TT too heavy?!

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Pheniox05

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Starting to get into the market of buying a TT, I have a 2012 F150 3.5 with max tow, 3.73 rears. All numbers I can find show payload 1,700 lbs, GCWR 17,100 and GVWR 7,650. Family of 5, all kids are young. Could i comfortable tow a TT with a unloaded weight of 7,260/ GVWR of 9460 (these numbers are from manufacturers site)
Thanks.
 

SpencerPJ

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Answer, absolutely not. Payload is on a yellow sticker in driver's door jam. Mfg are notorious for publishing numbers that are lower than reality. You need to be thinking 25’ long, 7000# loaded as max numbers, and that’s if you truly have 1700# of payload available.
 

Pheniox05

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Guess I’m going to have upgrade to a 250, with a family of 5 I was looking at 32-35 total length. I assume a 250 gaser would be enough?
 
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Gary RV_Wizard

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The engine is rarely a critical factor - it's the driveline, rear axle, suspension and chassis/hitch receiver that make the big differences. Tires sometimes as well. You should be looking at the Ford (or GM or Ram) towing guides for the truck model & configuration you are interested in. Among very similar configurations of the same model there is often 2000-3000 lb difference in tow ratings and several hundred lbs of payload difference.

Ford has excellent towing guides, and GM is pretty good too. Ram does it mostly with an online tool.



Looking at the 2012 Ford Tow Guide, it appears your F150 could conceivable manage a trailer that large, at least on paper. However, with the kids and a large-trailer tongue weight, I think you run out of payload before you hit the 11,300 lb max tow. Tongue weight is a minimum of 10% of the loaded trailer weight, so you would be looking at 900-1000 lbs for that alone. Nor would I be comfortable suggesting that a 30-35 ft trailer is ok with a fairly light duty truck that is already heavily loaded. A case of a tail bigger than the dog, I think.
 
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Pheniox05

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The engine is rarely a critical factor - it's the driveline, rear axle, suspension and chassis/hitch receiver that make the big differences. Tires sometimes as well. You should be looking at the Ford (or GM or Ram) towing guides for the truck model & configuration you are interested in. Among very similar configurations of the same model there is often 2000-3000 lb difference in tow ratings and several hundred lbs of payload difference.

Ford has excellent towing guides, and GM is pretty good too. Ram does it mostly with an online tool.



Looking at the 2012 Ford Tow Guide, it appears your F150 could conceivable manage a trailer that large, at least on paper. However, with the kids and a large-trailer tongue weight, I think you run out of payload before you hit the 11,300 lb max tow. Tongue weight is a minimum of 10% of the loaded trailer weight, so you would be looking at 900-1000 lbs for that alone. Nor would I be comfortable suggesting that a 30-35 ft trailer is ok with a fairly light duty truck that is already heavily loaded. A case of a tail bigger than the dog, I think.

On paper for my VIN does show a heaving tow rating... according to RV tow check, my max trailer loaded for my truck numbers would be 9460 lbs with a Tongue weight of 13%. But this is using an RV app and I haven’t towed an RV before. If I bump it up to 15% TW, the app says 8600.
 
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jackiemac

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Firstly, welcome to the forum.

We looked at a lot of Dodge Ram 2500 Laramie trucks as we wanted a top of the range with leather seats etc. We struggled to get one with enough payload to tow our 10,000lb TT but managed eventually.

If buying from a dealer (or indeed privately) ask them to photograph the sticker for you if you are not physically there.

We are really happy with what we have. The dealer did say we could do it with the 1500 but when we did the numbers even he said that it would be better with the 2500.

Good luck with your search.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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according to RV tow check, my max trailer loaded for my truck numbers would be 9460 lbs with a Tongue weight of 13%. But this is using an RV app and I haven’t towed an RV before. If I bump it up to 15% TW, the app says 8600.
There is a fair amount of judgment call in this. The specs say the truck will do it, which basically means it won't break down, at least not within the warranty period. :( It doesn't say you will like doing it, or feel safe in a crosswind, or not soil your underwear if a driving emergency happens.

Another factor is that the truck specs are NOT tuned for RV trailers only, and RVs are harder to tow than low utility trailers. RV trailers have high frontal wind resistance, high center of gravity, and are very susceptible to sidewinds, so it's better to stay below the maximums. If you were talking about a 250 or 350, they are designed for heavy hauling. A 150, though, is designed and equipped more like a passenger vehicle with a big open trunk. Tradeoffs are made for ride comfort and fuel economy rather than handling big loads.
 

Pheniox05

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New York
Firstly, welcome to the forum.

