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  #1  
Old 12-16-2008, 10:56 AM
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2009 F150 SuperCrew 4x4 for towing

I have a 28' (overall length from tongue to bumper) travel trailer that actually weighs just under 7,800 # fully loaded. While the truck may be rated at over 11,000# towing capacity, I know there are more factors to consider. I have run all the numbers (GCVW, payload, etc.); the 2009 F150 SuperCrew 4x4 with Tow Max package, 6-speed automatic, and 5.4 with 3.73 axles should be fine (near max, but still OK). The truck is used only about 20% of the time for towing, so I am really leaning toward replacing my 3/4 on with a 1/2 ton.

But, my questions have to do with torque since I live in the mountains and often have windy conditions out in the flatter country.

To improve towing performance, which of the following should I consider (a mechanic warned against most of these because he says I will rip out the transmission, etc. with increased power)?

* Install some sort of performance chip
* Change axle to 4.1 from the maximum factory one of 3.73
* Change the air intake to K&N or something similar
* Install a Magnaflo exhaust or possibly headers
* Wait for 2010 or 2011 and hope for the 6.2 Boss availability in the F150 line.

Thanks for any insight you can give me.

My direct email is flatcoatdad@yahoo.com if you wish to contact me individually.

Last edited by TBerkhouse; 12-16-2008 at 10:58 AM.
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  #2  
Old 12-16-2008, 11:06 AM
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I can tell you as an owner of an '07 Expedition that you are not going to want to go to 4.10s with the 6 speed, the 3.73s are fine - and you may want to find a new mechanic.....
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  #3  
Old 12-16-2008, 01:03 PM
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First, no Supercrew is rating to tow over 10k pounds.

Any axle gear change should be at least 2 steps, so 3.73 to 4.56 because that's $1200-1500 for a 4WD.

7800 pounds is more than I would want to tow with a half ton, but people do it. There is no doubt the 2009 F-150 will ride better for every non-towing situation and may be worth the compromise while towing.
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  #4  
Old 12-16-2008, 04:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by APT View Post
First, no Supercrew is rating to tow over 10k pounds.

Any axle gear change should be at least 2 steps, so 3.73 to 4.56 because that's $1200-1500 for a 4WD.

7800 pounds is more than I would want to tow with a half ton, but people do it. There is no doubt the 2009 F-150 will ride better for every non-towing situation and may be worth the compromise while towing.
The 2009 with the MAxTow package is reported to tow 11,300 lbs. That is a hell of a lot. Below is straight off Ford's web page. Also, until you guys actually drive one of these trucks you won't understand my comment about changing gears - it is not needed. First gear would NEVER be used. The 6 speed is great, it keeps the motor right in its sweet sopt.

The All-New '09 F-150 gives you best-in-class trailer-towing capability* - 11,300 lbs. - across all cabs with the added confidence and stability of standard Trailer Sway Control (TSC)** and an available factory-integrated Trailer Brake Controller (TBC)**. Furthermore, the selectable Tow/Haul Mode on the six-speed automatic transmission compensates for altitude, grade and load to aid performance, especially when driving up steep grades or down extreme slopes. You can choose the Trailer Towing Package or the new optional Max Trailer Tow Package - a special group of heavy-duty towing upgrades.

*Class is full-size pickups under 8,500 lbs. GVWR. When properly equipped.

I consistently tow 7,500 lbs with my regular cab, SWB 2003 FX4 with the 5.4 and have no issues at all with a LOT of tongue weight on the trailer. No sway control, no weight distribution, only a brake controller. The weight of the above trailer would be no problem at all for the 3V 5.4 with the 6 speed auto. It is the length of the trailer at 28' that comes into play. With that being said I know of 2 people with 07 and up Expeditions pulling trailers that length (a travel trailer) and the other guy is pulling a 24' enclosed with a mustang in it (weighs alot) and both claim to have no problems (now they are both using an equilizer hitch). It is not like you are going to be pulling this every weekend, I think you will be fine. Although, since you can get an F-250 in the same price range that would be my suggestion. The newer F-250s are nice, ride good, and I see no reason not to get one if you are thinking about actually using your tuck consistently, nest time I am truck shopping that is what I will get.
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  #5  
Old 12-16-2008, 05:55 PM
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I honestly don't think you will have any problems if you get the 150 fully tow equipped. The 5.4 with the 6 speed should handle it fine with no mods. However, if you want to do it RIGHT, get a F-250 with a V-10.
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  #6  
Old 12-16-2008, 09:31 PM
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What is wrong with the 3/4? Or do you just want a new truck?
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  #7  
Old 12-17-2008, 07:38 AM
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Originally Posted by 70BOSS302 View Post
The 2009 with the MAxTow package is reported to tow 11,300 lbs. That is a hell of a lot. Below is straight off Ford's web page.
I checked out the towing guide for 2009 Fords. While the 11200 pound tow rating is impressive for a 4x4 Supercrew, it is cut down by 500 pounds for 18 and 20" wheels. Also, GVWR is still 7200 pounds max for Supercrews which means the truck would be over GVWR with 15% tongue weight, a full tank of fuel, 350 pounds of passengers at 7k pounds.

