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2014 Forester 2.5i
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7 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Adding to tow a Runaway Camper trailer (4'x8' body @ 760 lbs.) Because my '14 2.5i, CVT w/75k miles, i am very careful about towing capacity. According to the owner's manual, vehicle load capacity weight is 900 lbs. Again, according to the owners manual, how to determine the load capacity for towing trip in my case only is to add the following parameters:
*Driver + dog = 210 lbs
* Car Cargo = 300 lbs
*Trailer Hitch ~ =22 lbs
*Trailer Tongue Weight = 106 lbs
and here is the calculation for trailer tongue weight:
10% of trailer cargo + trailer weight = 10%x 300lbs+760lbs = 10%x 1060lbs = 106lbs

So this calculation says that i can load up 600 lbs between the Forester and the trailer and be less than Subaru's 900 lbs load requirements for a 2014 CVT Forester.

Has anyone had any experience with loading up Foresters? I'm a little spooked with all the bad press CVT's have had even tho' my Forester CVT has given me no problems doing some pretty hefty off-road stuff.

Love driving it in the Wet Mountains trails w/o too much rock crawling, but don't expect to do any of that with a trailer.
 

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2015 Forester CVT
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664 Posts
Kinda

I have never loaded our Forester that critically. I do, however keep a rough talley of approximate weight as we load up. Sometimes we keep a small cooler in a rear footwell. Usually there is enough leeway that we don't worry about it. Being a former backpacker, going to car camping has been a fairly light weight affair.

GD
 

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2018 Forester Manual
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348 Posts
I have a manual transmission forester, but I hauled some old cinder blocks off to a fill spot. I won't say how much they weighed, but I will say that it killed one of the wheel bearings in my trailer it was so heavy.

The car handled it great. Braking distance was not affected. No strange handling.

Until I lost a wheel bearing on my trailer.
 

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2014 2.5i Subaru Forester premium
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17 Posts
for some reason i thought i could tow 1500lbs in my 2014 forester. am i totally wrong? i haven't tried yet but im thinking of getting a camper trailer ... likke 1000lbs. what do i need to check on my car before i do!? thanks!
 

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2013/14 2.5i-L CVT
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750 Posts
for some reason i thought i could tow 1500lbs in my 2014 forester. am i totally wrong?
1,500 lb is SoA's recommended limit for braked trailers and will therefore probably be the legal limit, however, higher limits are specified in other countries. In Australia it is 1,500 kg, about 3,300 lb, braked for 2.5i. The main difference between U.S. and AU Foresters is that ours come with an OEM CVT cooler. I regularly tow a ~2,200 lb boat and have had no issues with the CVT. I regard it as the best towing transmission available as there is no interruption in power delivery because of gear changes.
 

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SeasonedStalker
2017 XT Touring in CBS HT CVT
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154 Posts
Your Forester should be able to hand out handle that load fine, mine did for two years. I would recommend installing an auxiliary transmission cooler to keep temperatures down from the added load. After a drain and fill would be an ideal time to install the cooler and at 75k with planned towing duty exchanging fluid would be advisable IMHO. Amsoil CVT fluid has worked very well in my experience.
 

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2001 Forester
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1,228 Posts
Your Subaru may or may not even feel that trailer and your cargo weight at all. The Subaru can handle a lot more weight than what you're throwing at it. Personally I towed 3300 lbs with my 2001, mind that's with the 4EAT and not the CVT transmission. Trailer had it's own brakes.
 

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2014 2.5i Limited CVT
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971 Posts
I've towed a flat-bed trailer a few times - empty and loaded with people and decorations for parades - and never had any problems with the drive. Mind you, I'm going slowly - usually no more than 20 or 25 mph to keep stuff from flying off - but it's been fine. The trailer dry weight is just about 1000lbs and then adding people and stuff can take me to the load limit quickly...

Don't confuse, however, the towing ability of the Forester vs the load carrying ability for inside the Forester.
 

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2001 Forester
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1,228 Posts
I've towed a flat-bed trailer a few times - empty and loaded with people and decorations for parades - and never had any problems with the drive. Mind you, I'm going slowly - usually no more than 20 or 25 mph to keep stuff from flying off - but it's been fine. The trailer dry weight is just about 1000lbs and then adding people and stuff can take me to the load limit quickly...

Don't confuse, however, the towing ability of the Forester vs the load carrying ability for inside the Forester.
@RedErick57 There are 2 schools of thoughts regarding towing and load carry capacity. I have gotten into many heated discussion in the past regarding towing. There are some that believe the cargo carrying capacity listed by Subaru includes the tongue weight of your trailer and therefore for example, must subtract the 200 lb tongue weight from the 900 lb cargo capacity. And then there are those that believe the tongue weight is considered outside the cargo capacity of 900 lbs of the vehicle.

However what is more important to check but difficult to check is GAWR(Gross Axle Weight Rating), GVWR(Gross Vehicle Weight Rating). There is a sticker on the door from of the driver's door listing these weights. Tongue weight plays into the rear axle's GAW. So you may want to consider the idea of moving cargo from the car itself and onto the trailer if that helps lighten the rear axle weight as an example.

Also how you load the trailer is important, you want 60 in front the the trailer axle and 40 behind the trailer axle. Also balanced left to right. You can use a bathroom scale under the tongue of the trailer to find out what your tongue weight is.

I should add that when I was pulling the 3300 lb trailer, I did actually stop at a truck stop and paid about $15 to use their truck scales to find out he weight of the trailer, and weight of the Subaru's front and rear axles.
 

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2014 2.5i Limited CVT
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971 Posts
@RedErick57 There are 2 schools of thoughts regarding towing and load carry capacity. I have gotten into many heated discussion in the past regarding towing. There are some that believe the cargo carrying capacity listed by Subaru includes the tongue weight of your trailer and therefore for example, must subtract the 200 lb tongue weight from the 900 lb cargo capacity. And then there are those that believe the tongue weight is considered outside the cargo capacity of 900 lbs of the vehicle.

However what is more important to check but difficult to check is GAWR(Gross Axle Weight Rating), GVWR(Gross Vehicle Weight Rating). There is a sticker on the door from of the driver's door listing these weights. Tongue weight plays into the rear axle's GAW. So you may want to consider the idea of moving cargo from the car itself and onto the trailer if that helps lighten the rear axle weight as an example.

Also how you load the trailer is important, you want 60 in front the the trailer axle and 40 behind the trailer axle. Also balanced left to right. You can use a bathroom scale under the tongue of the trailer to find out what your tongue weight is.

I should add that when I was pulling the 3300 lb trailer, I did actually stop at a truck stop and paid about $15 to use their truck scales to find out he weight of the trailer, and weight of the Subaru's front and rear axles.
That's what I was working with too in my thoughts - but couldn't remember the term - too many things in my head lately...

But yes, the GVWR is all important and lists the max (including cargo and/or people.
 
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