We looked at a lot of Dodge Ram 2500 Laramie trucks as we wanted a top of the range with leather seats etc. We struggled to get one with enough payload to tow our 10,000lb TT but managed eventually.

If buying from a dealer (or indeed privately) ask them to photograph the sticker for you if you are not physically there.

We are really happy with what we have. The dealer did say we could do it with the 1500 but when we did the numbers even he said that it would be better with the 2500.

Good luck with your search.
There is a fair amount of judgment call in this. The specs say the truck will do it, which basically means it won't break down, at least not within the warranty period. :( It doesn't say you will like doing it, or feel safe in a crosswind, or not soil your underwear if a driving emergency happens.

Another factor is that the truck specs are NOT tuned for RV trailers only, and RVs are harder to tow than low utility trailers. RV trailers have high frontal wind resistance, high center of gravity, and are very susceptible to sidewinds, so it's better to stay below the maximums. If you were talking about a 250 or 350, they are designed for heavy hauling. A 150, though, is designed and equipped more like a passenger vehicle with a big open trunk. Tradeoffs are made for ride comfort and fuel economy rather than handling big loads.
Thanks, sounds like I’m gonna have to upgrade to a 250 before buying a TT
 

Lou Schneider

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35 ft. Is a lot of sail area for a pull trailer. The difference between bumper pull and 5th wheel trailers is with the hitch behind the rear axle, a bumper pull trailer has a lever arm to affect the direction of the tow vehicle. Push right on the hitch and the tow vehicle will rotate around the rear axle and turn left, creating sway. A 5th wheel hitch is directly over the rear axle so side forces go straight to ground and don't have any leverage to affect the direction of travel.
 

CharlesinGA

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Lou has stated it well. Its not the weight its the huge amount of surface area. That is why you see pics of semis turned over on the interstates after a high wind. If this was a 35 ft trailer loaded with 9000 lbs of bricks, it would not be an issue. It is the tail wagging the dog, plain and simple.

While no fun to drive, the longest truck you can get, such as a Super Duty with 4 dr cab and a full 8ft bed is the best at controlling a trailer that long. Five kids makes it difficult to find a small bunkhouse, but that is the best thing to do. It will also allow you to fit into more sites at campgrounds and thus more versatility and selection.

Charles
 

Pheniox05

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Lou has stated it well. Its not the weight its the huge amount of surface area. That is why you see pics of semis turned over on the interstates after a high wind. If this was a 35 ft trailer loaded with 9000 lbs of bricks, it would not be an issue. It is the tail wagging the dog, plain and simple.

While no fun to drive, the longest truck you can get, such as a Super Duty with 4 dr cab and a full 8ft bed is the best at controlling a trailer that long. Five kids makes it difficult to find a small bunkhouse, but that is the best thing to do. It will also allow you to fit into more sites at campgrounds and thus more versatility and selection.

Charles
Thanks, I’ll have to keep my eye out for a used super duty. Sorry I might have misspoke in the beginning, have a family of 5, not 5 kids.
 

SpencerPJ

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You will be more happy with a 3/4 ton. Do your homework, get some actual numbers off trailers and still highly consider weights and payloads with F250. You can load them up and eat away from that payload easily. Shoot for maxing out at 80%, gives you extra room and lessens the white knuckle experiences while towing.
 

MN Blue Skies

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Our expensive upgrade story... We started out with a TT and a Dodge Durango. The Durango didn't do the job so we bought a 1500 Dodge Ram. Then we decided to upgrade to a 35' 5th wheel. DH (Dear Husband) wanted to get a 2500 Dodge Ram. DW (Dear Wife) insisted that we buy a used one ton Ram.
We shopped and found a deal on a used one ton Ram. DH is very proud of his one ton. DW is happy. The moral of the story is consider buying a bigger truck than you think you will need. In our case it was a one ton Ram.
 
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scottydl

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Thanks, I’ll have to keep my eye out for a used super duty.

You'll be much happier with that choice, for the size trailer you're considering. As others have stated, TTs are essentially giant sails and anything near/above 30' would be shaky for most 1/2 ton trucks. Think of it as the tail wagging the dog. My prior tow vehicle was a gas Suburban C2500 (3/4 ton) with a 10,000# towing capacity. Our 32' TT weighs between 9200-9500# loaded, and I can't imagine towing with anything smaller. In fact, I had a few brief white-knuckle experiences with the Burb when towing on uneven back roads that caused trailer sway.

Heavier duty trucks generally have upgraded engine cooling, transmission, brakes, suspension, and tires... all of which will make the towing experience much more do-able. I'm actually looking forward to the towing experience with my new-to-me diesel dually truck I bought last summer. It's intended for an eventual upgrade to a 5th wheel, but will do nicely with our TT until then!
 
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