your top picks for towing 2-horse trailers
Ok, I'm going to lay my cards on the table here and confess: I know NOTHING about towing horses. So here it is. First thing is that I'm going to buy is a truck. Now I've read that it is better to buy the trailer first and I understand why. However in our situation it is 99% likely that the truck will come first.
So, what would be your top picks for trucks to consider in the $10-$15K range for a 4WD to pull 2 horses plus tack in a 2-horse trailer.
And I don't know if the trailer will be steel, aluminum or titanium (do they even come in titanium?) or solid gold. I haven't gotten that far :) but I'll post about that later.
I've done some research which suggests to me that a Ford F150 might not be enough power, however an F250 would. For all I know I could be way off base. And I'd like to consider other makes/models as well!
Virtual beers go to those who give lots of specifics (year, make, model (not just series!), engine size, etc, etc)
Thanks very much in advance!!
When hauling, bigger is better. You CAN pull and stop with a half ton, but you have to know the size and weight of your trailer.
I have a half ton and it pulls my trailer just fine. It doesn't have a tack room, and it's an older 2-horse bumper pull, straight load Adams.
I wouldn't go any bigger than that unless I went to a 3/4 or 1 ton pickup.
F150 f 250, doesnt have anythign to do with power, it has to do with how much weight the bed of the truck can hold. My F150 has a bigger more powerful engine and a higher towing capacity than a gasoline powered F250.
Lots of features on the truck effect the towing capacity.
search FORD Towing guide, for the year truck you are looking at.
You must know the engine, (you already said 4X4) and rear end. Usually a code on the door panel, also if the truck has the tow package installed. Basically a heavy duty radiator and probably an oil cooler. Pretty much all recent F 150's with the 5.4 engine has the added cooling capacity.
An F150 with a 5.4 engine and anythign but the 3.31 rear end would have no problem with a bumper pull or aluminum goosneck 2 horse trailer.
A simple steel bumper pull with a manger tack area will weigh about 2800 lbs at the most. Add 2 horses and some tack and you are still under 6000 lbs.
Not really a problem, however get a f150 with 3:31 highway gears and a 4.6 engine and it wont get out of its own way. BIgger liters on the engine and bigger numbers on the engine and bigger numbers on the rear end is always better.
Go here, https://www.fleet.ford.com/showroom/...06_default.asp
punch in the year and scroll down to towing. It will give you the weight limit. Stay well below that limit and you will be fine. I imagine Chevy and dodge have something similar.
You want specific ? Ok look for a F150 or F250 with a 5.4 liter or larger engine and a 3.73 or 4.10 rearend made between 2004 and today. For a basic 2 horse bumper pull.
Personally stay away from 1/2 tons when pulling livestock, they'll do it but not really built for it. A lot of people get away with using them but you don't want to be one of the ones that don't.
Get an F250 or F350, they are all over built stronger so they can safely haul heavy loads. For Chevy/Dodge that would be a 2500 and 3500.
Engine size, the saying is there's no replacement for displacement. Bigger the better when it comes to towing. Diesels are the kings of towing but stay away from Fords 6.0L diesel, it's been a problematic motor since the day it was introduced. The 5.4L engine is as small as I would go but personally would stay away from it too. Reason being it is more of a HP motor and lacking in torque, torque is what will yank you over the top of the hill towing a trailer. But then if you don't mind gearing down and going slow it will get the job done.
Gearing. The smaller you engine the higher you want your gearing number as a rule of thumb. That same said 5.4L you should be running 4.10 or 4.33 gearing. Snag a diesel and you could easily pull with 3.54 gears.
If you get a pickup with an automatic transmission then make sure it has a transmission cooler, this will keep you from cooking it. You wont have to worry about a cooler with manual transmissions. Manual transmission is my preference for several reasons but that makes me a rarity.
Don't pull from the bumper, it wont take it. You want a class III, class IV or class V hitch. Class III will work for smaller horse trailers, up to 6000 pounds. Class IV is for up to 12000 pounds, which will do for most trailers. Going Class V will pull anything you wish to drop behind a pickup. If you decide to go the goose neck route you'll most likely have to get a hitch installed when you buy the trailer unless you buy it from someone who already has a goose neck trailer.
You said a 4x4 pickup. I would stay away from lifted pickups all together but a mild 2" lift would still be OK.
Almost forgot tires! Look at the load range and weight rating of the tires. Since tires can easily be changed they aren't a deal breaker when buying a pickup. It becomes an issue before hooking up to a trailer. You need to ensure they can handle the weight and properly inflated first.
My f150 has the heavy duty rear axel and more power than the non diesel F250's. GM products tend to be extremly cheap and lightly built so maybe you have to go to a 2500 class vehicle so cant speak for them, Dodges seem to be the gas power kings, but have a pretty dismal transmission record. I have no issues pulling a 3600 lb gooseneck with two horses, usually I only have one when I have alot of gear, my truck is rated at 9500 lbs, and I am only pulling about half that. Bigger is allways better but no reason you cant tow a basic bumper pull with a F150 5.4 or larger. I cant speak for GM, Mopar or Japaneses products. But all of them should have towing guides. I figure the engineers that publish these guides are pretty smart dudes and know way more than anybody you will find on a websight. Follow the manufacturers recommendations.
I'm doing fine with my 2005 F150 that has the 5.4L engine. I pull a 2 horse slant titan avalanche and my truck is humming right along even when fully loaded. I have to be careful on the open highway not to go too fast. lol. Up steep hills, no prob.
Obviously, more power is generally better. I truck will last longer if you are not towing at it's maximum capacity all the time.
Also, I was told the only real difference between an F150 and F250 if they have the same sized engine, is just the suspension. The F250s cost a bunch more so we opted against the upgrade.
An f150 4X4 with the FX4 suspension and max tow kit is just as capable as the f250 other than the label on the side. Plus the 150 regular cab is a way better design than the 250's. You have plenty of storage behind the seats and more leg room ,instead of the seat right up against the back of the cab in the 250. Thats why I went 150. I deally Id like to have a big giant diesel but I just couldnt justify the added expense.
I have a 2011 F150 V6 ecoboost with a 3.73 rear end. It gives me 9800 lbs of towing capacity which is plenty. I don't haul often so the fuel economy is fantastic when not hauling and when I towed my friends 3 horse with tack room + 2 horses without issue pulling or stopping. I am going to get a 2 horse trailer under 4000 lbs so I will be well within my capacity.
I totally missed the price limit part of your post! I would go for an f150 or 250. I didn't like the inside of the GMC's at all when we were looking. My friend just got an 05 Ford 350 super charged diesel duely with 70k miles for $19000. She has 18000 lbs of towing capacity LOL.
You should be able to find a deal!
Yes and F150 will tow a horse trailer but that's not where the issue lies.
-Stopping is just as important as go power, F150 will have smaller brakes then an F250/F350.
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