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Old 04-11-2010, 01:01 AM   #1
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Question F-250 TV Question

After reading the many posts between the F-150 and F-250 I have settled on a F-250 because of the additional payload capacity. I'm debating between a 6.7L V10 4WD model with 4.10 rear end and a tow rating of 12500lbs and a 5.4L V8 model with a 3.73 rear end and a tow rating of 10000lbs. Both trucks have a 142 inch wheelbase. My trailer is a 1977 31' Excella 500 that weighs 7500lbs loaded and has a 880 lb tongue weight loaded. It also weighs 6620 when hitched to the tow vehicle with a weight distributing hitch. The V10 may be more truck than I need. With the 5.4L I would be at exactly 75% of maximum tow rating which is recommended on these boards. Anybody out there tow a similar size/weight trailer with a F-250 with the 5.4L engine and 3.73 rear end? If so, I'd like to know if the power is sufficient on the grades.

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Old 04-11-2010, 06:18 AM   #2
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I towed our 31' (7700# loaded) with an F250, 5.8, manual transmission. Because of your location sort of in the mountains, I'd recommend the V10. You really don't want to be crawling up the hill with slow moving semi trucks passing you.

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Old 04-11-2010, 12:14 PM   #3
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I know it may cost more - but what about going diesel vice gas - especially if you plan on keeping the TV for a while and gonna put some miles on her?

Just some input...
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Old 04-11-2010, 02:08 PM   #4
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I've never heard anyone say "I wish my TV had less power." The V10 is a good motor and as far as I know has not had many problems. As an old racer, our mantra was there is no substitute for cubic inches. Power also provides an additional margin of safety. I agree with JFScheck regarding considering the diesel if you can afford. I have an F350 7.3 diesel and I can hardly tell my 8000 lb. Flying Cloud is back there sometimes. Now I'm waiting to order a 2011 F250 6.7 diesel. It is an incredible truck if you can afford it.
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Old 04-11-2010, 03:07 PM   #5
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I don't believe you said if you were looking new or used. If you go used, be sure to get a 2004 or newer. Both the 5.4 and the 6.8, from 2003 and older, were prone to spitting spark plugs out of the heads. Ford supposedly fixed the problem in 2003.

I say this because I had a 2001 Excursion with the 6.8L V10. It was a really nice truck, and it towed very nicely. But it spat a plug right out of the head, and Ford wouldn't cover it. Upon doing some research, I found it was a very common occurence. In my case, I had 36,348 miles on the truck. I had a 3 year 36,000 bumper to bumper and a 7-year 100,000 powertrain warranty that the dealer sold me. Well, I thought the powertrain warranty would cover it, but they wouldn't. Told me it was a known defect and they wouldn't cover it.

So anyway, if you get either one, I'd recommend you buy one that is a 2004 or newer because Ford supposedly corrected that defect sometime in 2003.

On my own part, I fixed the Excursion myself and traded it in on a new Dodge Ram 2500 4dr 4wd truck with the Cummins turbodiesel. Like others have mentioned here, I can tell you first hand....diesel is the way to go when towing. My Ex was a nice rig, but I love my Cummins! If you're sold on Ford, look at the new Powerstroke. It's gotten really good marks.

Best of luck whichever way you go,
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Old 04-11-2010, 03:50 PM   #6
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Hi, I'm not a Diesel fan so I would go for the 6.8 L V-10 engine. The V-10 has pretty good horse power, but tons of torque. I tow with a 5.4 L engine, but my tow vehicle and trailer is much lighter than yours. Even though I love my 5.4 L engine, I can not recommend it for you.

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Old 04-11-2010, 04:13 PM   #7
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We tow our 28 ft, 78 Ambassador with a 2001 V10, 4x4 has 3.73 gears, but I think 4.10's would be ideal - those steep hauls up in the Sierra's would be a bit easier with 4.10 gears, IMHO...

As you probably know, the Excursion is built on the F-250 frame, and I wouldn't haul with anything less! It's just about the ideal TV for us, with the long WB, we get no sway, even from passing big rigs...we use an Equal-izer WD hitch, which works great for us and is just about the easiest to hook/unhook...IMHO

Our complete rig weighs about 14,500 lbs, the TV weighs about 8400 lbs when hooked up with the WD hitch...the V-10 has all the power we need in the flat lands, but has to down shift for those steeper hills I mentioned...

We bought our Ex used with about 112K miles, but got a super deal, as not many people want these rigs these days - but for us was just right! We get about 9.6 MPG overall, at 55 mph cruise speeds combined with those treks up in the hills...

We like to run over to Half Moon Bay, or up to Bodega Bay, and up in the Sierras, East of Placerville, North of Hwy 50 into the State Forest Campgrounds...One of newest fav's is a place called Indian Creek Campground (BLM) just north of Markleeville - lots of good fishing nearby, and the campground has hot showers and freshwater avail - there's a dump sta close by - but bring you genny if you're going to need any 110 AC 'juice'...

