An RV is enough to move around in and carry most of your things. But what if you plan to stay at the campsite for long? Would you run your errands in an RV? What if you want to carry something that will not fit in your RV?
While all tow dollies may be functionally similar, there are also certain aspects that set one apart from another. As such, it’d help to know what factors will affect the performance and suitability of whichever tow dolly you purchase. Check out below for the basic features you should keep an eye on.
- Design: Tow dollies come in two varieties: the mounted front wheels and center pivots—the difference between the two lies in the pivot location. A mounted front wheel is a safer dolly for towing because it prevents your toad from hitting the back of your RV while driving on a winding road.
- Weight Capacity: A dolly towing more than its capacity can result in a swerving toad. Hence, it’s essential to get the right capacity that exceeds the weight of your tow vehicle. Our reviewed tow dollies have a hauling capacity of 4,000-4,800 lbs and an axle capacity of 3,500 lbs.
- Brake System: For safety, look for car tow dollies with a sound brake system. Most tow dollies for class C motorhomes use an electric brake to stop the dolly when disconnected accidentally. Some tow dollies below also use hydraulic surge brakes to stop the dolly whenever your RV stops.
Carrying another vehicle along gives you a perfect solution to all those questions. And how can you bring your vehicle along on your road trip? By investing in a good quality RV tow dolly. And this article is a detailed RV tow dolly review that shares all the important information. By the end of this article, you will be clearer about how to choose the best tow dolly for an RV.
|Product name||Outstanding Features|
|Dethmers Manufacturing Company 9713045||
|Demco 9713047 Tow Dolly||
|Roadmaster Inc. Universal Tow Dolly||
Table of Contents
- Top-Tier Tow Dolly Reviews
- What To Consider Before Buying Tow Dolly
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Top-Tier Tow Dolly Reviews
Here are the best tow dolly reviews that will help you make a well-informed decision:
1. Dethmers Manufacturing Company 9713045 Tow Dolly
If you are looking for a reliable tow dolly to pull your car safely and efficiently, then this Kar Kaddy SS is one of the most suitable options. I recommend this product as it gave me peace of mind about towing my vehicle.
Out of the many things that I liked about this product, the first is the hydraulic surge brakes. The brake system effectively controls the stopping to enhance safety in sudden situations. It also comes with safety cables on the RV dolly, a good security feature that gives you peace of mind while hauling the vehicle.
Moreover, the adjustable and foldable treads make it convenient to store the dolly, even if there is limited space. When the treds unfold it extends up to 133 inches whereas it folds up to 67 inches. With such a stow away size, it gives an excellent solution for both the finish and storage issues.
It can easily accommodate a wheel-to-wheel between 42 inches and 76 inches. RV dolly comes with a hauling capacity of 4,800 pounds as well as axle capacity of 3,500 pounds. This allows you to carry different types of vehicles with utmost ease. Featuring tongue weight of less than 100 pounds, it makes it easier to handle the vehicle being towed.
- Features hydraulic surge brakes for smooth and safe
- Comes with a towing capacity of up to 4,800 lbs, able to carry different vehicles.
- Integrated adjustable and foldable treads for easy storage.
- Durable and easy to use design.
- The lack of a stabilizer impacts the performance.
2. Demco 9713047 Tow Dolly
Coming to the first product on my list, Demco 9713947 is a great dolly with a lot of interesting innovations. It features low tongue weight, making the towing process easier. Another great feature of this Demco tow dolly is the surge brakes. These are smooth and can be worked with easily.
Usually, you cannot take any tow dolly to ship a vehicle from one US state to another. It’s not easy to find any product to solve this problem at one purchase. But with Demco 9713047 you have the perfect solution with you.
In terms of design, the tow dolly has checked all the boxes. I’m really impressed with the build of this tow dolly; it is entirely enclosed, featuring polyethylene fenders that are dent and rust-resistant. This ensures that your vehicle can be used for a long time and is entirely safe to use.
You will also find a lot of safety features, including well-integrated tail lights. This allows me to stay visible to the other drivers, especially during the night. It is an important feature to steer clear from any road mishaps.
- Features tail lights for safety.
- Smooth and efficient surge brakes that are easy to use.
- Rust-proof fenders for durability.
- Ramps are strong enough to last for a long time.
- The price tag of this product is a bit heavy.
3. Roadmaster Inc. Universal Tow Dolly
The next tow dolly on my list is by a popular brand- Roadmaster. To begin with, I was seriously impressed with the strong build of this dolly. It features top-grade steel material, which is built to last for a longer time period. The device is capable of carrying up to 4000 pounds. To carry such load in high safety, the manufacturer equips the product with an electric brake system.
