Getting a decent truck that will allow you to pull your trailer is probably the most important thing you’ll have to remember when it comes to boondocking and other types of mobile home vacations.
There are plenty of vans for this type of holiday scenario, all you have to do is hitch your RV or 5-wheeler to the back of your truck and you’re away to go.
Not only does this save you massive amounts of money on hotel and food costs, but you can use it for transportation the rest of the year.
The Ford F-150 is a classic model of full-sized tow truck – more on these definitions later! – and is a great choice if you want to pull your trailer or camper van.
However, if you end up having too large a payload in the back of your camper van, then you might start to experience some issues.
Because the major question that you might be asking yourself right now is: how much weight can a trailer truck pull exactly?
Well, it’s not just a matter of how heavy the payload in the back is, you have to think of your engine power as well as maneuverability.
Because how much weight exactly can an F-150 truck pull? How much can you load it up with before you start to experience issues with your engine?
Will having a 5-wheel RV on the back of your F-150 cause you many issues? Are trucks really the best mode of transport for towing your heavy truck or trailer?
Well, you won’t have to wonder for much longer, as we’ve got all the information that you need for your tow truck capacity questions.
We’ll first discuss the differences between different types of tow truck, then we’ll discuss gross weight capacities and how they’ll affect your driving.
We’ll also give you a brief look at the competition, making sure that you have the right truck for your towing needs.
Remember: you might not have to spend the big bucks to get the right type of truck to pull your RV. You might even find that the F-150 does not stack up against other rival trucks.
The Different Terms Used To Describe Types Of Truck
If you’ve ever been on the website of your favorite tow truck maker, you might be confused by some of the terms that they use to describe the various sizes of their vehicles.
That’s because there are a lot of different terms to describe something that you might actually be familiar with.
In the world of tow trucks, as with anything else – it’s all about learning the specific definition of terms!
You have to speak the tow truck lingo!
You might have come across the following terms and be left scratching your head: light-duty truck, rabbit truck, super crew, half-ton truck and a few others that have slightly baffling names.
Now, this might not apply to the Ford brand of trucks, but we have certainly heard many different competitors similarly describing their trucks and might have even applied the same term to a Ford truck.
So what are the differences between a rabbit truck and something like a super crew?
In the case of a ‘half-ton truck’, this does refer directly to the weight of the vehicle itself, more like it refers to the payload that it can carry.
So the term ‘half-ton’ directly refers to the suspension system of the truck and how much weight that it can hold.
So, by using this method, you can see how the payload that you’re carrying affects the capacity of the truck.
Many trucks such as the F-150 have a higher payload, so could be described as having one higher than the half-ton truck.
These trucks are often referred to as a ‘three-quarter ton’ pickup. These usually have gas or diesel engines.
These trucks are extremely powerful and can tow up to 13,000 pounds at their highest towing capacity.
However, this weight classification usually does not include the passengers or any other gear that you might be towing.
If you are including all the gear and multiple passengers, then it would be more reasonable to suggest that your truck can carry around 6,000 pounds.
This will be regarded as the towing capacity of your vehicle.
How Does The Payload Affect Towing Capacity?
The payload is what you are towing behind you, this will either be your 4-wheeled or 5-wheeled RV.
This will include the carrying box and the suspension and will not include the number of passengers that you are carrying.
The payload will directly affect the tongue, which is the part of the payload that is hooked onto the back of your vehicle.
Having a larger payload weight will usually affect the pressure that is put on the tongue, which in turn will affect your car’s ability to move and the top speeds that you can reach.
The pressure of the tongue will affect the total weight of your trailer, as well as how evenly that weight is distributed across the trailer and the truck itself.
These two weights are a delicate balancing act, and if one is too heavy for the other, then you might see the whole thing catapulting over into the road.
The higher the total weight of your truck and your payload will determine the amount of pressure that is placed on the tongue in the center.
The increased amount of weight that you put on your trailer’s tongue can actually make the rig more stable – although this is only to a point.
The reason for the increased weight being more stable is because there will be less shaking and your trailer will succumb to far less sway, which can often afflict lighter trailers.
Usually, you’ll be driving your trailer down the motorway in a more or less straight line, so having a heavier trailer will mean that you have a lot more stability.
If you have a trailer that is too light or has too much weight in the back, then you can expect it to veer dangerously from side to side. This is the cause of a lot of accidents.
The back end of the vehicle will topple to the side, pulling the front vehicle off its axis and potentially off the road entirely.
A heavier trailer will also not bounce over uneven surfaces, which is one of the major plus points of having one.
The tongue has a lot of weight which will cause it to act like a sort of anchor, keeping both itself and the pulling vehicle firmly on the floor.
However, if you have a tongue that is loaded with too much weight, then you can experience cracks and splits that will cause the payload to become detached from the truck.
Again, if your payload becomes detached when moving at high speeds, then you can expect the whole thing to get pitched to the side of the road.
