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Honda CR-V Towing

2

Comments

  • Hello everyone! I am looking to get rid of my Nissan Frontier S/C and looking at a smaller SUV for better gas mileage. The catch is, I need to be able to pull a 5x10 trailer with a mower. Would the '04 CRV be able to handle pulling a trailer and mower? I am also looking at a few other smaller SUV's in that price range (13,000-18,000) and I'm finding that a Ford Escape XLT 4WD has about twice the towing capacity! I was surprised to hear that. Is it possible to get a 2-inch reciever hitch for the Escape?

    Options:
    Honda CRV
    Toyota Highlander
    Ford Escape

    Anybody have any advice you'd like to share? It is very much appreciated. I do want something around (or higher than) 20mpg. Thanks!
  • blufz1blufz1 Posts: 2,045
    Wait 18 mos and get a Honda CRV diesel.30 city 40 hwy. If you can't wait, get the CRV. It has a better resale value.
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Posts: 2,798
    Hello everyone! I am looking to get rid of my Nissan Frontier S/C and looking at a smaller SUV for better gas mileage. The catch is, I need to be able to pull a 5x10 trailer with a mower. Would the '04 CRV be able to handle pulling a trailer and mower? I am also looking at a few other smaller SUV's in that price range (13,000-18,000) and I'm finding that a Ford Escape XLT 4WD has about twice the towing capacity! I was surprised to hear that. Is it possible to get a 2-inch reciever hitch for the Escape?

    Options:
    Honda CRV
    Toyota Highlander
    Ford Escape

    Anybody have any advice you'd like to share? It is very much appreciated. I do want something around (or higher than) 20mpg. Thanks!


    Isn't Frontier V6 powered? If you are looking for fuel economy, then you need to look at 4 cylinder powered vehicle, which have limited towing ability.

    If you tow your trailer and mower as a business on a daily basis, you are probably better off keeping the Frontier. It is a small truck after all. It should be getting 18-22 mpg or what not. CR-V is not that much better (22-30), and will be just as bad if you tow, plus you lose the pick up bed.

    You can get 30 mpg in a Manual CR-V if you drive at the speed limit. There is a spacer for the 6th gear, when replaced with TSX/RSX-S/Civic Si 6th gear, it pushes CR-V into 30+ mpg hwy category.

    Generally, if you are replacing a vehicle solely to save on gas, the fuel economy has to be significantly greater than the depriciation hit. Let's say one goes from a H2 Hummer that gets 10 mpg to a Civic Hybrid that get 50 mpg, then it may make sence, and only if they drive significant miles per year. Otherwise, it is more financially sound to keep the vehicle you have, and maybe change driving patterns and habits. Coasting in neutral, accelerate slowly, combining trips into one, driving at times when congestion is low, driving at the speed limit, keeping the vehicle in tip top shape (tune ups, filters, fluids), getting rid of unneccessary weight (junk in the car, excessive body fat), inflating tires to higher than VEHICLE MANUFACTURER's recommended, but staying within the tire max pressure.
  • If someone has this hitch (Part 13555 on etrailer.com), could you please post a photo of the finished install or email me through this forum. I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks!
  • rtedrted Posts: 11
    I have part # 24772 installed and it's great. A lot less dead weight on the back end of your car - almost half - for the 50 weeks of the year you aren't pulling a trailer.

    It'll tow 2,000 lbs which means that with a CR-V tow rating of 1,500 lbs, it's fully capable of holding anything that your car can pull (since the car's limit is the deciding load factor). There's no reason for you to pay for a Class III hitch for a car that can barely handle a Class I load. It's your money.

    Take the price savings and consider a trans cooler, too.
  • Can you post a picture? I need a 2" receiver so I can share my bike rack with our other truck. Most if no all of the class I hitches are 1.25".

    If anyone else has PICs of their install of an after market hitch, please post... Thanks!
  • phisherphisher Posts: 175
    I attached a slighty different curt 2" hitch but it was fairly straight forward. E-mail me and I'll shoot you pictures as I can't get them attach here.
  • rtedrted Posts: 11
    I'm afraid the Hidden Hitch model I referenced is 1.25". I guess the ones with 2" tend to be Class II or above by default, not that the vehicle in question will benefit from the "Class II" rating of the hitch.

