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This time I'm actually in the financial position to start seriously looking for a vehicle. Unfortunately I do need to take fuel economy into consideration because I have to use this as a daily driver but I need a hauler too. There's a truck I found locally that looks good but I'm not sure. I have two horses I need to haul and am going to look for a smaller steel stock trailer. I can't imagine I'll be ever hauling more than 6k lbs. This is the trucks specs. It's a 2014 F150 V8. I was looking at a Tundra but i couldn't find one in a V8 locally. You won't catch me hauling in a V6. Max tow capacity on this truck is 11k. I'm not worried so much about controlling the trailer as the truck is heavy enough to do that and it has 4wheel drive, I'm worried about the wear and tear on the engine.

I'm no truck guru. Would this truck work for what I need it for or do I need to go bigger?
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My sister in law has a truck in that era. While half tons are bigger than they used to be, there is still no way I would consider using one to tow 2 horses. You just don't have enough truck to safely stop that trailer in an emergency. It's not "can it pull it", it's "can it stop it".
Oh I know, there are some that will sure, go for it. But not from me. You need more truck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
My sister in law has a truck in that era. While half tons are bigger than they used to be, there is still no way I would consider using one to tow 2 horses. You just don't have enough truck to safely stop that trailer in an emergency. It's not "can it pull it", it's "can it stop it".
Oh I know, there are some that will sure, go for it. But not from me. You need more truck.
I was afraid of that but what about this truck makes it unable to stop a 2 horse so long as everything has breaks? I mean there's obviously the situation if brakes failed on everything but in that case there's not much you can do anyway. I don't even know if I would call this a half ton even though it technically is. Especially the Fords have gotten huge. It's nothing like the bitty things they used to be. The dry weight of this truck is 5500lbs. I probably won't even be hauling that behind me.
 

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Max tow capacity on this truck is 11k
Is that with a GN hitch or bumper bull? If bumper pull, I assume it requires a weight distribution hitch if you're hauling more than 5k. Be aware of that.

Don't forget that mileage goes down as a vehicle gets older, so it won't get whatever it was supposed to get when it was new. My 2017 F-250 gets 14-16 mpg not hauling (that's actual numbers based on my own driving), so it's not any worse than what you are looking at.

I've narrated my horrible Pony towing story more than enough times, but suffice it to say when I got a truck I got one where I was sure I'd have more than enough truck for what I needed. A truck that can haul your horses on a nice flat easy road might not be able to do the same on hills. Or in the wind, or rain, etc.

Also 3/4 trucks, at least with the towing package, have the stiffer suspension in the back. Makes them less fun as a daily driver but much nicer to haul in.

At the end of the day, in this market, I think you just have to get what you can afford and then drive accordingly. Get a weight distribution hitch even if you don't technically need one or are close to needing one. Drive carefully. Think about what you're doing with hills.

Does this truck have the towing package? I wouldn't buy a half ton without a towing package. But I was already a "better safe than sorry" person, and my terrible experience with Pony that one time sealed it for me.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Forgot to mention I live in the land of flat, aka Florida. I'm not hauling in the mountains or even long distances.
 

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A half ton truck is ok for a short distant like a visit to the vet if local, going to local events are just hauling down the road, but if hauling longer distant like out of town driving more then a few hundred miles then I would want a larger truck, I would look into the 3/4 tons, a half ton sure would get some wear and tear hauling for hours at a time. I always had haul with a 3/4 ton, then my truck got totaled when illegals ran a stop sign and hubby T-Boned them, after that truck I got another 3/4 ton Ford with a V10 great truck for hauling and loved the fuel too, lol, now I have my one ton Dually's.
I'm just someone that likes a bit more truck and a 3/4 ton is what I would vote on for safety reasons.
 

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What many not know or do the research to find is when you add 4x4 you decrease the amount you can tow.

If you are that serious about this particular truck get the VIN and run it....understand what that report is reporting.

So, 2014 truck makes it 9 years old...the 2023 are out and orders being taken ages your truck again.
The truck being "local" doesn't tell you where it came from or what it has been exposed to during its lifetime..
You are sitting in the timespan when 150 did not have the heft of today's trucks to tow heavier loads.
A 150 is a light-duty truck and at this year depending upon what gears are in the rear end makes a huge difference in capacity for load & towing.
My biggest worry is has this truck been caught in the floods and come from a salvage title resurrected.
Has it sustained damages to the electrical wiring and what kind of warranty are you getting and what kind of a extended warranty are you putting in the vehicle covering you bumper to bumper, top to bottom...
Make sure someone has fully checked the frame as it is light-duty and they rust out easier.
All your components are light duty application = they can strain to handle the job presented when you tow loaded and you tow a lot....
Your brakes, cooling system, drivetrain, and suspension are made to actually cart humans around not the weight of a loaded horse trailer...
Not even going into gooseneck applications...for that if you are just forget it. Please....

