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Old 02-10-2014, 05:20 AM   #1
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Back a 22' into a driveway?

Is it even possible to back a 22' Sport into a driveway on a residential street? My street is kind of the standard residential street--you know, maybe just over three car widths' wide--and I can barely back my popup into my driveway. It is possible through some trick of Airstream Magic to back my new 22' in when I bring it home in a few weeks? I will have the equalizer hitch and sway bars on, and I drive a relatively long Toyota Tacoma Access Cab, which of course restricts turning angle and adds length, respectively.
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Old 02-10-2014, 05:54 AM   #2
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You can do it!! I do it in our subdivision with an average street width with our 29' and now I do it with our 32. A Single axle of course is always trickier because it will turn on a dime. I'm not sure what you have but with tandem axles for me it's much much easier. Again, you can do it. At first Katie would stand behind me and we would talk on cell phones with mine on speaker and she would give me "words of encouragement" to help but now I just back it right in. Practice practice. Maybe take it to a big box parking lot first and practice. Good luck.

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Old 02-10-2014, 06:01 AM   #3
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I do it with my 29' and up a hill , It's easier when no neighbors are watching
just go slow and use your mirrors .
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Old 02-10-2014, 06:36 AM   #4
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I do it on a much narrower street- our street is only 2 car widths, in a short block with stop signs at each end on a very busy street. It is not angled like a campsite, it is a 90 degree angle- so it will never go in on the first try- it is a series of pull up, back up, pull ip, back up until it is in- then I give up on getting it straight and leave it crooked in frustration- i have come to the conclusion that it will always be crooked in relation to something- nothing on this lot is square- if it is lined up with the house, it is crooked to the fence or shed or something else- I learned to not be OCD about, put the truck in park, and go on in the house-
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Old 02-10-2014, 07:07 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belbein View Post
Is it even possible to back a 22' Sport into a driveway on a residential street? My street is kind of the standard residential street--you know, maybe just over three car widths' wide--and I can barely back my popup into my driveway. It is possible through some trick of Airstream Magic to back my new 22' in when I bring it home in a few weeks? I will have the equalizer hitch and sway bars on, and I drive a relatively long Toyota Tacoma Access Cab, which of course restricts turning angle and adds length, respectively.
The easiest thing to do is get a front receiver, then add a cheap triple ball to that receiver & hook the trailer to the front of your tow vehicle & back the trailer in, while driving facing forward. I have done this on both of my tow vehicles & this works great. The added bonus is that you can also use it for a bicycle rack or cargo carrier.
Good luck,
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Old 02-10-2014, 07:41 AM   #6
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The first thing you need to do is take off any sway control or undo any kind of pressure on the system, people have snapped them off by backing up with them on since it could bind.

Second, learn to use your mirror's if you don't already and that should be all you need. If the hole is wide enough to get it in, one should be able to do it. To put my trailer in my driveway, I have to back through a space between my house and a wall that after the width of the trailer leaves less than six inches on either side.

MIRRORS, Mirrors, mirrors, if one learns the correct use of them, you and can back up and put any trailer you want anywhere, if you don't, you'll be looking for drive through sites the rest of your life ;-)

Enjoy,
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Old 02-10-2014, 08:29 AM   #7
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Follow this technique, you'll have no problems :
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Old 02-10-2014, 01:45 PM   #8
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Haha That's how it was backing into my site on our Safaris maiden voyage. Nearly lost my mind with 20 drunks yelling directions. Up the windows. Turned up the radio and used my mirrors.

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Old 02-10-2014, 02:30 PM   #9
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Should not be any problem off a normal width street. The longer the trailer the easier it is to back. If there is no traffic pull across both lanes when you start so your turning angle will be less than 90 degrees.

If you don't already have convex mirrors for a wider view ad them .
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Old 02-10-2014, 03:04 PM   #10
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A good rule of thumb; if you can tow it out of the driveway, it's possible to back it into the driveway.
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Old 02-10-2014, 03:06 PM   #11
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A good rule of thumb; if you can tow it out of the driveway, it's possible to back it into the driveway.

Of course that begs the question..... chicken or egg?
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Old 02-10-2014, 04:11 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Belbein View Post
Is it even possible to back a 22' Sport into a driveway on a residential street? My street is kind of the standard residential street--you know, maybe just over three car widths' wide--and I can barely back my popup into my driveway. It is possible through some trick of Airstream Magic to back my new 22' in when I bring it home in a few weeks? I will have the equalizer hitch and sway bars on, and I drive a relatively long Toyota Tacoma Access Cab, which of course restricts turning angle and adds length, respectively.
I can back my 30' into my driveway with my Suburban which isn't much shorter than your Tacoma. However, my driveway is two car widths wide at the end which helps.

I am quite sure that I could back your 22' into your driveway.

