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Discussion Starter #1
Gents I am new to the travel trailer tow world and I am looking into purchasing one. My truck is a 2016 ecodiesel with gde tune w 3.55 gear. I think my maximum tow rating is about 8000lbs. I am looking at a trailer with a gross weight if 8487. So is this not possible with my truck or safe rather? Some didn't have a gross weight they had a dry and a cargo weight and I think you add those and get a gross weight.
Thanks!
 

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But, to answer your question, there's a difference between possible and legal. You can tow that trailer with your truck. If you use weight distributing hitch and good trailer brake controller it'll tow it fine. BUT, in a crash the insurance company might hold you liable if you're over legal capacities. Plus, in some states the police will write you up for being over legal limits.
 

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I too have a '16 with GDE ecm and trans tunes. Most I've towed is around 8900# and it did pretty well. My Toy Hauler pulls a lot of wind so that's an additional factor to the weight.

I wouldn't recommend pulling 8500# on a regular basis. I keep mine around 7500#.

What make and model camper are you looking at? Maybe we can find the dry weight and tongue weight on it somewhere.
 

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2015 Outdoorsman EcoD CC w/6.4' 4X4
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At times when the 28' is fully loaded the trailer is in the 8K lbs range. It does fine but I don't think I'd push that much more especially on long endeavors.
It's interesting you can't find the GVWR for a trailer as that's a legally required specification on the trailer VIN plate.
 

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2019 RAM 1500 Tradesman 4X2 EcoDiesel
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Gents I am new to the travel trailer tow world and I am looking into purchasing one. My truck is a 2016 ecodiesel with gde tune w 3.55 gear. I think my maximum tow rating is about 8000lbs. I am looking at a trailer with a gross weight if 8487. So is this not possible with my truck or safe rather? Some didn't have a gross weight they had a dry and a cargo weight and I think you add those and get a gross weight.
Thanks!
If you look at RV Forum--a good site--the advice would be somewhere around 6000#, leaving about a 25% margin from the rated capacity. As others have said, you could pull more, but I agree with the conservative approach of leaving a margin. One factor is where you will be traveling. I haven't done much towing with the ED yet, but I wonder how it would do with >8000# over a 7-8,000 foot mountain pass. With gas trucks, HP (and torque?) decreases considerably with altitude; I'm not sure if that applies to a turbo diesel.
 

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With gas trucks, HP (and torque?) decreases considerably with altitude; I'm not sure if that applies to a turbo diesel.
Forced induction engines (turbo, supercharged) don't suffer as much of a performance loss as a naturally aspirated engines do at higher altitudes.
Diesel powered would suffer less as the fuel injection doesn't depend as much on the O2 exhaust sensor feedback as a gasoline powered engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I too have a '16 with GDE ecm and trans tunes. Most I've towed is around 8900# and it did pretty well. My Toy Hauler pulls a lot of wind so that's an additional factor to the weight.

I wouldn't recommend pulling 8500# on a regular basis. I keep mine around 7500#.

What make and model camper are you looking at? Maybe we can find the dry weight and tongue weight on it somewhere.
So I did more research and this is the weights I found. I will maybe pull 4 to 5 hour trips to Virginia from PA. With a full truck load family of 5 and a dog.
Hitch Weight1023 lbs
Gross Weight8487 lbs
Dry Weight5981 lbs
Cargo Weight1900 lbs
 

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FWIW. Just my personal experience. I have a 2016 CC with 3.92 and air suspension. I would not recommend going too much over 7500lbs. like BH says. Also I would stick to around 29-30ft.
Since your new to this anything larger/heavier will make for a tense towing experience.
As others have said the truck can do more but if you want a more relaxing experience stick to those numbers or less.
I'm sure Vern, the towing god, will chime in, but make sure you get a good quality WDH, properly load your TT and take it slow the first couple trips. Plan shorter trips in the beginning until you are comfortable.
Hope this helps.
 

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So I did more research and this is the weights I found. I will maybe pull 4 to 5 hour trips to Virginia from PA. With a full truck load family of 5 and a dog.
Hitch Weight1023 lbs
Gross Weight8487 lbs
Dry Weight5981 lbs
Cargo Weight1900 lbs
Not too much different than what I tow. My tunes and external oil cooler help me a lot.

You can negate that tongue weight a little by loading the camper with weight in certain areas. Just shoot for close to 12% tongue weight.
 

