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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, today I am looking for some information on towing with the Escape. My parents are thinking of trading in their 07 Ridgeline in the near future for a Chevy Volt because they really want something that gets great fuel economy. However once they trade in the truck they will no longer have an open flat bed for towing large or messy items. I was telling them they should get a trailer hitch on the 2009 Escape they have and get a small trailer. However they bring up a bunch of questions that I am not qualified to answer. So I was thinking you guys can share some information with me. First would be what is my Escape rated to tow? I think it's 3500 pounds. Second would be how much would a trailer hitch cost with installation? Third is driving with a trailer. My father is especially concerned it will be a challenge to drive this vehicle with a trailer hooked up, and when we get to our destination where would we park it while we make our purchase. Finally what are my options on trailers? Thanks in advance for the information.
 

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We need a little more info on the vehicle to give you an accurate answer. Is the vehicle a V6 or I4. The V6 with the towing package will tow 3500lbs. The V6 without the towing package= :shrug: not sure because it does not have the larger trans cooler. The I4 will only tow 1500lbs and there wasn't a towing package option on the I4.

I would put a larger trans cooler on any vehicle before towing if not factory equipped with a towing package. This is simply my personal preference.

I believe you can buy the hitch for a little over $100. Installation cost will probably vary i would assume around $100.

There are so many options on trailers i wouldn't know where to begin. A simple utility trailer is usually cheap and effective.

If you are using the trailer to go get something and park it in a section of the lot where there are not a lot of vehicles and no one should bother you.

I think that just about answers all your ?'s Hope this helps!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
TopElimn8r said:
We need a little more info on the vehicle to give you an accurate answer. Is the vehicle a V6 or I4. The V6 with the towing package will tow 3500lbs. The V6 without the towing package= :shrug: not sure because it does not have the larger trans cooler. The I4 will only tow 1500lbs and there wasn't a towing package option on the I4.

I would put a larger trans cooler on any vehicle before towing if not factory equipped with a towing package. This is simply my personal preference.

I believe you can buy the hitch for a little over $100. Installation cost will probably vary i would assume around $100.

There are so many options on trailers i wouldn't know where to begin. A simple utility trailer is usually cheap and effective.

If you are using the trailer to go get something and park it in a section of the lot where there are not a lot of vehicles and no one should bother you.

I think that just about answers all your ?'s Hope this helps!
Yeah sorry I though I said I had a V6 somewhere. Is it still possible to take my Escape to a Ford dealer and have the hitch and transmission cooler added after the fact? I am a bit concerned about this transmission cooler now, this sounds like something that will cost some coin. Thanks.
 

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You don't need the factory trans cooler. Just about any shop can install one for you. I believe the factory one can be installed by the dealer but you are probably correct in assuming the dealer wanting big coin. However, around here we have noticed that the dealers have became more competively priced due to the nature of the economy. I believe the factory towing option when i ordered mine was about $350. I assume you will pay this price or more for the parts from the dealer plus installion. If you get it installed at the dealer it will not void anything in the warranty, i'm not sure how this works with aftermarket parts if you do not get it done at the dealer.

A rule of thumb i use is. If a towing option is available order it. It is a good selling feature when you sell the vehicle, and it is better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it :rant: .
 

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If they need a trailer for the Escape, they don't need the Volt.

Bottom line, don't buy the Volt. It's a glorified waste of money. It'll cost more at the electric meter than the Ridgeline will at the gas pump. I suppose it is good for bragging rights as a greenie, but that's about it. Better to put a windmill in the backyard to charge a battery set for running the house. It would be a truly long term investment that will give some return on the money spent. It's just my $.02.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
jonas1022 said:
If they need a trailer for the Escape, they don't need the Volt.

Bottom line, don't buy the Volt. It's a glorified waste of money. It'll cost more at the electric meter than the Ridgeline will at the gas pump. I suppose it is good for bragging rights as a greenie, but that's about it. Better to put a windmill in the backyard to charge a battery set for running the house. It would be a truly long term investment that will give some return on the money spent. It's just my $.02.
Well to be honest we only use the flatbed 6-8 times a year, we only want the trailer for those times. For some the Volt is pointless but for my parents it's a great vehicle. We can have a 208 outlet installed in our garage, charge the vehicle up and they can do local running around with charge to spare. Even with the rate hike on our electricity we aren't paying much for electricity. Powering our home and heating it on the coldest day of the year only cost them $400/month. Compared to the home they had in the city which was half the size we save tremendously on electricity. Even with the Escape my father constantly complains about the prices of gas even now with gas at $2.60/gallon. With the Volt he would only need gas for long trips and at 50+ MPG he would use very little. I don't see a problem with the price, it should be around $32k with the rebates. By time he is ready to buy the price will be around that even without the rebates. Even if he didn't buy the Volt he would probably spend about that much on his next vehicle anyway, since he typically loads the car up with all the options which the Volt has at that price.

I see the Escape/Volt as a great combo for my parents. They would have utility with the Escape: The ability to get through snow, room to seat more than 2 people in comfort, room for plenty of cargo, and the ability to haul a small trailer for extra large or messy cargo. With the Volt they would have mind numbing fuel economy: Nearly infinite fuel economy for their local errands (40 mile electric range), excellent fuel economy for long trips, and a nice small car for trips in the city. The best part? It is designed, engineered, and built here. Finally the joy of not being at the mercy of the oil companies, or OPEC. I would say that's priceless.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
TopElimn8r said:
You don't need the factory trans cooler. Just about any shop can install one for you. I believe the factory one can be installed by the dealer but you are probably correct in assuming the dealer wanting big coin. However, around here we have noticed that the dealers have became more competively priced due to the nature of the economy. I believe the factory towing option when i ordered mine was about $350. I assume you will pay this price or more for the parts from the dealer plus installion. If you get it installed at the dealer it will not void anything in the warranty, i'm not sure how this works with aftermarket parts if you do not get it done at the dealer.

