We’ve flat towed our Honda CR-V behind our motorhome for over 18 years now, so we’re well aware of the benefits of flat towing. We’ve also had plenty of time and experience to determine which is the best tow bar for flat towing, or “4-down” towing.
When you choose to flat tow your vehicle behind your RV, your “toad” or “dinghy” rides on all four wheels. If you’re using the right tow bar, one person can quickly and easily connect and disconnect it.
In today’s post, we’ll let you know what we think is the best tow bar for flat towing and why it’s the only tow bar we recommend.
Choosing the Best Tow Bar for Flat Towing Behind an RV
There are several things to consider when choosing the best tow bar for flat towing your toad, beginning with the weight of the car you plan to pull.
Tow bars have a limited towing capacity, so you need a tow bar with an appropriate weight limit relative to your toad/dinghy.
Most tow bars of this kind will include wiring to connect your RV’s lights to your toad’s lights. Not only is it dangerous to tow a vehicle without working lights, but it’s also illegal. So, if you choose a tow bar kit that doesn’t include a lighting solution, you’ll need to purchase a wiring kit separately.
You’ll also need safety cables. Many tow bar packages include safety cables, but if yours doesn’t, you’ll need to invest in a pair made for your towing capacity. It’s illegal to tow without safety cables because they prevent your toad from ricocheting down the highway, in the unlikely event that the tow bar detaches from the RV or the toad.
Another critical component of your towing setup is the hitch receiver. Many RV’s come equipped with a receiver from the factory, but if yours doesn’t, you’ll need to install one on the rear of the RV.
To save yourself money and inconvenience, check the size of your RV’s receiver and match it to the tow bar you’re buying. Most RVs will have a standard two-inch square receiver but confirm this before shopping.
What to Look for in a Tow Bar for Flat Towing
Let’s look at some of the best features of tow bars for flat towing so you’ll know what to look for when considering various brands.
Simple is best! Easy hookup and quick-release systems are benefits you’ll appreciate every time you hook up or detach your toad. Ideally, you’ll want a tow bar that can be easily connected and disconnected by one person.
Binding is an issue you might encounter when trying to disconnect, when the latches won’t release due to pressure on them. Non-binding latches are one of the best features of any tow bar setup. Take it from us, you don’t want to deal with binding! It can be incredibly frustrating. As far as we’re concerned, no tow bar makes it into the “best tow bar for flat towing” category without non-binding latches.
Non-binding latches let you release the tow bar at any angle or slope. No more worrying about being perfectly straight or level to disconnect. No more pulling your toad back and forth to try to get your tow bar to release.
As mentioned previously, finding the right weight capacity is essential. Locate your toad’s weight in your owner’s manual, and only compare tow bars rated for more than that weight. Accounting for anything you may carry in the toad means that buying a tow bar with a considerably higher weight rating is best. That also might allow you to upgrade to a heavier toad at some point without replacing your tow bar.
Think about the function of a tow bar. It’ll be seated between your RV and your tow vehicle as you roll along miles and miles of highway. Consider not only your tow bar’s durability over time but also its durability related to safety.
The Best Tow Bar for Flat-towing
As we noted at the beginning of this post, we’ve towed our car behind our RV for more than 18 years. We’ve used several tow bars, and we have a clear favorite.
The Roadmaster Nighthawk is our tow bar system of choice, and of course, it’s the one we’ve used ourselves over thousands of miles.
What We Love About It
We’ll start with the most unique feature of the Nighthawk.
No other tow bar system incorporates the LED lighting of the Roadmaster Nighthawk. These prominent lights run along the tow bar arms and illuminate anytime the RV’s lights are on. They tell traffic that we’re towing a vehicle behind our class A motorhome, even in total darkness. That’s a huge safety bonus, since other drivers may not expect to see a car “following” so close behind you.
Then there are the Nighhawk’s non-binding latches. We’ve tried to make this tow bar system bind. You read that right. We’ve actually tried to cause binding on purpose because we couldn’t believe there’s a tow bar system that will never bind. But we’re happy to report that we failed in that attempt.
We owe this to the non-binding Freedom Latch of the Roadmaster Nighthawk. The release is easy, simple, and non-binding every single time we disconnect. Considering the number of times we dealt with binding in the past with our original tow bar, this feature is unmatched in our book. Nighthawk is Roadmaster’s top-of-the-line tow bar, but it isn’t their only one to feature these latches. So you can still get their non-binding technology without springing for the most expensive model they make.
The Nighthawk also offers the longest bar arms we’ve ever seen, which makes it that much easier to connect without getting the toad perfectly positioned. It features solid stainless steel inner arms and a baked-on powder-coat finish on the outer arms to prevent corrosion.
We also love the enclosed channel for the power cord and safety cables, keeping everything easily at hand, and looking good, too.
Is the Roadmaster Nighthawk Tow Bar the Best Flat Towing Option for You?
We think you’ll love the Roadmaster Nighthawk for all of the features we’ve noted in this post. Since we use and love it ourselves, it follows that we’d feel comfortable recommending it. And we do. We know it’s the Cadillac of t0w bars, and there are certainly less expensive models available. But when it comes to safety, we don’t like to cut corners. And since most RVers will buy one tow bar that can last them for many years, we think this is a great investment.
When it comes to safety, ease of use, reliability, and durability over time and travel, we think the Roadmaster Nighthawk is the best tow bar for flat towing.
We love our Nighthawk so much, that we’ve arranged with Roadmaster to provide a special package just for you. Since you’ll surely want to protect such an awesome piece of gear, what better add-ons than a free tow bar cover, and a free hitch receiver lock!?
The Roadmaster Nighthawk is our favorite RV tow bar. The non-binding latches ensure you'll have an easy time disconnecting, no matter how the RV and tow car are positioned. Longer arms make...Show More
The Roadmaster Nighthawk is our favorite RV tow bar. The non-binding latches ensure you'll have an easy time disconnecting, no matter how the RV and tow car are positioned. Longer arms make connecting and disconnecting easier. And the LED lights along the arms improve safety and visibility when towing!
Call Roadmaster at (800) 669-9690 to order your Nighthawk tow bar factory direct and tell them you want “The RVgeeks Package”. You'll receive a FREE Tow Bar Cover & Hitch Receiver Lock to keep your new Nighthawk secure and looking great. Free Shipping is also included!Show Less
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