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One year after Christmas I was traveling north on I5 in southern Oregon. It was about 40° and raining moderately. My wife and I were in her Denali going about 60 around an easy curve. We watched a half ton pick up with approximately a 24 foot trailer in tow begin to slide in the curve in a clockwise fashion and did 180° slide and went off the road to the right and into a ditch. I don’t know how much the trailer weighed but it could not have been anywhere near the weight being discussed here as it was empty. The truck and trailer were both new to the driver. Fortunately he only got banged up a bit and his two dogs were OK as well. He was not going over 60 MPH and there was no cautionary reduced speed sign on the right of the road. I was the first on the scene and state police showed up about 15 minutes later. I was concerned about the potential for fuel leakage from the rig or the propane tanks from his travel trailer. It was a chore to get him out of the truck because it was laying on the drivers door with the passenger door straight up in the air. I’m confident his truck and trailer were both totaled. I don’t know what experience the driver had or if he had any mechanical issues but I’d say probably not. I guess with your family in the truck and your new baby in tow, taking it easy would be the best course of action, especially if there are any road, weather, traffic conditions warranting extra caution. I don’t know nearly as much as some of the guys on this forum but have as much respect for towing a trailer is anybody.
 

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IMO good advice does not include using an imaginary 25 percent safety margin over & above the factory engineers safety margin IE factory specs just for fear of the unknown. No disrespect to you Slow Roller thats just another Forum blind parrot attempting to lead a blind mouse.

Better to make it known by using a CAT scale. Adjust your WDH & loading to meet specs until you cannot. After which you know a bigger truck or lighter load would be a better safer choice. As Tarheel said get a quality WDH, properly load your TT and take it slow the first couple times.

Holy Mac Tarheel now I’m cook, dish washer, toilet scrubber, & tow god? LOL

Vetrob1, Ok round the dry weight up to 6k. With batteries, propane, minimal water & supplies people commonly add almost 1,000 pounds for a best estimate wet weight of 7k. As Bounty suggested I adjust hitch & loading per scales towards a safe 12.0 percent tongue weight or 840 pounds for the 7k TT example.

Tongue weight (Assuming use of WDH) is calculated by Subtracting your truck only combined drive & steer scale weights from your scale slip with truck & TT attached combined drive & steer weight.

Additionally & in the process of getting the tongue weight down you work toward replacing or matching your unloaded truck steer axle weight. After which assuming proper tire inflation etc you will have the most safe stable set up for your truck and trailer.

You can also check your slips for other things to make sure you’re not exceeding max axle weights (3,900 each) max receiver weight (1,150) GVWR (6,950 The most commonly exceeded but perhaps the least important with respects to stability until you exceeding max axle weights. Legality however in some jurisdictions may be a different matter.) and GCVWR. (Varies by vehicle but max for the 4th gen platform 15,950)

I think that trailer is an acceptable match to your truck just where possible keep the weight from behind the drive axle & behind the TT axles. Better to have it over the TT axles.

Use a WDH with built in sway control and consider air bags or neoprene springs such as Timbergrove or Sumo. An aftermarket tune with an engine brake feature is a great safety feature as is a factory TBC. When applicable Up the long highway grades limit your sustained rpms to 3k to keep heat under control. Enjoy & let us know how she does.
 

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IMO good advice does not include using an imaginary 25 percent safety margin over & above the factory engineers safety margin IE factory specs just for fear of the unknown. No disrespect to you Slow Roller thats just another Forum blind parrot attempting to lead a blind mouse.

Better to make it known by using a CAT scale. Adjust your WDH & loading to meet specs until you cannot. After which you know a bigger truck or lighter load would be a better safer choice. As Tarheel said get a quality WDH, properly load your TT and take it slow the first couple times.

Holy Mac Tarheel now I’m cook, dish washer, toilet scrubber, & tow god? LOL

Vetrob1, Ok round the dry weight up to 6k. With batteries, propane, minimal water & supplies people commonly add almost 1,000 pounds for a best estimate wet weight of 7k. As Bounty suggested I adjust hitch & loading per scales towards a safe 12.0 percent tongue weight or 840 pounds for the 7k TT example.

Tongue weight (Assuming use of WDH) is calculated by Subtracting your truck only combined drive & steer scale weights from your scale slip with truck & TT attached combined drive & steer weight.

Additionally & in the process of getting the tongue weight down you work toward replacing or matching your unloaded truck steer axle weight. After which assuming proper tire inflation etc you will have the most safe stable set up for your truck and trailer.

You can also check your slips for other things to make sure you’re not exceeding max axle weights (3,900 each) max receiver weight (1,150) GVWR (6,950 The most commonly exceeded but perhaps the least important with respects to stability until you exceeding max axle weights. Legality however in some jurisdictions may be a different matter.) and GCVWR. (Varies by vehicle but max for the 4th gen platform 15,950)

I think that trailer is an acceptable match to your truck just where possible keep the weight from behind the drive axle & behind the TT axles. Better to have it over the TT axles.

