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Old 02-27-2012, 05:59 PM   #1
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towing weight question

When considering what you weight can tow with a certain TV, it seems as though the manufacture would have to give worse case senerio, like towing over the rocky mountains, I live in central Florida (FLATLAND ONLY) can I get by with a little over the tow vehicle's max? We only go within 100 miles from home, no turnpikes or I-95 type roads. I have a dodge ram 1500, reese WD hitch with sway control.

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Old 02-27-2012, 06:47 PM   #2
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Lots of folks "get by" with towing over one or more of the tow vehicle's weight ratings.

I wouldn't worry much about the tow vehicle's GCWR. That just tells you the max weight you can tow under extreme conditions (such climbing a Rocky Mountain pass) without breaking something or burning up something such as a tranny or differential.

But the GVWR is a different matter. That tells you the max weight that can be on the truck chassis, frame, tires, wheels, and that the brakes are designed to stop. That one is much more serious when it comes to safety on the road. Someone exceeding the GCWR will probably be the slowpoke in the right lane holding back traffic. But someone exceeding the GVWR is looking for a place to have an accident and hurt or kill someone.

If you don't exceed the GVWR of the tow vehicle, then you probably won't exceed any of the other weight ratings, except maybe GCWR of some low-powered trucks.

Hitch rating is another area you want to comply with the weight ratings. A typical TT hitch has a receiver, ball mount (drawbar or shank), ball, and coupler. All of those parts of the hitch have their own weight ratings. Don't exceed any of those.

Grumpy ole man with over 50 years towing experience. Now my heaviest trailer is a 7,000-pound enclosed cargo trailer, RV is a 5,600 pound Skyline Nomad Joey 196S, and my tow vehicle is a 2012 F-150 3.5L EcoBoost SuperCrew.
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Old 02-27-2012, 07:01 PM   #3
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Usually it's the brakes that aren't up to the task.
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Old 02-27-2012, 07:05 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Mr_D View Post
Usually it's the brakes that aren't up to the task.
The trailer has brakes to help with the trailer. The truck should have brakes sufficient to stop the truck at full GVWR.

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Old 02-29-2012, 12:42 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by SmokeyWren View Post
I wouldn't worry much about the tow vehicle's GCWR. That just tells you the max weight you can tow under extreme conditions (such climbing a Rocky Mountain pass) without breaking something or burning up something such as a tranny or differential.
Not sure where this information came from, because the correct definition for 5th wheel tow capacity is the truck's GCWR minus the weight of the truck when loaded and ready to tow (including pin weight and everything in the truck).
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:43 AM   #6
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1/2 tons are highly over rated for towing capacity. Get at least a 3/4 ton and be safe.
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:05 PM   #7
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You have two weights of concern. First and foremost safety wise is the trucks axle/tire ratings. Do not exceed the 1500 trucks RAWR/P tire capacities which your 1500 Dodge may be approx 3900 RAWR. IMO you will be fine in that area unless you have a inbed aux fuel tank or a heavy ATV in the bed or heavy "stuff" in the bed.

Your other weight of concern is the trucks tow rating. I won't guess at a tow rating as you may have a Hemi or the tiny 4.7 gasser. If your trailer is a couple of hundred over the trucks tow rating its more of a performance/trucks reliability issue especially with the auto tranny.

Brake performance is a function of the GAWR. Example if your trailer has two 3500 lb axles = 7k braking. The 1500 Dodge has a 3700 FAWR/3900 RAWR = 7600 lb braking performance.

Looking at your profile you indicate a 26' TT. You should be fine with the Hemi as its rated up to 10k. The 4.7 V8 has up to a 7000 lb tow rating however its gonna' struggle in the hills at that weight.
The older 5.9 gasser 1500 Dodge will work also.
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:11 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by JIMNLIN View Post
You have two weights of concern.
As far as Dodge is concerned (no pun intended), you have four weights of concern:

Front axle GAWR
Rear axle GAWR

Dodge says none of these are to be exceeded when towing.


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