View Full Version : Hitch and AC questions

10-16-2007, 09:37 AM
My wife and I are considering the purchase of one of the 2720 models. We have two questions we hope one of you with experience and technical knowledge can answer for us.
1. My TV will be an F250 heavy duty, 8' bed truck (rear wheel drive). With that big of a TV do I need a WDH? We previously had a truck camper so towing was not an issue for us.
2. We live in and will do most of our camping in the Pacific Northwest. We have previously gotten along fine without AC. Opening a window on the cool side and exhausting with our Fantastic fan was all the cooling we needed. I wonder if the greater air infiltration of the TM, by the nature of its construction would warrant AC. How difficult is it to have AC installed later if we decide we need it? Will it require a trip to the factory?
Thanks in advance for your help!

10-16-2007, 10:45 AM
1. My TV will be an F250 heavy duty, 8' bed truck (rear wheel drive). With that big of a TV do I need a WDH? We previously had a truck camper so towing was not an issue for us.
2. We live in and will do most of our camping in the Pacific Northwest. We have previously gotten along fine without AC.

1. Most folks seem to recommend a weight distribution hitch if, for no other reason, to improve safety in an emergency maneuver. It's anecdotal but consistent advice. What you probably don't need to pay for is sway control.

2. The TM is actually very "tight" and well insulated - the seals prevent most air infiltration and the sandwiched aluminum and styrofoam walls are effective. Looking at it in the reverse direction, here in Fla heat my unit will cool down in 10 minutes or less and stay nice and cool with little effort. When you turn off the air, the unit stays cool quite a while. My impression is that it is very weather-tight.

Good luck. You'll love the thing.

10-16-2007, 11:14 AM

Even though I have an F150, I still use a WDH. With a 480 lb. tongue weight (that includes the WDH platform, but doesn't include the 2nd battery I installed later) on the TM, it takes 180 lb. off of my front axle, and adds 700 lbs on my rear axle. Your F250 will easily handle that kinda weight either way, but I would think even with your heavier truck, if you could get the original geometry back into your vehicle as set up by the factory, your would have a more pleasant and safer driving experience.

That said, if I used a standard drop ball mount that would be mounted closer to the vehicle, and with less weight than a WDH platform, that would probably put some weight back on my front tires.....hmmmm.

About the AC: It is my understanding that to add that after market, you would probably have to take it back to the factory, or a really good TM dealer that knows what they are doing. They will probably have to install heavier torsion bars to accomodate the extra weight. If I would be questioning my future AC needs, I would be looking for something with AC.


10-16-2007, 12:48 PM
We own a 2006 model 2720 with the low profile A/C.
(1) If you should sell the unit it would be a good selling point.
(2) Here in the midwest the humidity is a factor in hot weather. The A/C gives relief from both heat and humidity. I wouldn't be without it.
Makes sleeping better on hot nights too.
Can't help you on the hitch question, we use a mininvan. Good luck!

10-16-2007, 02:07 PM
I tow my 2005 TM 2720 with a 2002 Chevy 1500HD 6.5 foot bed truck. The one time I weighed it all the weight on the TM axle was 3380 pounds, pretty close to the limit.

While talking to the factory for a different topic we discussed sway control and WD hitches. The advice I got was that a TM never needs sway control and does not need a WD hitch when towed by a large TV, such as mine, and probably yours.

I have measured the sag at the rear bumper and attaching the TM causes 5/8 inch of sag. The front lifts slightly.

On one occasion I made a near panic stop and was impressed with how fast it all stopped and that it stopped in a straight line.

You get to make your own choice, but I think your truck is at least as big as mine.

Regarding a/c: In three seasons of camping I have used it once. We mostly camp above 5,000 feet, are gone all day and never have shore power. But, I like having it because we intend to keep the TM for another 11 years until we retire. You never know where you will want to go in the future.

10-16-2007, 02:37 PM
Thanks for the advice and tips, folks. Whatever other reasons there are for buying a TM, the existence of this owners' forum is a HUGE benefit. The prospect of being able to tap into your experience and advice is worth a lot!

10-16-2007, 03:34 PM
Speaking from someone who's lived on both coasts and for several years in the midwest, I'd highly recommend the AC simply for resale in the future if nothing else. We had a camper for 20 years before we sold it to get our TM, but because of some of the non-standard items we had in it (even for that old of a camper) it sold very quickly. Things like that (as long as they work) will either help you in the midterm when you go to sell or in the long term as the item that differentiates you from the other guy. Plus as PopBeavers says, you just never know where you'll be in the future.

