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Old 08-31-2017, 12:43 PM   #1
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Flat Towing a Ford F150

I own a 2000 Winnebago Chieftain powered by a V10. I recently towed my daughter's car on a dolly. It was a breeze to pull but I think I would rather flat tow instead of buying a tow vehicle. I have a 2014 F150 regular cab 4X4 shortbox truck which according to everything I have read can be flat towed. The curb weight is under 5000lbs so I know I'm ok on that front. Before I spend the money to outfit the truck I wanted to get some feedback from people who have towed trucks. Specifically with an RV with a V10. I know that I will be about 2000lbs heavier than the car and dolly combo and want to make sure I can pull this with my RV.

Would appreciate any feedback.

Thanks,
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Old 08-31-2017, 01:01 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jlang View Post
I own a 2000 Winnebago Chieftain powered by a V10. I recently towed my daughter's car on a dolly. It was a breeze to pull but I think I would rather flat tow instead of buying a tow vehicle. I have a 2014 F150 regular cab 4X4 shortbox truck which according to everything I have read can be flat towed. The curb weight is under 5000lbs so I know I'm ok on that front. Before I spend the money to outfit the truck I wanted to get some feedback from people who have towed trucks. Specifically with an RV with a V10. I know that I will be about 2000lbs heavier than the car and dolly combo and want to make sure I can pull this with my RV.

Would appreciate any feedback.

Thanks,
I used to tow my 2016 4WD F-150 behind our 35' 2012 Bounder. It did fine in the flat lands but can't speak for the mountains since we didn't go there.
My truck specs said curb weight was 4900 but the CAT scale said 5600.
I have a Blue Ox Avail tow bar rated at 10000#. I also had to use a 4" drop hitch to get the tow bar within 3" level thatBlue Ox recommends.
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Old 08-31-2017, 01:37 PM   #3
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Thanks,

I will weigh my truck as well. Looks like the hitch and tow bar will be within 2 inches so I should be OK there. My tow bar is rated at 8000lbs. I did tow the car in the mountains and definitely knew when I was climbing but I suspect I would have geared down without the car as well.
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Old 09-01-2017, 07:40 AM   #4
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I used to tow a 4x4 Ranger behind our 1999 36ft Pace Arrow with a V-10. The ranger with my Harley and other stuff in it had a weight of a bit over 6200. I had no issues towing it and made several cross country trips hitting the mountains as well as the flatlands.
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Old 09-01-2017, 08:56 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Jlang View Post
The curb weight is under 5000lbs so I know I'm ok on that front.
Not sure how you came to that conclusion, but if you based it on reading the tow capacity on a placard, the hitch itself or in the manual...that 5K tow capacity has some caveats.

You may already know all this but maybe not, but it will be good for other members as well.

Here's my previous response to another fella that was going to do the same thing:
All good advice but no one addressed this part that I noticed. "tow my 5000 lbs Truck”. That may be another wrong assumption but I'm glad you're realizing you need to be careful.

I know for me—when I first began trying to figure this all out—it was difficult to understand how all this weight stuff works by reading a whole bunch of short tips from 50 people. It was hard to connect all the dots so that I understood it all. Maybe you do understand it but in case you don't or others that read this don't, I'm going to break this down so you/others can really check what you're able to do.

• You have your basic MH weight as it stands unloaded when you bought it...Dry weight. Then you put all your stuff in it. Then add people, pets, water, fuel and everything else as you are going to travel with. You can keep doing all that until you max out your weight and achieve your GVWR. Your "Gross Vehicle Weight Ratio" is the MAX you can "CARRY" on board OR on the chassis.

• Now, concerning the tow vehicle and what you put in it. Your toad has a factory weight too—BUT—make sure it has everything in it too. When you go to the weigh station, you'll have the toad hooked up to your MH. When you weigh, you'll be weighing everything concerning the toad....like, the tow hitch, maybe an additional braking system in the toad, the toad itself, it's fuel, spare tire, maybe extra camping gear in the bed, etc. This is where you might be assuming something here that raised a flag to me. Your hitch rating says it's capable of 5K. Well, yes as long as your toad & MH doesn't exceed your GCWR - Gross "Combined" Weight Ratio.

So for example our MH:
• Our MH has a GVWR of 22K - so that means I can load the MH/chassis up to 22K max amount and also making sure I don't overload the front & rear axles doing it.
• Our GCWR is 26K, so that means, if I max out my GVWR at 22K, I can only tow 4K max, "EVEN THOUGH MY HITCH AND MY MH IS RATED FOR 5K". So, if I want to tow a 5K truck, I'll have to shed 1,000lbs off my GVWR, instead of maxing it out at 22K. In other words, I'll have to get my MH/chassis weight down to 21K to tow that 5K truck.

