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Can You Put A Towbar On A Motorhome

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  • 06-03-2023
Can You Put A Towbar On A Motorhome

Can you put a towbar on a motorhome? MotorHome Towbars offer towbars fitting Lincolnshire. Find out more about motorhome tow bar installation and which type of tow bar is suitable for your motorhome. 

Can I fit a tow bar to my motorhome?

Most motorhome owners can fit tow bars to their vehicles. However, the main thing determining whether it is possible is the year in which their particular motorhome was built. For example, if your motorhome has a 61-plat or older, meaning it was built before April 2012, then you can attach any type of tow bar to it.

Alternatively, if your motorhome has a 12-plate, meaning it was built after April 2012, there are more strict rules. While you can fit any type of tow bar to motorhomes of this age to attach bicycle or motorcycle racks, if you actually want to tow something behind your motorhome, you can only fit manufacturer-approved tow bars to do this. Regardless of what you want to use your tow bar for, we recommend you always use manufacturer-approved types of tow bars.

This way, if you decide to sell your motorhome, potential buyers will be more inclined to make a purchase since they won't have to struggle to find a suitable tow bar for their needs. Alongside the age of your motorhome, its configuration at the rear end will also determine whether you can attach a tow bar or not.

What Weight Can My Car Tow?

For example, if there is a significant rear overhang, spare wheels or a lack of support at the rear end of the chassis framework, it may be difficult but not impossible. In cases like these, you can either weld or bolt additional Al-KO chassis extensions or bracing on, which you'll then attach your tow bar to.

Finally, the available payload of your particular motorhome will also determine whether it can tow something behind it. If you are unsure about your motorhome's towing capacity, the best places to ask for help are your local motorhome dealership, the UK's National Trailer and Towing Association, or your local tow bar specialist.

They will know the exact towing capability of your particular motorhome and be able to recommend a type approval tow bar for your needs. They can also help with tow bar fitting, ensuring that the tow bar fitted to your motorhome is the right type. Where necessary, these specialists can also help with any AL-KO stabilisers your motorhome might need. 

Motorhome tow bar installation

Motorhomes usually come with everything you need to head out and take a road trip. However, more motorhome owners are choosing to make additions to their vehicles these days, allowing them to carry more to their destinations. From motorbike trailers to car trailers, whatever you want to bring with you, it's likely you'll need to fit a tow bar to do it.

It can sometimes be difficult and complicated to fit a tow bar to your motorhome, depending on its configuration, as it's very different from fitting one to your car. Tow bar specialists can help with this, installing your tow bar and giving you professional recommendations on the best ways to maintain it, allowing you to tow whatever you need on your road trips. There is a range of motorhome tow bars to choose from, including:

Swan Neck Tow Bars

Detachable Tow Bars

Flange Tow Bars

motorhome age

Again, the age of your motorhome is one of the biggest factors determining the type of tow bar you can have and how you will install it to your vehicle. For motorhomes that were built after 2012 until the present, you'll need an EC Type Approved tow bar. However, if your motorhome was built before 2012, you'll need a made-to-measure tow bar specifically designed for your vehicle.

This last point is possibly the most important, as it raises a significant consideration. Given that some motorhomes need made-to-measure tow bars, this means you can't swap the same tow bar between different motorhome models or those built in different years. Even if you buy your motorhomes from the same manufacturer, different model years have different requirements, often needing new tow bars. 

Can You Put A Towbar On A Motorhome? Towbars Fitting Lincolnshire

motorhome Weight

The main weight figure you must pay attention to when towing is your motorhome's Gross Train Weight (GTW). You can find this figure in your owner's handbook or the VIN plate, often located inside the door of your motorhome. The GTW is the total weight of your motorhome and whatever you want to tow behind it, such as a loaded trailer. It is very important that you do not exceed this total weight during domestic or commercial towing.

In fact, you should give yourself plenty of room between what you are towing and the Gross Train Weight, just in case. This goes especially for new motorhome owners who are inexperienced when it comes to towing. Anything too heavy can seriously affect your comfort and driving ability. So, once you have everything loaded up, head to your nearest weighbridge to see if you are over the limit.

Another crucial consideration when towing is the maximum rear axle weight for your motorhome, which you can also find in your owner's manual. Essentially, the more weight you load into your tow bar, the more weight is added to the rear axle. This can seriously compromise your driving, especially if you start seesawing. Therefore, you should never exceed the maximum axle weight for your motorhome.

Can I tow a trailer with my motorhome?

Determining whether you can tow something with your motorhome comes down to your driver's licence. You'll need a category "BE" licence if you want to tow a typical car trailer. However, it also matters when you pass your driving test. For example:

Before the 1st of January, 1997 - you can drive a vehicle and towing vehicle combination weighing up to a Maximum Authorised Mass (MAM) of 8,250kg.

After the 1st of January, 1997 - you can drive a vehicle and towing vehicle combination weighing up to a MAM of 8,500kg. However, this rule was only introduced as of the 16th of December, 2021. Therefore, if you passed your driving test between 1997 and 2021, there may be additional restrictions to your towing capabilities. 

The December 2021 rule changes essential grant all drivers a BE category licence, allowing them to tow the 8,500kg maximum. However, if you passed your test before 1997, the rules are still the same, and you are limited to the 8,250kg maximum towing weight. 

What weight can I tow with my motorhome?

It's important to remember that while your driver's licence might allow you to tow most trailers up to a MAM of 8,500kg, your motorhome might not.

The manufacturer usually determines the towing capacity of your motorhome, and familiarising yourself with it is the best way to avoid disasters.

 The average capacity for most motorhomes, caravans and campervans is around 2,000kg, but to be fully sure, you should consult the Gross Train Weight in your owner's manual or your motorhome's VIN plate.

What Weight Can I Tow With My Motorhome? Towbars Fitting Lincolnshire

Are you looking for towbar fitting in Lincoln or the surrounding areas of Lincolnshire? We offer mobile towbar fitting and adaptations. We would love to discuss this with you.