10-16-2007, 08:05 PM

My husband read your post and asked me to tell you we have a 3124ks TM and pull it with a 2004 Chevrolet Duramax Diesel 3/4 ton truck. He felt sure he would not need a WDH. The dealer wanted 1000.00 for a WDH. We took delivery and brought it home without one. We decided to check some measurements. We measured both from the bottom of the back bumper to the ground and also from the front bumper. We did this without the TM and with the TB hooked up. It only dropped the back bumper about 2 and 1/2 inches without the WDH....but it lifted the front bumber about 1/2 inch. Then we remembered that many years ago we had a popup camper and took one 5,000 mile trip and when we got home we had to buy new tires for the S10 Trailblazer. The tires were cupped. We realized that it costs over 1000.00 for a set of tires for our Duramax...so we went to Campersworld and got a Robin WDH for under 200.00.

10-16-2007, 08:59 PM
We pull a 2720 with a 1500 4x4 Chevy, and only use the hitch. No problems so far in 4 years.

10-16-2007, 09:49 PM
I pull with a Chevy 2500 - no problems at all. I used to pull with a Chevy 1500, and that most definitely could have used a weight distributing hitch (it was a very light 1500 - the v6), as it had more bounce than I was comfortable with.

That said, I don't like the way that some roads seem to set the TM and TV bouncing even with the 2500 and have been debating off and on about different options, such as a weight distributing hitch. I'm a bit leery of the WD hitch though, because of the additional weight it puts on the wheels, and I don't feel like it's a safety issue - it's more of a comfort issue, for me.

I've towed about 10,000 miles so far with the TM, in a total of about 6 months of ownership.

That said - I'll let others correct me if I'm speaking without knowledge here (I probably am) - you can always hitch up to a TM and see how "flat" your vehicle appears when hitched. Both the TM and the TV should be "level" (one way to test this: turn your headlights on, mark where they hit a wall a few feet away from the front of the TV; then lower the TM onto the TV, while in the same spot, and see how much your lights move; also measure the height of your front bumper before and after, as that's exactly the ideal distance your headlight pattern on the wall should move; if it moves much at all, you might want a WD hitch). If everything is flat, I don't think you need to worry too much. Just be careful not to exceed any of your weight ratings on your ball or receiver (I've noticed many have a 500 pound weight carrying tongue weight limit - which is a bit iffy I think for a TM).

NW Native
10-16-2007, 11:25 PM

I gather you are on the shady side of the Cascades where AC is not usually required. Even so, I would recommend getting the AC so that your camping locations are not limited. We originally had a tent trailer without AC when we lived in Las Vegas. My thought at that time was, "If we need to have AC, we might as well stay home." Camping at 7000+ feet proved to be a non-issue; however, when we went to camp at places like Zion NP that was a different story. After Las Vegas we spent 2 years in Virginia and NEVER went camping because it was too hot for us. Imagine that after 7 years in Las Vegas! After moving home to Washington State, we were certain that our new TM had to have AC. To sum up my ramblings here, even though you plan to stick to the PacNW at this time, your future camping options may be limited by not having AC.

10-17-2007, 01:10 PM
I tow a 2720SL with an F250 Heavy duty XLT Crew Cab Short Bed. I don't use a WD hitch and have no problems. I did use a WD hitch when I had an F150 regular cab short bed.

10-23-2007, 12:58 AM
I tow a 2720 with a 4Runner and no WDH but a heavy duty suspension. Drives nicely and the 4Runner is level when towing and high in the back otherwise. My dad has a '95? F250 4x4 with a decent sized pop up camper shell. That thing will carry so much weight I can't imagine it even blinking at the TM's 300lb tongue weight.

Amazingly, there are people towing these trailers with what amount to unibody cars. Granted they have WDH's.

Try it without. If you don't like the way it drives, add a WDH.

Oh yea AC. Well it doesn't get used THAT much but it's worth having. Have you really seen many Travel Trailers without? There's a reason and expectation of comfort. If you are going to buy one of these, buy it equiped so you don't regret it later. The weight of the AC won't affect the towing of it. The weight of your wallet... I can't speak to.