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Old 07-20-2015, 12:58 PM   #21
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Cool Power for towing

For what it is worth, here is my input on gas engine/drive train towing power. I live at greater elevation (6000') than most of the other respondents. I have found that power is lost the higher you go (diesel is the exception). The best performance for elevation gain is to get the lowest gear ratio possible. Rear end ratios used to be published on the spec. tag of the truck which usually is posted inside the glove compartment, on the lid. IMHO, the 410/411 rear end ratio is the best. This ratio may not be available any longer due to EPA restrictions. Go with the lowest available. Next, go with engine horse power that will be compatible with the gross load (trailer completely packed). I am towing a 1988 25' Excella, gross load= 4000#. I can take most of the high elevation passes (11,000'+) in Colorado at 35-45 mph with a 2005 Chevy Silverado, crew cab, 5.4L engine, 410/411 rear end, using the tow feature. I average 13 MPG on reasonably flat highway @ 60mph.

I have a few friends who have gone with tow vehicles which were recommended by dealer sales, were grossly under powered/geared and they have ended up trading within a short time.
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Old 07-20-2015, 12:59 PM   #22
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Ford has missed the boat

I am sorry but the eco-boost engine just doesn't make any sense to me. They have taken about 1000 lbs out of the weight of the truck with the alum cab. They have also swapped out the V-8 with a V-6. Now inorder to get the horsepower they have added not one but two turbochargers. So when you need the horsepower pulling your 9000# trailer with a 7000 fully loaded TV the Turbo's are ON. For me that will be about 50% when I am pulling the trailer. Since I put 10,000 miles per year on the trailer the turbo's will be on about 100-150 hours per year. That means I have exceed the life of the Turbo in one year. $2500+ repairs thank you. Also the 7000# TV could be thrown around a bit with the #9000 trailer in that unforeseen event that would land your 90,000 trailer and 50,000 Truck in the ditch. I have looked at the F-150 long and hard and I just can't make that gamble. I would feel more comfortable with the Dodge and Hemi V-8 and 8 speed but it is just not rated high enough for load capacity. With 2 men in the truck and 800# tongue weight you would have enough load capacity to carry an additional 2 suitcases and a fishing pole no fish line or hooks.

I am not disagreeing that the Ford will do the job but at what cost. Would hate to be boondocking and have to leave the trailer in the wild to go get the truck fixed. Again, not the gamble I am willing to take.

Looks like the F250 will be the choice until Ford and Chrysler Come to their senses and make a real truck that will do this RV job at the 1/2 T level.

Love to hear of any success with the 2015 F-150 Miles driven and maintenance costs.

Happy Traveling
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Old 07-20-2015, 01:03 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by coloradopete View Post
For what it is worth, here is my input on gas engine/drive train towing power. I live at greater elevation (6000') than most of the other respondents. I have found that power is lost the higher you go (diesel is the exception).

~~
Small correction here. Diesel is not the exception, forced induction is the exception. All of the modern diesels are turbocharged, as is the Ecoboost, and the forced induction is what minimizes the loss of power from altitude. A naturally-aspirated diesel would also lose power at altitude.
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Old 07-20-2015, 01:17 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by gr.austin View Post
I am sorry but the eco-boost engine just doesn't make any sense to me. They have taken about 1000 lbs out of the weight of the truck with the alum cab. They have also swapped out the V-8 with a V-6. Now inorder to get the horsepower they have added not one but two turbochargers. So when you need the horsepower pulling your 9000# trailer with a 7000 fully loaded TV the Turbo's are ON. For me that will be about 50% when I am pulling the trailer. Since I put 10,000 miles per year on the trailer the turbo's will be on about 100-150 hours per year. That means I have exceed the life of the Turbo in one year. $2500+ repairs thank you. Also the 7000# TV could be thrown around a bit with the #9000 trailer in that unforeseen event that would land your 90,000 trailer and 50,000 Truck in the ditch. I have looked at the F-150 long and hard and I just can't make that gamble. I would feel more comfortable with the Dodge and Hemi V-8 and 8 speed but it is just not rated high enough for load capacity. With 2 men in the truck and 800# tongue weight you would have enough load capacity to carry an additional 2 suitcases and a fishing pole no fish line or hooks.

