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Old 01-13-2010, 05:47 PM   #1
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Boat Towing Assistance

I have a new 2009 Jeep Wrangler Sahara Unlimited. I'm looking at buying a boat and want to know if anyone can provide some input. I know the towing capacity is 3500 lbs. I also know this capacity is usually on the conservative side. My question is this. Most likely my boat is going to weight approximately 4500 lbs with the trailer and be anywhere from 21-24 feet. Has anyone tried to tow anything of this size? Not just a mile down the road either. I mean highway and everything. Secondly my jeep did not come with the factory tow package. I'm debating getting it installed at the dealership and getting ripped off or simply installing my own class 4 receiver. The only reason I'm considering the dealership is the 09 and 10 models have the trailer anti sway feature which may prove useful with what I'm attempting to do. Anyone have input on whether it's worth it. I know the easy answer is get a bigger car or get a smaller boat but I love my jeep and I don't want a smaller boat. Also as of now I have made no after market changes to the jeep. I appreciate everyone's help with this.

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Old 01-13-2010, 06:13 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wittigvincent View Post
I have a new 2009 Jeep Wrangler Sahara Unlimited. I'm looking at buying a boat and want to know if anyone can provide some input. I know the towing capacity is 3500 lbs. I also know this capacity is usually on the conservative side. My question is this. Most likely my boat is going to weight approximately 4500 lbs with the trailer and be anywhere from 21-24 feet. Has anyone tried to tow anything of this size? Not just a mile down the road either. I mean highway and everything. Secondly my jeep did not come with the factory tow package. I'm debating getting it installed at the dealership and getting ripped off or simply installing my own class 4 receiver. The only reason I'm considering the dealership is the 09 and 10 models have the trailer anti sway feature which may prove useful with what I'm attempting to do. Anyone have input on whether it's worth it. I know the easy answer is get a bigger car or get a smaller boat but I love my jeep and I don't want a smaller boat. Also as of now I have made no after market changes to the jeep. I appreciate everyone's help with this.

This is very simple, tow more then you are rated for and get in an accident and your insurance will NOT cover you, PERIOD!!!! When I used to work in the boating business, if someone came to pick up a boat with a vehicle too small, we would not let them take the boat, yes, it is that serious!!!! Vehicles are rated what they are for a reason!!!

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Old 01-13-2010, 06:18 PM   #3
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Something else you and many people forget when figureing the weight of their boat. You need to add dry wieght of boat with weight of trailer, plus weight of fuel and ALL gear on board the boat. It adds up fast!!! My formula dry weighs 7500 lbs, but add 125 gallons of fuel, water, safety gear, misc gear, trailer, ect., my weight goes up to 11K pounds, a big difference there... Something to think about...if you go up to 24 ft, more then likely, you can easly push up to 6500-7K lbs gross weight.
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Old 01-13-2010, 08:09 PM   #4
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I would bet Formula292 pulls his boat with his Silverado and not his Jeep, correct? There is a difference between pulling a boat and towing it. Your JK will pull the boat. Getting the dead weight moving is easy, stopping it is another. The towing capacity is as much or more a factor of your vehicles ability to stop the load (under control) than the ability of the vehicle to pull the load. As has been said, exceed the legal limits and you're culpable. I've pulled my 24' express cruiser (4400lb dry weight) plus trailer with a 4.0 TJ. Notice I said "pull" not tow. I'd never venture out on a populated highway with that config. My JK will pull my boat but I'd never tow with it. If you need to tow your boat any distance go looking for a used F250 or 2500 series pickup. FWIW.
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Old 01-13-2010, 08:32 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by KnottyBuoyz View Post
I would bet Formula292 pulls his boat with his Silverado and not his Jeep, correct? FWIW.


