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  1. #1
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    Default Is my towbar legal?

    I was recently stopped in a road block and the traffic officer checking the vehicle asked me where my towbar 'certification plate' was. I didn't have a clue. I wasn't towing at the time so there was no further issue and no fine was issued to me.

    I have a GobiX combination bumper/spare wheel carrier/tow hitch with loose towplate and high lift jack points fitted on my LC 76. I am very happy with the product I bought.

    I approached the fitment centre where I purchased and fitted the bumper and they expressed surprise at the request, but contacted GobiX for me and obtained a copy of a test certificate issued by a laboratory in Brakpan. This report clearly states that it '..does not imply approval...of similar parts that have not been tested.' Only applies to the sample provided-which, by the photos looks like a shop prototype.

    The test numbers all appear to satisfy Toyota's 3,500kg tow capacity for the vehicle and it is tested at a 140kg vertical load-where is not stated-ie, on ball or on mountings. The test specification is SANS1505-1-2007 ED 2.3 CLAUSES 5.2.

    I noticed that two 79's in the shop had Toyota OEM towbars with specification plates attached.

    My question is, what does the law actually say about certification, plates etc? What specific regulations deal with this? A 2h Google search has not helped much at all.

    The reason for my concern is that:
    • Some fitment websites state that a towbar has to be 'SABS Approved'. I guess that means SANS now.
    • Some sources say that they must have a 'SABS stamp', with the allowable tow mass also displayed.
    • The test must be for both the towbar and the loose drop plate.
    • Some warn that failure to have the spec plate will result in any insurance claim relating to towing with the vehicle being rejected.
    • The liability one may assume in the event of an accident.


    There appears to be many opinions about but not very much direct reference to the actual law.

    Can anyone provide any concrete information on the subject of towbar legality in South Africa?

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Very interesting and relevant



  4. #3
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Interesting thread.
    My car has a OEM removable goose neck, no plate

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  6. #4
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Geez.......quickly went to check my Hardbody....also bumper/towbar combination.....mine has a Nissan sticker next to the coupler.....i think a lot of us do not consider that plate/sticker as important....raak te gemaklik.....
    Last edited by chris dippenaar; 2021/10/13 at 06:59 PM.

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  8. #5
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Quote Originally Posted by rob wilson View Post

    ..............The test numbers all appear to satisfy Toyota's 3,500kg tow capacity for the vehicle and it is tested at a 140kg vertical load-where is not stated-ie, on ball or on mountings. The test specification is SANS1505-1-2007 ED 2.3 CLAUSES 5.2.

    My question is, what does the law actually say about certification, plates etc? What specific regulations deal with this? A 2h Google search has not helped much at all.

    There appears to be many opinions about but not very much direct reference to the actual law.

    Can anyone provide any concrete information on the subject of towbar legality in South Africa?
    SABS 1505-1 extract below.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

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  10. #6
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    What happens to homemade bumpers and towbars?

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  12. #7
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Only read this thread now. Will most definitely go and look tomorrow if my towbar has something like this. I have never heard about this and must confess I have never paid attention either.
    Johan Swanepoel

    "Nkabe ke ngwana wa morago"

  13. #8
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    My DC has the original towbar and there is no sticker nor plate - have never been questioned on the legality.
    Robert

    '98 Isuzu 280 DT D/C 4x4, home made roof rack
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  14. #9
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    So my 97 Hilux has a Bosal fitted towbar.
    Checked now. Got stamped number and following recommended ratings….75kg down, 850kg pull

    I pull ton trailer around…..
    Robert van den Berg...(fully vaccinated with two Pfizer jabs & certified)

    '98 Daihatsu Rocky 'The Kitty' (jabbed with 50ppm)
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  15. #10
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    I checked the vehicles in our household now. Ford, Toyota, Nissan, Subaru - all have stickers or plates on.

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  17. #11
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Checked all the cars before I left home.

    Amarok: factory fitted towbar. Nothing
    105 series: factory fitted towbar. Nothing
    Swambo's Tiguan: Factory fitted electric towbar. Nothing
    Mike

    Out in the bush!

    2012 Amarok with a transfer case
    1956 Series 1 (now in boxes, Covid delayed the rebuild)
    1999 Land Cruiser 105 EFI

  18. #12
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Every towbar should have a plate or stamp stating max ratings,ie: tow weight and vertical load. Vertical load is on the ball. And the design should have been tested to the SANS specs for towbars.
    If your towbar says max tow weight is 850kg then you should not be towing a 1 Ton trailer

  19. #13
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Stupid question time, where is this tag supposed to be?
    I can't see one on mine.
    I don't tow right now but I'd like the option of a camper trailer one day.

  20. #14
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    I have a Frontrunner towbar. Checked some time back and has a sticker on bar very difficult to see lying underneath vehicle stating "150kg". No visible plate. See date is 2007 for abovementioned SANs doc'. Vehicle is 2009.
    Last edited by Sneaky Pete; 2021/10/14 at 10:25 AM.
    Peter
    SOMETIMES I WAKE UP GRUMPY,

    SOMETIMES I JUST LET HER SLEEP!

  21. #15
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chopped View Post
    Stupid question time, where is this tag supposed to be?
    I can't see one on mine.
    I don't tow right now but I'd like the option of a camper trailer one day.
    Just checked. My Amaroks is fitted to the plate that holds the 7 pin female plug. STARTREK towbars, towing capacity 2500 kg, vertical weight limit 100 kg.
    Johan Swanepoel

    "Nkabe ke ngwana wa morago"

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  23. #16
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Hi

    Interesting thread. So I might have a problem with my aftermarket bumper / tow ball combination when it comes to an insurance claim?
    Could anyone post a photo of these plates perhaps?

    Want to go chat with the guy that build mine.
    2018 Triton 2.4 Di-D 4x4
    Echo 2 Legend

  24. #17
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lappies Labuschagne View Post
    What happens to homemade bumpers and towbars?
    Well, looking at this thread............ILLEGAL
    Jakes Louw
    2012 Jeep Sahara Unlimited 3.6 V6
    Percivamus

  25. #18
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    as a rule of thumb:

    If not OEM approved don't fit it.
    2019 Wildtrak 4x4 Bi-Turbo - Current
    2020 Ford Fiesta 1.0 Ecoboost Titanium auto - SWAMBO's new car and she loves it.
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  26. #19
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lappies Labuschagne View Post
    What happens to homemade bumpers and towbars?
    Have a sticker made up at a sticker shop, plak hom op en gaan aan met die lewe
    Attie


    Ford Ranger 3.0Tdci Super Cab 4x4
    (workshop whore)


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  28. #20
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    Default Re: Is my towbar legal?

    OEM Toyota Rav4 Towbar has no sticker or plate anywhere. Permanent goose neck type

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