To prevent any issues with over or under-loading, any truck manufacturer will recommend that your tongue weighs about 10-15% of the overall weight of both your payload and your trailer.
This weight will be including any passengers and loaded gear.
So if you are going with the F-150, then you should have its weight calculated first (with passengers and gear) to calculate the weight of your tongue.
If you have a payload that is around 2,000 pounds, then you should factor in an additional 1,000 pounds for passengers and gear.
So this will leave you with only 1,000 pounds of weight for your tongue. Anything over this will lead to the splitting or swaying issues that we have listed above.
We would recommend that you put your tongue in between the car and the payload before driving.
What Does GVW Stand For?
This stands for Gross Vehicle Weight and it means the weight of your entire vehicle, including the payload and the trailer itself.
This includes the truck’s dry weight, which is basically what it weighs without any gear or passengers loaded within it.
The weight of gear, fuel and passengers is not included in the GVW.
This should be added on afterward. So when anyone asks you the GVW of your F-150, then you should make sure that it is divested of people and objects before calculation.
What Engine Does Your F-150 Have?
The F-150 generally comes with a modular engine, although you can get them with a diesel model.
However, diesel engines are reserved for larger vehicles such as the three-quarter and one-ton trucks.
Traditionally, your F-150 will not have diesel as this would really not be an efficient use of fuel.
Why Should You Get A Diesel Engine?
Diesel engines do give you great output in terms of power and torque, being more energy-dense than other types of engines. This means that they are more fuel-efficient, making them great accompaniments for pulling heavier trailers.
However, the F-150 is a smaller vehicle, usually not designed for heavy-duty hauling, so you probably won’t need a diesel engine. The fuel efficiency for this vehicle will be markedly less than some of the others.
One thing you’ll be wanting to figure out is how much you’ll be spending on your engine. Very often you’ll be spending a lot more money on something that isn’t that much more cost-effective.
In reality, you probably won’t get that much mileage as you would with a gasoline engine, so we would opt for the latter, which is often much cheaper.
However, if you are going to be towing a diesel engine, then we would definitely recommend that you go with a diesel engine, as it will give you more power.
If you are pulling a heavier payload such as a small boat or a camper, then we would certainly suggest that you get yourself a truck with a diesel engine.
Is A 4-Wheel Drive Better For Heavier Payloads?
There will be numerous factors that determine this question, the 4 main ones will be: where do you live? How much money are you prepared to spend? Where will you be towing your trailer?
If you have a rear-wheel-drive truck, then your power will be mostly concentrated in the back of the vehicle. If you get an F-150 truck, then you can expect the power to be in all four of the wheels, making for an ultimately more powerful machine.
However, with a greater wheel power comes a greater price tag. If you want your truck to be more powerful, then you should be prepared to pay a fair whack for the privilege.
However, there is a difference between ‘all wheel drive’ trucks and ‘four-wheel drive’ trucks.
Having a car with four-wheel drive will come in very handy when you are experiencing frosty, rough or loose driving conditions.
With your wheels digging into the tarmac, you will get more of a hold on much more slippery surfaces. This will also come in handy when you are towing a truck behind you.
However, bear in mind that engaging all of the wheels requires a lot more petrol, which will cost you a lot more in fuel.
This will eat up some more gasoline, which in turn will result in you spending a lot more money. If you are thinking of taking your F-150 out for more than one spin over the summer vacation, then you’ll have to be aware that you’ll be spending a lot more money overall.
This is where your living area will be important when considering fuel costs.
If you live in a particularly icy or snowy location, you can be sure that you’ll probably be spending more on fuel with each passing week.
If you are up in Dakota or Canada, then you can be certain that you’ll need a four-wheel drive most of the year.
If you end up trapped in the remote regions of these areas, then you can be sure that you will experience hypothermia. Most of the F-150 models of trucks come with a four-wheel locking system with a limited-slip differential.
A limited-slip differential is when the front wheel moves slightly differently from the rear wheel, which means that you’ll be able to gain more traction on more slippery surfaces.
You should only activate this differential if you are working in wintery conditions, otherwise, you can see yourself having to tackle some pretty treacherous steering.
If you are continually driving with your high traction settings on, then you can be sure that you’ll wear down your tires a lot quicker than you would with other vehicles.
This can also damage your hubs and lead to decreased functioning with your suspension and brakes.
The only time that you’ll have to use this four-wheel drive on the ‘low’ setting is if you are struggling to pull your camper out of a tricky situation. If you are pulling a boat out of a wedged snowy area, then we would recommend this setting.
However, some trailer towers have said that they’ve owned an F-150 for years and never had to engage their high four-wheel drive setting.
You should avoid driving using this low setting, as it will eat up fuel and cause a lot of wear and tear on your tires. Remember: this setting is designed for severe weather conditions and should only be used as such.
Can You Tow A 5-Wheel Trailer With An F-150?
Technically, you can, although the vehicle’s makers Ford certainly don’t recommend that you do this.