    People on hondasuv.com tout the wonderful Curt hitch because among other things it bolts on the unibody "frame" on the sides of the hiddeen spare-tire well and also utilizes the center tow hook for stability. Well, so does the H.H. at half the weight.

    But if you have to have a 2" receiver, then that's what you need above all else. Best of luck getting somthing that serves the need. For my part, I found a bike carrier that hangs off the back-door spare tire just fine and carries two cycles. Under $100.
  • I did a search for hitches and found 1 company that sold a Curt model. You have to buy from a dealer. I ended up with a Class 3 bolt on Draw Tite with a 2 in. receiver. I have the type of bike rack that the wheels set in hoops. It is a 2 bike model Xport. The heat from the muffler(even though it is raised) could melt the tire on the bike closest to the car.
  • Let's see if it works today...
    image
    image
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Posts: 2,798
    image

    Your fish is missing legs. :)
  • gws1gws1 Posts: 2
    Does anyone have additional info on the release of the CRV Diesel?
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    This would be a good opportunity to reignite the conversation in Honda CR-V Diesel version!

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • blufz1blufz1 Posts: 2,045
    Earliest release date 9/08. Latest release date 9/09. Just my .02. Can't wait to drive the diesel.
  • Want to pull a utility trailer with my GL1800 Goldwing on it, total weight approx 1400-1500 lbs.(trailer and bike) from the TX coast to Camp Pendleton, CA. Is the wife's 2007 CRV up to it or am I risking damage to the transmission, etc.?
  • rtedrted Posts: 11
    First rule: Pulling any trailer is comparatively uncomplicated... it's STOPPING the trailer that gets interesting. All indications are that the '07 has the same drive train as the '05 and up, so the following is regarded as popular wisdom: Whereas the European owners' manual for my model year specifies 1500# capacity without brakes and 2500# with, you're probably OK for occasional pulling of your 1500# capacity as it is, new off the lot. This means trailer plus load = 1500, not 1500# on top of a 450# trailer.

    I haul a boat and trailer that totals around 950 pounds and on flat coastal plane, I'm not sure I'd want to pull (and have to stop) more than 1K plus 3 other people, provisions, auxillary engine, and all our gear on board. That is to say, at this load I feel very comfortable with the good braking capacity of the V. I've never experienced brake-fade as of yet but it's all flat around here, plus, the auto trans will downshift for you automatically as you slow down. No mountain descents to have to pump brakes, etc. but there is a lot of traffic. East coast "in your face" traffic. If you nose-dive at the end, you waited too long to slow down. And watch any braking on a curve, especially downhill or in a switchback or in rain. It's not so much the weight alone as it's the 1500# trying to shove your car sideways against a point about 3 ft behind the rear axle. (This applies to towing with any car).

    And if you're going to do this much more than a time or two, you can add a B&M transmission cooler between the transmission output and the built-in OEM cooler input (so that in cold weather, it doesn't over-cool). Many will insist that an extra cooler is completely unnecessary and redundant upon stock provisions. If you aren't going to tow this much weight regularly, you can probably forego this part. In any case, note that if you didn't purchase a Honda "towing package" they may try to skip out on your 36K/3yr warranty if they see a non-factory hitch on the car.... because they can. Then again, with the added cooler it's less likely to become an issue in the first place. If you bought the car with the Honda tow package, great. Consider synthetic engine oil, towing or not, unless you're going to throw it away every 3K.

    Last but not least, follow the requirement (if yours is an automatic trans) to keep in D-3 by using the little button in the end of the shift lever. I'd be happier if they chose to lock the transmission simply in D-4 because the way it is now, the car screams along at 4,000 RPM at 60 miles/hr. If you fail to heed this Honda directive, your transmission will get shift-busy going up and down from 5th to 4th all day long until the clutch pack finally burns out. I've gotten used to doing 60 - 65 keeping in mind that Mobil1 is doing its job. So, use a good oil, slow down and enjoy the desert scenery, and good luck in your next duty station.