Quote:
I consistently tow 7,500 lbs with my regular cab, SWB 2003 FX4 with the 5.4 and have no issues at all with a LOT of tongue weight on the trailer. No sway control, no weight distribution, only a brake controller.
That's just dumb. You are exceeding the weight limits of your hitch. Get a WD hitch, preferably with some kind of sway especially because of your short wheelbase. While you may have never been in a situation where it is useful, you cannot instantly add one in a situation when it would be.

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The weight of the above trailer would be no problem at all for the 3V 5.4 with the 6 speed auto. It is the length of the trailer at 28' that comes into play.
Power has not been a problem for moving 10k pounds for over 40 years. While I am sure the performance of the 5.4L 6-spd are significantly improved over the previous generation F-150s, the limitations have not changed over even the 2008 F-150.

The question for the OP is do you want to tow at or over GVWR or have some extra payload available for more stuff (firewood, bikes, misc camping gear).

Also, it is not wise to post your email address on here. Expect lots of spam as even Google can fins threads on F-150 online.

Last edited by APT; 12-17-2008 at 07:41 AM.
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  #8  
Old 12-17-2008, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by APT View Post
I checked out the towing guide for 2009 Fords. While the 11200 pound tow rating is impressive for a 4x4 Supercrew, it is cut down by 500 pounds for 18 and 20" wheels. Also, GVWR is still 7200 pounds max for Supercrews which means the truck would be over GVWR with 15% tongue weight, a full tank of fuel, 350 pounds of passengers at 7k pounds.

Well APT, he asked for some advice and since you were unable to provide him with any real world experience, other than some technical mumbo jumbo, I did. I can also tell you that where I come form people consistently tow well over published 1/2 ton weights - Chevy, Dodge, or Ford. But then again these people actually use their truck as do I. Do you think the weights listed are actually the MAXIMUM? No fudge factor built in? Get out of your shell and go to any ORSCA, NMRA, Fun Ford, or NHRA regional event and you will see 1/2 ton trucks pulling well over the suggested weights - and they do it with no problem. But then again, these people actually have some common sense and do not base what they can and can not do because their tongue weight is 3 percent over the suggested maximum.


That's just dumb. You are exceeding the weight limits of your hitch. Get a WD hitch, preferably with some kind of sway especially because of your short wheelbase. While you may have never been in a situation where it is useful, you cannot instantly add one in a situation when it would be.

Again, real world experience, I am not one to pee money away when something is not needed. If you would like to send me a check for one, I will PM you my address. If some idiot pulls out in front of me, a weight distributing hitch with sway control is not going to keep me from running over them. I have put over 20,000 miles towing on this truck is the past 5 years and I have yet to experience a situation it "would be useful". I did not know they had accident prevention built in also - where do I get one of those?

Power has not been a problem for moving 10k pounds for over 40 years. While I am sure the performance of the 5.4L 6-spd are significantly improved over the previous generation F-150s, the limitations have not changed over even the 2008 F-150.

Please, tell me the limitations since you are a self proclaimed expert on how to tow properly. Wait, all you need is the Ford pamphlet on towing that is available at any dealer show room, it has all the suggested weights and percentages in it.

The question for the OP is do you want to tow at or over GVWR or have some extra payload available for more stuff (firewood, bikes, misc camping gear).

Also, it is not wise to post your email address on here. Expect lots of spam as even Google can fins threads on F-150 online.