This is because a 5-wheel camper is very large and requires a certain special goose-neck hinge that you can only find on your camper van.
This type of hinge will certainly alter the movement of your trailer, which sadly the F-150 will not be able to accommodate.
If you try hitching your 5-wheel drive to your F-150, you will certainly expect some splitting as the hinge struggles to accommodate a larger trailer.
Is An F150 Good For Towing Larger Capacity Trailers?
This model of truck has been specially commended in many fields as being the best in its class for towing. This has been reflected in the amazing sales that it has had over the years.
The high price point of this truck reflects the fact that it has been tried and tested and is very popular amongst consumers.
The amount that your F-150 will tow all depends on the model of F-150 that you’re buying, as well as the trim package of the model.
Looking at the variations of this truck, there are a few models currently available for your price range:
- The XL
- The Lariat
- The King ranch
- The Limited Edition
- The Raptor
The standard model for the F-150 truck is the XL, although you can get plenty of limited edition models that will really work with your trailer.
In fact, some of the limited edition models have been specifically designed to make towing a lot easier.
For example, both the Raptor and the Platinum models have amazing off-road features which are perfect for negotiating treacherous terrain or lugging very heavy trailers across the country.
This has a very powerful engine, which is why it can carry things that have a very high weight.
A lot of these engines are gasoline, which means that you won’t be shelling out that much for the original price of the engine or the added fuel costs.
However, when it comes to how much your engine will be able to tow, there will be a few factors that you’ll need to bear in mind.
How Strong Is A F-150 Engine?
In simple terms, the equation follows: the more powerful your engine, the greater the amount of weight that you’ll be able to move.
The greater engine power translates to power and torque, both of which are crucial for towing another vehicle.
There are several types of engines that you can get with your F-150 engine. They are as follows:
- The 3.3-liter naturally aspirated V6
- The EcoBoost V6
- The 5.0 Liter V8
- The 3.5 liter EcoBoost V6
If you opt for a model of F-150 such as the Raptor, you’ll be able to find a much more powerful engine, with maximum torque of around 3,500 rpm.
This gives your vehicle around 450 horsepower, which is great for towing large trailers or small boats.
The F-150 is great for towing small trailers, but will certainly struggle with larger weights such as a 5-wheel camper. We would recommend something that gives you a firm hold on the central coupling.
How Good Is The Axle Ratio?
You might not have heard of this, but it is very important when it comes to engine strength and your power.
This is basically the amount of torque that is provided by the engine, which plays a huge role in the towing capacity of your engine.
The torque is the force that moves your wheels and trailer, which is when you accelerate from a stop.
Once you and your payload are at full speed, the torque of the engine not longer applies, as you are largely moving in a straight line with full momentum behind you.
The axle ratio all depends on how many revolutions your wheels need to make to generate the amount of power that you need to get your truck and your trailer moving.
The slower that your engine turns, the more energy it is putting into towing the trailer. If your wheels are moving quicker, then they are not efficiently producing energy.
There is a phenomenon called ‘axle tramping’, where there is a sudden torque on the suspension of your vehicle, which causes the wheel to rotate violently when they spring back and the whole suspension to shudder violently.
This will negatively affect how your trailer is towed behind you.
To break it down even further, the purpose of your engine is to create energy.
When that energy is generated, it goes into the driveshaft, which will then in turn rotate very fast. This driveshaft rotation will then send either one or both of the axles of your car rotating, which will then rotate the wheels.
How many axles will rotate will all depend on the type of wheel drive that your car has.
If you have a two-wheel-drive then only one axle will rotate, as two wheels are attached to each axle. For a four-wheel drive, two axles will rotate, as there are two wheels to every axle.
The slower the turn of each wheel, then the more energy you can expect your wheels to put in.
This means that if your wheel is spinning faster, then more speed is being unleashed but not necessarily more power.
More speed means less momentum, so if you want your car to get you out of a sticky situation, then you’ll want to make sure that your truck has a low axle ratio.
If you are towing a small trailer on the road with a relatively small weight, then we would recommend that you have something with the same energy that can move a lot faster, as this will expend you a lot less fuel.
If you have a large payload, then you can expect a lot more fuel, so you’ll want an engine that is more energy-efficient.
The standard axle ratio is marked with a number like 3.15, which represents the number of turns of your axle for each turn of the wheel.
The axle will generally be a lot faster than the turn of the wheel. The higher this number is, then the slower the movement of your tires, which as mentioned above, means more power.
So, in short, if you are going to be towing, then you’ll want a very high axle ratio, as this will give you more power and not expend too much fuel. If you want great fuel economy when it comes to not towing, then you’ll want a much lower axle ratio.
How Long and Heavy Is Your Truck?
The dimensions of your truck will definitely affect how effectively you can pull your vehicle. It will also handle the ability that you have to maneuver when you have a trailer attached to the back of your vehicle.
The faster that your vehicle drives, then the stronger the relationship gets between your trailer and your truck.
