December 10, 2012
Filed under RV Tech Q&A
My question is about flaps on the back of a motorhome to protect a towed dinghy vehicle. I have an 18-by-48-inch flap (a solid piece) on each side of the hitch tube bolted directly to the bumper. I have seen the loose brush or bristle flaps, 4-inch-wide strip flaps and solid one-piece flaps on motorhomes hanging by a chain a few inches below the chassis. Which of these systems are considered most effective? Does a solid piece from the bumper down create an airflow drag? The loose bristle or brush type seems to almost reach a horizontal position when the motorhome is at highway speeds. Thanks.
Thomas Kelly Jr. l Dallas, Texas
The nearly solid shields work best but create a huge wind drag that could affect your mileage. The brush or hula skirt types allow air to pass more easily, but when they lift from the wind passing under the coach they do lose some effectiveness. I prefer a soft “bra” and windshield cover on the towed vehicle, as these don’t increase wind drag as much. Roadmaster makes a front-end guard that attaches to its towbar assemblies, and it’s an effective piece of hardware, as well.
— Ken Freund