So, googling quite a bit for information and adding as many details as you gave....The max tow added about 2,300 in capacity to your towing. So that dumps you right back to the truck is manufactured capable of around 8,000maximum.
This is what reads for the Max Tow package for 2021 trucks...2014 reads near identical.
It consists of a 4-pin/7-pin wiring harness, Class IV receiver hitch, 3.55 / 3.73 electronically locking rear differential, 36-gallon fuel tank, auxiliary transmission and engine oil coolers, an integrated trailer brake control (TBC), and an upgraded front stabilizer bar.
So here come a discrepancy...class 4 receivers are rated for a max of 10,000 pounds, so why is a truck that is supposed to tow higher capacity not equipped with complimenting receiver of class 5...................:unsure: oh yes, time to start to really dig...:eek:
What I found in the old specifications guide is you must be positive of gears in that vehicle and it must be a specific combination, not just because some blurb says it can...it must of been made to do from the factory or don't just don't...
You go from what you are hoping for in capacity to dumping down to between 5000 - 8000 in a hurry with just a single component off.
Not only must you have the Max Tow package you also must have the regular towing package combined to reach the higher capability numbers. :oops:

Knowing where you travel "the land of flat" is not as flat as you think. There are grades and hills and we have wicked winds and crosswinds you are suddenly going to truly feel...hauling several horses, their tack and food with water... now add the weight of a steel stock trailer you are teetering on the edge of should you or should you not.
When you put your trucks capabilities to the edges of what it is made to do then you add more wear and tear to the vehicle for needed maintenance.
F150 were made to be yuppie vehicles and people movers, the soccer moms car....
There is no comparison in ride when you go from a light duty truck to a heavy duty of the 250/350 line and the capability made into the frame, drivetrain and just everything else.

Can you tow with it....sure.
Should you is where you have to draw the line in your mind for a vehicle you plan on keeping for many years of not only daily driving but towing reliability...well, because you can doesn't mean you should is very true...

You have some serious decisions to make and think about.
Research what the different size in brake rotors and pads are, transmission cooler along with regular radiator...how much larger and thicker the frame is 150 to 250 class size....there is a difference.
Look at how the hitch is attached, literally...on your back and look at it.
Then if you think you want take this truck to a super thorough shop and have it evaluated from top to bottom...
Average weight of the kind of trailer you mentioned empty is about 3,000 pounds. Can only go by what our horses weight which is 1300 each (shy 16 hand), then add tack and food/water....you are quickly pushing the 8000 pound number and you haven't added you or companions to those numbers either. And older stock trailers are often heavier not lighter, be aware they are made heftier when older and depends a lot on the brand trailer you buy...oh yea!

My friend bought a beautiful used 1500 from a dealer off their lot...she had a issue and took it to a different dealer closer to home to find her trucks frame was junk and she was told to take it back and never put any trailer to it...the frame was rotting from the inside out...when a bit more reading of the car fax report came back it was caught in flood waters...that truck was either a 2015 or 2016....
Don't get caught...make sure you have a super thorough inspection done and can live with the issues that are going to be told to you...the truck is 9 years old so it better have some issues...
Be a very well informed consumer....

I'm in the camp of not maxing my truck out. I would go with larger capacity of 250/2500 truck.
🐴...
 

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So here come a discrepancy...class 4 receivers are rated for a max of 10,000 pounds, so why is a truck that is supposed to tow higher capacity not equipped with complimenting receiver of class 5...................:unsure: oh yes, time to start to really dig...:eek:
Yes this is a really good point. Is the HITCH rated for 11k pounds, or is the TRUCK rated for 11k pounds? If the numbers for the hitch and truck are different, then the lower number is the relevant one.

And yes, look at the VIN of the specific truck, not the advertised rating of what a similar truck in the line might be capable of. What I mean is, maybe an F-150 from that time COULD tow up to 11k pounds, but that doesn't mean that THIS truck can tow 11k pounds.
 

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Per this article:

Weighty Matters
When hauling horses (live cargo), stay below 70%-75% of the vehicle’s maximum tow rating.
Choose a tow vehicle based on the weight, size and type of trailer, and the weight and number of horses you’ll be hauling.
Consider the truck and tow vehicle as a single unit, and make sure all parts are compatible, including hitch, brakes and tires.
In hilly or mountainous terrain, braking power is as important-or even more important-than the horsepower required to drive up the slopes.
When it comes to selecting a tow vehicle, safety is far more important than fuel
efficiency.
This article, and this one and this one may be helpful. lots of information online.