This is because the velocity at which your truck and trailer are traveling will affect the floating relationship of these two moving vehicles.
Think of it this way: the faster the vehicle moves then the more mass that it has.
However, the faster your trailer is moving then the greater the swaying will be. This is why your trailer must be heavier than your vehicle, this additional weight will anchor it to the ground when you are moving.
Although if your vehicle is too heavy, then you can expect a great swing, which will lead to increased chances of an accident.
If your truck is wider, then it will be more difficult to maneuver. This is because of the relationship between the torque and the ability of your engine to move the trailer at an awkward angle.
If you are driving on wider roads, then you probably won’t even notice the difference in the length of your truck or trailer.
However, when you are dealing with raised pavement, then you’ll need to make sure that your truck is narrow enough to make the distance.
If your truck is heavier, you’ll also need to factor in the power of the engine, as you’ll need this to push your truck over the top of raised sidewalks and uneven surfaces.
Remember, if you are going backcountry camping, you’ll want to be sure that your F-150 has a four-wheel drive and the engine power to pull a heavy trailer through muddy surfaces and gravel-shale driveways.
Make sure that your tongue can take the vertical pressure when you are pulling it over a raised surface.
How Heavy Is The Payload?
Now that we’ve talked about the engine power and the torque, let’s look at how the payload itself affects the degree to which you can move your trailer.
You’ll need to not only calculate the weight of your vehicle and trailer, but the weight of numerous passengers and any gear will also dramatically affect the weight.
If you go too much over the capacity than your payload can carry, then you can be sure to experience issues such as splitting or swaying.
You’ll need to check the baseline statistics for the trim of some of your trucks. Here are some of the more recent statistics for the F-150:
- The 3.3 Liter gasoline engine – with a four-wheel drive and a supercrew cab, you can expect this one to carry upwards of 1,680 pounds.
- The 5 liter V8 gas engine – with a two-wheel drive and a regular cab, you can expect this one to carry around 3,270 pounds.
Remember when you are calculating these figures that you aren’t counting the weight of the passengers or any gear that you might be carrying. The difference between a 3.3 liter and a 5-liter engine is pretty amazing.
If you are going to be carrying a larger payload, then we would certainly recommend that you get the more heavy-duty engine. But just jumping up a few liters, you’ll be able to carry double the payload.
What Towing Setup Do You Have?
When you are looking at your payload and vehicle, you’ll need to think about the towing package.
This is something that will be built into the construction of your vehicle, which will increase the towing capacity as well as improving the overall handling of your vehicle.
Looking at the trim of your vehicle will include many different features, each one giving you much more than you would normally expect from a regular F-150.
There are a few trim options with this model, each one affecting the payload and towing capabilities.
The Class IV Trailer Hitch – This comes with a standard towing package that often comes with the XL and XLT models. This has a towing capacity of around 6,000 pounds with 3.3 liter and 2.7-liter EcoBoost engines.
This has electronic brake systems that will definitely prevent the amount of damage that you will do to your vehicle if you start to spin out.
What Is The Package With Your Trailer?
The limited-edition models of the F-150 come with many different options that make off-road trailer towing a little bit easier for you.
This set up comes with plenty of accessories like an auxiliary transmission oil cooler and a front stabilizer bar that will make towing heavier loads much easier. This towing capacity can drag upwards of 11,100 pounds, which is impressive.
You also get a 4-pin and 7-pin wiring harness which will power any trailer lights that you have.
Investing in these additional lights will be invaluable to you when you are negotiating those tricky turnpikes in the dark.
This also comes with smart assist brake systems, which will come in very handy when you are turning your trailer and truck into a tight corner completely blind.
This comes with a cooler and an electronic axle in the rear that will help with steering and coming to an immediate halt.
However, the towing packages do not stop there. You can get a package that can tow upwards of 13,200 pounds. These come with intricate pin systems that you can be sure will keep your trailer locked tight during those more extravagant corners.
This towing package also comes with a hitch receiver that will allow you to tow something as heavy as a five-wheel camper van.
You also get a 36-gallon fuel tank which certainly will come in handy when the axle rotation skyrockets and you need that little extra grit to pull your trailer out of a sticky situation.
How Does Towing Capacity Work?
If you are opting to purchase the slightly more luxurious Ford F-150 Raptor, then you can look forward to a bounty of features that will help you when you are driving across uneven surfaces.
If you compare it to the F-150 Lariat, with a 3.3 liter Ti-VCT V6 engine that can charge 290 horsepower and 265-pounds of torque, then it performs very well.
However, if you are shopping for a 5,000 pound or over towing range, then you might be looking for something a bit more heavy-duty.
If you supe-up your Lariat with a 3.5 liter V6 EcoBoost and a 375 horsepower engine, then you can look to have a towing capacity of around 10,000 pounds.
It is always worth remembering that you can always switch out your engine so that you can have a much more powerful machine overall.
