Automotive

Towing Travel Trailer

  • Last Updated:
  • May 4th, 2020 8:10 pm
[OP]
Member
Dec 10, 2012
433 posts
281 upvotes
Vancouver

Towing Travel Trailer

Doing a bunch of research on safe towing capacity on my F150. Lots of inconsistent information out there...
My rig is 2020 F150 with 2.7L EcoBoost 145" wheelbase, 4x4, super crew.
I am towing a 4800 lb dry weight travel trailer.
The GVWR sticker on the truck says 6600 lbs. So is that to say the 1800 lb difference would be to accommodate passengers, gear, etc?
Dealer tells me I'm good to tow 7600 lbs but not sure if trust that...
22 replies
Deal Addict
Sep 8, 2017
4020 posts
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GTA
You need two more pieces of information:

1) 3.55 or 3.73 axle ratio
2) GCWR (from door sticker)

If you have the 3.55 axle ratio, then your dealer is correct.

https://www.ford.com/cmslibs/content/da ... _Oct15.pdf

But there's more to it than that.

GVWR means Gross Vehicle Weight Rating. That is the maximum weight your truck can carry, including a full tank of gas, passengers, cargo, payload in the bed, and tongue weight from the trailer. You don't subtract the GVWR from the Towing Capacity.

There are three other conditions you need to check: the Load Limit (weight of passengers, cargo, and tongue weight), the GCWR (Gross Combined Weight Rating - weight of truck + trailer), and the GAWR (Gross Axle Weight Rating - how the weight is distributed across both axles of the truck).

You have to subtract payload from the GCWR. So you really might be right on the limit with a fully loaded truck and trailer.

Your truck and trailer combination needs to meet ALL of these requirements: less than the Load Limit, less than the GVWR, less than the GCWR, less than the GAWR, and less than the Towing Capacity.

I strongly suggest that you read the "Load Carrying" and "Towing" sections of your owner's manual before doing anything.

http://www.fordservicecontent.com/Ford_ ... 8_2019.pdf

This is probably the most important part related to your question:
Calculating the Maximum
Loaded Trailer Weight for Your
Vehicle

1. Start with the gross combined
weight rating for your vehicle
model and axle ratio. See the
previous charts.
2. Subtract all of the following
that apply to your vehicle:
• Vehicle curb weight.
• Hitch hardware weight, for
example a draw bar, ball, locks
or weight distributing hardware.
• Driver weight.
• Passenger(s) weight.
• Payload, cargo and luggage
weight.
• Aftermarket equipment weight.
This equals the maximum loaded
trailer weight for this combination.
Note: The trailer tongue load is
considered part of the payload for
your vehicle. Reduce the total
payload by the final trailer tongue
weight.
[OP]
Member
Dec 10, 2012
433 posts
281 upvotes
Vancouver
Thanks for that info.

I can't find the GCWR on the door stickers. Pics of stickers attached.

Axle Ratio is 3.55

The tongue weight of my trailer is 470. Total weight of family is 665. So I think I am Ok to tow this trailer?
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Deal Addict
Sep 8, 2017
4020 posts
4152 upvotes
GTA
That still leaves you 390 lbs cargo capacity in the truck (Load Limit - Tongue Weight - Passengers = 1525-470-665=390).

The 3.55 axle ratio means you have a Towing Capacity of 7600 lbs (from the chart), and a GCWR of 12,800 lbs (from the owner's manual).

The curb weight we're gonna have to estimate (GVWR - Load Limit = 6600 - 1500 = 5100 lbs).

So following the instructions in the owner's manual:

12,800 GCWR
-5100 Curb Weight
-470 Tongue Weight
-665 Passengers
-390 Remaining Cargo Capacity
=6175 Maximum Trailer Weight

Your trailer is 4800 lbs, so you're good!

