Thursday, November 5, 2009

Cash for Clunkers

We don't actually have a clunker at the moment.  I hope we do someday because we're planning to keep our current "toad" until it gets to be about 12 years least.   At this time we drive a 2005 Ford Explorer 4WD.  (click on photo to enlarge) 

I would like to be a "green thinking driver" and have one of those fancy hybrid cars, but that just isn't going to happen.  Since our car is paid for, it doesn't make sense to buy something new when we really don't have to.  I know we have one of those darned old gas guzzlers, but that's the way it goes.  We bought this Explorer after  having 2 previous ones we'd been very happy with.   Besides, the back seat was roomy for Dad and the larger back doors made it easier for him to get in and out.  We had looked at a couple of other types of SUV's, and even took our tape measure to check the width of the back door opening.  The Explorer won out.   

We've had good luck towing the 3 Explorers we've owned.  We use the Stow Master tow bar and that has worked well for us also.  Well....except for the time we were driving north on Hwy 101 out of San Francisco, CA and something broke and we saw the car trying to pass us!  That was one scary moment.  The car hadn't come loose completely, but was swaying over to the left and partly into the other lane.  We pulled over ASAP and checked it out.  It appeared that the lock on one of the arms that extends out to form the "V" of the tow bar had broken.  Not much we could do and we were barely onto the shoulder of the highway, so we did the best thing we could.  DUCT TAPE.  Bruce got the tow bar into the correct position and we duct taped the hell out of that thing.  It kept the arm extended and locked (taped) into place so we could continue on until a proper repair could be done.  The tow bar was still securely attached to the trailer hitch ball with the safety chains intact.   Red neck RV'n was how our son describe it.

We can also tow the Explorer with all 4 wheels down.  We had a Neutral Tow device installed under the dash to the right of the steering column.  It works great and this is our 3rd one without any problems.   We did not want to use a tow dolly or trailer for our toad.  That was just another "thing" to have to deal with. 

We've been motorhome traveling since 1988 and so far have been happy with our choices.  Other people have made their own choices that work best for them and we all have our own opinions.  I guess that is why we see all manner of RV's on the road.  We all have our own way of doing it and enjoying it.  The important thing is to just "do it".  There is no better way to travel.

Until next long for now!



We have towed a travel trailer & a fifth wheel in the past but towing a car is best by far. Much easier & less stress. Smoother all round ride as well. Luckily we have a standard 5 speed car so didn't have to add anything. Know what you mean by not wanting a tow dolly. Just looking at that kind of set-up is scary in itself!!

Jerry and Suzy said...

We seem to be in the same boat (or Toad) as you, except ours is a 2004Suzuki XL7. We used to tow a little green (color green, not "green")Geo Tracker, but it kept getting smaller and smaller in relationsip to us. The Suzuki tows 4-wheels down. All we have to do is put the transfer case in neutral and the transmission in Park. No need to get a new car for quite a long time.