If you keep your F-150 with the engine that it came with, then you can certainly expect it to have a lot less towing abilities. It’s all about how often you plan on towing and what weather conditions you are likely to expect.
The Tongue Weight – Why It Is Important
Just remember that you need to think about how much weight your tongue will be carrying.
You’ll want to keep the amount of pressure that you put on the link between your trailer and your vehicle to around 12-15% of the gross weight of your whole vehicle and trailer (without people and gear, that is).
If you are packing for a vacation and you have all your camping gear as well as fishing tackle, then you’ll want to be smart about what you take.
Loading up your trailer with everything might not be the best way to operate and could result in accidents along the way.
Accounting for the additional weight, you’ll have to make sure that there is no fishing gear or any other apparatus in your trailer when you account for its gross weight.
Usually, the weight of the entire frame will be included in your instruction manual. If you are pulling an overloaded camper up a muddy hill in the rain, then you can expect a higher risk of losing your trailer, your vehicle and also your life.
This truck has a superior payload, which is why the F-150 is so popular among those who like to take their RV out on vacation across the country.
It can deal with a lot of variable situations, with four-wheel drive that will get you out of some of the steepest trenches that you can imagine.
However, make sure that you get a tongue that lasts, as this will be the one piece of equipment that you will need to stay solid. You should dedicate one afternoon out of your month to maintain your tongue, as it will be the part of your vehicle that will keep you safe, especially in wet and cold weather.
Try not to exceed any maximum weight specifications of your vehicle, your trailer or your tongue.
These things need to work in tandem to keep your journey smooth and free from slippages, as well as giving you the ability to get yourself out of a tricky situation.
How Can You Stop Your Trailer From Swaying?
There are a few handy tips that you can follow to stop your entire camper from pitching into the road.
Here are a few rules set out by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that you should follow to drastically reduce the amount of sway on your vehicle:
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions – this might be regarding towing capacity, payload weight limits or the torque of your engine. Whatever happens, make sure that you do not go often of the stated weight limits.
- Drive carefully – do not exceed the speed limit of the area that you are operating in. Remember that you also have added weight in the back, which you should make an account for, as it will affect your braking time.
- Do not turn suddenly or sharply – you should add on a few seconds to your braking time. This is because it will take additional time to stop when you are braking.
- Make sure your tires are pumped up properly – having great pressure in your tires will be necessary for towing your truck, as this will make it easier to negotiate gravel and dirt paths. If your tires aren’t inflated, you can be sure that your maximum load capacity will decrease.
What Should You Do If Your Trailer Sways As You’re Driving?
One surefire method of reducing the amount of sway in your trailer is by pulling off to the side of the road and distributing the weight of your fishing or camping gear a lot more evenly across the trailer.
Set off again and see if you notice any difference.
However, be mindful that the wind can cause your trailer to sway. You have no control over this, so you might just have to reduce your speed and be careful when approaching sharp bends.
Try to slow your approach on your way to an obstacle, as any sharp brakes will increase the chances of you having an accident.
If you are experiencing severe wind and are towing a trailer, we would recommend that you pull over at a gas station or a rest stop and wait for the weather to die down.
It might also be a sign that you have exceeded the maximum capacity of your trailer.
In this case, try and distribute the load as well as you can in the trailer and move as many items as you can from the trailer to the truck and vice versa.
Sometimes you might have to leave some non-essential items at home. If it is a matter of safety, then you definitely need to lighten the load – how much do you really need to take those curling irons with you?
One thing a lot of drivers do is accelerate to try and get to their destination quicker. Avoid doing this at all costs, as it will increase the sway and the chances of you having a serious accident.
What Types Of Travel Trailer Are There?
So, now that you’ve got a better idea about the physics behind towing trailers, you’ll probably be wondering what kind of trailer you’ll be able to tow with your F-150.
Remember, if it’s vacationing you’ll be wanting to use your trailer for, then you’ll want to be considering a few things: how long are you going to go away for?
How many things are you going to be taking with you? How many people will be on vacation with you?
It is also important to remember the number of people that you’ll be traveling with. The collective weight of everyone will not only affect your trailer, but it will also affect the power of the truck that you’ll be using to tow your trailer.
If you want more power when trying to dig your trailer out of a tight spot, it is recommended that you have as few people in the cab as possible.
If you are about to buy a travel trailer, then there are multiple different options available to you. Campers and trailers are very versatile and different models will be able to cater to different needs.
These come in a wide variety of sizes, so if you have your whole family with you, then you’ll definitely be looking for more space.
But remember what we said earlier: the larger the trailer that you have, then the more weight that you’ll have to pull.
This increased weight will lead to more fuel, which will result in you having to spend more money. However, you’ll need a truck that can basically support more than one size of trailer.
Here are a list of some of the best trailers that you can get on the market:
- Classic travel trailer
- Teardrop trailer
- Stand-Up Trailer
- Toy Haulers
- Pop-Up Trailers
Different camper vans come with different facilities. Some have toilets, whereas some do not.