Last thing to check would be the GAWR's. You can do that at a truck scale once you get everything loaded down. They'll probably be fine.
[OP]
Member
Dec 10, 2012
433 posts
281 upvotes
Vancouver
derass wrote: That still leaves you 390 lbs cargo capacity in the truck (Load Limit - Tongue Weight - Passengers = 1525-470-665=390).

The 3.55 axle ratio means you have a Towing Capacity of 7600 lbs (from the chart), and a GCWR of 12,800 lbs (from the owner's manual).

The curb weight we're gonna have to estimate (GVWR - Load Limit = 6600 - 1500 = 5100 lbs).

So following the instructions in the owner's manual:

12,800 GCWR
-5100 Curb Weight
-470 Tongue Weight
-665 Passengers
-390 Remaining Cargo Capacity
=6175 Maximum Trailer Weight

Your trailer is 4800 lbs, so you're good!

Last thing to check would be the GAWR's. You can do that at a truck scale once you get everything loaded down. They'll probably be fine.
Thanks a ton. Very helpful and much appreciated!!
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2011
6074 posts
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Mississauga
What if you had a 3.73 rear end?
Newbie
Dec 27, 2014
95 posts
101 upvotes
Toronto, ON
derass wrote: You need two more pieces of information:

1) 3.55 or 3.73 axle ratio
2) GCWR (from door sticker)

If you have the 3.55 axle ratio, then your dealer is correct.

https://www.ford.com/cmslibs/content/da ... _Oct15.pdf

But there's more to it than that.

GVWR means Gross Vehicle Weight Rating. That is the maximum weight your truck can carry, including a full tank of gas, passengers, cargo, payload in the bed, and tongue weight from the trailer. You don't subtract the GVWR from the Towing Capacity.

There are three other conditions you need to check: the Load Limit (weight of passengers, cargo, and tongue weight), the GCWR (Gross Combined Weight Rating - weight of truck + trailer), and the GAWR (Gross Axle Weight Rating - how the weight is distributed across both axles of the truck).

You have to subtract payload from the GCWR. So you really might be right on the limit with a fully loaded truck and trailer.

Your truck and trailer combination needs to meet ALL of these requirements: less than the Load Limit, less than the GVWR, less than the GCWR, less than the GAWR, and less than the Towing Capacity.

I strongly suggest that you read the "Load Carrying" and "Towing" sections of your owner's manual before doing anything.

http://www.fordservicecontent.com/Ford_ ... 8_2019.pdf

This is probably the most important part related to your question:
This ^ is good info!

Also check the hitch itself. I believe they are rated to 500lbs tongue weight (5,000lb trailer) and anything above requires a WDH (weight distributing hitch)

There is a sticker on the receiver that will indicate the above (I believe)
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Jul 5, 2004
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mrweather wrote: What if you had a 3.73 rear end?
derass did a very good job explaining everything. If that's too much info to take in (although you should learn it in time if you're going to be towing), then look on your door sticker for payload. That's the number you should be worried about because that's the number you'll almost always exceed first. Your payload is all the cargo and people added to the vehicle, including the tongue weight of the trailer.

So although an F150 with the 3.5 EB may tow 11,000 lbs, the reality is the tongue weight of the trailer will be too heavy and you'll exceed payload before you exceed the towing capacity.
So while your truck with the 3.73 rear end may be able to tow more than 7600 lbs, the read end does nothing to change the payload numbers. Your payload should be listed on the door sticker. If you can't remember other numbers or don't understand them, pay attention to payload and you'll be just fine.

Also keep in mind that most class IV hitches have a tongue weight limit of 500 lbs unless you use a weight distribution hitch. So any tongue weight over 500 lbs requires a weight distribution hitch. Also look into sway bars. If your trailer is over 20 feet, you can get some serious sway depending on the weather, your load setup, etc. It can make for a really uncomfortable drive.
Jr. Member
Feb 24, 2016
165 posts
163 upvotes
The trailer’s dry weight is 4800, that’s a useless number.

