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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > sway bar instructions

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Terryallan

Foothills NC

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Posted: 09/26/20 08:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Have any of you read as I have the sway bar instructions? Especially the part about NOT using the sway bar in the rain? HINT. It really means what it says. It CAN cause the TV to go straight in a turn. Want to know how I know????

Thursday as we hooked up to come home it was raining, and I thought about the instructions, but put it on any way. ( my TT doesn't sway with out the bar). So I put it on anyway. and had O problems until I went to turn into a driveway. Yes I slowed way down, But as I turned, the front tires started sliding. The truck did NOT want to turn. But it finally caught and I went into the driveway. Scared me some as we were still in the mountains and there was a pretty good drop beside the driveway.

Anyway. moral of the story. There is just barley a chance the manufacturers know what they are talking about when they write the instructions. And it is required that your TT be setup correctly and not sway, even with out the sway bar.


Terry & Shay
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Lynnmor

Red Lion

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Posted: 09/26/20 11:03am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Then there are all those popular, expensive brands that can't be adjusted for slippery conditions.





Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 09/26/20 12:44pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Terryallan wrote:

Have any of you read as I have the sway bar instructions? Especially the part about NOT using the sway bar in the rain? HINT. It really means what it says. It CAN cause the TV to go straight in a turn. Want to know how I know????

Thursday as we hooked up to come home it was raining, and I thought about the instructions, but put it on any way. ( my TT doesn't sway with out the bar). So I put it on anyway. and had O problems until I went to turn into a driveway. Yes I slowed way down, But as I turned, the front tires started sliding. The truck did NOT want to turn. But it finally caught and I went into the driveway. Scared me some as we were still in the mountains and there was a pretty good drop beside the driveway.

Anyway. moral of the story. There is just barley a chance the manufacturers know what they are talking about when they write the instructions. And it is required that your TT be setup correctly and not sway, even with out the sway bar.


Glad you are OK and everything ended well.

I bolded the most important part of your post.

It is why a take all the safety police on this forum with a grain of salt who insist one MUST always use WD and anti sway devices in all conditions and all combinations.. Those items are nothing more than a bandaid slapped on top of a very bad TV/trailer combo (way to heavy or too long of a trailer) and or not properly distributed weight on the trailer (IE not enough tongue weight).

WD and even friction anti sway devices were designed to help folks tow larger combinations than they would be able to with a lesser tow vehicle.

Your rig SHOULD and MUST tow CORRECTLY in any and all conditions BEFORE you ever slap on those feel good bandaids.

And YES, that means you need to select a trailer weight well below the max "ratings" of the TV.. It is why one should pay attention and use to the GVWR of the trailer instead of the supposed dry weights.

YES, that means you may end up with a much shorter and smaller trailer with 3K of cargo weight that you will never need.. So be it, to be much SAFER to start with without the aid of slapped on bandaids is a much better way to tow.

I didn't know the difference until the day I bought a much heavier 3/4 ton to replace a light weight heavy half.. Much better towing, feels confidant in all weather conditions and the truck is in command instead of the trailer.. And I do not need those devices to be able to tow for my combinations.

Yes, my comments will raise the hackles of good intentioned towing/weight police and I don't care, it really needs to be said.

time2roll

Southern California

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Posted: 09/26/20 01:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I assume this is a trailer friction anti-sway attachment.
Yes by all means don't have it so tight in the rain, especially at low speeds.


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Seon

Lake Camanche, CA

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Posted: 09/26/20 01:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Speaking of sway bar, I remember reading this....

Friction sway control bars are designed to work fine going forward when turning or not but not designed to turn when backing up (backing up straight is fine). It can and likely will damage them because apparently the force being applied to them is different when going in reverse.

canoe on top

Denver, CO, US

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Posted: 09/26/20 02:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Equal-i-zer recommends removing the bars on rough roads or going through dips or ditches to prevent undue strain on the brackets. The manual doesn't say anything about limited traction. A large part of what the WD feature does is put weight back on the front axle which maintains steering response. A significantly unweighted front axle can create very dangerous, "float" which, I would think, would be most obvious in conditions of limited traction.I have towed in rain and snow with the bars in place and never had any problem with loss of traction with the front wheels.

Terryallan

Foothills NC

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Posted: 09/28/20 10:17am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

First time for me. in 20 years.

Terryallan

Foothills NC

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Posted: 09/28/20 10:19am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

time2roll wrote:

I assume this is a trailer friction anti-sway attachment.
Yes by all means don't have it so tight in the rain, especially at low speeds.


Truth is. they only have 2 settings, on, and off. The lever is the on off switch. All the way tight is on.. any thing less is off. According to the instructions.

Terryallan

Foothills NC

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Posted: 09/28/20 10:26am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gdetrailer wrote:

Terryallan wrote:

Have any of you read as I have the sway bar instructions? Especially the part about NOT using the sway bar in the rain? HINT. It really means what it says. It CAN cause the TV to go straight in a turn. Want to know how I know????

Thursday as we hooked up to come home it was raining, and I thought about the instructions, but put it on any way. ( my TT doesn't sway with out the bar). So I put it on anyway. and had O problems until I went to turn into a driveway. Yes I slowed way down, But as I turned, the front tires started sliding. The truck did NOT want to turn. But it finally caught and I went into the driveway. Scared me some as we were still in the mountains and there was a pretty good drop beside the driveway.

Anyway. moral of the story. There is just barley a chance the manufacturers know what they are talking about when they write the instructions. And it is required that your TT be setup correctly and not sway, even with out the sway bar.


Glad you are OK and everything ended well.

I bolded the most important part of your post.

It is why a take all the safety police on this forum with a grain of salt who insist one MUST always use WD and anti sway devices in all conditions and all combinations.. Those items are nothing more than a bandaid slapped on top of a very bad TV/trailer combo (way to heavy or too long of a trailer) and or not properly distributed weight on the trailer (IE not enough tongue weight).

WD and even friction anti sway devices were designed to help folks tow larger combinations than they would be able to with a lesser tow vehicle.

Your rig SHOULD and MUST tow CORRECTLY in any and all conditions BEFORE you ever slap on those feel good bandaids.

And YES, that means you need to select a trailer weight well below the max "ratings" of the TV.. It is why one should pay attention and use to the GVWR of the trailer instead of the supposed dry weights.

YES, that means you may end up with a much shorter and smaller trailer with 3K of cargo weight that you will never need.. So be it, to be much SAFER to start with without the aid of slapped on bandaids is a much better way to tow.

I didn't know the difference until the day I bought a much heavier 3/4 ton to replace a light weight heavy half.. Much better towing, feels confidant in all weather conditions and the truck is in command instead of the trailer.. And I do not need those devices to be able to tow for my combinations.

Yes, my comments will raise the hackles of good intentioned towing/weight police and I don't care, it really needs to be said.


I am a firm believer in a WDH. As it returns lost weight, and steering control to the steering axle..
However I also know that the WDH, and trailer should be setup to the point there is no sway in normal driving. And that is where mine is set. I have 0 sway. I use the sway control for those emergency manuvering situations where I might have to dodge something. Like a deer, or accident. I have forgotten to install it a time or two, and there is virtually no difference in normal towing. It is only for emergencies.

The only mistake I made , was using it in the rain. And as I say. This is the first time in 20 years it has caused this problem.

Terryallan

Foothills NC

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Joined: 06/28/2004

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Posted: 09/28/20 10:27am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lynnmor wrote:

Then there are all those popular, expensive brands that can't be adjusted for slippery conditions.


You are simply not to use them in slippery conditions. your TT should not sway with out one. They are only for emergency situations.

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