There are a lot of different companies and manufacturers, which can make the task of shopping for one very difficult. However, we’re going to give you an in-depth review of each trailer type and how they can help you.
Classic Travel Trailer
This might be the first thing that pops into your head when you think of a trailer.
This has a relatively decent size and can easily be pulled by your F-150 truck. This type of trailer is pulled behind a car, so a truck will be able to make very short work of it.
You’ll usually need a ball hitch to attach this type of trailer to your truck. This is almost like a joint in a bone or a door hinge. You’ll need to make sure this ball hitch is very sturdy to make sure that it doesn’t suffer from splits or cracking. This is very important if you are doing off road driving.
These travel trailers are very roomy, allowing you to stand up fully. This trailer will accommodate people who are around 6ft in height. They have very solid shells that will be able to withstand lots of hard rain and other extreme weather elements.
Many of these classic trailers give you everything that you want when it comes to living arrangements, usually coming with a bedroom, a bathroom, with kitchen elements that are either built into the main living area or as a separate entity.
You also have plenty of cupboards and closets, both overhead and under the sink.
Many of these classic camper vans come with secret compartments where you can keep your valuables but also save on storage space.
These sections usually fold out when the camper van is stationary, giving you a lot more room to maneuver. You can have canopies and areas that you can use for your plastic furniture.
You can usually get camper vans that come in a wide range of sizes, although we would recommend that you get plenty of luxury models if you need to fit your family under one roof.
However, remember that a larger caravan comes with a lot more weight, which will require more engine power and fuel.
We would definitely recommend that you buy an F-150 to pull a larger classic camper van, as this will have the appropriate axle ratio.
These heavy-duty trucks can be used to pull large trailers, so make sure that your truck can handle the weight before you pull it across the country.
If you are pulling a camper or trailer that is too heavy for your car or truck, then you can certainly expect a lot of drag, as well as splitting in the tongue and swaying when you’re out on the highway.
These teardrop trailers are a lot smaller and can be towed by cars and trucks very easily. They are designed to have a lightweight quality, with a lower roof that is built for increased aerodynamic speed. This makes it a great unit for hauling up and down the country without much fuss.
The inside of these teardrops are a lot less than you would get with a classic caravan, however, they do make the most of what room that they do have.
This teardrop trailer does have a kitchen – of sorts. You have plenty of room for meal preparation, with a sink and a tap that you can use to wash your vegetables and meats.
Sadly, these types of trailers do not generally include a bathroom, so you might have to rely on the great outdoors when you need a number two.
If you have a large family with children, then we would probably leave the teardrop off the list of camper vans that you might want to go for, as it really doesn’t have room for more than two people.
We would recommend that you have one of these camper vans for a romantic getaway for two or maybe if you and a friend are thinking of spending the weekend having some beers and fishing.
In terms of weight, these trailers are less than 1,000 pounds when they are empty, which is perfect if you are thinking about using your F-150 to lug it across the country. It is also good for going off the beaten track, as this trailer has great suspension.
These trailers are also great for storage, you won’t even need a garage to house this little number.
The inside will give you not much except for a mattress or a sofa bed, with many models often sacrificing a table and other furniture for sleeping arrangements. There are also a few closets that you can use for storage space.
One thing that you might have to be wary of is swaying. The fact that this is so lightweight will give you cause for concern in stormy weather traveling at high speed on the motorway. Make sure that this trailer is anchored firmly before you move out.
These are very similar to the previous teardrop caravans that are made, with a small and lightweight design that is easy to carry around and easy to store.
These caravans have sleeping areas, some storage space and a kitchen area that will allow you to prepare food and other things.
However, some of these caravans do have full beds, while others have bathrooms that will enable you to shower and wash in the morning.
This is especially useful when you are out camping or hiking and you like to get yourself waist-deep in muck and dirt. These include full beds and other such items.
These stand-ups are called such because they are very roomy, allowing most people up to 6 feet tall to stand without having to slouch.
These models have much more relaxation space, which is why they remain popular, although they aren’t sold as widely as classic caravan or teardrops.
These trailers are probably most likely to be bought by truck owners as they are very easy to tow. These are also great if you are camping in the great outdoors.
These are great for carrying large amounts of gear, so they are great for use by fishermen, camping equipment and other recreational vehicles. They have four wheels that will be able to tow the added weight of their own shell with ease.
You can even keep smaller vehicles within this camper, that’s why they are called ‘toys’. You can mount a UTV or a jet-ski on this camper with very little issue.
Because these campers are designed to carry larger vehicles themselves, then you’ll need a pretty hefty truck to carry this one in the first place.
However, as we know, the huge weight of a camper like this will affect your ability to be able to tow it effectively. The additional weight will certainly cause you to drag your camper back, so you’ll need to be sure that you have enough engine power to pull yourself along even the most gravelly of surfaces.
One of the most common issues with this size of the trailer is the inability to stop from swaying.
