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How heavy is too dangerous without brakes

Discussion in 'Towing' started by Digger2, Mar 6, 2011.

  1. Mar 6, 2011 at 12:53 PM
    #1
    Digger2

    Digger2 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Hello all, I am just wondering how heavy of a utility trailer loaded with 2 quads and gear can I pull with my '08 Tacoma TRD DC without electric brakes?? The trailer itself weight is like 1000lbs and each quad is around 700lbs plus gear say another 200-400lbs. So all in total 2800lbs total weight be hind the Taco. Is this to much?? I am considering buying electric brake kit for my trailer as it has the brackets on the axle to support brakes. What do you guys think? Do I really need brakes for this much weight, cost is going to be around $400 to set everything up. Thanks.....
     
  2. Mar 6, 2011 at 1:00 PM
    #2
    offroad05taco

    offroad05taco Well-Known Member

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    You definatly do not need to worry about that, it will pull it fine.
     
  3. Mar 6, 2011 at 1:12 PM
    #3
    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    Brakes would make it more comfortable, especially if you tow through mountains. With that kind of weight, I wouldn't want to make a habit of towing without brakes, it'll just chew up the truck brakes and make for a some much longer stopping distances.
     
  4. Mar 6, 2011 at 1:21 PM
    #4
    offroad05taco

    offroad05taco Well-Known Member

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    Yea sorry I'm in the flatlands of NC. I know it's alot different with mountains.
     
  5. Mar 6, 2011 at 2:33 PM
    #5
    Digger2

    Digger2 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    No worries about mountains here in Ontario, but I know what your sayin'. I just felt the trucks brakes seemed a little on the weak side when stopping with this load and didn't know if I was doing something a little dangerous or not. I do pull this load 10-15 times a year about 300 miles each way, so I didn't know if I should be putting brakes on this trailer or not. This is why I come to TW to get my answers. Thanks to all who have posted....
     
  6. Mar 7, 2011 at 9:41 AM
    #6
    tegdog

    tegdog Taco Lover

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    What is the max capacity of the trailer, the rule of thumb I have heard in the past was < 3000lb no need for trailer brakes. How fast you drive, how closely you follow, type of terrain (hills), distance all factor in as well.

    I think you would be fine @ 2800lbs w/o trailer brakes but a little heavier throw in a few hills & I would feel better with that extra security of trailer brakes, even if you do everything right it only takes one idiot to pull out in front of you to ruin your trip.
     
  7. Mar 7, 2011 at 9:43 AM
    #7
    whippersnapper02

    whippersnapper02 Well-Known Member

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    In CA anything over 1500lbs needs brakes but no one ever follows that law.
     
  8. Mar 7, 2011 at 3:16 PM
    #8
    sailreno

    sailreno New Member

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    The trailer brake law is different from state to state, so you should consult with a local RV/Trailer dealer for your states requirements. California is the strictest with a 1500 # requirement for electric brakes, but they are not alone.
     
  9. Mar 8, 2011 at 2:23 AM
    #9
    FoxySandChick

    FoxySandChick Well-Known Member

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    I towed a 16ft flat bed with 3 quads (400lbs each) plus a little extra in the bed, similar weight to you, without trailer brakes and it handled just fine even in the hills.
    But I don't do it regularly and it was only about 200 miles round trip, if I did it more often I'd consider adding trailer brakes just to keep down the wear on the truck.
     
  10. Mar 8, 2011 at 10:48 AM
    #10
    Digger2

    Digger2 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks again to all for your input on this topic, it's appreciated.:cheers:
     
  11. Mar 8, 2011 at 10:52 AM
    #11
    Wile

    Wile Back in the game!

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    You'll be fine, but your emergency stopping distances will greatly increase. Don't follow too close. :)
     
  12. Mar 8, 2011 at 10:57 AM
    #12
    bjmoose

    bjmoose Bullwinkle J. Moose

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    That's heavy enough that I'd prefer to tow it with brakes, but would not cancel my trip if I did not have them.
     
  13. Mar 8, 2011 at 10:58 AM
    #13
    macgyver

    macgyver Well-Known Member

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    Just keep a distance and don't drive fast. I have towed cars on my buddy's trailer with my tacoma on multiple occasions (~4500 lbs) without trailer brakes (my truck isn't wired for them.) I always keep a safe distance when I'm towing a trailer regardless of its size.
     
  14. Mar 8, 2011 at 11:01 AM
    #14
    OffroadToy

    OffroadToy The dog did it...I swear!

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    I have the automatic also. While towing a 16' loaded up fishing boat down a pretty steep mountain road (2'500 foot elevation gain) I just just take advantage of the engine braking and downshift once in a while instead of constantly useing the brakes...works fine.
     
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