A rule of thumb i use is. If a towing option is available order it. It is a good selling feature when you sell the vehicle, and it is better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it :rant: .
Why do they make tranny coolers if you don't need them? If the dealer can install the hitch and tranny cooler for $350 that would be reasonable. We didn't order the hitch because we never planned on towing.
 

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Escape-PA- said:
Why do they make tranny coolers if you don't need them?
I didn't say you don't need a trans cooler, i was saying you don't need the factory one. Places like summitracing.com and Jegs.com have reasonable prices on aftermarket trans coolers. Just make sure you spec one that is big enough. Summit has awesome tech support. Sorry for the confusion.

Escape-PA- said:
If the dealer can install the hitch and tranny cooler for $350 that would be reasonable.
Also, when you order the escape the towing pkg is $350. You may be able to get the parts from the dealer for that price but it does not include installation. I ordered a complete vehicle with the towing option, which is why i dont know how much they will charge to install it. Best thing i can suggest is call the dealer and inquire about your options. If it will not affect your warranty then i would go aftermarket because you will probably save some money. See what the dealer has to offer and go from there.

Escape-PA- said:
We didn't order the hitch because we never planned on towing
Back to my rule of thumb. Better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.

Sorry for the confusion. Hope this helps!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
TopElimn8r said:
Escape-PA- said:
Why do they make tranny coolers if you don't need them?
I didn't say you don't need a trans cooler, i was saying you don't need the factory one. Places like summitracing.com and Jegs.com have reasonable prices on aftermarket trans coolers. Just make sure you spec one that is big enough. Summit has awesome tech support. Sorry for the confusion.

Escape-PA- said:
If the dealer can install the hitch and tranny cooler for $350 that would be reasonable.
Also, when you order the escape the towing pkg is $350. You may be able to get the parts from the dealer for that price but it does not include installation. I ordered a complete vehicle with the towing option, which is why i dont know how much they will charge to install it. Best thing i can suggest is call the dealer and inquire about your options. If it will not affect your warranty then i would go aftermarket because you will probably save some money. See what the dealer has to offer and go from there.

Escape-PA- said:
We didn't order the hitch because we never planned on towing
Back to my rule of thumb. Better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.

Sorry for the confusion. Hope this helps!
Thanks for clearing that up, obviously I will get the transmission cooler because I am not interested in frying the transmission. Chances are I will go with the dealer since I have no idea how to install the equipment and I want everything to be under warranty.
 

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jonas1022 said:
If they need a trailer for the Escape, they don't need the Volt.

Bottom line, don't buy the Volt. It's a glorified waste of money. It'll cost more at the electric meter than the Ridgeline will at the gas pump. I suppose it is good for bragging rights as a greenie, but that's about it. Better to put a windmill in the backyard to charge a battery set for running the house. It would be a truly long term investment that will give some return on the money spent. It's just my $.02.
How do you figure that the Volt will cost more to run than a Ridgeline? $.80-$1.00 for upwards of 40 miles of travel beats the Ridgeline like a rented mule.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Leviathan said:
jonas1022 said:
If they need a trailer for the Escape, they don't need the Volt.

Bottom line, don't buy the Volt. It's a glorified waste of money. It'll cost more at the electric meter than the Ridgeline will at the gas pump. I suppose it is good for bragging rights as a greenie, but that's about it. Better to put a windmill in the backyard to charge a battery set for running the house. It would be a truly long term investment that will give some return on the money spent. It's just my $.02.
How do you figure that the Volt will cost more to run than a Ridgeline? $.80-$1.00 for upwards of 40 miles of travel beats the Ridgeline like a rented mule.
That's right. Right now I use that truck to get to work about 46 miles round trip and it cost me $45/week at $2.60/gallon. It gets about 17.5 MPG at best.
 

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I bought a hitch with wiring kit($130 w/delivery on ebay) that plugs right into the stock harness behind the tail lights...i was able to install it with and extra set of hands(my fiance) in no time at all with basic hand tools. The wiring is plug and play...you clip into the tail lights, drill a hole for a ground screw/wire and run the power wire up the battery....the hitch itself is just 6 bolts in pre existing holes. Didn't have to remove bumper on my 05 but not sure about new models. I'd save the 300 bucks and set aside an afternoon if you're even remotely handy.
 

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wonder if i need a cooler just to tow a ski-doo?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
stlxlt05 said:
I bought a hitch with wiring kit($130 w/delivery on ebay) that plugs right into the stock harness behind the tail lights...i was able to install it with and extra set of hands(my fiance) in no time at all with basic hand tools. The wiring is plug and play...you clip into the tail lights, drill a hole for a ground screw/wire and run the power wire up the battery....the hitch itself is just 6 bolts in pre existing holes. Didn't have to remove bumper on my 05 but not sure about new models. I'd save the 300 bucks and set aside an afternoon if you're even remotely handy.
Thanks, but I prefer to have the work done by someone who does this sort of a thing for a living.
 

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andjayik said:
wonder if i need a cooler just to tow a ski-doo?
I should think not, if you live down here in TX and were pulling a couple SeaDoo's, that would be different. Hot air, in the summer (not the winter), and two units instead of one = bad news at the transmission shop.
 
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