hitch to get level. Best place to buy IMHO is E trailer.com around $114. free shipping
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Old 03-03-2014, 06:56 PM   #16
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We have had two honda crv's with the blue ox. Tow bars has worke
well. The currant one is a 2011 with a Winnie. Seesig.
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Old 03-03-2014, 08:20 PM   #17
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Thanks to all for the great advice!!
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Old 03-04-2014, 09:40 PM   #18
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Another for blue-ox bar and base, brakebuddy.

I got my tow bar (extra heavy duty) from a couple in NM for less than half of a new one.

The inventor of brakebuddy was refurbing original units from when he sold the company and was selling them on ebay for $500 - that was quite a few ears ago. Of course it still works great.

The new car got another blue-ox baseplate, previous cars had them, this time I was the test-dummy and wrote modified install instructions for them in trade for a baseplate. They even sent me a wiring harness and diodes for the taillights. Easy setup and works perfect.

We looked at CRV as well, but I've had two subies in my driving history and liked the way it looked and drove so it got the nod. Very easy to tow.

Blue-ox makes a good product.

I hate paying retail. LOL.
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Old 03-05-2014, 10:24 AM   #19
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I have a 2010 SunStar 26P and tow a 2007 Honda CR-V. Tow bar and auxiliary brake are Blue Ox.


I previously towed a 2000 Honda Accord 20K miles and always ran the engine 20+ minutes at the end of the day to maintain the toad battery charge. I didn't pull the radio fuse or install any additional toad battery tending equipment. I just bought the CR-V and have not yet towed it more than about 10 miles. The CR-V manual recommends pulling the accessory radio fuse if towing an extended period.


Reading the posts here, it looks like I have 3 alternatives:
1-install a radio fuse disconnect switch on the dash;
2-install a Toad Charge unit
3-install a charging line from the moho chassis battery to the toad battery using the 7-to-6 pin coiled connector.


It seems the radio fuse disconnect switch would be easiest given the cost of the Toad Charge unit and the potential overcharge damage from option #3.


I welcome input to help me better understand these options.


Jeanne


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Old 03-05-2014, 11:23 AM   #20
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Reading the posts here, it looks like I have 3 alternatives:
1-install a radio fuse disconnect switch on the dash;
2-install a Toad Charge unit
3-install a charging line from the moho chassis battery to the toad battery using the 7-to-6 pin coiled connector.
If it were me I'd do #1.
But begs the question...why can't you just turn off the radio if that key mode is accessory? Is there that much residual drain? Enough to kill the battery?
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