Trailer Life Magazine Open Roads Forum: Beginning RVing: Towing capacity question
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Randbo

Concord

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Posted: 02/11/18 11:54am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for the great advice. The only sticker I found on the van shows a front GAWR of 3,400' and a rear GAWR of 3,800'. The GVWR is 7,000 pounds. According to a Ford payload capacity document, the maximum is 1,920 pounds. I found another comprehensive calculator on changinggears.com. Based on the values I researched for the van and calculated for the estimated load in the van, I think the dry weight of the trailer will already maximize the van's capacity. That doesn't give me any cushion for added performance going up hills, etc.

Sounds like we will have to shop for a new vehicle with more towing capacity.

MFL

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Posted: 02/11/18 02:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for posting back. I think you have made the right decision. Keep active on the forum, and best of luck finding something a little more capable!

Jerry





time2roll

Southern California

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Posted: 02/11/18 03:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have been pulling a 7880 GVWR trailer with a 2001 5.4 for more than a decade. Been over the Rockies, Sierras, Siskiyou and plenty more. Yes it slows a bit with grade and elevation. Slowing down is not inherently unsafe.

I did swap in some 4.10 ratio gears to keep the RPM up a bit.

In general I recommend keeping the trailer GVWR within the tow rating. If close do not expect to load a bunch of heavy items in the tow vehicle.

Probably fine if you are patient. For many a newer and more capable vehicle will give a better experience.


2001 F150 SuperCrew
2006 Keystone Springdale 249FWBHLS
675w Solar pictures back up

Las Vegas Proud

Las Vegas

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Posted: 02/14/18 10:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a 2003 F150 with a 5.4 2v and 3.55 gears. I was going to get a 5500lb dry weight trailer which would have been around 6-6500 loaded and was talked out of it by the guys on the F150 forums. I am glad I didn’t get it. Instead I got one that is 3600lb dry weight and am at around 4300lbs loaded and am pretty happy towing it. The 2v engines are dependable but just don’t have the guts to comfortably tow a large heavy trailer.

tatest

Oklahoma Green Country

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Posted: 02/17/18 03:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Ford lists maximum towing capacity for passenger vans based on GCWR - weight of empty van with full fuel and driver, pretty much industry standard for rating passenger vehicles if there are no factors calling for a lower rating. So how much of that maximum is actually available will depend on how much load is in the van. My E-350 with the same engine (but 3.73 gearing) gets a 6000 pound tow rating because the van is just that much heavier.

You can overstrain the engine as tuned for the van, it won't put out any more power than it is designed to put out full time. That's not necessarily the case for some performance tunes in special versions of pickups and some SUVs, but in the van the engine is limited to 100% duty cycle ratings. I don't know about the transmission, which rating of the E4OD got put into the E-150. I would definitely consider an accessory transmission cooler if you don't have the factory tow package with the heavier radiation and cooler from E-250/350 vans.

I suggest locking out overdrive. With the ratios in my E-350 (60-series version of the transmission) and slightly lower final drive, that has me running 2800 RPM at 70 MPH, rather that the 2000-2050 I see in overdrive. For towing, I can live with the extra noise, it is essentially the same RPM my 6.8 V-10 cruises at in overdrive, and means about 40% more HP available as you get to full throttle at that speed.


Tom Test
Itasca Spirit 29B


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