I am not disagreeing that the Ford will do the job but at what cost. Would hate to be boondocking and have to leave the trailer in the wild to go get the truck fixed. Again, not the gamble I am willing to take.

Looks like the F250 will be the choice until Ford and Chrysler Come to their senses and make a real truck that will do this RV job at the 1/2 T level.

Love to hear of any success with the 2015 F-150 Miles driven and maintenance costs.

Happy Traveling
How you imagine that the design life of a modern turbocharger is less than 150 hours of boost is beyond me, but if you have some actual metrics on that I'd be interested to see. I've been driving turbocharged automobiles for hundreds of thousands of miles over the last few decades and have yet to replace a turbo, though it's certainly true that turbos die on both compression- and spark-ignition engines from time to time.

If memory serves there are 8 Ecoboost drivers in my WBCCI unit, with trucks as old as 2011. None of them has replaced a turbo or had any other catastrophic failure, though 2 have experienced the problem with the early-design intercoolers in humid environments. They're towing trailers ranging from a Wee Wind to a 30' Classic.

Another of our members tows an Ambassador with an EcoDiesel, his turbos are also spinning madly and not showing any signs of disintegration.

Several others are towing with half-tons of various other brands (myself included) over hill, dale and mountain pass. I don't denigrate your choice of a 3/4 ton, but there's no reason for unfounded aspersions to be cast on the half tons either.
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Old 07-20-2015, 03:09 PM   #25
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We have a 15 F150 Lariet super crew with a 5.5' bed and the Ecoboost 3.5 engine w/tow package and 3.31 rear end and are towing our 1998 30' Excella with no problems. We have towed it up to Estes Park, CO and back down. I am very impressed with the truck, but then again I am not a GM fan.
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Old 07-20-2015, 03:11 PM   #26
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Forgot we also have the extended range fuel tank which is 36 gal
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Old 07-20-2015, 05:25 PM   #27
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Just thought I would throw in my two cents on the durability question of the EcoBoost. I have two of them, four if you include the Explorer and Escape I have. The two F150's, one is a 2011 and the other a 2015. Both Platinums. Increased payload on the 2015 by 500 lbs over the 2011. The 2011 has over 125,000 miles on it pulling horse trailers, Polaris trailers and Airstreams. Only issue on that one was an intercooler issue. No other problems. On the 2015 F150, 17,500 miles and no issues at all. About 4,500 of those miles are pulling an Airstream, either a 25FC or a 28FC. The other two EcoBoosts have about 100,000 miles on them with no issues either.

I keep the boost gauge on as one of my selected gauge options and boost typically runs very low. Not using full boost most of the time as someone suggested. In pulling through Colorado, Montana, Wyoming and then up the Jasper National Park in Canada, had zero issues pulling up the mountains. In fact, out performed many other naturally aspirated vehicles as not starving for air like most of those do. I will admit, a 3/4 to 1ton might be nice if you don't handle coming down the mountains right. Control your speed coming into the decline and use the truck gearing and we have not had an issue, even when someone pulled right out in front of us.

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Old 07-20-2015, 05:33 PM   #28
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Ford F150 delivers

I pull a 2015 27 FC with my 2013 Ford 4x4 Supercrew with 3.5L EcoBoost engine and MaxTow package and a 6.5' bed. I live in New Mexico and most often we travel to Colorado and have encountered some pretty diverse terrain and most every mile is at or over 5000 foot elevation. The F150 pulls that 27' Airstream without a whimper. It might drop down a gear on a grade or possibly 2 on a really good grade. The six speed keeps the RPMs in a comfortable range and that EcoBoost engine continues to impress me with all the power I need when towing and good mileage when I am not. Heck I average 12 to 13 while towing. All in all it is a good combination and an amazing truck.
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Old 07-20-2015, 05:43 PM   #29
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After driving a 2015 Ecodiesel I ordered a 2016 Longhorn fully loaded to tow my 2014 27'Flying Cloud. After a lot of research and then actually driving one I am going to switch from the Hemi. I have owned two RAM 1500's with the Hemi and they are an impressive engine. The Ecodiesel has outstanding fuel mileage and is one of the smoothest diesels I have ever driven. You should take a close look.
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Old 07-20-2015, 06:56 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DKB_SATX View Post

Another of our members tows an Ambassador with an EcoDiesel, his turbos are also spinning madly and not showing any signs of disintegration.
Just one water cooled turbo on the ecodiesel.

