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Author Topic:   DAUNTLESS 13: Towing with Honda Accord
jackpine posted 06-28-2008 11:25 AM ET (US)   Profile for jackpine   Send Email to jackpine  
[What vehicles are used to tow 13-foot Boston Whaler boats?] I have a Dauntless 13 with a Mercury 50-HP two-cycle on a Karavan trailer. I think the whole rig weighs 1,000-lbs. Around home I tow it with my truck, but we are heading for [Florida] this winter and I would like to use our 2005 Honda Accord V6 to save on gas. Most of the trip is no problem, but southern [Illinois] and [Kentucky] have some pretty serious hills. I am thinking I will keep the speed down to 60-MPH and leave the transmission in D3 thru the hills. I would like to hear from other people who might be using passenger cars to tow their boats.
fishgutz posted 06-28-2008 11:40 AM ET (US)     Profile for fishgutz  Send Email to fishgutz     
You should have no problems towing with a Honda Accord with the V6. Most cars can tow a 1000 to 1500 pound rig easily. Over 1500 pounds and there could be a little concern. Go for it.
HuronBob posted 06-28-2008 01:43 PM ET (US)     Profile for HuronBob  Send Email to HuronBob     
I towed my 130 Sport with a subaru baja with no problem. I'm now towing with a Jeep Liberty v6, 3.7 liter, also a piece of cake...
jimh posted 06-28-2008 05:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I used to tow my SPORT 15 with my Ford CROWN VICTORIA, but the vehicle was rated for 5,000-lbs of towing. However, despite what would appear to be an abundance of towing capacity in the vehicle, I learned that towing a trailer, even a small one, imposes a significant load, and your vehicle needs to be in tip-top condition to handle it.

Be certain that your vehicle's brake system is in excellent condition, as I imagine you do not have brakes on your trailer. Your notion to drive in D3 and not in an overdrive gear is very prudent. Check your vehicle manual for advice on the transmission gear to be used when towing. Driving in overdrive can kill a transmission when it is used for towing. You might also consider adding an auxiliary transmission cooler, but check with a good Honda mechanic to confirm that.

Also get the trailer in top condition, too. Check the tire inflation and the wheel bearings.

DLee posted 06-29-2008 10:32 AM ET (US)     Profile for DLee  Send Email to DLee     
Jim's points are excellent. I might add that a transmission fluid change before the trip can't hurt.

I tow my 170 Montauk with a Subaru Outback V6. I have some pretty steep hills between me and the water. I just take my time and don't push the car to hard. Those in a rush behind me just have to wait...

I do have trailer brakes and that makes a huge difference in stopping. I swear the car stops easier with the trailer hooked up than when she's on the road by herself.

I was going to install an auxiliary transmission cooler. When I called the dealership to get one they told me they are not available because the car already has one from the factory. This is a bit contrary from what I've been told in the past, so a little more research is in order.

I doubt that you'll 'forget that it's there,' I don't. But the car should handle it no problem. Just take it easy. I regularly cruise in Drive, downshifting only when I get slowed down on a upgrade. 60 is very comfortable on the highways.

David1877 posted 07-01-2008 12:42 AM ET (US)     Profile for David1877  Send Email to David1877     
The irony.

I once owned an Accord V6 and a Dauntless 13.

I pulled my boat for a number of seasons and never had any trouble. Like Jim suggested, I took good care of the bearings and checked the temps during stops.

I did not add a transmission cooler but I did change the fluid occassionally.

jackpine posted 07-01-2008 08:58 AM ET (US)     Profile for jackpine  Send Email to jackpine     
David 1877, thanks that is exactly what I wanted to hear, I have been towing boats for over 40 years but always with a 4wd pickup, a lot of the landings I have used it takes 4wd to get in and out. I had the trans. flushed last year on the honda, and plan on replacing the timing belt before we leave this year. I have always done my own maintenance and repack wheel bearings every fall before storage, if I break down I don't want it to be my fault.
boatdryver posted 07-01-2008 11:29 AM ET (US)     Profile for boatdryver  Send Email to boatdryver     
One thing I have observed with a front wheel drive tow car is wheelspin when retrieving the boat on a steep wet slippery ramp. This is usually solved by recruiting a couple of people to sit on the hood of the car.


Wet Willy posted 07-01-2008 12:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for Wet Willy  Send Email to Wet Willy     
I have been towing a 13 Dauntless, 50E-TEC and a new trailer with a 2008 Ford Taurus, its rated for 1,000lbs and I have trailered it 1,800 miles in the last 4 months with no issues. My milage goes from 24 to 16 while towing.Your Honda should do fine. My Ford is FWD as well and it does great on the ramp, never slipped.
Tohsgib posted 07-01-2008 12:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for Tohsgib  Send Email to Tohsgib     
1000lbs is no problem, like having 4 semi-heavy friends in the car. I would see no problem with her in OD unless the hills are steep. The best way to check if you need OD or not is while on a flat road set your speed at say 60mph and hold it, then slip it out of OD, if car speeds up then leave it out, if car slows down then slip it back in. Some cars, my Jeep Liberty for instance, goes into OD at 57-58mph automatically. If I flip off the OD she goes up by 1200 rpm which in a Diesel is too much. So when I tow a heavy load I need to keep it under 57mph. Towing my 13 behind the Jeep is hardly noticeable and I go from 28+ mpg to about 26 on the highway. I have a Civic Hybrid but she is sensitive about throttle and loads in order to get 50+mpg. I was going to put a hitch on it for the 13 but I was told it would probably drop to 35mpg and therefore there is not enough of a gain from the 26 I get in the Jeep.
Mambo Minnow posted 07-02-2008 12:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for Mambo Minnow  Send Email to Mambo Minnow     
I towed a Dauntless 15 with a V6 Toyota Camry for six years.
It was not a problem, but I'd try to limit myself to local tows. Longest trip was Philadelphia to Florida one way.

Make sure you turn the Overdrive off or you will ruin your transmission.

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