    See also this Honda owners' site.
  • Thanks for the reply. Need to clarify that my son is stationed at Pendleton, not me. He's a marine helicopter pilot and the wife and I are going out to see him over Easter. I've made the trip out there a few times on the motorcycle to ride together out there or back to TX w/him. I've got a diesel pickup, but need to reduce the annual mileage it's racking up. Besides, gas is cheaper than diesel currently. I've pulled a lot of trailers, having grown up on a farm. In those days, everything was underpowered and woefully under braked. My worry is primarily to not damage the drivetrain. From what I've read, looks as though it will do fine so long as common sense is used.
  • I am thinking of purchasing a 13 ft. Scamp trailer. According to their brochure, the trailer weighs 1200 pounds and a hitch weight is about 100 pounds.

    I am pretty clueless about figuring out if my 2006 CRV can handle it. Does the weight of the things inside the car add to the total?

    The trailer has an electric brake option. What will that do?

    Thanks for any help.
  • Well, I went to the source and talked to the dealer today. They got me straight, without making me feel like an idiot.

    So, now I figure out what options for the trailer and get it ordered.

    Thanks.
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Posts: 2,798
    I am pretty clueless about figuring out if my 2006 CRV can handle it. Does the weight of the things inside the car add to the total?

    People ar enot born with this knowledge. This is why one needs to read the Owner's Manual, at least. The manual talks about most of these things. :)
  • I have an 03 Honda CR-V Ex with 197,000 miles on the clock. I have the Kert hich plus a Softride or Quiet ride ball mount. We tow with it all summer long, non-stop. We have a Hog cooker trailer that has two charcoal ovens a rack for 6 bags of extra coal fuel and other utiensiles realted to the trade. It also has two side boxes that can hold three full sized Hogs undresed which weigh about 200 lbs each. We cook at small fairs and town parties with this rig all summer across the South and Sometimes as far north as Indianoapolis Indianer.
    Four people and 3 dogs and all their geer plus food and refreshments are as well carried by the CR-V. The trailer itself weighs 2,448 Lbs.
    My brother weighs 230 Lbs
    My Uncle 189 Lbs But heze been sick.
    My girlfriend weighs 200 I think.
    Three Hogs (undressed) 900 Lbs.
    And I weigh 137 Lbs.
    The dogs total about 250 Lbs.
    The gear and refreshments, about 300 Lbs.
    Fuel on the trailer for fire startin is 5 Gallons so bout 15 lbs.
    So thats a total of bout 4,669 Lbs without including the weight of the honda.
    Actually its closer to 5,000 Lbs because of the other things I wont mension here.
    I’m welding a rack for the roof for it now and that’s real heavy for extra coal and fuel and maybe one more hog if we get the Mizuri gig.
    It may seem like a lot of weight, but other than the expected problems of every day trailerin it’s pretty good but not real fast until you get goin on the hiway.

    If you have any questions and are wonderin what you should do and want to be safe I sugest you call honda and ask them, they build these trucks. Mine looks good to, people honk and wave all the time and smile, nice people.
    Don’t listen to these people here who are talkin about erope and all, they don’t know anything, plus the people in urope are pillow-bitters if ya ask me.
    Sorry for bustin in. Just wanted to help/.
    One more thing, watch out for Illinois, those troopers are mean, they took my uncles medices too, they told us we could leave but not to come back.
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Posts: 2,798
    Well, I went to the source and talked to the dealer today. They got me straight, without making me feel like an idiot.

    So, now I figure out what options for the trailer and get it ordered.

    Thanks.


    How do you know for sure that the person you spoke with knew what they were talking about.

    Not trying to make you feel like an idiot, just pointing you in the direction where the information is already avaialble and it is not hearsay, rather first mouth information, straight from the pens of Honda Engineers.