I'm pretty sure it has a bit more than 150 hours on it and it hasn't exploded yet.
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Old 07-20-2015, 07:57 PM   #31
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I REALLY enjoy readying everyone's responses, they are invaluable!

Paula, you are too funny! We own several 14' diesel box trucks for our business as I drive them places by myself all the time to get stuff for the house- Home Depot, stone yard, Tractor Supply, etc. Sometimes my husband chuckles and asks "do people look at you funny when you get out of that thing alone?" Usually! When we bought a Nissan NV last year the salesman laughed like "are you gonna let the wife drive it? Ah ha ha" - Gordon was like, that's nothing! So, I'm with you. I've driven large vehicles my whole life and they don't scare me one bit.

My primary reason for wanting to stay with a 1/2 ton for now is more about our daily lifestyle. We live right IN Dallas and parking is already a beast in our Tahoe half the time. We need something that can be a daily driver around town, pull our Airstream, and also carry us, two large Labradors, and our stuff :-) We own a business and work together so many days we are in just one car, and while I now drive a small SUV I suspect that if we have a brand new truck or SUV it'll be the shiny new toy and we'll want to drive it everyday! So we do need to not get ourselves trapped in small parking garages if possible.

I'm glad to hear there are several folks successfully and happily pulling 27-28' trailers with the new F150. We'll probably realistically have our trailer out 15-20 times/year or so for the next several years. Primarily in TX, AR, OK, etc but we may get up to CO sometimes too (we hope!).

If we are back to ~1700 payloads on 1/2 truck then the Suburban becomes tempting again. We've always had SUV's and do love the interior space they offer.

We do need to test drive the GMC/Chevy 2500, but for now we really love the new F150 on the truck side or the Suburban/Yukon XL on the SUV side.

Decisions.............
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Old 07-20-2015, 09:18 PM   #32
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After beating this poor sales guy up all day back and forth, the latest answer is that:
- On 5.5' bed, 2020lbs is the max payload
- On 6.5' bed you can get the HD Payload, which is then 2420
- He said "you can get a spring pin after market to increase that"
- He said you'd have to order the HD payload
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Old 07-20-2015, 09:46 PM   #33
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Sounds strangely familiar.

Don't fiddle with aftermarket springs right off, especially not if you're going to order the HD Payload truck in the first place. I suspect it will do pretty well as long as you're not carrying a lot of gold bars or buckets of lead shot in the bed, and it will likely handle VASTLY better with the stock suspension setup than some aftermarket buckboard springs.
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Old 07-21-2015, 05:38 AM   #34
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I just bought a 2015 last Thursday but in that process went through the order sheets checking on ordering just in case. There are a few caveats as shared already. First the fuel tank on the new model is 23 gallons, the payloads have gone up but is all is about configuration. I jumped because Ford is offering rebates as a way to get customers back after not having many trucks in stock at dealers for three months waiting for the Kansas City plant to tool up. They are for a limited time- like a month or so for two of them at least.

On the build sheets the HD payload is only available with the 5.0 engine right now. That said, I did not pursue the 2.7 small eco so I may be incorrect on items on that engine. The salesman and I literally went through the lot staring a payload stickers on many models- XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum. One definite trend was that the higher the trim level, the lower the payload most often. There were some XLT models with payloads over 2300#, something never seen when we looked at the year end clearance on the lot for 2014 models. In Nov I read that Toyota and Ford were the only two using SAE J2807 standards on their current models it is listed right in their publications. Perhaps the other companies changed recently? My truck's payload is stickered at 1720#.