Use a good weight distribution system and you should be fine. Also be mindful of loading the trailer with your gear, you want some weight on the hitch to reduce to sway.
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jeremiahkool wrote: The trailer’s dry weight is 4800, that’s a useless number.

Regardless, Use a good weight distribution system and you should be fine. Also be mindful of loading the trailer with your gear, you want some weight on the hitch to reduce to sway.
It's not useless at all. It's actually very helpful. Most people tend not to pack several thousands of lbs of gear in their trailer. The dry weight will give the OP an idea of what they're going to be towing. What can add a lot of weight is if the OP fills the water tanks prior to heading out. If so, a quick google search will give him the weight of the added water based on the size of the tank.
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Oct 6, 2010
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373 is fantastic for off roading! Towing, meh.
DYI difficulty scale:
0-joke
10-no joke

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Jr. Member
Feb 24, 2016
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Dry weight doesn’t count the battery or propane tanks which usually are in the front adding to hitch weight, especially if a single axle trailer.
You’d be surprised how quickly weight adds up since payloads are pretty low on 1/2 tons.
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Dec 15, 2017
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Toronto
derass wrote: You need two more pieces of information:

1) 3.55 or 3.73 axle ratio
2) GCWR (from door sticker)

If you have the 3.55 axle ratio, then your dealer is correct.

https://www.ford.com/cmslibs/content/da ... _Oct15.pdf

But there's more to it than that.

GVWR means Gross Vehicle Weight Rating. That is the maximum weight your truck can carry, including a full tank of gas, passengers, cargo, payload in the bed, and tongue weight from the trailer. You don't subtract the GVWR from the Towing Capacity.

There are three other conditions you need to check: the Load Limit (weight of passengers, cargo, and tongue weight), the GCWR (Gross Combined Weight Rating - weight of truck + trailer), and the GAWR (Gross Axle Weight Rating - how the weight is distributed across both axles of the truck).

You have to subtract payload from the GCWR. So you really might be right on the limit with a fully loaded truck and trailer.

Your truck and trailer combination needs to meet ALL of these requirements: less than the Load Limit, less than the GVWR, less than the GCWR, less than the GAWR, and less than the Towing Capacity.

I strongly suggest that you read the "Load Carrying" and "Towing" sections of your owner's manual before doing anything.

http://www.fordservicecontent.com/Ford_ ... 8_2019.pdf

This is probably the most important part related to your question:
You forgot to add licence class. I used to drive a Dodge RAM 5500 for a company and it could tow 14,000 lbs. I was towing 12,000 lbs trailer and got a big fat ticket from the MTO. The reason? I only had a "G" licence. I needed an "A" class licence, no need for air brakes "Z" but for a "G" you are limited to towing at 10,000 lbs. Even an "DZ" licence holder can't tow a trailer thats more than 10,000 lbs, what a joke Ontario is.
Member
Feb 4, 2012
291 posts
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Ottawa
Lots of good info here. I agree the dry weight is not that helpful, but it is a starting point. If you want to be really conservative go look at the placard on the trailer and find out what it's GVWR is, which is the most the trailer can weigh. That is the better planning number for your rig. It's amazing how much stuff accumulates in campers.

Also make sure your tires can carry the load too. When it comes to licensing, you're supposed to register (your RGW - registered gross weight) for the combined weight of the loaded truck and trailer. An Ontario Class G licence is good for up to 11,000 kgs provided the trailer weighs no more than 4600 kgs, so you're good (fifth wheels are exempt from the 4600 kg limitation). I tend to take my RGW up for towing season and down again in the off season. We just got back from Florida at the end of March so I'm getting $220 back on my sticker.

Congrats on working to get these numbers right. It can be a lot of work and head scratching but it's good to be sure you're within all parameters.
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Apr 5, 2013
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afaik G license in Ontario is good for 26000 lbs GVW...and that dodge 5500... GVW should be about 19000 lbs
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jeremiahkool wrote: Dry weight doesn’t count the battery or propane tanks which usually are in the front adding to hitch weight, especially if a single axle trailer.
You’d be surprised how quickly weight adds up since payloads are pretty low on 1/2 tons.
You're right, but my point is that the dry weight gives you something to work from. It should also give you an idea how close you're going to be from your capacity, whether it's payload or towing.