When you are on the motorway, it will certainly be very difficult to keep this trailer straight in terms of trajectory. We would recommend that you get an appropriate truck to keep this one stable.
This is why the F-150 might not be suitable for your needs. Classed as a medium-sized truck, this might struggle with the sheer weight and length of a larger trailer.
You often won’t just be traveling in a straight line down the highway. So when it comes to negotiating those tricky turns and reverses, then having a lower-powered F-150 will make the challenge all the harder.
This trailer will also be very hard to store due to its massive size. To keep it safe, we would recommend that you have a garage with the requisite space that you need to store it.
However, the main plus point of having one of these trailers is the size and the comfort. This will be like your very own home-away-from-home.
You can have plenty of kitchen space, along with a bedroom and living area. This is ideal if you are taking a large family, which is often very difficult when it comes to the smaller trailers.
If you are carrying lots of heavy equipment, this is also a great unit for you to use. If you are fishing, then we would recommend that you take one of these, as it will be very easy to carry them on the long haul.
You will have plenty of space to store camping gear too, so if you do want to take a tent and experience the wonder of sleeping under the stars, then you can.
This type of trailer comes with a ramp that will help you to lift it into the garage, if you have that sort of arrangement. You can retract and withdraw this ramp as and when you need it, it fits easily into the body of your trailer.
This might be slightly difficult to squeeze into most garages, so make sure that you have the room before reversing it. You’ll have to make sure that all the dimensions of your garage are equal before you try to back this model into it.
You might also have an issue with parking a toy hauler in a narrow parking space, so make sure you have the type of truck that can handle this bulky beast.
These vehicles are very heavy to move, so make sure that you have a truck that comes with a large towing capacity.
Make sure that you include all the people that are going to be staying in your caravan during transit, as well as the gear that you’ll be taking with you.
Pop Up Trailers
This type of trailer is considered the bridge between a tent and an RV. They resemble a standard tent except when they are stationary.
Once they have been set up, then all you have to do is open up their extenders. These usually come in the form of canvas flaps that act as canopies.
This type of trailer/tent is perfect for those who want all the ease of setup that a tent has but with none of the hassle. It is also very easy to transport one of these trailers, as it is very lightweight and compact.
You can easily hook this one up to any car or truck and be ready to leave within the hour.
This will save you space in the garage when you are not using it. In fact, you probably won’t even need a garage with this handy unit, you can simply park it up alongside the sidewalk.
This comes with useful weatherproof capabilities, so you won’t have to worry about it succumbing to rain or wind either.
There are two types of pop-up trailer: soft and hard-sided. The soft-sided options have canvas sides, which creates a nice airflow through the body of the tent itself.
The hard-sided trailers are more insulated against the elements and will keep you warmer during the night, in much the same way as a standard trailer.
Whether you will get a soft- or a hard-shelled camper will all depend on what level of comfort that you need for your vacation.
If you think the weather will be pleasant and you want that open-air feel, then we would recommend that you get the softer version. The hard camper van will give you plenty of room to maneuver.
These trailers are meant to be easy to set up and to pack away, formatted for very quick and easy access. You usually have some cooking attachments, although these often come with the harder exterior setups.
You can also get a dining interior and some bathroom fittings with some of the more luxurious models.
If you want the great outdoors but with some of the creature comforts of home, then we would certainly recommend that you get a pop-up trailer.
Your F-150 will have no problem towing this compact little unit, although we would suggest that you weigh it down with some gear to stop it from swaying on the road.
You should also make sure that the tongue between your pop-up trailer and your truck is very secure. If you do not have the right anchoring, then you can expect to see some swaying and maybe some splitting.
This will definitely lead to swaying and wear and tear over the first few months of use.
This is where we get a bit more niche – introducing the Airstream camper van, which are a unique brand that comes with a very specific look.
They have various dimensions, although you can guarantee that they will have rounded edges, which will make for a very aerodynamic form of travel.
Another design feature that certainly will pique your interest and might remind you of the swinging 60s is the exterior of this trailer, which is covered in very shiny metal.
This will certainly get heads turning on the campsite, but this metal also results in a very durable composition.
This type of trailer does not come with any slide-out compartments, it is a very much ‘what you see if what you get’ type of affair.
These also don’t have any floor plan extensions, so if you are a heavy packer, then you might have to amend certain bad habits. Packing light will assure you a lot more space to actually live.
Most of the conventional airstreams have a bathroom, bedroom, kitchen and dining area.
There is also a decent amount of floor space, so you can have plenty of room for a foldaway tent and some basic fishing gear. We would certainly recommend this vehicle if you are planning on bringing the whole family and your dog.
You can get these airstreams in a more compact size, although these are much harder to find on the market.
It might even be difficult for you to find a regular-sized Airstream, as they are a much sought-after brand by collectors and enthusiasts. If you are looking for one of these, be prepared to wait up all night refreshing your eBay listings.
