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Old 08-23-2016, 12:57 AM   #1
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Tow capacity?

I know this has been asked before, but I couldn't find it.

On a Class A gas rig (or any Class A I guess) how do you figure the towing capacity? What I am seeing is figures like---26000 GCWR and 22000 GVWR which I am guessing would mean you could tow 4,000 lbs if you have the unit loaded to it's max weight. Is this correct? I am seeing loads of specs for rigs that don't have much of a tow rating but see them hauling down the road with Grand Cherokees and such which probably go well over 4K lbs.

What is the proper method of figuring out how much you can tow from the manufacturers specs?
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Old 08-23-2016, 02:20 AM   #2
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The hitch receivers used on most motor­homes are rated for 5,000 pounds pulling. If you subtract the gvwr from the gcwr, you get 4000 pounds, which is close to the specification, you should not exceed any ratings for safety reasons. Front-engine coaches have a long rear overhang, which is not designed to handle a lot of hitch weight, usually around 500 pounds dead weight. So a car hauler is likely out, dolly possible, looking like four down. You should weigh the motorhome fully loaded with full LP-gas, fuel and freshwater tanks and passengers to get an actual wet weight, not dry, and subtract that from the gcwr to determine what’s left for a dolly or dinghy . Whether it’s 3,000 pounds or less that’s also assuming you adopt braking ability for the dinghy.


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Old 08-23-2016, 03:55 AM   #3
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Well you got it, most Class A Gassers can only haul about 5k lbs max. Even if they come with a 10k hitch.
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Old 08-23-2016, 06:50 AM   #4
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OTOH, most diesel coaches have a 10,000 lb towing capacity. Or more accurately they have a 10K lb. hitch. I'm not sure I'd want to tow that much with mine. Makes my 2400 lb. toad feel pretty secure though.
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Old 08-23-2016, 06:50 AM   #5
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All depends on the chassis model, how much the house is built on weights, how much stuff the owner packed AND addition to the limits of the weakest link in the towing chain. As a side note Ford has recently released a F53 with 26,000/30,000 lbs. GVWR/GCWR. Not sure who's building a house on it.

Granted there is probably a large safety margin built into the numbers and pushing the limits slightly, although never recommended, an owner might be OK 99% of the time. As I have gotten older my risk tolerance has pretty much dropped to a very small number so you won't see a Grand Cherokees behind me anytime soon. For what it's worth my 2006 coach is built on a 18,000 GVWR chassis and my normal weight is 15,500 lbs. GCWR is 26,000 so on paper I have 10,500 lbs. of towing capacity. Will I ever use it all? Never, I'll stick to 3500 lbs. CRV.

If you want to noodle the numbers deeper the link below is for model year 2016 and page 3 has the listed numbers.

https://www.fleet.ford.com/truckbbas...16_F53_F59.pdf
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Old 08-23-2016, 08:38 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sweetbriar View Post
All depends on the chassis model, how much the house is built on weights, how much stuff the owner packed AND addition to the limits of the weakest link in the towing chain. As a side note Ford has recently released a F53 with 26,000/30,000 lbs. GVWR/GCWR. Not sure who's building a house on it.

Granted there is probably a large safety margin built into the numbers and pushing the limits slightly, although never recommended, an owner might be OK 99% of the time. As I have gotten older my risk tolerance has pretty much dropped to a very small number so you won't see a Grand Cherokees behind me anytime soon. For what it's worth my 2006 coach is built on a 18,000 GVWR chassis and my normal weight is 15,500 lbs. GCWR is 26,000 so on paper I have 10,500 lbs. of towing capacity. Will I ever use it all? Never, I'll stick to 3500 lbs. CRV.

If you want to noodle the numbers deeper the link below is for model year 2016 and page 3 has the listed numbers.

https://www.fleet.ford.com/truckbbas...16_F53_F59.pdf
Thanks guys.
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Old 08-23-2016, 10:03 AM   #7
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Towing calculator

There's a simple way to figure all of this out:

RV Tow Check | Salesperson Fact Checker
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Old 08-23-2016, 12:25 PM   #8
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There's a simple way to figure all of this out:

RV Tow Check | Salesperson Fact Checker
That site is mainly for figuring trailer towing where hitch weight is involved. I've used that a couple times to figure out my stuff for my TT. Flat towing is a bit different in the hitch weight is almost nothing. But from looking at all this I'd say any flat towed vehicle that comes under that 5,000 lb hitch weight would be okay. My brother has a 2013-2014 Winnie Adventurer which I think is the 35P model. He tows a Jeep Rubicon 2dr and also at times a Jeep Grand Cherokee just fine. His GC probably weighs 5100-5200 going down the road. For 2017 you can get a 30K/24K chassis on that Winnie! I think my brothers is a 26K/22K chassis. He did remove the factory receiver and put in a heavier duty unit. I haven't seen that yet.
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Old 08-24-2016, 11:36 AM   #9
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Tow capacity limited to weakest link

Remember that the capacity of the weakest link shows what you can safely tow. There are vehicles with high GCWR that may only have a 5k hitch and a shank rated for 3.5k.
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Old 08-24-2016, 12:16 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob1340 View Post
I know this has been asked before, but I couldn't find it.

On a Class A gas rig (or any Class A I guess) how do you figure the towing capacity? What I am seeing is figures like---26000 GCWR and 22000 GVWR which I am guessing would mean you could tow 4,000 lbs if you have the unit loaded to it's max weight. Is this correct? I am seeing loads of specs for rigs that don't have much of a tow rating but see them hauling down the road with Grand Cherokees and such which probably go well over 4K lbs.

What is the proper method of figuring out how much you can tow from the manufacturers specs?
In the case you have described, you have two "Do not exceed" numbers. Do not exceed 26,000# with loaded coach and toad. Also, the toad weight should not exceed the hitch rating. So if the coach weighed 21,000# loaded, you could tow a 5000# Jeep and be within the design limits of the coach and hitch, if the hitch is rated for 5000#.

As a side note, my coach had a 10,000# hitch which I replaced with a 15,000#hitch (approved by Tiffin). I tow a 13,000# trailer with a 1500# tongue weight and am still 9,000# below my GCWR.
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