If my trailer is 3500 lbs, I know that I don't have to worry much about payload unless I load half my host in it. I can pretty much load and go and not worry about the numbers.

Now, if my trailer is 5500 lbs dry, then I know I need to be mindful of what I put in my truck as well as how I load my trailer. I know that I can very easily exceed my payload and maybe even my towing.

In the case of the OP, his trailer isn't that heavy so as long as he doesn't overload the trailer or fill all his trailer tanks, he will be fine.

Dry weight gives people a number to go off, especially those of us who don't live anywhere near a scale.
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Dec 15, 2017
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cardguy wrote: afaik G license in Ontario is good for 26000 lbs GVW...and that dodge 5500... GVW should be about 19000 lbs
I was talking about towing with a "G" class licence, I cannot tow a trailer over 10,000 lbs but I can carry more than 10,000 lbs on the deck, limited only to the GVWR of the Dodge RAM 5500 which is 22,000 lbs.

Okay I will make it simple. I can drive anything with a combined weight of 22,000 lbs. The Dodge Ram 5500 I used to drive weighed 11,800 lbs. That left me with 9,200 lbs as the extra weight I can carry on the deck. Where do you get this 26,000 lbs number from?
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Jul 4, 2004
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MusicBox wrote: I was talking about towing with a "G" class licence, I cannot tow a trailer over 10,000 lbs but I can carry more than 10,000 lbs on the deck, limited only to the GVWR of the Dodge RAM 5500 which is 22,000 lbs.

Okay I will make it simple. I can drive anything with a combined weight of 22,000 lbs. The Dodge Ram 5500 I used to drive weighed 11,800 lbs. That left me with 9,200 lbs as the extra weight I can carry on the deck. Where do you get this 26,000 lbs number from?
You are quoting the old G license towing rules which were changed a few years ago. The current rules are that with a G licence, your combined weight must be under 11,000kg but with a pickup, you can tow a house trailer weighing over 4,600kg (although there are a few restrictions):

from https://www.ontario.ca/document/officia ... rs-licence
Class G
Allowed to drive any car, van or small truck or combination of vehicle and towed vehicle up to 11,000 kilograms provided the vehicle towed is not over 4,600 kilograms. A pickup truck towing a house trailer exceeds 4,600 kilograms, but the total combined weight of the truck and trailer does not exceed 11,000 kilograms is deemed a Class G vehicle.
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michelb wrote: You are quoting the old G license towing rules which were changed a few years ago. The current rules are that with a G licence, your combined weight must be under 11,000kg but with a pickup, you can tow a house trailer weighing over 4,600kg (although there are a few restrictions):

from https://www.ontario.ca/document/officia ... rs-licence
Buddy you are repeating exactly what I said, and using quotes that are exactly what I said to prove me wrong? LOL
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MusicBox wrote: Buddy you are repeating exactly what I said, and using quotes that are exactly what I said to prove me wrong? LOL
Maybe I misunderstood your message but it sounds to me like you were saying you cannot tow a vehicle over 10,000 lbs
I was talking about towing with a "G" class licence, I cannot tow a trailer over 10,000 lbs
It that's what you meant, this is not correct;
A pickup truck towing a house trailer exceeds 4,600 kilograms, but the total combined weight of the truck and trailer does not exceed 11,000 kilograms is deemed a Class G vehicle
The wording seems messed up to me but the rule is that in a pickup, you CAN tow a travel trailer that exceeds 10,000 lbs (4600 kgs) provided the combined weight does not exceed 24,000 lbs (11,000 kgs) (i.e. a pickup with a house trailer exceeding 4,600 kgs is considered a class G vehicle if it's combined weight is under 11,000 kgs so you can legally tow the combination with a G licence).

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