    Owner's Manual is given to new Owners so that they can familiarize themselves with their new vehicle. It does not make any less of a person if you sit down and read it, maybe a few times to absorb all the wealth of information presented in the Owner's Manual. If anything, it will just make you a better informed Owner.
  • blueiedgodblueiedgod Posts: 2,798
    This is the best post in a very long time!!!!!!!
  • uncleasyuncleasy Posts: 2
    I left last thursday at 9pm, from misouri to denver colorado, it's about a 1,444 mile trip, I was fully loaded with the hog trailer and the crv only thing different was one less dog,. One thing i want to mention is that no mater what you do or no matter how you do it you have to be alert. Nothing can be better than good eye-balls.
    In iowa I counted 144 vehicles in the ditch after that ice storm, humers,semis,and lots of those silly pt-cruisers on there roofs. it was sad really. people think that because they got a huge 4x4 that they can do anything and they will not get stuck or worse because of their exspensive geer. i don't care if ya got a humer or an eskalade, if your stupid you are not going to get where you want to go period, your right, ask honda. we just rolled on past , we got to where we wanted to go and back. We had a good time too, it was sunny and nice in colorado. the pot holes in illinois will make you a beliver that man never went to the moon really. why would he when he can just go to illinois cheaper. my uncle said that when we came over the mississippi near davenport into illinois that he saw buzz aldren standing by a hole with a flag, but like i said he's been on strong medicin and kids alot still.
    thanks for the kind words, hey' it's a honda crv. tell them to read the book, i did. modify as needed.
  • hello there,

    I was looking to purchase a Scamp trailer too and had questions about towing it - can I ask what sort of information you got from the dealer?
  • Hi,
    The dealer told me that there should be no problem towing the Scamp, as it is well under the 1500 lb towing capacity of the CRV. I am having them install a towing package (should have gotten it when I bought the car, but hindsight is 20/20), to minimize potential problems with warrenty, etc., despite the cost (around $700)

    I have ordered my Scamp, and will pick it up in June. I am so excited!
  • m171333m171333 Posts: 1
    HI, saw that you have the 2 bike XPORT rack.
    I am considering for my 08 CRV. how do you like it?..had any problems?

    thanks

    Mike
    [email protected]
  • 289fia289fia Posts: 1
    Is it feasible to modify a 2001 CRV (transmission cooler, larger brakes, beefy towing attachment + trailer with brakes) to tow 3500 lbs? I hate the idea of buying a bigger car to occasionally tow my cobra replica & trailer. Comments appreciated.
    Rick in Miami.
  • rtedrted Posts: 11
    Sure, go ahead and modify. You'll need a Class III hitch, to force some of the weight toward the front axle. That'll rip out the unibody chassis under the trunk before it helps you tow anything. In short, it's feasable to do anything you want to do if you're willing to accept the consequences. And the consequences of trying to pull over twice the rated tow weight of the vehicle, even with a tranny cooler and electric brakes, is severely shortened service life of the tow vehicle and the risk of lawsuits from anyone who gets injured or the estate of someone killed, due to modification of your property beyond the manufacturer's recommendations.

    You're basically saying that the CR-V off the assembly line is underrated for the load you want to pull and you'd like to make up for it. That the CR-V can't pull 3500# is not a shortcoming of the vehicle, it's just the wrong choice for that application. You need a larger car or truck. That's the solution, and that's the price we pay for wanting to even occasionally do something that requires a higher capacity. Case in point, my all-wheel-drive is a waste of technology and expense........ until I need it for one snow per year or on a slippery boat ramp 3 or 4 times per summer if I happen to go sailing when the tide is really low.

    Regards,

    Ted
  • blufz1blufz1 Posts: 2,045
    Check into a rental pickup for the occasional towing.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "Is it feasible to modify a 2001 CRV (transmission cooler, larger brakes, beefy towing attachment + trailer with brakes) to tow 3500 lbs? I hate the idea of buying a bigger car to occasionally tow my cobra replica & trailer. Comments appreciated. "

    I wouldn't suggest it. The 2001 had only a 2.0 liter engine, not the 2.4L of the Gen 2. If you do attempt this, be sure and get brakes for the trailer - one of the biggest problems is stopping!

    Are transmission coolers and larger brakes really available for the Gen 1 CR-V?
  • Just thought I would post an update.

    I bought the 13 ft. Scamp, and picked it up in Minnesota in June. Then I drove approximately 1500 miles around the US, from North Dakota, through the Midwest, in the mountans of Kentucky and West Virginia with no problems whatsoever.

