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Max weight you'd tow with only surge brakes?

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Old 06-27-2009, 10:01 PM   #1
aaronk [OP] aaronk is offline
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Max weight you'd tow with only surge brakes?

Got the tow package, so max is 6500 on the truck, but as everyone who owns a Tacoma knows, the brakes leave a lot to be desired. How much would you comfortably tow if the trailer only had surge brakes? Assuming they're functioning correctly of course. Any problems with towing right up to the maximum?
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Old 06-27-2009, 10:03 PM   #2
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I've towed a samurai on a heavy tandem axle car trailer with no brakes and did just fine. Just use caution when towing big loads.
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Old 06-27-2009, 10:04 PM   #3
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i tow an old jeep cj5 on a tandem axle trailer with one brake axle. You'd be fine. I'm pushing almost 6k lbs.
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Old 06-28-2009, 05:23 AM   #4
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If you've got the option- Something with better than surge brakes would be a good call.

You can tow up to the rated- Just be super careful!! Keep in mind that your stopping will be far slower and take far longer. Take main roads, but not highways imo-Less curves and tight spots, but no high speeds either.

How far are you planning on towing??
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Old 06-28-2009, 06:29 AM   #5
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Are you renting a trailer or looking to buy a trailer?

If you're looking to buy a trailer - I'd STAY AWAY from surge brakes. Get a trailer with electric brakes on all axles and get yourself a brake controller. They're safer and you have 'controllability' to fine tune the amount of braking force for the load you're hauling. You can also activate the electric brakes anytime you want to help control sway.

If you're renting a trailer for one-time towing, then having surge brakes is better than not having any.
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Old 06-28-2009, 06:32 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Janster View Post
Are you renting a trailer or looking to buy a trailer?

If you're looking to buy a trailer - I'd STAY AWAY from surge brakes. Get a trailer with electric brakes on all axles and get yourself a brake controller. They're safer and you have 'controllability' to fine tune the amount of braking force for the load you're hauling. You can also activate the electric brakes anytime you want to help control sway.

If you're renting a trailer for one-time towing, then having surge brakes is better than not having any.
I agree with you about the controlability of brakes useing a brake controler, BUT, why "stay away" from surge brakes? My Buddy pulls a 28 foot Cuddy and has surge brakes, and they seem to modulat, and stop very well....
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Old 06-28-2009, 07:25 AM   #7
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i tow about 3000 fairly regular, and it seems that i'm right on the verge of needing trailer brakes. in fact, i wish i had them. i believe the maual calls for a load distributing hitch for anything over 4k. my truck stops pretty good with 3k, but i am worried i may be over-taxing the breaks a bit. my father has destroyed his breaks on his '03 Chevy 1500 from overtowing too often. read the towing section in the manual, and go from there. don't forget about tongue load and tire load class ratings.
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Old 06-28-2009, 09:23 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris4x4 View Post
, why "stay away" from surge brakes? My Buddy pulls a 28 foot Cuddy and has surge brakes, and they seem to modulat, and stop very well....
And I don't doubt that they don't work.

If you're buying a trailer, I would definately get electric brakes. And the most important reasons for that - is because you can activate the brakes independantly of the vehicle brakes (atleast, with a Prodigy brake controller you can).

For example, If you're ever in a situation and the trailer starts to sway....or for other situations, you can reach down and move a slider switch that will slowly (as you move the slider) activate the trailer brakes without using the vehicle brakes. That gets the trailer straight again.
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Old 06-28-2009, 09:36 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Janster View Post
And I don't doubt that they don't work.

If you're buying a trailer, I would definately get electric brakes. And the most important reasons for that - is because you can activate the brakes independantly of the vehicle brakes (atleast, with a Prodigy brake controller you can).

For example, If you're ever in a situation and the trailer starts to sway....or for other situations, you can reach down and move a slider switch that will slowly (as you move the slider) activate the trailer brakes without using the vehicle brakes. That gets the trailer straight again.
Ah...I understand that, and we have seperate brake controler in the Dodge for pulling the 5th wheel, and toy hauler, but it seemed the surge brakes work welll for what they are, and I have considered them for when we buy a larger baot. In fact, out here, it seems most all of the boat trailers are comming with surge brakes as OEM.
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Old 06-28-2009, 07:54 PM   #10
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I'm not buying or renting, I'm borrowing my dad's boat The boat is a 20.5ft Bayliner Trophy. Most boat trailers are surge only and this one is no exception. I've towed it around the neighborhood before, but only at slow speeds, never been on the highway with it. I'm sure the truck will do just fine, I try to haul it with minimal gas to help out with the weight. I just don't particularly care for surge brakes. Also, backing down some of the ramps can be a bit sketchy... The old 71 Ford that my dad usually pulls it with just about skids down the whole ramp, I'm hoping that doesn't happen with the Tacoma.
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Old 06-30-2009, 08:08 AM   #11
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A set of properly working surge brakes works very well. I used to tow a Jayco popup camper with surge brakes that I believe stopped the entire rig better than the tow vehicle by itself in a panic stop. Make sure the hydraulic plunger system doesn't have any leaks with fresh seaks and make sure that the plunger has a cutoff chain to lock up the brakes in the case of the trailer coming loose.
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Old 06-30-2009, 11:20 AM   #12
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Max for the truck if the load is loaded correctly, thus the 6500
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