Backing Up with a Trailer Tow Bar

Backing Up with a Trailer Tow Bar

It happens to many trailer haulers. You’re towing a car and you misjudge the turn. You need to reverse so you don’t clip a sign or curb. Maybe you missed a turn at the RV park. Either way, the question remains: can you back up with a tow bar or do you need to disconnect? 

Understanding Tow Bars and How They Work

Basically, you need a tow bar to haul a flat-tow vehicle (sometimes called a toad or dinghy) behind your RV. Flat towing is when all four tires are touching the ground. To tow the dinghy, you need base plates or brackets. And for an RV, you would need a receiver hitch. 



If you try to back up your vehicle hooked up to an RV with a tow bar, you’re going to do some damage. A tow bar is only meant to handle load or stress in one direction. Your dinghy tow vehicle can’t steer when you’re in reverse. That’s going to damage the vehicle and the tow bar. 

How Backing Up Damages a Tow Bar

If you try to reverse with the tow bar, you’ll end up bending it. The dinghy will bend the tow bar when it jackknifes. You also might jam the arm lock so badly that they won’t be able to uncouple. The tow bar is connected to the tow-vehicle’s frame, so the force will be transferred there when pushing back in a reversing scenario. You might damage your steering system too. 

Backing Up When Using Other Tow Gear

Backing up can be challenging regardless of your tow gear of choice. It takes a while to fully understand how multiple vehicles move together. Regardless of how you are towing, you should give attention to using safe, secure, strong, adequate gear. 

The Best Trailer Towing Gear

Regardless of your haul, you can find the towing gear you need from The Trailer Parts Outlet. We are delighted to answer any and all questions you may have about towing, trailers, trailer parts, safe towing practices, and more. Use our website or call us up if you have any questions about finding the right trailer gear for you, or how to use it.
Back to blog