• The next thing to watch for is that whiling your loading up your MH and then go weigh it, make sure you don't exceed your front and rear axle weights. This is why you want a 4 corner weigh. That will accurately show you your total axle weight, how the weight is distributed throughout your MH and the weight report will inform you how you'll have to adjust and redistribute your weight so that your axles are not over loaded and whether your side to side weight is heavy on one side. Then, once you've distributed your weight and got your final weight, THEN you'll know what max you can tow. This weight info will also be valuable on how to inflate your tires to the proper PSI to carry that weight.

Now for me, I always like to be a little more conservative and not max out everything just because it's capable. It's easier on the entire drive train, better MPG's, better braking (especially down hills) climb better, hopefully run cooler etc. We are preparing to FT soon and we're working through all these issues as we speak. Our goal is to try to run 80%-85% of GVWR or around 21,500lbs. max + we chose a Ford Fiesta as our toad which will have a weight of somewhere around 2,800lbs. So at the end of the day "rolling down the road" we're shooting for around 24,500 or so which will be 1,500lbs. UNDER our GCWR.

Once you figure all this out for your scenario you'll KNOW where you stand and you've taken the precautions to be as safe as possible not only for you but those driving around you. NTSB has stated that 60% of traveling RV's are over weight and is dangerous.

Here's another informative link on this subject:
https://www.fmca.com/motorhome/polks...versights.html

Hope this helps.
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Old 09-01-2017, 09:24 AM   #6
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I towed a full size Chevy Blazer from Calif to Colorado and back. V10. I outran the rest of our party.

It would have been nice to have a toad brake. I was not even aware they had them back in those days.
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Old 09-01-2017, 10:16 AM   #7
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I tow a 2013 Ram 1500 (Longhorn Laramie), behind my 2013 Winnebago Vista (30T) with the F53 chassis and the V10 Triton without any issues. I've got the Blue Ox tow base and Blue Ox tow bar, I also use a Brake Buddy Classic (tan one) with remote alarm (in the event it came loose I want to know). I also run a RVi brake Towed Battery Charger to keep my battery maintained and charged with the use of the Brake Buddy (battery drain avoided). I keep it under the sound barrier (lol cruise set at 60 - 65 mph), I get passed by just about everything on the road, but that's okay cause I'm not in a hurry to get where I'm going. Oh by the way I previously pulled a 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland which was 200 pounds heavier then my Ram (go figure that out), and that was straight off the vehicle weight sticker on the door.
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Old 09-01-2017, 10:18 AM   #8
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Lots of good info about weight and I encourage you to be sure that's all worked out.

As for pulling the F150 with 4 wheels on the ground, right around 2014 I was working with a guy who was actually buying a new F150 because his current one (pretty new but can't remember the exact date) couldn't be towed that way. Basically, there may have been some change right around the time of your truck's year so you might want to familiarize yourself with your exact build date to do the research.
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Old 09-02-2017, 05:38 PM   #9
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Thanks for all the info. Greatly appreciated. I will be purchasing a Blue Ox Patriot braking system. I will also be running a wire from my plug to continuously charge my toad battery while traveling. The garage where I'm purchasing my equipment from have also been very helpful and offered a lot of great suggestions as well.
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Old 09-03-2017, 08:15 AM   #10
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I flat tow a 2015 F150 with a invisibrake braking system, but have a diesel pusher. We have no issues towing it. Just take your time in the mountains.
One issue we did have, user error, if you have automatic lights make sure you turn them to "off" when towing, as they will drain you battery.
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Old 09-03-2017, 10:36 AM   #11
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I flat tow a 2015 F150 with a invisibrake braking system, but have a diesel pusher. We have no issues towing it. Just take your time in the mountains.
One issue we did have, user error, if you have automatic lights make sure you turn them to "off" when towing, as they will drain you battery.
Did you use diodes or separate bulbs? For the invisibrake that is.
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Old 09-03-2017, 03:21 PM   #12
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Thumbs up Towing Ram or Ford

I have never had an issue with my lights, pulled both Grand Cherokee's (95,98) and 2014, now a 2013 Ram 1500 all with auto lights and I have never had to turn them off. No keys left in ignition (for unlocking steering wheel), doors locked with key fobs (in the past I would use my auto start to charge the battery before leaving in the morning), this before I learned to install a charge line to keep the battery charged. It must be a Ford thing for the auto lights, but I wouldn't know why if the vehicle is not running and the doors are locked then the lights shouldn't come on.
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Old 09-04-2017, 09:16 AM   #13
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I have never had an issue with my lights, pulled both Grand Cherokee's (95,98) and 2014, now a 2013 Ram 1500 all with auto lights and I have never had to turn them off. No keys left in ignition (for unlocking steering wheel), doors locked with key fobs (in the past I would use my auto start to charge the battery before leaving in the morning), this before I learned to install a charge line to keep the battery charged. It must be a Ford thing for the auto lights, but I wouldn't know why if the vehicle is not running and the doors are locked then the lights shouldn't come on.
I have a 2015 F-150 and the lights are not burning even though the auto lights is in the on position.
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