Use a WDH with built in sway control and consider air bags or neoprene springs such as Timbergrove or Sumo. An aftermarket tune with an engine brake feature is a great safety feature as is a factory TBC. When applicable Up the long highway grades limit your sustained rpms to 3k to keep heat under control. Enjoy & let us know how she does.
@VernDiesel,

Can you help me understand something. I'm looking at the towing charts from Ram for the 2014 1500's (my year). The Hemi is rated to tow 1400 more than the ecodiesel, and the payload is 400lbs more roughly, yet it has the same axles. You mention not to exceed the axle weights, yet these are the same axles in the Hemi. It is my understanding that the only difference between our ecodiesels and the hemis is, well, just that, the engine. The axles are the same, the transmission is the same (8HP70). I would imagine the rest of the suspension components, brake system and everything else between the engine and the wheels would be the same, though I cannot verify this online.

After my own research and studying, the main reason the ED is rated lower is the cooling system we have. If these issues were resolved, and the engine was able to maintain a safe, proper temperature, I would imagine that one could safely tow the same as the hemi.

As far as safety goes, since all of the equipment is the same as the Hemi, I would think that it would be safe to tow the same weight, with the only concern being engine reliability.

What are your thoughts on this?
 

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In recent years Mfgrs adoption of SAE J2807 standards brought the cooling system into minimum safety standards & test requirements for acceleration & or time to climb a grade.(I don’t remember the specifics) But the compromised cooling system and derate made the ED fail the “safety” standard much sooner than the Hemi.

Otherwise the 4th gen ED would be very similar to the Hemi as it is in the 5th gen where they relocated the hot radiator blocking intercooler.

We can mitigate the cooling system short comings by limiting throttle to stay below derate. Mfgrs however could not for meeting the standardized J2807 tests.

In doing so we can effectively tow about the same as the like equipped Hemi truck. More limited horsepower becomes the next shortcoming as the ED actually has a slightly higher torque rating to move a slightly heavier load but with less HP cannot move it as fast.

This is why I choose the wording I do for covering CVWR which at the limits is an important tool for accessing a safe possible limit for most things brakes suspension frame etc. You can move it just not as fast. We have had people post here having towed 16,000 cvw over grades. In fact when coming down a grade with an aftermarket engine brake (tune) we have better capacity to control more speed & longer than a Hemi truck. Lots of people will tell you they are more concerned about coming down a mountain than going up it. Lol no run away traps for going up hill.
 

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Yep, cooling is our downfall. I've addressed it in my truck and have no issues going above axle weight, payload, and GCVWR ratings.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
@VernDiesel,
Thanks for the insight and solid information. I ended up buying a 2006 dutchmen 29qgs and the GVWR was 7,700lbs. I was also more comfortable towing this because its smaller than the others i was looking at pushing the weight ratings. I have a scale near me by the border of PA/NJ and plan on getting it weighed. I ordered a new Husky WDH and patiently waiting for it to get here. I pick it up in a week or so and i had to add the trailer brake controller since mine did not come with it from the factory. I installed it and ran the Alfa OBD to add it in the truck.
 

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@VernDiesel,
Thanks for the insight and solid information. I ended up buying a 2006 dutchmen 20qgs and the GVWR was 7,700lbs. I was also more comfortable towing this because its smaller than the others i was looking at pushing the weight ratings. I have a scale near me by the border of PA/NJ and plan on getting it weighed. I ordered a new Husky WDH and patiently waiting for it to get here. I pick it up in a week or so and i had to add the trailer brake controller since mine did not come with it from the factory. I installed it and ran the Alfa OBD to add it in the truck.
I own and rent several trailers and one of ours is a 2008 dutchmen four winds 29qgs. My truck tows it nice, I imagine yours will as well. Just got back from a trip last night with it that was about 400miles through some tough canyons in Utah. Averaged 14mpg for the trip. Hottest my oil got was 235 up one 6% grade that didn't seem to want to end. Started at 65mph at the bottom and ended up at 55mph at the top, I slowed down slightly to keep egts down. We were full, 6 people in the truck, 6 bikes, and the trailer and cargo.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
@gpill be in the same boat. I have a family of 5 with a shepherd. Towing should be no problem this also my first travel trailer. I've towed before but nothing this long and big.
 

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@gpill be in the same boat. I have a family of 5 with a shepherd. Towing should be no problem this also my first travel trailer. I've towed before but nothing this long and big.
Just remember that the trailer weight in only one piece of the puzzle. When you load the trailer the weight will go up significantly. Don’t travel with full water tanks -waters 8.3 lbs/gallon, so 40 gallons adds 339+lbs to your load. What Vern said about a scale is very important. Balance it critical and a good WD hitch (and a set of airbags) can make life a bunch easier..
 
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