Well APT, he asked for some advice and since you were unable to provide him with any real world experience, other than some technical mumbo jumbo, I did. I can also tell you that where I come from people consistently tow well over published 1/2 ton weights - Chevy, Dodge, or Ford. But then again these people actually use their truck as do I. Do you think the weights listed are actually the MAXIMUM? No fudge factor built in? Get out of your shell and go to any ORSCA, NMRA, Fun Ford, or NHRA regional event and you will see 1/2 ton trucks pulling well over the suggested weights - and they do it with no problem. But then again, these people actually have some common sense and do not base what they can and can not do because their tongue weight is 3 percent over the suggested maximum. As far as me not using a WDH, again, real world experience, I am not one to pee money away when something is not needed. If you would like to send me a check for one, I will PM you my address. If some idiot pulls out in front of me, a weight distributing hitch with sway control is not going to keep me from running over them. I have put over 20,000 miles towing on this truck is the past 5 years and I have yet to experience a situation it "would be useful". I did not know they had accident prevention built in also - where do I get one of those? Limitations, now you have turned into a mechanical engineer, please, tell me the limitations since you are a self proclaimed expert on how to tow properly. Wait, all you need is the Ford pamphlet on towing that is available at any dealer show room, it has all the suggested weights and percentages in it.

Now to answer the original posters question, since no one else has, I think, based on my experience, the 09 would have NO problem. You are talking about an actual trailer length of 24' I bet, in your original post you said 28' tongue to end. 7,850 is very well within the towing capacity, because this is a travel trailer wind will have a large impact as it also would on an enclosed car trailer, so I would suggest a weight distributing hitch with sway control. Get a good brake controller - a Tekonsha Prodigy is the only choice. You will have no problems

Last edited by 70BOSS302; 12-17-2008 at 12:38 PM.
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  #9  
Old 12-17-2008, 01:18 PM
APT APT is offline
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Just because I did not post it in this thread does not mean I do not have real world experience. How do you know that am not the Ford engineer who works on these trucks? Why do you care? Why does it matter? You don't have to like my opinion. It is just the opinion of some shmuk on the internet. Move on.

I'll restate what I have said many times in this forum. I have exceeded some of the Ford specs on my two F-150's. In the US society today, I think recommending people exceed OEM ratings on the internet to people you don't know is stupid, especially when they plan to do so on a regular basis (RVing).

Read your hitch. 5000 max tow rating and 500 pounds tongue weight weight carrying. I have the same receiver. Even if you don't care about GVWR, you say you exceed the receiver's tow rating by 50% with probably more than that for tongue weight. Why do you think that is safe? How does exceeding GVWR and tow ratings relate to racing? People who buy vehicles for recreational towing can rarely afford to buy new transmissions or differentials when their truck and RV are sitting on the side of the road. They also drive their vehicles with millions of other people on the roads vs. a handful on closed tracks.

For the sake of everyone else on the roads, why take the chance that a WD hitch may have helped avoid hitting that car in front of you?

Last edited by APT; 12-17-2008 at 01:47 PM.
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  #10  
Old 12-17-2008, 01:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by APT View Post
Just because I did not post it in this thread does not mean I do not have real world experience. How do you know that am not the Ford engineer who works on these trucks? Why do you care? Why does it matter? You don't have to like my opinion. It is just the opinion of some shmuk on the internet. Move on.

I'll restate what I have said many times in this forum. I have exceeded some of the Ford specs on my two F-150's. In the US society today, I think recommending people exceed OEM ratings on the internet to people you don't know is stupid, especially when they plan to do so on a regular basis (RVing).

Read your hitch. 5000 max tow rating and 500 pounds tongue weight weight carrying. I have the same receiver. Even if you don't care about GVWR, you say you exceed the receiver's tow rating by 50% with probably more than that for tongue weight.

For the sake of everyone else on the roads, why take the chance that a WD hitch may have helped avoid hitting that car in front of you.
I will admit these are all good points.
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  #11  
Old 12-17-2008, 02:15 PM
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There is a huge difference between what you CAN do and what you SHOULD do. Recommending that someone routinely exceed one or more ratings, or doing it yourself, is not something you SHOULD do, especially in today's lawsuit-happy society. There is also a risk of being stopped by a DOT check.
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  #12  
Old 12-17-2008, 04:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by APT View Post
Read your hitch. 5000 max tow rating and 500 pounds tongue weight weight carrying.
Unless I missed something here, where do you come up with a hitch on a vehicle being rated at 5,000 max tow rating? If you are talking about a truck without the tow package, then okay. Ford says that towing in excess of 5,000# requires the tow package (pre-2009 trucks). There is now way on this earth, or anybody elses, that a truck rated at 9,200#, like the 2008 F-150 Supercrew 4WD will have a hitch capable of only 5,000#.