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Old 04-11-2010, 07:21 PM   #8
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I use a 150 for our TV, but I have three 250s in my business and I have switched fro gas to diesel over the last four years and for towing heavy loads the diesels in my opinion have a decisive edge over the 5.4 gas engine.
They are more up front but in the long run it evens out.
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Old 04-11-2010, 07:52 PM   #9
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Ford F-250

A few minutes ago, I was watching channel 4 NBC news from Los Angeles.

They named a few of the WORST vehicles that are currently available.
At the top of the "WORST" list was the Ford F-250, for having many serious safety defects. They did not go into any detail as to what those defects are.

Another "BAD" vehicle was the Cadillac "Escalade". Again, no explanation.

I didn't catch where channel 4 said they got that information.

Something to think about and investigate.

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Old 04-11-2010, 08:24 PM   #10
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Many small truck expedited freight operators have backed away from diesel since they've got the gas engines so well designed now that the mileage hit is not a factor as it once was (esp. with the ultra low sulfur diesel) AND the maintenance and long term repairs of diesel end up costing more than just running the V10 until they've beat the frame apart...

My 5.4L with 3.73 gears gets 8-12MPG towing; if you're into economy you set the cruise control at 56mph and think mellow thoughts until the next fill up...

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Old 04-11-2010, 08:29 PM   #11
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I towed with a 2000 F250 V10 with no problems and then traded it for a 2003 F250 V10 and towed with it, the only problem being a alternator that went out at 84,000 miles. I sold the truck with 120,000 miles. Both were excellent tow vehicles. I thought that I would benefit from the better, albeit slight, fuel economy of the diesel. My 2007 F250 with the 6.0 diesel now has 95,000 trouble free miles, but the economy is only 2 mpg better than what I was getting with the V10, and the towing performance is not noticeably better with the diesel. I got a consistent 10 towing with the V10 and I get 12 with the diesel. Empty the V10 was about 13.5-14 and the diesel is 16-18. Towing the biggest difference is that the diesel will pull steep mountain grades at a lower rpm. I won't being going back to the diesel in the future given the price of diesel fuel, the cost of maintenance and the initial cost of the diesel option.

Concerning the 5.4 I think it is a little light, given the empty weight of the F250 and the size trailer you plan to pull.

PickupTruck.Com - Part 1: 2007 Heavy Duty Shootout

This article details pretty well the differences in real world towing betweent the gas and diesel engines. Performance wise,the V10 is very close to the diesel.
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Old 04-11-2010, 08:52 PM   #12
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It's a 2010

Thanks for the replies so far. I'm looking at 2010 models with a 142 inch wheelbase. I want a truck that can fit in my garage and the Supercab with the shorter bed will. According to the "rule of thumb" for trailer length and tow vehicle wheelbase, 142 inches is about a foot short of the recommended 154 inches. However, 142 inches is longer than any 70's model suburban/passenger car that this trailer was built for. My parents towed this trailer with a 75 Cadillac coupe de ville, a 75 Ford F-250 supercab, 84 Ford F-250 supercab and a 95 Ford F-350 Crew cab dually. With the exception of the caddy, my father never needed to use a sway control device. Just to be safe, i would use a friction sway bar with the new truck. I don't expect the trailer to push me around. I am going with the V10 4WD.
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Old 04-11-2010, 09:05 PM   #13
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Apparently Consumer Reports rated the 10 worst made cars on the road and the F-250 is on the list.
"The F-250 Lariat earned both the "worst value" and "worst safety performance" distinctions from Consumer Reports this year. It received an overall score of just 37 out of 100 points for predicted reliability, fuel economy, depreciation, ride, owner costs, accident avoidance, front-seat comfort, acceleration and owner satisfaction." the report did not say what engine was rated.
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Old 04-11-2010, 09:45 PM   #14
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We spent 10 days on the beach at Pismo Dunes State Rec Area last Thanksgiving holiday...For those unfamiliar with this area, it is a wide open beach/dune area run by Calif State Parks, where you run right on the beach and camp alongside and into the dunes behind the beach - offroad buggies, moto's, side-by-sides, and sand rails are allowed to run up into the sand dunes...

The Thanksgiving holiday attracts hundreds, if not thousands of dune runners; their trailers of all sorts; toy haulers; travel trailers; and tow vehicles of every kind, modified or stock that you can imagine...

Which brings me to my 'unofficial' survey of the rigs I saw on the beach...and I'd have to say that there wee probably as many Fords as all the other brands combined...many diesels were pulling the larger, heavier toy haulers, more than I've ever seen in one spot before!

I think the big, beefy, Ford Super Duty 'image' appeals to many in the 'toy-hauler' crowd...

We all have our favorite brands, but you can't deny there's a whole lot of big Fords hauling TTs and 5ers around our highways every day...
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