Additionally, reinforced steel fenders protect the wheels and add to their durability. The wheels feature mud flaps that offer additional protection against water and dirt. The wheels are also integrated with a stabilizer, which enables the RV dolly to track the vehicle without cutting corners. Moreover, the dual pin bed latch ensures the bed stays intact even when one of the pins isn’t secure.
It also has adjustable ramps, another feature that I found very useful. It can be adjusted from 93 ½ inches to 101 ½ inches, and the ramps are capable of accommodating up to 16-inches wide wheels. The ramp, as well as the cradle, comes with raised treads that provide extra traction.
- Features stabilizer for better performance.
- Comes with electric brakes.
- Adjustable ramps for efficient use.
- Raised treads that offer better traction.
- More safe and durable with the steel fenders.
- The set-up process takes too long.
4. Demco 9713046 Kar Kaddy Three Tow Dolly
Demco has been a leading manufacturer of quality tow dolly for RVs. With the 9713046 Kar Kaddy, the brand has extended another great product. When designing the tow dolly, the company has integrated all the right features that you would expect. This Demco tow dolly comes with sure-grip galvanized low profile loading platforms and ramps which makes it easier to haul the vehicle on top of the dolly.
You will also find polyethylene fenders featuring protected and sealed lights. These lights make sure that other vehicles at night knowing that there is a vehicle being hauled, thereby reducing road accidents. You would also enjoy the easy-to-use tilt bed frame accompanied by an automatic relatch locking mechanism. Together these features add to the efficient performance and safety of the product.
The axle capacity stands at 3,500 lbs, and the overall vehicle weight capacity 4,800 lbs. So you can easily carry small cars and compact sedans at the back of the RV. The addition of the auto-steer feature makes you less worried about the vehicle touching corners while turning. On the purchase, you also get a 3 year-warranty, leaving you no worry about the lube or product care services.
- Automatic release locking mechanism for ease of use.
- Sure-grip loading ramp for better security.
- Features auto-steer for clear turns.
- Good load-bearing capacity.
- Polyethylene fenders with sealed lights for safe night driving.
- Inefficient instruction guide that makes set-up tiring.
5. Demco 9713049 Kar Kaddy Tow Dolly
Next on my list is another excellent product offered by Demco. This fully extended, 133 inches long American tow dolly is perfect for carrying your vehicle on road trips. It incorporated a lot of interesting features that you would expect from a brand like Demco.
The product can tow up to 4,800 lbs with an axle capacity of 3,500 lbs. In addition to that, chrome wheels feature radial tires to offer higher reliability when hauling a heavy load behind the RV. Moreover, the addition of a steerable axle will also add to your peace of mind. Even when I was moving in tight spots, the dolly functioned efficiently.
Once you set up, the dolly weighs less than 100 pounds, making it easier for you to handle the towing. There are also safety cables to safely secure the vehicle on the dolly and haul it to your destination.
It comes with foldable 67-inch ramps, turn the tow bar into a compact size so that you can store it easily. Moreover, you will get three years of unlimited warranty for added reliability.
- Fully extended, 133 inches for ease of carrying
- Foldable ramps for easy storage
- Good loading capacity of up to 4,800 lbs
- Axle steering for precise turns
- Comes with a heavy price tag
What To Consider Before Buying Tow Dolly
Tow dolly makes it easier for you to haul your vehicle on an RV while on the trip. Considering its usability, this product is hugely popular among the RV-owners across the country. But how do you choose the top-quality RV tow dolly for yourself?
Below are important caveats that you should consider while looking for tow dolly –
- Understand Your Needs
When it comes to tow dolly, you have essentially two options- mounted front wheels or central pivot dolly. Both these types of dollies have their advantages and disadvantages.
Therefore, when selecting between the two types and their variations, consider the vehicle that needs to be towed and the one which is ideal for your situation. Understanding how they work will make it easier for you to select the right product.
Tow dollies may feature brakes for all or some wheels. The kind of brakes that these devices have determines how secure you and your vehicle will be while using it. Although it is very rare, losing control while dollying the car can be hazardous. Therefore, choosing car dolly with brakes is a smarter option.
- Weight Capacity
Every tow dolly comes with a certain weight capacity, and it is important that you do not exceed this limit. This can result in imbalance or failure and hinder your and vehicle’s safety. A dolly that has a higher weight capacity allows you to carry different types of vehicles with ease. This is the factor that you should especially consider when you are hauling heavier vehicles.