Yes, my Silverado is my tow vehicle, that is the only reason I have the truck. It tows my three boats and 5th wheel, my little 2 door Jeep tows nothing but itself!! And my truck is a crew cab 2500, 4X4, Duramax Diesel with Allsion tranny. Now it is a towing monster!!!
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Old 01-13-2010, 09:25 PM   #6
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I towed a 21 foot boat with a over grown homemade stainless steel trailer one time with a CJ, Thank God I only had to go a couple miles. That thing scared me to death!
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Old 01-13-2010, 10:45 PM   #7
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Thanks for the input. Formula I understand the implications if I get in an accident which is one reason I am on here asking if it has been done safely by anyone vice just winging it. I understand there are limits by the manufacturer but they are also highly conservative to prevent potential lawsuits. Your absolutely right about how quick weight adds up. The boat I'm looking at now with trailer is approx 3900 dry weight. With fuel and loaded up I'm probably looking at 4400 lbs.
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Old 01-13-2010, 11:02 PM   #8
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if ur trailer has brakes, and you had the appropriate controller for it. along with that sway control u mentioned, you could probably get away with more if u kept ur speed very reasonable. an ex: in the us, the tj has a tow ratting of 2000 lbs, but in europe, you can tow 4000 lbs as long as you have the proper trailer with a braking unit, and you dont go over 55 mph.

now that said, you still have to take into account GVWR cause if you exceed that, then its not a good thing.
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Old 01-14-2010, 06:20 AM   #9
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Remeber this as well, at least where I live, the police are relatively smart and will pull you over and give you a ticket and park you if you are over rated.

Adding only 500 lbs for fuel and gear is unrealistic unless you have a 6 gallon fuel tank or you keep all of your safety gear, skis, coolers, ect in the jeep, but that still adds to your GVW...

If I may ask, what are you looking at?
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Old 01-14-2010, 06:32 AM   #10
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When I owned a boat, I used it 2, maybe 3 times a year. Enjoyed the heck outta it when I had it in the water. Trouble is when I figured out the cost of owning the stupid thing I realized that I wasn't rich enough to actually own a boat. Now I rent boats when I want to hit the lake and I've found out that rental boats are cheaper AND more fun than owned boats.

Rent the boat, put the money saved into your jeep.
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Old 01-14-2010, 06:34 AM   #11
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I am on here asking if it has been done safely by anyone vice just winging it.
"verses" not "vice!" Sorry, I see this more and more and it drives me nuts!
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Old 01-14-2010, 08:04 AM   #12
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My suggestion, listen to formula292,unless you like white nuckles. That boat is way to much for a jeep. Like someone said eariler buy a truck. I pulled something to heavy for my van a couple times for 4hrs on the highway had white kuckles the whole time.
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Old 01-14-2010, 09:38 AM   #13
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I tow with an ford F350 diesel. No problem towing. My 2008 jeep no way. Small trailer to the dump okay. Trailer or boat of any fair size no way. I do enough to the jeep on dirt roads and trails.
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Old 01-14-2010, 10:24 AM   #14
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it's not safe!
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Old 01-14-2010, 01:23 PM   #15
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I'm with the not safe so don't do it crowd. I personally will pull up to the stated limits with my Jeep and do it confidently. As I approach the limits, I tend to be more careful. I wouldn't call it white knuckle driving but I do increase following distances and brake early, go slow in tight curves, etc. My guess is that as any of the towing capacities are reached for any vehicle, the caution should go up just based on how the vehicle reacts to the weight.

As a driver for more than three decades, I have seen enough accidents with large objects in tow making it easy to conclude: It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that care should be exercised. I cringe when I see large loads on tow vehicles in the passing lane doing 80 to 90 mph. I wonder: what are they thinking.

I would advise to stay within the limits. Get a beater truck for the big hauls...or rent.
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Old 05-02-2010, 09:41 AM   #16
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My '07 JK pulls my boat (4400 lbs + trailer) twice a year (1/2 kilometer each way). I'd never take it on the highway, there's no brakes on the trailer (yet). Even then I'm way over the recommended limit for the Jeep. The JK pulls hard and you'd hardly notice the boat & trailer were behind you at all. I struggled for years with the Jimmy to haul this rig. Here they are mated together for the first time.


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