    The hardest part of the whole thing is backing the trailer up, but I am sure that will be easier with practice. I enjoyed parking my "little rig" next to the big ones at rest stops.

    :)
  • I have a 2002 with tow package. I read the entries regarding the 3500lb trailer, but wondered if keeping a small load in the 1700 lb trailer would be safely do-able. I would be driving in the mountains--sometimes 20% grade. Does fine without trailer, but have never pulled a trailer with this CRV.
  • nupocnupoc Posts: 1
    Is the honda part any better than the competitors like reese, hidden hitch, etc. From what I can see the Honda hitch is designed for a unibody sheetmetal chassis and has four bolts to attach it to the car. The others seem to be originally designed for truck based SUVs and only attach with two bolts. I want to know if these are comparable hitches. Experience tells me to get the Honda part because it attaches with more bolts and spreads out the forces from the trailer. Any ideas?

    Thanks
  • phisherphisher Posts: 175
    If you have a 2002 - 2006 CRV I can tell you that the Kurt hitch is about 100X easier to install not sure on the 98. It bolts right through the frame and all it requires is removing the rubber muffler attachments and snaking some bolts. The Honda one if I remember correctly has like 10 pages of instruction. It seemed like a whole lot more work. You can go look at Handa.com and check out PDF's of the installation process. Also The Kurt class 2 hitch I have attached with 4 bolts if thats any reassurance.
  • rtedrted Posts: 11
    Don't feel it necessary to spend $300 on a name, though I'm sure Honda's stuff is good. I use this model and it's rated for 2,000 lbs GTW, 200 lbs. tongue weight which exceeds the Honda owner's manual limits. In plain language, it's as good as the car can handle and putting on a class "2.5" receiver won't help anyone tow more weight than what the U.S. manual says.

    As far as spreading out forces, the mount points of any hitch bolt on to wherever the manufacturer put hitch-mounting holes and so I trust that my two bolts thru the trunk unibody areas, plus the one thru the tow-hook (by definition capable of holding the weight of the car), is good enough and then some. But if you have to have the largest and heaviest piece of steel possible, go for it. I'd rather have less to haul around the 50 weeks per year that I'm not towing a trailer.

    As far as the rest of the "tow package" goes, these.work really well between the trans output and the stock, radiator cooler circuit. Put it there, so the coolant won't drop below spec temps in freezing weather. Takes about 15 minutes to put in once the front plastic is removed.
  • We are looking at towing 13' Scamp with a 2007 CR-V. What is the dry weight of your Scamp and does it have the toilet and shower?
  • I have an '08 EX-L and want to put a hitch on it. I have read about some that vibrate against the muffler.
    I would like to know the best value and least likely to vibrate.
  • When we bought the 05 CRV we were told not to go over 1k to tow,is this right
    if so what will happen if we do go over.
    We searched found a used pop up trailer that is just under 1k the new ones
    are just over 1k.
    But now to find some one to put on the hitch so we can drive it home.How
    much should this costs,what do we look for and ask for.
  • Hello Big Daddy,

    I can't speak to the tow limits of your vehicle, but I can say this; It is a machine. I have been an industrial mechanic for 34 years. In industry, machines are run until they break and then we fix them and then they are run until they break again and we fix them... again.

    Be safe, follow the guide lines which the manufacture establishes as close as you feel comfortable. Your vehicle will break down before it breaks in two.

    My Honda is a 2007 CRV with a 1500lbs tow limit. I read the owners manual and it is very confusing. It seems they are limited the vehicle to 1500lbs total, in car and towed weight.

    Use your own good sense.

    We have a class 3 hitch and have rented UHaul utility trailers to move stuff to the dump, bring in landscaping gravel, mulch, etc, etc. We have at times double our tow limit of 1500lbs without damage, but the car suffers performance wise.

    My advice is to install or have installed a hitch, rent a UHaul for $18 a day, and clean up your house and yard. This will give you a good feel for what its all about and it will also make your wife and neighbors happy.