Like I said, maybe I missed the message somewhere, but clearly the trucks tow ratings will have a hitch to match, unless the hitch was installed aftermarket.

On to the OP...

I run a trailer at about 7,000# loaded. My 2008 F-150 long bed Supercrew has the 3.73 L/S rear, and the 5.4L. I have strictly driven diesels for about 10 years. Yes, it was a shock when I pulled our trailer for the first time, but once I realized the trucks potential, I see no need to run out and get a 3/4 ton again... especially with diesel prices and the V-10 economy.

Look up my posts and see what I have posted. See what Welfare Wagon has posted, too, in the towing section. I'm waiting with baiuted breath to order my 2009 in a few months just because the 6-speed will amke a big difference. I'd certainly not change gears or anything - especially since you are within reason -and tow 20% of the time. I am like you, but I drive 50,000 miles plus a year unloaded and not towing. My Supercrew is a much nicer ride for daily use, and I have not yet regretted towing my trailer to the point I've had to run out and look at a Superduty again. And, my blood still smells like diesel and I leave soot stains in my underwear.

Mind you I did change trailers this fall, too, and the trailer alone has made a MAJOR DIFFERENCE! See the "What are you towing" post in the towing section for details.
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Last edited by Smokewagun; 12-17-2008 at 04:27 PM.
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  #13  
Old 12-17-2008, 10:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Smokewagun View Post
Unless I missed something here, where do you come up with a hitch on a vehicle being rated at 5,000 max tow rating? If you are talking about a truck without the tow package, then okay. Ford says that towing in excess of 5,000# requires the tow package (pre-2009 trucks). There is now way on this earth, or anybody elses, that a truck rated at 9,200#, like the 2008 F-150 Supercrew 4WD will have a hitch capable of only 5,000#.
I said weight carrying. Every class 3 hitch I've seen including the OEM on used on F-150s since 1997 (haven't seen the 2009 one) says 5000 pounds without a WD hitch. Most say 10k pounds with WD. That is all.

If I have not been clear, I think the OP will enjoy a 2009 F-150. While it won't have quite the power as a V10 or diesel Superduty, the unloaded towing experience will be 10 times better. Just watch the weights, especially truck axle and GVW.

Boss man, I apologize for being so bluntly rude. While I still think you towing 7500 pounds as you have successfully done for so long is dumb, we all do dumb things. Somethings God lets us get away with it and sometimes not.
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Old 12-19-2008, 12:44 PM
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Have to admit I didn't read through all the other posts. Just too long. I will give you my perspective though. I have a 2wd '07 SuperCrew 5.4L w 3.55:1 ls rear end. I tow a 24ft enclosed (28ft overall) thats about ~7800lbs loaded up. I installed SIDO magnaflow, Airforce 1 intake and Troyer tunes -all delivered as a package for my truck from Troyer Performance. I use an Equalizer load leveling system and Protidgy brake controller.

I live in Dallas but have towed all over. I've been up to the great lakes, been to Orlando, been to the east coast. In my travels I've gone through the Ozark Mtns and the Appelations several times. Plus obviously very windy flats of TX.

In my opinion, the truck does a fantastic job. Is it a diesel 3/4 ton? Hell no, not even close. I always tow at 60 to be safe and try to save gas. The truck never has any problems at that speed. Maybe dropped down to 53 on the biggest hills I've seen. Usually stays right at 60mph though.

If your talking about going up through the rockies regularly, I don't know. Those can be some pretty extreme hills. It's not a diesel 3/4 ton but it does get the job done fine for my needs.


Hope this helps.
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Old 01-10-2009, 06:21 PM
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I wouldn't consider your setup to be at the edge. The truck should be able to support a trailer like that. I see 28 footers being pulled by these trucks all the time. I personally only have a 19' trailer and even with that the tranny gets pretty hot on hills. For sure change the tranny fluid regularly. If possible change to a good synthetic (ie Ams Oil). The synthetic will lower the temp by about 20 F. The tranny on the 2004-2008 is a little on the light duty side so fluid maintenance is a must. I'm not sure if the 2009 uses the same tranny. This is what you mechanic was talking about.

There are some other posts by guys in this area going grossly over the capacity their trucks. I hope I don't come across one of them on the highway. I believe you are well within the trucks limits.
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Old 01-10-2009, 06:21 PM


 
 
 
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