Since you will be hauling a heavy vehicle, it is imperative to consider the toughness of the product. Go for a device whose parts include hardware, surface, wheels, etc. are made with hard materials such as steel. The quality of the materials impacts the performance and durability of the dolly.
This is typically integrated on the fenders of the tow daily. You must have operating tow lights on the back of the vehicle in tow as well. You can do the installing wiring to the vehicle that enables the factory lights to be operated by lights of the RV.
One other option is to invest in a removable light bar or system which can be attached to the end of the towed car and removed once you have reached the destination.
A new car tow dolly would cost you between $800 and $3500. Irrespective of the type, tow dollies come with two ties that take the weight of the front wheel of the car. Considering the kind of weight that these devices bear, they are bound to experience wear and tear. Therefore, depending on your needs and the features included in the dolly, the cost would vary.
- Ease of Use
The major downside of tow dollies is that it takes time to load and unload the vehicle, especially if it is your first time. Moreover, setting up the tow dolly itself is a laborious task. So the ease of use provided by the device makes a huge difference. It should come with convenient and safety features.
- Additional Features
Additional features integrated within the dollies adds to the efficiency of the product. For instance, some dollies feature straps or handles that make it easier for you to haul the vehicle. The device can be helpful if you are moving them between garages, car shows, or on road trips.
What Are The Types of RV Tow Dollies
Below are the types of RV tow follies that you will find in the market –
- Mounted Front Wheels RV Tow Dolly
It features mounted wheels similar to what you see in the front of a car. They come with kingpins and move around the corners while your car moves between the trailer wheels. These types of dollies are reckoned to be better functioning than the other type of tow dollies. Mounted dollies mitigate the probabilities of your vehicle hitting the trailer while moving around narrow corners.
- Center Pivot Dolly
These dollies feature a middle pivot, which enables the car to track around the corners efficiently. Since they come with fixed trailer wheels, they are considered less efficient than the abovementioned type.
Benefits and Drawback of Tow Dolly
Advantages of Tow Dolly
Traveling on an RV is very convenient, but this huge vehicle does not offer the ease to go anywhere. Imagine going for grocery shopping on your trip in your RV; you would have an easier time making your errands when you have a passenger car with you.
When you are traveling for a long period, carrying another vehicle makes your trip easier. Then investing in a good quality tow dolly is the most suitable way to carry your vehicle on your road trip. This little tool proves to be highly beneficial. And some of its prominent benefits include –
- Offers more conveniences
A need to bring a second vehicle is suitable when we are camping, and we do not want to break down the camp if we want to move. When you carry a second vehicle, you can use it to run the errands or visit your friends and family who live nearby your destination.
But it would be difficult to carry a second vehicle along; therefore, a strong towing device can make this task safer and more efficient. In case your RV breaks down in the middle of the road, you can use your car to go and seek for help.
- Extra storage space
When you tow a car, it implies that you have an extra space that you can use to store stuff. If your motorhome or RV is packed and does not have space, you can use the tow dolly to carry the vehicle, thereby getting additional space. Once you have reached your campsite, the extra vehicle you have brought along can be used for more leisurely activities.
- Best Source to Take Your Vehicle Along
A tow dolly is a top-tier option when it comes to hauling vehicles from one place to another. These are built to bear solid weight, thereby proving to be an effective tool in the garage. These are typically capable of bearing 1500 pounds each. And, when you choose, take the premium tow dollies, they are tough enough to stand-up up to the weight of a standard car for a long time.
A majority of tow dollies are built to handle wheels and vehicles of different types, including front and rear wheel vehicles. Moreover, heavy-duty dollies can load up vehicles that vary between Miata and Ford F-150. If you have smaller cars, you could go for a lightweight tow dolly.
One of the main reasons for purchasing car dollies is the freedom it gives to take a vehicle from one destination to another. Whether you are on a road trip or a professional mechanic who is looking to transport vehicles, an RV car dolly can be invaluable.
Disadvantages of Tow Dolly
Below are some disadvantages of the tow dolly
- The weight-bearing capacity of tow dollies is lower than other car trailers. This limits the utility of the vehicles.
- Considering tow dollies can only hold the drive wheels, if you tow a car with a long front, the element may drag during the tow.
- The fact that tow dolly only tow the vehicle from the front wheels, it impacts the reliability as opposed to other options.
- Setting up a car to the dolly is more complicated than setting up the trailer. This is because you have to take care of the extra security aspect in tow dolly.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is an RV tow dolly?
Sometime, you would definitely need to take a second vehicle and let the RV stay where you have parked it. And this is what a two wheel car dollies is used to accomplish; it helps in bringing a second vehicle efficiently and safely.