    Good Luck
  • Finally I did find someone to put on the hitch I needed without it costing
    over 500.,we found a used trailer too ,its a start will get us use to driving
    with a trailer,may upgrade in the soon future.
    UHaul was of no help but we had several people tell us to try to rent one
    from them first.
    Do you know me and or my house I have done lots of work to it this year
    new roof,painting the exterior,new gutter,new front porch.
    I can do so much in the wheather we have here in Oregon and don't really
    care what the neighbors think.
  • I am towing a Fleetwood Cobat with my 2008 CRV (1,340 lbs unloaded). I was very nervous about buying it based upon the amount of discussion regarding this topic. However, my CRV is pulling it NO PROBLEM. I live in Colorado and have pulled it over Kenosha Pass, Monarch Pass, and Eisenhower Passes at 55mph+. Plenty of power, but you know it's there.
  • That's about the same weight we are pulling with our Scamp travel trailer. Again, no problems so far. I do notice a slight "whine" that last only a few seconds that seems to be coming from the front of the CR-V "2007". The sound is spiratic, and can happen at any speed and condition. It sounds like something being activated in the transmission or differential. Any help?
  • No idea. I haven't had any problems like that. When I have been pulling up a very steep hill for a long while, I HAVE smelled a little bit of a tranny smell, but that's about it.
  • l0g1kl0g1k Posts: 9
    To answer this question:
    Are transmission coolers and larger brakes really available for the Gen 1 CR-V?

    I don't know for transmission coolers, but the 1997-2001 Honda CRV share the exact same front discs and pads has a 1998-2001 Acura Integra Type R.

    So for front break upgrades there are endless possibilities in the aftermarket.

    As for me, I own a 1999 CRV with manual transmission.

    I'm planning on buying an old Gitan travel trailer (made here in Canada and I beleive they weren't sold anywere else).

    The model I'm looking for is 16 feet long rated at 1450 lbs. I plan on changing the CRV next year for a used Honda Ridgeline or a brand new Jeep patriot (still undecided) so I'll be towing this trailer only one summer.

    However I live in the mountains and I wonder if the CRV will be up to the task.

    With the equipment I'm pretty sure the Gitan will be a bit over the 1500 lbs limit.

    I'll be upgrading the break pads for a set of PBR ceramic pads.

    On another note, a guy around here used to tow is 2200 lbs race car on a dolly with a 2000 CRV and didn't seem to have any problem.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 131,061
    I wouldn't be worried about the brakes (Brakes? We don't need no stinkin' brakes). I'd be worried if your ten-year-old clutch is up to the job... I had a '98 CR-V with a stick, and though it was down about 20 HP from your model, the torque was about the same... I can't imagine pulling an extra 1500 lbs. around with it..

    I don't have any practical experience with a trailer. But, the clutch would be my area of concern..

    regards,
    kyfdx

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    Edmunds Moderator

  • l0g1kl0g1k Posts: 9
    My clutch is also my main concern.

    I'v pulled trailers with small cars before and never had any problem.

    I even pulled my Yamaha Warrior in a trailer with a 1990 Suzuki Swift with a 70 hp engine. Altough it wouldn't go faster than 60 mph in 4th gear (engine would slow down in 5th gear) it wasn't that bad.

    I used to pull the same ATV with a 99 Ford Escort Station wagon and wouldn't even notice a difference with the trailer or without (about 600 lbs combined trailer + ATV).
  • I've towed up with several small cars including approx. 1400lbs with a '03 Toyota Corolla. They all manged fine. the brakes were more a concern o nthe smaller cars.

    The worry about the clutch is over emphasised unless you drive a LOT of stop and go traffic. You only need hte clutch to get up to 10mph. After that, it's not being used. Just besure no to slip the clutch too much when getting started. Use the torque of the engine rather than the clutch and accept that it will be a little slugish until 15mph.

    My '09 CR-V does great with my 900lb trailer when loaded with a motorcycle. It has PLENTy of braking power, very stable and the transmisison works a little harder, but the shift logic deals with the laod as though it's on a incline or driving into a headwind. So it doens't hunt much and typically picks a gear and locks the torque converter. With a heavier load or very hilly terrian, I would lock out OD. But on flat ground at freeway speeds, it's not nesseary and can hold 5th gear with the TC locked.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    So a couple years later now....are you still towing it without trouble? I am in mkt for a small trlr with toilet and shower also and have a std tranny 05.
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