help with towing capability and tongue weight?

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eddified

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Aug 27, 2018
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I've got a Ford Transit 350. I'm trying to figure out what the tow rating is, and tongue weight. (The goal is to figure out what my limits are, as a starting point for travel trailer shopping). I looked at the sticker inside the driver's door (image here: https://i.imgur.com/qeYZf5C.jpg?1), and it tells me axle ratings, but no tow rating or tongue weight limit....

What should I do to figure out the tow rating?
 
Check out this page.......  https://www.fleet.ford.com/fleet-specifications-vdm/?sg=commercial-trucks&category=maximum%20towing%20capabilities%20-%20conventional%20towing&yr=2018&categoryId=specmaximumtowing%20capabilities%20-%20conventional%20towing&md=TransitCommercial&brand=Ford
 
The official Ford rating are also in the 2018 Ford Towig Guide - see https://www.fleet.ford.com/resources/ford/general/pdf/towingguides/Ford_Linc_18RV&TTowGuide_r8_May15.pdf

The Max tow rating is based on an empty truck and without any optional equipment, so its always higher than real life.  Start with the GCWR for your specific model and subtract the curb weight as shown on the vehicle title.  That's YOUR specific max tow rating, but it has to be further decreased by the weight of passengers and gear carried in the van.

The trailer hitch will have a rating as well, both for pulling and the trailer tongie weight it carries, both with and without a Weight Distributing (WD) hitch.

That yellow sticker should also show the cargo capacity (payload) of the van . Was that blacked out in the photo?  The cargo capacity has to be sufficient for the trailer tongue weight plus all passengers & gear carried in the truck.
 
Generally, your limiting factor is PAYLOAD.  The yellow border tire placard on the driver door latch pillar is the actual Payload for YOYR van as it left the factory.  Forget about the generic charts.  Read their footnotes, and you will see why I say that.

The maximum weight of all passengers and cargo shall not exceed XXXX lbs speaks for itself.

Find that placard.  From your payload, subtract the weight of all passengers, car seats, tools, snacks and cargo you plan to carry.  Subtract 80# for a WD hitch.  What remains is the most tongue wt you can carry.

You MUST have at least 10% of the loaded trailer weight carried on the tongue or expect excessive sway.  12% is a better target.  Assuming 12.5% tongue wt, multiply max tongue wt from above by 8 to the the heaviest GVWR trailer you can handle.  Assuming 10% tongue wt, multiply by 10 to get the absolute max TT  GVWR possible for your rig.  NOTE  Use GVWR, not dry wt.  Nobody camps in an empty trailer.  If you do not load it to the max, you have a safety margin.
 
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