RV and F-150 Tow Truck Accessories
We have mentioned the accessories that you can get with your trailer, but we haven’t really delved into exactly what you should be taking with you when you’re out on the road.
So here we have a list of camping accessories that you’ll need to take with you on your next adventure.
A Surge Protector
This is the number one must-have device that you’ll need for your trailer and tow truck.
Sadly, the electrics on a camper van can be temperamental at the best of times, so it is best to protect yourself against power outages and surges that can strike at any time.
If you have an electrical mishap in your campsite, you can be sure that it will affect your camper van.
You might not be willing to hook it up to your truck, as this will cost you quite a bit in fuel. A surge protector is a great way of preventing all the circuits in your trailer from frying.
If you like to wake up in the morning with a hot shower and a pot of coffee, then we would certainly recommend that you get one of these items. It can be fitted onto your F-150 with very little difficulty.
Water Pressure Regulator
You can’t always rely on the water pressure of your campsite. Very often there will be very little maintenance done to the campsite that you’re going to stay at, so why not protect yourself with a water pressure regulator?
This will prevent your water supply from bursting and potentially filling your RV or trailer with water.
Needless to say, the damage that this could cause to your possessions would be irreparable and very expensive. So we would suggest that you get a water regulator so that you won’t be paying the price later on.
If you are going to buy one of these handy devices, then we would recommend that you don’t look for them at the cheaper hardware stores.
If you skimp on quality with one of these devices, then you’ll be sure that they will fail you. You’ll want something that will easily and efficiently allow you to dial in the pressure of your water.
Fresh Water Hose
You’ll want one of these to fill your water holding tank or to connect to the water pipes that you will have at your campsite. You will definitely want a designated water supply that does not run from the tank in your camper if indeed it has one at all.
You’ll want to save as much water as you can in your RV, as you should use this only for emergencies.
You can have a few different lengths on these hoses, although we would suggest that you opt for a longer one, as this will give you more flexibility when it comes to your water options.
If you want to save on storage space, then we would recommend that you get around 2 lengths of hose of around 25 feet each. You can always link up these two hoses or have the option of using only one.
This is also great for replenishing the water tank in your trailer. You’ll need to make sure that it is topped up before you leave for the open road.
A Water Filter
Traveling around the country in your RV, you’ll be gathering water from a lot of different sources and not all of them will be entirely clean! You’ll need water that is safe for you and your family to drink.
So what better way to guarantee that than with a state-of-the-art water filter?
One of these filters should easily and efficiently remove any unwanted bacteria and foreign bodies from your water. The last you’ll be wanting is to chug on any grit or sediment from the bottom of a lake.
This will also help you purify your water for cooking and making coffee in the morning.
An Extendable Power Cable
In much the same way as you don’t want to be without water in case your trailer water pipe bursts, you definitely won’t want to be without power if your onboard electricity shorts out.
If you decide to opt for a cheap household power extension cable, then you can all but guarantee a fire, as it will not be able to handle the surge of electricity that your RV will need.
One piece of advice that we would give you is that you get an extension lead that has the right wattage for the appliances that you’ll be wanting to power.
One way of calculating the gross wattage of your trailer is by adding up the wattage for each of the appliances inside.
Sewer Hose Accessory
If you don’t have a self-composting toilet, then we would recommend that you get a spare sewer hose for your built-in toilet. This will mean that if you have issues with your existing sewer pipe, then you’ll have something to replace it.
What can be worse than having a toilet that does not properly remove waste? If you have any blockages and are unable to fix your non-functioning toilet, then you can expect an unholy smell that will definitely put a swift halt to your vacation.
Unfortunately, not all camping spots are on the same level, so you might have to make up for the shortfall with one of these handy and adaptable brackets.
If you have food in the fridge or are a light sleeper, having the right level for your caravan will be crucial in getting a sound night’s sleep and making sure your food is not spoiled.
These are very easy to establish and should right your caravan in no time at all. If you have a lightweight trailer, then it will be even easier to put right.
Another major plus point of having a leveler is that they will take up hardly any room in your gear.
However, we would make sure that you test the durability of your leveler by having numerous people stand in the trailer when the levelers have been applied.
The last thing you’ll want is for your bracket to come out from underneath and send your whole caravan interior capsizing.
Our Final Say
We hope that our comprehensive in-depth list of the towing capacities of the F-150 has helped you to decide which trailer you should buy for your favorite truck.
However, you must get the balance of the weight and the length of this truck in relation to your trailer.
You should also be aware of the tongue that connects these two vehicles, as even the slightest imbalance in the weight could lead to swaying.
This could possibly result in your trailer becoming detached from your car, which would be catastrophic.
Shopping for the right trailer is never easy, and we hope that our list of some of the top models has helped you to better decide which one goes best with your F-150.
Remember to include your gear in the overall gross weight of your vehicle, as well as the collective weight of the people in your RV.
The science of trailers and trucks is very exact and you will have to get it just right to avoid accidents.