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Old 06-07-2012, 07:45 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by SmokeyWren
It sounds like you did a good job of matching tow vehicle to trailer. You'll probably be right up against the weight limits, but not overloaded, if you use your head when loading the trailer.

The Ford 2012 RV and Trailer Towing Guide says the 2012 Explorer with 3.5L V-6 engine and AWD requires both the factory heavy duty towing pkg and an aftermarket weight distributing hitch to tow more than 2,000 pounds. So ignore any idiot that claims you don't need a weight-distributing hitch.

My 2012 F-150 has that build-in electronic trailer sway control. I just returned from a 4,000-mile trip to eastern Tennesee, southern Ontario and northwestern Michigan, dragging my 5,000 pound TT with a Reese Strait-Line dual-cam WD hitch with sway control. Towed like a dream. Absolutely no problems with sway or anything else. No apparent conflict between the electronic sway control and the real thing built into the hitch.

GCWR on your Exploere with the HD tranny cooler and WD hitch is 10,125 pounds. To determine if you're overloaded, fill up with gas and weigh the wet and loaded rig on a CAT scale. (Wet and loaded means a tank full of gas and all the passengers normally in the car when on the road.) If your gross weight is less than 10,125 pounds, then you should be good to go. However, you must also be aware of the weight limits inside the SUV. You cannot haul a car full of linebackers and tow a 5,000 pound trailer at the same time without exceeding the GVWR. Your Explorer has two weight limits you must worry about.

The GCWR tells you how much weight you can pull, including the wet and loaded weight of the trailer, without overheating the drivetrain.

The GVWR tells you how much weight you can haul, including the hitch weight of the trailer, without exceeding the capability of the suspension.

When loaded with a family and stuff, your limiter will probably be the GVWR instead of the GCWR of the tow vehicle.

So when you weigh the wet and loaded rig, add the weights on the front and rear axles of the SUV, and compare the total to the GVWR of the Explorer.

My 2012 F-150 Lariat with the tow pkg includes a digital transmission temp gauge in the "guages" mode of the info center on the dash. Doesn't your Explorer Limited have that gauge too? If it has the gauge, then the red line is about 235. If it doesn't have the gauge then I would add a tranny temp gauge before I towed a TT over any mountain ranges.

Great information Smoke, I informed the dealer to change my WDH to the Reese Straight line dual cam, this will help in the winds. I sure your right, it's just the wife and I, so the GVWR, will be ok, the TT loaded now at 1/4 tank of fresh water, sits at 3944lbs.
I know my old F150 had a tranny temp gauge, really, with all the gadgets they put in the new Ex, one more gauge wouldn't hurt.
I let you know the verdict of what was accomplished.

Thanks, P n J
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Old 06-07-2012, 02:15 PM   #16
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Not enough suspension to control the trailer and keep it from fish tailing. Seen a lot of rigs like yours turned over on the hiway.
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Old 06-08-2012, 12:13 AM   #17
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Swapping WDH I was sold for new Reese with Dual sway control, much better, pull like a dream down the road. Thanks for the recommendations everyone.
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Old 07-05-2012, 07:56 AM   #18
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Swapping WDH I was sold for new Reese with Dual sway control, much better, pull like a dream down the road. Thanks for the recommendations everyone.
Well going on our first official RV trip tomorrow to Bodega Bay, Ca. Towing the TT which is really 19 ft, (21 with tongue), pulls really nice. I'm happy with the new WDH, Reese SC it levels the Explorer and TT pretty good. Total weight added to TT was 458 lbs ( weight as I loaded, kept most of the weight over axles of TT, 100lbs towards the front of TT. I will try to hit the scales on the way out to check overall GVWR limits, but in my calcs. We are within limits with some buffer. Only traveling with 7 gallons of water in tank to help with tongue weight. I did weight the tongue with my old racing scales, it weighed in at 376 lbs. I let you know how the tow goes after we arrived at Bodega Bay. I had a suggestion from our Explorer forum, they said use the manual shift mode of the tranny, for the hills, it will do a better job of shifting since I control the shifting points. Give it a try.
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Old 07-05-2012, 10:34 AM   #19
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Have fun ! sounds like you've done good due diligence getting ready !
fyi, most fords only need the manual shift mode if it is continual shifting up and down... otherwise just drive it normally -taking into account the clearance and wgt of the house behind you of course
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Old 07-06-2012, 03:06 AM   #20
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Have fun ! sounds like you've done good due diligence getting ready !
fyi, most fords only need the manual shift mode if it is continual shifting up and down... otherwise just drive it normally -taking into account the clearance and wgt of the house behind you of course
Thank you, yes I practiced today using the manual shift mode, much better towing, let you all know how it goes
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:19 PM   #21
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Thank you, yes I practiced today using the manual shift mode, much better towing, let you all know how it goes
Well the tow went well, not bad the normal tow mode worked well, had to use manual trans a few times, but overall it was ok the new Explorer will not bust any speed records for sure. Gas mileage, really sucks, I averaged 9 to 11 mpg, my F150 did much better.
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