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Flat towing is an appealing option when you need to transport your personal vehicle. It wears the tires evenly and does not require yet another vehicle to tow your car. However, not all vehicles can be flat towed. If you own a Ford Expedition, you might be wondering if you can flat tow it. We’ve completed the research to bring you this answer.
You can flat tow any Ford Expedition if you have 4WD. Your Ford Expedition owner’s manual provides information on whether or not your vehicle can be flat towed. It also offers instructions on how to flat tow your vehicle, if applicable.
We will describe the flat towing procedure in depth so you can perform it on your next adventure. We will also discuss alternatives to flat towing if your vehicle cannot be flat towed.
How To Flat Tow Your Ford Expedition
The flat tow procedure is the same for all model years from 2017-2021. Here are the steps you will follow.
Ensure you have all the supplies you need
You have to connect your Expedition to your trailer before you can flat tow it. Make sure that you have everything you need to do so, including a tow bar, a base plate, safety cables, and a towing harness. Consult your towing vehicle to find out if there are any other supplies you need to tow a vehicle.
Hitch the Expedition to your towing vehicle
You should already have your towing vehicle, and you should know whether it has the capacity to flat tow your Ford Expedition. If it does, you can begin hitching the Expedition to your tow vehicle.
To Engage Flat Towing
1. Start your vehicle.
Start your vehicle and make sure that it is in 2H mode. Find this mode on your gear shifter.
2. Turn your vehicle off.
After you’ve shifted into neutral, turn your engine off but leave the keys in the ignition. You will know that you’ve completed all the steps correctly so far if your car gives you a message stating “transmission not in park.”
3. Press and hold the brake pedal.
4. Enable neutral tow mode.
Go into the settings on your display and choose “general settings.” In the menu, choose “advanced settings.” Select “vehicle” from that menu and then select “neutral tow.” When you hold the “ok” button, you’ll get a message letting you know that you’ve activated the neutral tow mode.
5. Neutral tow is engaged.
If you have the push to start option, you can lock your car’s doors and keep the keys with you. Otherwise, leave your keys in the ignition for the tow duration if you have a physical key instead of a push to start button.
You may want to get a duplicate key made if you don’t already have one so you can have access to your vehicle along your trip without disengaging tow mode each time.
To Disengage Flat Towing
When you reach your destination, you can exit the neutral towing mode.
1. Put the car back in 2H mode using your shifter.
2. Start your Expedition’s engine.
Make sure not to take your Expedition off the towing vehicle until you are finished disengaging the tow.
3. Turn the engine off.
Leave the key in the ignition in the “on” position. For vehicles with push to start, press the start/stop button twice. Do not engage the brake pedal while you do so.
4. Shift out of neutral and into park.
You will know you’ve successfully disengaged tow mode when you see a message.
5. Disconnect the Expedition from the tow vehicle.
Alternatives To Flat Towing
Across all model years, you cannot flat tow your Expedition if you don’t have 4WD or 4×4 low mode. Both of these are necessary to flat tow successfully. In the case that you don’t have these, you can use a car trailer.
How To Tow With A Car Trailer
Like with flat towing, you need to make sure that your towing vehicle has the capacity to tow your Expedition. You should also check the towing capacity of the car trailer.
1. Connect your car trailer to your towing vehicle.
Follow the instructions given by your specific car trailer and towing vehicle to make sure they are connected properly.
2. Load your Expedition into the car trailer.
Align your tires with the ramps you will use to load your car trailer. Then, carefully drive your Expedition onto the trailer, keeping the wheels aligned with the ramps. Finally, pull up into the trailer so that 60% of your Ford Expedition’s weight is at the front of the trailer.
Take a look at the video below to see the process. While the trailer in the video is a bed, the process is similar using a box trailer.
Does Flat Towing Add Miles To A Vehicle?
Yes. The odometer adds miles according to the movement of the axle and tires. Since they are moving when a vehicle is being flat towed, the odometer will count the miles.
How Fast Can You Flat Tow A Ford Expedition?
You do not have to go a certain speed when you are flat towing a Ford Expedition. You can go as fast as the towing vehicle and the local speed limits allow.
Can You Flat Tow All Configurations Of The Ford Expedition?
Yes, you can flat tow any Ford Expedition that has four-wheel drive.
Now that you are aware of how to flat tow, let’s take a look at some tips to make sure that you can tow safely.
Do Not Attempt To Reverse
Think about it. You are driving a large recreational vehicle, such as a motorhome, that has the added weight of a car trailer. Inside that car trailer is a large SUV. The weight and size of this setup make attempting to reverse dangerous.
Do Not Attempt To Flat Tow A Vehicle That Shouldn’t Be Flat Towed
It may be tempting to try to flat tow a vehicle even when it is not designed to be flat towed. After all, you are pulling the vehicle along the road on tires you use daily. What is the worst that can happen?
When you flat-tow a vehicle that is not made to be flat-towed you run the risk of damaging the transmission. While your vehicle may be okay, if you flat tow it anyway, you may find that it doesn’t work correctly when you are ready to drive it on its own.
Use A Supplemental Braking System
Some states now require you to use a supplemental braking system when towing a vehicle. If your state doesn’t, however, it is still worth looking into. A supplemental braking system allows your towed vehicle to stop when your towing vehicle does, which reduces the risk of collisions.
Get An Alignment
Before you begin your towing journey, schedule your vehicle for an alignment. If your car is properly aligned, it will remain straight when it is being towed, and your tires won’t get worn down unevenly.
Do Not Flat Tow Your Vehicle To The Mechanic
If your vehicle needs work and you have the means to do it, you might be tempted to flat tow your vehicle to the mechanic instead of having to wait for a towing service. This is a bad idea because it can cause further damage to your vehicle.
Flat towing requires your vehicle to continue moving, sometimes at a comparable speed to regular driving, without the support of fluids and lubrication. If your car already has something wrong with it, flat towing it will put unnecessary strain on your vehicle.
Ford Expeditions across all model years are able to be flat-towed as long as they are 4WD. If you are unsure if your vehicle is 4WD or can be flat towed, be sure to contact your car dealer for further clarification. Flat-towing a vehicle that cannot be towed may result in costly damage.