Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Cape Canaveral, Florida
I wrote all the below before I realized your trip was only 160 miles. Consider that as you read it -- 160 miles may not warrant all the work I mention below, but you can use your own judgement. The important thing is: keep your speed DOWN. You don't have fender-benders when you're towing a heavy car at highway speeds -- you have disasters.
I tell you, if I was driving a vehicle that weighs less than 4000 pounds towing a car that weighs 4000 pounds I sure wouldn't be going over 55. It's so easy to get in trouble.
I believe when you rent the dollies and trailers they have stickers on them telling you to not exceed 55 or so.
If the other car is staying on all four wheels, then you just consider the car's weight; but if it's up on a dolly or on a trailer, then you have to add the weight of the dolly and/or the trailer to the equation. They are *heavy*.
Make sure your brakes and cooling system are in perfect condition. FLUSH all four brake channels so you have fresh clear brake fluid, and use good DOT4 brake fluid.
I would consider flushing the cooling system and putting in a nice fresh 50/50 mixture if it hasn't been done in a couple years. Draw out any power steering fluid you can get out and refill it with fresh fluid. (Towing is rough on all systems, including steering.)
Make sure the transmission doesn't already act a little strange, or you could be stranded during a long tow. Regardless, I would change the transmission fluid and filter and install a transmission cooler -- it's very cheap insurance against a blown tranny. You wouldn't want an expensive transmission job right after the tow.
AIR UP THE TIRES to somewhere within 35-40psi range, as appropriate for a high-load condition like towing. This is extremely important for a safe ride and to avoid overheating the tires.
A weight-distributing hitch would distribute more of the weight to the front tires, instead of making the rears do all the work, and will help your Jeep maintain a flatter, more stable attitude.
Probably the BEST advice: When towing, slow down and enjoy the scenery and you'll get there safely!
Cape Canaveral, Florida
2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo 4.7L
2005 Dodge Durango SLT 4.7L
Last edited by Intrepidjeep; 02-11-2003 at 09:00 PM.