This is accomplished by latching the dolly on the back of the RV or motorhome. Once the front end of the tow dolly has been latched successfully, you can now mount your vehicle that you wish to bring along with you.
How does the RV tow dolly work?
Have you ever wondered how this device is capable of hauling big vehicles efficiently? An RV tow dolly functions by installing it on the rear end of the RV or motorhome. Thereafter the vehicle that you wish to tow is mounted on the dolly by positioning the front wheels via the ramps. Once the front wheels are placed on the cradles and all the safety features are clasped, your vehicle is ready to be towed.
The Brake system is the most important feature that ensures the efficiency of the dollies. When it comes braking system; you have two options to choose from –
- Electric Brakes – These are installed on the tow dolly by connecting the brakes to the primary system of the RV. It is activated by stepping on the brakes and causing the dolly wheels to slow down; this process co-. However, a drawback of electric brakes is that you would have to adjust it constantly.
- Hydraulic Surge Brakes – Tow dolly with brakes like this provides the safety that depends on the primary braking system of the RV you are driving. It is activated by using the momentum generated from the vehicle being towed. Once the RV slows down, the hydraulic pistons decelerate the wheels of the tow dolly.
Who makes the top-quality tow dolly?
There are many tow dolly manufacturers in the US itself that offer tow dolly. But below are some of the top-rated car tow dolly brands to consider:
- Demco Tow Dolly
- Roadmaster Tow Dolly
- LiftMaster Tow Dolly
- Red Hound Auto Tow Dolly
- Pentagon Tools Tow Dolly
- Stehl Tow Dolly
- Acme Tow Dolly
- American Car Dolly
You can buy tow dolly from these brands easily; they are both selling online and offline. Search in your near local store, the brand’s official websites, or reputable selling platforms such as Amazon, tow better dolly, eBay, etc.
How safe are tow dollies?
When investing in a tow dolly, one of the main concerns people have is whether or not it is safe to use. It is natural to think whether or not the small device is capable of towing your precious vehicle safely. Tow dollies are safe to use when you choose the right device and use it correctly. Here are some of the tips that will help you use your tow dolly safely –
- Don’t go beyond the weight rating
Be aware of your gross vehicle weight rating of your RV and make sure not to exceed the same. You can find this rating listed on the exterior of the product. If you do not find it there, you can look up for this information online. Once you have loaded up the towing vehicle, take it to a shop and get your RV scaled.
- Check Your Lights
It is important that you consider the lighting system placed on the exterior of the RV and ensure that all the lights are working efficiently prior to connecting the tow dolly. Once you have hooked up the lighting system on the tow dolly, have someone check the turn signals and tail lights are working properly.
- Check Brakes and Hitchers
It is imperative to check the working status of your hitch every time you attack the tow dolly before each road trip to make sure it is a working condition. Loose attachments and improper brakes are among the major reasons for road accidents concerning tow dolly.
What cars can be towed on a tow dolly?
When it comes to a tow dolly, there are some important elements to consider. Based on the type of car you own, there are some factors that you need to take into consideration. A car tow dolly is made for front-wheel-drive-cars that weigh around 5000 pounds or less.
Different types of cars can be towed in the dolly. Below are the most common types of cars that are towed in a dolly –
- Chevy Aveo
- Toyota Prius
- Toyota Camry
- Honda Civics
- Mini Cooper
- Other compact cars or midsize sedans
Can you reverse with a tow dolly?
When it comes to backing up the towed vehicle, you need to be extremely careful not to move too fast. It’s because when you apply the brakes, inertia plays an important role. It refers to the resistance of an object while there is a motion change. Therefore, if an object is moving, there will be a resistance force trying to stop your efforts.
When backing up, place one hand at the base of the steering wheel in a six o’clock position. This position will allow you to turn in a similar direction as you move the hand. Remember to use small adjustments. This is because when you make small adjustments on the wheel, the movement will be larger than your efforts. So, if you turn your steering wheel too far, the towed vehicle will also take a sharp turn.
How do you set up and use tow dolly?
Following are some simple steps that you can use to set-up and use tow dolly
- The process of connecting a tow dolly is similar to connecting any trailers of a similar kind; that is, by using a ball hitch and light receptacles. So make sure that the receptacles that you see on the trailer are the same on the back of the towed vehicle. And, even if they don’t match, you can use adapters to make the lights compatible.
- Choose the right-sized hitch and hitch ball to hook the dolly to plug it in, ensuring that the lights match the ones in the towing vehicle.
- Park the dolly as reasonably close as to the front of your vehicle that needs to be towed. Make sure you are parked on a leveled ground.