As to my own experience shopping, my two favorite trucks are the Ford and Dodge style-wise. I was not that impressed with the ecodiesel. I had a 2010 VW TDI sportwagen and was burned by the potential of issues on the high pressure fuel injection ($10K to replace), the higher cost of diesel fuel (seems to be dropping for now) and the higher cost to buy. It is treated like a novelty at the dealer and they even told me to go with the hemi for really towing something like my trailer. Then there was the payload and tow rating. I am not sure that the Ram 1500 diesel was designed for bigger tow jobs- more like the 2.7 ecoboost as a moderate. It had a tow rating of I believe he said 8200# and the payload was low BUT it road like a crossover. Now, I already calculated from my own TDI experience that higher fuel cost as was in my area ate away the equivalent of 2mpg without the use of UREA or DEF. That stuff is about 0.15 per 100 miles. Not too much but still a cost. I am not convinced yet that the modern diesel is the super reliable diesel of yore with all that specialized systems used to operate them. The Mercedes I had was like a tank with a drip type heavy duty injection system. The VW, as I mentioned was nothing like it at all- much more to go wrong and very expensive to fix if it breaks. Oh and get this, the Bosch injection systems state that they require a particular mixture of lubricant in the fuel that is not available in the U.S. When that story broke VW acknowledged it but said it would be OK. They are not Bosch. This of course is VW and not Dodge but this all was going through my head at the time of shopping.
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Old 07-21-2015, 08:08 AM   #35
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Whatever you decide, make sure you don't have to wear spurs on your boots.

1989 FSuperduty, 460ci, ZF5420S trans, Dana 80 rear with 5.38. , 8' x 12' diamond plate bed with a Warn 12K winch. Very civilized and over qualified.

The new trucks are nice, but I just cant see spending what they are asking, especially when I can get an awesome medium duty truck for a fraction of the cost of new. My mileage is very good. 12-14 unloaded, 9-10 loaded with 3 cu yd of rock, 6-8 when having some fun. Insurance is much, much cheaper and replacement parts are in abundance. Besides, Ronald Reagan was president when this one was made.

There seems to be a lot of hair splitting here on what can pull / haul what. Take a look at the Kodiak and TopKick trucks. If you are going camping, the last concern will be "will it pull it?" Proven drivetrain combinations and less than a new whatever. If you have to have a brand new shiny truck that's OK. I understand.
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Old 07-21-2015, 11:59 AM   #36
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Impressive 1/2 ton OR sales gimmick??

LOL on the older truck so true! I have to share that my insurance dropped about $30 yr with the new truck go figure. When I asked why he said v6 versus v8. Yes the new trucks are scary expensive at least to me.

Btw the 2300# payload XLTs we found were 5.5 beds. They only had one 6.5 bed model and a few 8 and I did not look at them.
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Old 07-21-2015, 01:59 PM   #37
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F-150 w/max payload

Since you asked, I can report that our new F-150 Platinum with max-tow & 36 gallon fuel tank has just returned from a 2,000 mile tour of the Pacific Northwest pulling a 27'FB without any issues. Compared to our former TV, a Dodge Ram 3500 Van with a 4.9 ltr. engine, it was silk smooth and a real pleasure to drive. It was necessary to special order this vehicle as there were none to be found at a Dealer in February, but that issue may be resolved by now. Also, the Eco-boost 3.5 ltr. motor is quite efficient, the mileage was 12mpg average, and the dual turbo chargers have a great sound when they kick in. (For the first time, I bought the extended warranty just to be sure it holds up for 100k. miles.)
One surprise from Ford was that a 1,000 mile break-in was required prior to our first tow. I thought that went out in the '60's, however there are so many features on the new rig that on reflection, I'm glad that I spent that time to learn what I had prior to towing. Finally, the Costco auto program saved us a bunch off the invoice price, so if you have that program available check it out.
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Old 07-21-2015, 03:08 PM   #38
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Thanks JFRINALDI! Yours is max tow, but NOT HD payload, correct?
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Old 07-22-2015, 08:38 PM   #39
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Thanks again everyone! Truly appreciate all of your examples, experiences and insights. VERY helpful to get your real life feedback! :-)
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Old 07-22-2015, 09:29 PM   #40
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Impressive 1/2 ton OR sales gimmick??

HD payload package was only available in long box trucks with steel wheels only in previous 2014 F150.XLT base model only.

Max tow is a completely different option that gives you larger mirrors and upgraded rear bumper and requires you to order specific options in addition.
People get these confused.

I does not matter what it's rated to pull if it's not rated for the payload that is required for your trailer tongue weight, passengers,and things you will be putting in the truck.If you weigh more than 150lbs add that to your payload also.

The majority of dealership sales people and their managers have know clue when it comes to equipping a new truck to pull your Airstream properly.Do your home work ask for a towing guide.
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