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Author Topic: 5th wheel Hitch Question.  (Read 679 times)


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5th wheel Hitch Question.
« on: January 25, 2017, 08:41:20 PM »
Ok I am planning on a purchase of a 5th wheel trailer that weighs in as: 
Unloaded Vehicle Weight 13500 (lbs)
Dry Hitch Weight  2735 (lbs)
Gross Vehicle Weight Rating  16500(lbs)
My truck Tow rating is MAX 14500 (lbs)
I am driving the truck 1450 miles to pick the trailer up from a dealer. Then hooking it up and towing it back home as it sits from the dealer.  Not adding water, propane or any other items. Just a 3 to 4 day drive home. Once home the trailer will be parked in a RV park full time for the next 7 to 8 years until retirement. If it is moved again it will be short trips with this truck. When the time comes a new tow vehicle will be bought and we will travel in it.
So the question is this. For the 5th wheel hitch do I purchase the 16k hitch or the 18k hitch. There is a big price difference between the two. Any preference in brand type?


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Re: 5th wheel Hitch Question.
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2017, 10:34:40 PM »
Welcome to the forum.  I think you do not have enough truck for this FW.  Since you are going to park it for a few years, I suggest you hire someone to move it for you.  It is better than pulling it for such a long distance with your truck and risk that something might go wrong.  For that kind of FW you need at least 18k.  Wish you well.
2017 Leprechaun 311 FS
Toad: 2016 Jeep Patriot
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Home: WI
Snowbird 6 months/yr.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: 5th wheel Hitch Question.
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2017, 10:50:11 AM »
Forget the dry weight and dry hitch weight - you will never pull it that empty, even when leaving the dealer lot.  There is bound to be some water in the heater and bottom of the tank, probably at least some propane, and other odds and ends that add at least a few hundred lbs.  I'm confident you are going to be exceeding the truck max tow rating, but  just how much risk is involved in a modest overage on a single trip is arguable. The wheels don't fall of just because you went 50 lbs over, nor does the trailer completely blow away the truck, but 1450 isn't exactly a short trip either. Plenty of opportunity to hit a traffic emergency that requires a quick stop or swerve, or to encounter bad weather.

Are those weights from the actual federal weight placard on  that trailer, or a brochure or website? You want the actual weight from the placard - it is typically higher than any brochure weight. 

For the hitch, the 16k model isn't sufficient when you eventually want to tow it with that bigger truck, but if it's gonna be 8 years before you need the bigger hitch, I suppose you could upgrade then. You might want to get an inexpensive hitch now and then sell it right away to recover as much cost as you can, and buy the better one later. For the long term, you want the bigger hitch and one that both tilts and swivels, but there are several good brands available. If you buy it now, you have your money tied up, plus you have to store and maintain it for several years.

Have you priced having the trailer professionally delivered? The cost per mile is substantial, but you wouldn't need your own hitch and your own travel expenses are eliminated or reduced.
Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL


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Re: 5th wheel Hitch Question.
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2017, 07:18:15 PM »
If the DRY HITCH WT is published to be 2735#, the real pin weight coming home will likely be at least 2800# - 2850#.  Add another 200# for the hitch.  Assuming you are traveling alone, add your weight plus any "stuff" you carry in the truck.

Now go out to your truck.  If it is a 2009 or later model, it will have a yellow label on the driver door B pillar stating the max load that specific truck was designed to carry based on its' weight as it left the factory.

I am not aware of ANY ton truck that could handle that 3200# payload.   VERY, VERY FEW ton trucks have a 3200# payload.  The 14,500# Max tow wt suggests you do not have a 1 ton truck.

As others have said, hire someone to tow it to your site or include delivery in the sale price.  When the time comes, get a truck capable of towing that big of a FW (dually).
Preacher Gordon, DW Debbie
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