Towing Noises

About the important piece of kit under your Cape Cutter 19 when on the road.....

Towing Noises

Postby David Peck » Wed Jan 02, 2013 7:47 pm

Towing Noises

Whilst towing my boat last week across the Essex Alps, I noticed there is always a loud sharp “clonking” noise when going over bumps or undulations in the road. I have had this noise since I have been towing the boat with the same car (Land Rover Freelander2 with detachable tow-bar).

I spoke to a tow-bar specialist who said that the noise was probably due to the brakes needing adjustment but after carefully adjusting them, the noise was just the same!

As I do not do much towing (usually a couple of 60mile/96km trips a year) I’m not sure if this is normal. It sounds as if either tow ball is under size for the trailer socket (it is not) or the removable tow bar fitted to the car is loose!
Does anyone have any experience of this and is it normal? I would be particularly interested if any of you Freelander 2ers have experienced it, or not! I accept this is probably dificult to quantify!

I would like to get it resolved as I hope to tow the boat to France early this year.

Regards
David Peck
CC94 Whistling Rufus
David Peck
CC19 Association Member
 
Posts: 108
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 6:50 pm

Postby Dennis » Thu Jan 03, 2013 12:38 pm

Hello David

It is a well known issue with LR Freelander removable towballs.

here is a link to the (long) thread on the FL2 forum:

http://www.freel2.com/forum/topic4454.html

I have to say that it is not just a LR issue, the detachable tow-ball is (I think) a Brink or Thule unit.

The detachable tow-ball on my LR Discovery 3 was replaced under waranty, without question, (after three years) for the same reason, although that was an entirely different design, and not a common issue with the D3.

If it is a faulty tow-bar, LR should replace it with the modified version as it is a safety related issue. Read the thread on the FL2 forum!


Another possibilty is that you have not sufficient nose weight on the trailer allowing the trailer to "rock" and allow the inevitable slight clearances in the tow-ball/tow-bar/overrun brake mechanism to clunk.

I find I have to deliberately load the forward end of the boat with as much heavy "stuff" as I can, to get a decent noseweight. I aim for between 70 Kg and 100 Kg. (100Kg is the max that the HM trailer hitch will take). I find that if I do not do this I end up with a nose weight of only around 20Kg and also get some clunking even with the fixed tow-bar on my current FL2. However with a good nose weight I tow without clunking/knocking.

I hope this helps.
Cheers

Dennis

CC19 #100 Mary Ann
User avatar
Dennis
CC19 Association Member
 
Posts: 1118
Joined: Fri Mar 27, 2009 6:29 pm
Location: Northumberland

Postby David Peck » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:24 pm

Dennis,

Thanks very much for your very prompt and comprehensive reply.

I've read the LR forum thread and it describes my problem exactly. I will be contacting my Land Rover distributor who fitted the the tow-bar but unfortunately it was fitted about 2 years ago, so I don't know what the response will be. It sounds as if it could be serious!

Yes, it is a Brink Matic Advance! I wish I had raised this earlier as I only had the car serviced two weeks ago and of course, its warranty has just expired!:(

Regards
David Peck
CC19 Whistling Rufus
David Peck
CC19 Association Member
 
Posts: 108
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 6:50 pm

Postby Dennis » Thu Jan 03, 2013 5:27 pm

Hello David

Best of luck with your LR dealer. It may be worth taking some relevent prints of some of the posts in the FL2 forum thread with you, just in case they are one of the dealers who "have not heard" of the problem. And do not take any out of waranty excuses from them, it is a safety issue, it overides any waranty dates.

Bear in mind that I can get mine to clunk with a fixed towbar if I do not have sufficient nose weight on the trailer. What I am saying is, there could be more than one cause for your problem.


On a brighter note, I shall be launching for my fifth season with "Mary Ann" in approx two months. Can't wait, I hope the weather is better than last year, March was the best month up here. :(
Cheers

Dennis

CC19 #100 Mary Ann
User avatar
Dennis
CC19 Association Member
 
Posts: 1118
Joined: Fri Mar 27, 2009 6:29 pm
Location: Northumberland

Postby David Peck » Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:47 pm

Towing Noises

Hello Dennis,

I’m pleased to report that I have finally had my tow bar replaced free of charge! :) The dealer had stated that because it was out of warranty I would have to pay for the replacement. After complaining they should have noticed it when they previously serviced the car (it was always fitted) they persuaded Land Rover to accept their invoice!

Anyway, I now have the latest design fitted, so hopefully this will solve/improve the sharp clonking noise.

Regards
David Peck
CC94 Whistling Rufus

PS. I have sent you a PM.
David Peck
CC19 Association Member
 
Posts: 108
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 6:50 pm

Re: Towing Noises

Postby Simon » Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:36 pm

Hi,

I have rather belatedly looked at this thread.

I have a Freelander 2 with a detachable towbar, which was fitted when I bought the car as an ex-demonstrator in March 2015.

I frequently get a clunk when braking and occasionally when pulling away from a stop. I didn't have this problem with my previous car, which had a Westfalia towbar. Initially I thought this was a problem with the trailer brakes and took the trailer back to Honnor Marine (who are local to me) to get the brakes serviced. This has not made any difference. I then thought that the towball was under-sized. But maybe it is the fault described in this thread and on freel2.com. I am taking the car in for service on Monday and will raise it with Land Rover then. Any thoughts would be most welcome.

Also, is there any way of disabling the reversing alarm when reversing down a slipway with the trailer electrics disconnected?

Best wishes,

Simon Temple
CC87 Sea Badger 2
Simon
CC19 Association Member
 
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2013 9:59 pm

Re: Towing Noises

Postby Dennis » Sun Mar 12, 2017 11:15 am

Simon wrote:
Also, is there any way of disabling the reversing alarm when reversing down a slipway with the trailer electrics disconnected?

Simon Temple
CC87 Sea Badger 2


Hello Simon

I do not know of any facility on the car which allows the reversing alarm to be disabled temporarily, I suggest you ask the dealer when you take the car in for service, but don't hold your breath waiting for an answer. Personally, I just put up with it.

I assume that the car senses the presence of the trailer by detecting the resistance of one of the bulbs. It would be possible to use a spare trailer plug and connect a suitable resistance between the earth and the connection for the tail lights (I assume it is the road lights that are sensed). You could the plug this to the socket when you are reversing the trailer.

Frankly, it is a non issue for me. I just put up with it. :D
Cheers

Dennis

CC19 #100 Mary Ann
User avatar
Dennis
CC19 Association Member
 
Posts: 1118
Joined: Fri Mar 27, 2009 6:29 pm
Location: Northumberland

Re: Towing Noises

Postby Greybeard » Sun Mar 12, 2017 1:50 pm

You could always coast down the slipway in neutral of course ;) or learn to reverse faster and get it over with :)
A front mounted towbar does the trick too.
Simply pulling a fuse is no longer an easy option on most modern cars either - even if the device had its own live supply. Things were so much simpler, and quieter, when a driver was expected to rely on the mk1 eyeball :rolleyes:

Steve (avid Luddite)
Greybeard
CC19 Association Member
 
Posts: 287
Joined: Mon Oct 07, 2013 9:52 am
Location: East Yorkshire


Return to Trailers and Towing

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron