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Author Topic: Can my truck handle this camper ? New to campers  (Read 3656 times)


  • Posts: 1
Can my truck handle this camper ? New to campers
« on: June 09, 2016, 02:40:12 PM »
I have a 2014 sierra 1500 standard 6ft box, I'm planning on buying a camper and found one for a good price however it weighs around 1900lbs. It's a 1978 vanguard. My trucks payload is 1750 I believe. Also I need to drive it about 3000km. If I were to install airbags would that be enough to not destroy my suspension for that trip ? What would be best airbags to install I'm pretty new to this. Thanks for anyone's help.


  • Posts: 3
Re: Can my truck handle this camper ? New to campers
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2016, 12:58:55 AM »
Well, I don't have any idea about the airbags and also I don't own a trailer. But, I always think that it is somewhat risky to drive a trailer for a very long distance, if the person is not the professional driver. Recently my friend brought his new camper with the help of professional haulers. You can also think of hiring the professional. You can have a peek at these guys.

Great Horned Owl

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  • Lake county, IL
Re: Can my truck handle this camper ? New to campers
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2016, 07:11:07 AM »
Air bags help the springs ans shocks. They don't take any load off of the tires or axles. They also do give the brakes any help.

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Re: Can my truck handle this camper ? New to campers
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2016, 07:23:37 AM »
Just in case everyone didn't catch it, the OP is talking about a truck camper.

You can find the actual payload for your truck on the yellow sticker on the pillar behind the drivers door. If your payload is 1750 and the camper weighs 1900, you're going to be overweight. Air bags and helper springs may help you carry it better, but they don't raise the payload rating of your truck. You must also account for the other weight in the truck such as passengers etc.
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But I am not sure you realize what you heard is not what I meant

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  • Posts: 3
Re: Can my truck handle this camper ? New to campers
« Reply #4 on: September 28, 2016, 02:59:07 PM »
I wouldn't recommend doing that. I carry a 1900lb camper that loaded weighs close to 3000lbs, and puts me right at my weight limit. My truck is a 1997 Ford F250 heavy duty. You would be at least 1,000lbs over your limit.


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  • Posts: 5
Re: Can my truck handle this camper ? New to campers
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2016, 02:11:43 PM »
As they said in Jaws "You're gonna need a bigger boat."....or in this case TRUCK.


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  • Posts: 45
Re: Can my truck handle this camper ? New to campers
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2016, 12:24:22 PM »
I have pontificated on RV overloading to the point it has probably upset people.  But overweight is overweight, no matter how much a person thinks it "feels capable."  Feel free to check my other posts on here.  I honestly believe half or more of all TCs on the road are rolling over at least one weight limit.  Your family's safety and that of fellow road occupants is too important to play around with overloaded vehicles, and the liability is huge; become involved in a fatality or injury accident, and any attorney worth his bar exam will discover the overweight condition and exploit it, even if it's not the direct cause.  Ugly scenarios include a huge judgement against you, your insurance carrier rejecting the claim due to violation of stated limits, and your personal wealth being destroyed.  That's exactly what happened to my pool contractor.  The 36" tires on his lifted 2500 Duramax looked tough, but had load capacity way below the stock tires.  Towing  triple axle toy hauler, he had a blow-out.The overload numbers were crazy - nearly 1000 lbs. too much on each rear tire. Only a one ton dually would have been legal on all limits with his monster RV combo, but the factory tires on his 2500 would likely have prevented the accident from occurring.  It was tragic.  Two people killed, another never to recover fully.  He ended up with voided insurance and $3.5M in judgments against him.  No more pool company.  He had to sell everything just to scratch the surface of paying the injured parties.  His wife divorced him, and he died a broken human being, both in the financial sense and the heart.... a lot of guilt and sorrow.

In your particular case, a quick Internet search of 2014 1500 Sierra's (no idea if your's has 4x4 or other options that impact weight) suggested a payload of no more than 1800 lbs., so your 1750  is probably accurate  based on your knowledge of actual curb weight and placarded GVWR.  Payload, unless qualified otherwise, would need to include your truck's fuel, all passengers, and the gear that you take camping.  With four people, that can easily hit 1000 lbs., depending on how light you can pack.  Add that to the actual weight of the camper - propane, water, generator if you take one, firewood etc.  Using the 1900 lb. estimate for the Vanguard, you're starting overweight before adding any of the afore mentioned weights to your set up. The rig you propose putting together could easilly be 1,200 lbs. or more overweight for a typical road trip.  Hello squat and sway!  More important, consider axle and tire weight limits.  Whatever you end up with, I strongly encourage you to hit the scales at a local truck stop or state facility empty and then fully laden.  Guessing does not work.  Scales range from free to less than $20 for two axles - money well spent.  Your concern regarding the 3000 km journey is  good place to start, but you must look at your long term usage plan.  My guess is that your 1500 Sierra is inappropriate as a TC hauler, unless you focus on an ultralight pop-up; even then a lot of care would be required to stay in limits.  A word about airbags ... they will enhance your handling and seat of the pants feel, and realistically do make a rig safer, whether operating on the fringe of legality or well within the "comfort zone."  I highly recommend them for any pick-up or SUV that is going to be hauling significant loads.  But don't count them as weight capacity enhancers.  They are not.  You might consider a travel trailer instead.  Or wait until you're ready to spring for a heavier duty truck before getting into a TC.  I realize my response is a "buzzkill," but I'd like you to be open-minded to reality.  Good luck as you consider your options.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2016, 12:31:09 PM by zippinbye »
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  • Posts: 2
Re: Can my truck handle this camper ? New to campers
« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2016, 10:45:36 AM »
My suggestion 1200lb will be limit. 1500lb+ little bit higher and it could harm your suspension. Best wishes for your new tactical campers.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2016, 10:32:14 PM by roseawebs »