Truck suggestions?

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an RV or an interest in RVing!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.
Joined
Oct 7, 2006
Posts
13
Location
North Carolina
My wife and I have a 1999 Jayco Eagle 302FK loaded down with most of our personal belongings (that can comfortably fit that is).? But, we bought it and my uncle helped with his big GMC to get it to its current RV spot.? In December, we have to move from the current park and, call it a hunch, but I don't think our Honda Civic will be able to pull the TT!!!!!? I know we'll have to trade-in for a pickup that will pull this big boy, but I have no idea as to what to start looking for.? I need suggestions on not only will pull it effectively but will also be gentle on our extremely limited funding.? I hope to be able to get around $7k-$7,500 for our car and would love to be able to use no more than that on a truck.? Considering that we're becoming missionaries, you can factor in that luxury is not part of the option package on our soon-to-be truck!? Even if we have to step back in time quite a ways to get a decent deal, that's no biggie to us.? We just want something reliable to drive around mainly the Southeast raising support to hopefully leave for Africa next summer.

Please share your expertise with me!!!!
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
74,650
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
You have to get the actual loaded weight of the trailer to determine how much truck is needed to tow it. If you cannot get the trailer weighed, use the trailer GVWR (gross weight rating) from its DOT raing plate, usually found on the front left side somewhere.

This is a sizable trailer and you will need a heavy duty SUV, van or truck to pull it safely.  I recommend a 3/4 ton (F250 or 2500) or one ton (F350 or 3500), but cannot suggest what engine type or size and other equipment without the weight information.
 
Joined
Oct 7, 2006
Posts
13
Location
North Carolina
RV Roamer,
Thanks for the reply!  I remember the GVWR being somewhere around 7,500# with a cargo capacity of about 2,500#.  Does that help?

So, are the pulling capabilities of an F250 and its Ford van 'equivalent' the same?
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
74,650
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
I remember the GVWR being somewhere around 7,500# with a cargo capacity of about 2,500#.  Does that help?

Is this RV a travel trailer of a fifth wheel? In other words, do you need a pick-up truck (for the fifth wheel hitch) or would a van or SUV do (travel trailers with a ball hitch)

Since you will be living in the trailer, it is likely that you will be at - or beyond - the 7500 lb GVWR. That means the truck needs to be able to haul a 7500 lb load on a regular basis.    That's beyond the capabilities of just about all half ton trucks/vans, so a 3/4 ton model would be a good choice. 3/4 tons are designated F250 by Ford and 2500 by Dodge and Chevrolet.  As far as I know the import trucks don't offer a 3/4 ton model yet and you will be looking at older, used, models anyway.

Using the 2002 Ford towing specs as a guide, An F250 with the 5.4L V8 engine and an automatic transmission comes up a bit short if equipped with the 3.73 rear axle (sometimes called the "fuel economy" axle).  With the 4.10 rear axle, it can handle trailers in the 8600-9400 lb range, depending on the type of cab (regular, extended or crew) and length of the bed (box (6.5 or 8 ft).  Regular cabs and short beds increase the towing capacity, while the bigger, roomier cabs and long beds decrease the towing weight available. A V10 or diesel powered truck would be even better, but a diesel is probably outside your budget unkess it is pretty old.

An F250 van would probably be similar, though towards the lower end of the weight range becasue the van body is heavier.

Chevrolet and Dodge trucks and vans are going to be similar, with the smallest engines needing the 4.10 gearing to tow but the larger engines doing OK.
 
Joined
Oct 7, 2006
Posts
13
Location
North Carolina
RVR - Our RV is a travel trailer.  It sounds as though I definitely need to have the 4.10 rear axle.  So, don't diesels get better gas mileage than gas?
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
74,650
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
Not "definitely" because it depends on the other mechanical components as well.  Smaller engines need higher rear axle gearing to pull heavy loads, but larger engines may not. But yes, you are probably going to end up with a tow vehicle that has a 4.10 rear axle.

Diesels get excellent fuel economy when pulling heavy loads. They may also get better economy than large gas engines, whether towing or not. Small gas engines get good fuel economy when the truck is not loaded, but suffer badly wen heavily loaded, e.g. towing.  But diesels have a much higher purchase price too, and you can buy a lot of fuel with the difference. 

Since you have a travel trailer, you can use a van or SUV as well as a truck for towing.  Pick-up trucks are popular and so are SUVs, so the prices tend to stay high. Diesel pick-ups in particular are high priced.  Don't know about the full-sized vans, so check around in your area. A full size van is an excellent tow vehicle and great for travelers.
 

otrider

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 9, 2006
Posts
69
Location
Home is Ohio but here for now (Denver)
Hi,
I think You said the regular cabs and short beds have a better towing capacity. How does an extended cab  affect the capacity?    I have a F250V10 with an extended cab and the short bed.  The towing capacity is rated at 12,500.  I'm hoping for a fifth wheel but will need a sliding hitch.  Any known problems with this type of hitch?    Any general info/ models to look for or stay away from? Any info on the type that folds down flat into the bed of the truck or am I out of that ballpark with the short bed and needing the sliding hitch? 
Thanks
Pam
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
74,650
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
An extended cab or crew cab body simpy weighs more than aregular cab.  T Gross Combined Weight Rating of a truck is fixed based on its mechanical components, so every pound of increased weight  of the truck itself is subtracted from the amount remaining for towing a trailer.  That's why 4-wheel drive and duallie trucks often have lower tow ratings than 4x2 and SRW configurations - the extra weight of those items has to be subtracted from the GCWR as well.  SImply put, every pound on or in the truck reduces the pounds remainng for towing.

You don't need a sliding hitch just because you have a short bed truck.  You may want one for various reasons, e.g. peace of mind, but it is not a necessary piece of equipment to tow a fifth wheel.  With some trailers a slider would be totally superfluous and with many others it might be of use once in awhile, but only with a few trailers would a slider be something you used on aregular basis.  And youcould still get along without it.  However, I know of no particular problems with this type of hitch, though it is one more moving part that requires lubrication and could fail or jam in some way.
 
Top Bottom