Whether you can do so depends on skill, which varies considerably among drivers. As others have noted, stage fright affects people backing trailers.

You might want to consider practicing with cones in an emty parking lot.
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Old 02-10-2014, 04:20 PM   #13
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Smile Backing in driveway

Quote:
Originally Posted by Belbein View Post
Is it even possible to back a 22' Sport into a driveway on a residential street? My street is kind of the standard residential street--you know, maybe just over three car widths' wide--and I can barely back my popup into my driveway. It is possible through some trick of Airstream Magic to back my new 22' in when I bring it home in a few weeks? I will have the equalizer hitch and sway bars on, and I drive a relatively long Toyota Tacoma Access Cab, which of course restricts turning angle and adds length, respectively.
If you have electric control mirrors you can rotate so you can see sides [corners] of drive when on angle, this is the way that pro semi trk drivers do to back in tight spots. Bill
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Old 02-10-2014, 04:45 PM   #14
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OK My favorite trick. With Variations.

Lay down a TRACK for the roadside trailer tire to ride on - which will result in a perfectly parked RV. In bright sun this can be water. Use a spray bottle or a big pitcher. Position the trailer ready to back in, get your pitcher or spray bottle and draw a gentle curve from the trailer wheel back on the pavement turning toward the drive, over the curb, and finally where that tire will have to end up to have the whole trailer in the drive rather than the shrubs or the trunk of a tree or a pole light. Back the trailer watching the tire cover the wet trail. If it's dark a series of little flashlights marking the curve OR rope lights will work... just drive NEXT to them, not over them. Sidewalk chalk in a bright color will work too.

If the only direction you can get in your driveway is a "backwards turn" turning with the roadside on the outside of the turn arc as opposed to the inside - you can do the same thing with the right mirror, it's just a bit more difficult.

Paula
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Old 02-10-2014, 05:19 PM   #15
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Find a large parking lot and practice.You will find it very easy to back your trailer when you are calm and confident.It will also come in handy in your travels like when you pull into a stop with the only exit being the entrance you just used and now find yourself at a dead end.
I came upon a flooded road in MN a few years ago and it was blocked off with a State highway patrolman telling everyone to turn around.Me with a F350 Supercrew longbox and a 28ft Airstream backed up a half a mile on a narrow county road and found small private drive with trees on both sides turned around and off we went.Had I not been confident with my backing ability and experienced no telling how long we would have been there.
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Old 02-10-2014, 05:45 PM   #16
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I have never heard of using water before, not a bad idea. I have used orange extension cords ,ropes etc. Now I carry a set of cheap orange cones from walmart. My main use is to be able to park square where there are no references
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Old 02-10-2014, 06:13 PM   #17
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Find a large parking lot and practice.You will find it very easy to back your trailer when you are calm and confident.It will also come in handy in your travels like when you pull into a stop with the only exit being the entrance you just used and now find yourself at a dead end.
I came upon a flooded road in MN a few years ago and it was blocked off with a State highway patrolman telling everyone to turn around.Me with a F350 Supercrew longbox and a 28ft Airstream backed up a half a mile on a narrow county road and found small private drive with trees on both sides turned around and off we went.Had I not been confident with my backing ability and experienced no telling how long we would have been there.
Same kind of situation happened to us but we needed to do a U-turn right there or spend hours waiting for an accident clean up. Lucky for us we had a single axle and with a little maneuvering and the help of the State Patrol we were on our way. Single axle rigs do respond quicker and are easier to back up than multi axle rigs in short places, despite of what you hear here.
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Old 02-10-2014, 06:17 PM   #18
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Whatever you do, under no circumstances watch Desi until you are safely parked. And remember "trailer brakes first".
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Old 02-10-2014, 06:29 PM   #19
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Go slow. Have one person to guide, and only listen to that one person. They are there more to tell you if you are about to hit something on your blind side. Did I mention to go slow? I back up my 31' uphill slanted into a driveway. If you have nice neighbors that don't park on the street it makes it easier.
OK, so now here is my secret trick that I use when backing. So don't tell anyone
Place both your hands on the bottom of the steering wheel palms up. Grip the steering wheel. Then stick your thumbs out. The direction your thumb is pointing is the direction your rig will go. This is an easy reminder on which way to turn your steering wheel.
Not sure if I mentioned this, but go slow!
Have fun!
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Old 02-10-2014, 07:03 PM   #20
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Best thing to do is slam your had in the door, get mad as hell, hold it flat to the mat and don't look back.


O WAIT! (That was for towing in the mountains)

Backing up....

Drink 3 beers if no one is going to watch or direct...

If Wife is helping add 3 more total of 6

If Neighbors are directing / watching add 3 per neighbor

Ah what the hell just get a 30 pack.
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