- The dolly will be made of chains, straps, net, or in cases combination of all the things. Lay them out in a way that they are out of the way.
- In case the tow dolly features clamp-on or magnetic tail lights, ensure to lay them out so that you don’t move over them.
- Start the towed vehicle and slowly move it up on the dolly. Try to be as centered as possible and once you get into the right position, apply the parking brake.
- Use the chains or straps and secure the axle. In some dollies, you might find a hook that will either connect the vehicle to the tow tongue of your vehicle or wrap around the axle.
How to maintain tow dolly?
Once you have invested in a tow dolly for your car, it is important to care for it properly. Similar to any other mechanical tool, the maintenance of these vehicles is quite straightforward. Here are a few tips that will help you –
- Check the wiring
Irrespective of the distance you are traveling, wiring can get frayed or lose by different things and standard wear and tear. Before you take out the dolly, make sure to check every wiring that is visible to you. And see if there are any splits or frays. Regular checking will allow you to identify the problem in a timely manner and avoid the possibility of harmful accidents.
- Oil Up
Oil products come at low prices, and they do so much for your dolly. From protecting from rusts to squeakily, a proper layer of oil is all that it takes to prevent the areas that collect a large amount of dust in a dolly. Moreover, the hub needs proper maintenance check-ups every five years. But you should oil-up the bearings more frequently than that.
- Check the tire pressure.
While these devices are built with heavy-duty applications in mind, you still need to pay attention to make them function longer. And ensuring the right pressure is one of the steps that you can take. Make sure there is 90 pounds of pressure per square inch. Moreover, also perform a cold check to look for leakage and make sure that each lug nut is secured tight before you load a vehicle.
- Understand the instruction on the manual.
User manuals contain information that is important to ensure the device function for years to come. Within the instructions, you will find how to handle the product. Pay attention to the details mentioned for the maintenance to ensure that you get your money’s worth from the dolly.
- Washing the Dolly
You can use a pressure washer to thoroughly clean out any standing mud or dirt that gets stuck on the flaps. Once done, clean off the water remaining on the surface of the dolly. This step will prevent the formation of rust.
Is RV tow dolly good for long distance?
A hauling dolly isn’t recommended for long distances because it might cause damage to the rear wheels of the automobile. If you must use a tow dolly, you can take some precautions, such as performing a regular inspection at every stop. In addition, remember to tighten the strap and avoid moving back up.
Which is better tow dolly or tow bar?
An RV tow bar is better when it comes to easy installation. You can attach it alone with a base plate without the need for any heavy equipment like a power tongue jack. Just make sure that the vehicle you’re towing is compatible with a tow bar for RV.
However, a tow bar has a limited towing capacity. It’s only ideal for Mini Cooper and other small vehicles.
For trucks and heavier vehicles, a tow dolly is a better option. It’s also ideal for low profile cars and new vehicles with front-wheel automatic transmissions since the front is lifted from the ground for protection.
How fast can you drive with a tow dolly?
You can drive up to 55 miles per hour when having a tow dolly attached. Driving slowly is imperative for the safety of yourself and others on the road. While the straps can protect the wheels, it’s easy for the vehicle to sway with a sudden burst of speed.
How much are RV tow dollies?
RV tow dollies don’t come cheap. On Amazon, the price of RV tow dollies ranges from $159 to a few thousand. As for the RV tow dolly accessories like coupler pins and rubber grease plugs, they typically cost less than $5.
What size tire does my tow dolly need?
Like your vehicle’s tires, your tow dolly may need a different set of tires for replacement. For Eze-Tow Dolly, you can use E-rated tires that have a load capacity of 1,520 lbs at 80 psi.
Is it possible to use a 4 wheel tow dolly on the rear?
It’s possible to use a dolly set of four wheels, like the Ditch X-Series, on the rear, so you don’t need a trailer to lift all the vehicle’s tires off the ground. However, it means more complex installation, as you need to install a two wheel-dolly on the front and extra dollies on the rear.
Selecting the best tow dolly for your RV is not as simple as setting up your camp. You must understand a lot of things about the product prior to making a buying decision.
Consider the factors like your purpose, the construction, towing capacity, features, etc. And based on these factors, evaluate different product options you come across. This is one of the most suitable ways to ensure that you are choosing the right RV car tow dolly. To ease your research, I have reviewed top-rated RV car dolly products available in the market.
Okay, so I’m Philip Lopez. I join Riverside Trailer as an editor, where I will be doing research for both content and reviews. I contribute to studies aimed at understanding the most typical problems encountered by RVers on the road. I also keep up with the newest RVing gadget innovations so that I can promptly evaluate and recommend the best options.