Be sure to crunch ALL the numbers NOT just towing capacity and what you THINK your trailer weighs (empty and fully loaded).

I have friends who tow with a 1/2 ton & are happy with it. Mine is a 3/4 ton; not sure I would tow with a 1/2 ton on a regular basis.
 

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Be sure to crunch ALL the numbers NOT just towing capacity and what you THINK your trailer weighs (empty and fully loaded).
Yes, for instance, say your truck really can haul up to 11k pounds. But it has a payload of only 1k pounds, which is not impossible in a half-ton truck. Payload means everything that you put in the truck (including you) and it includes the tongue weight of your trailer. So if your trailer has a tongue weight of 800 pounds, and you weight 150 pounds, that means you can't have more than 50 pounds of other stuff in your truck. So no passengers and maybe even no dog.

And of course you don't want to shift weight around in your trailer to try to push weight to the back to reduce tongue weight, because this can increase your chance of trailer sway, and without the stiff suspension that a 3/4-ton truck has, you are a lot more vulnerable to trailer sway.

Sorry if this is stuff you already know; I did a lot of research before and after buying my truck, and there were a lot of things I didn't understand about weight capacity before I bought it. Choosing to over-truck myself meant that I didn't really have to worry about any of that stuff.** But I like to share it in case it helps.

** for instance, I was shocked to learn, after getting a trailer tongue weight scale, that my 4000 pound (empty) trailer had a tongue weight of 800 pounds! That's way more than expected. However, it was well within my truck's payload (truck has a payload of like 3k pounds) so it wasn't an issue.
 

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I think an F150 will be fine. I tow my 2 horse trailer with an older F150 and I haven't had any issues. My truck's tow capacity is 5000 lbs, maybe slightly higher than that with a weight distribution system. Before this I towed a small 2 horse trailer with a Ford Ranger. That Ford Ranger is still going strong and it's a 1999... But it was retired from towing when I got the F150. Now I just haul hay with the Ranger.

If you get a small 2 horse trailer (without a tackroom), your truck should have no issues (and will get better gas mileage). Also get a proportional break controller so your truck doesn't have to stop your trailer in an emergency.

People think they need a huge truck to pull a trailer. If you have a huge rig, yes. But most people buy a huge trailer when they probably can get away with less. I have no plans to get rid of my 2 horse trailer for something larger. I don't want a bigger trailer.

Make sure your trailer is properly balanced to prevent sway. A weight distribution system is great, if you can handle physically putting it on. I found it cumbersome and heavy, but it was designed for an SUV, not a truck and I finally sold it.
 

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Forgot to mention I live in the land of flat, aka Florida. I'm not hauling in the mountains or even long distances.
That's what I was going to ask. How, and where, would it be used?

I purposely bought a 1/2 ton to pull 2 horses in a 3 horse slant bumper pull. I never wanted to be tempted, or asked, to haul downer cows to the sale barn. Or crew horses to mountain pastures. I drive slower than I probably need to, and give myself extra stopping room on the flat. I also get regular maintenance and checks done on it. Never had an issue in ten years.

My truck was my life for several years doing remote healthcare. It was my primary vehicle.
 

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You just don't have enough truck to safely stop that trailer in an emergency. It's not "can it pull it", it's "can it stop it".
A lot of modern trailers will have electric brakes. If the trailer has a 7-pin connector, it is for the brakes. If it has a 4-pin connector, the truck has to provide the braking. One needs to look at the towing capacity of the individual truck. It is a combination of many factors. There are some good YouTube videos of guys towing trailers at max capacity and what they found about handling, power and stopping. After watching a number, I'd be leery of going over 75% of capacity at high speed or in the mountains. OTOH, I wouldn't blink an eye at max capacity on one of the local dirt roads doing 25 mph.

In looking around, it looks like trailers have improved as well. Not just in brakes, but in better balance and stability. Unfortunately, the price of trailers has nudged me out of the market. I've pulled stock trailers with my friend's truck. Let's just say he doesn't sweat a lot about rated capacity - but he's been a professional driver hauling 130,000 pound trucks filled with coal, so his skills may allow him to get away with more than I could. I've only driven them on dirt roads.

 

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A lot of modern trailers will have electric brakes. If the trailer has a 7-pin connector, it is for the brakes. If it has a 4-pin connector, the truck has to provide the braking. One needs to look at the towing capacity of the individual truck. It is a combination of many factors. There are some good YouTube videos of guys towing trailers at max capacity and what they found about handling, power and stopping. After watching a number, I'd be leery of going over 75% of capacity at high speed or in the mountains. OTOH, I wouldn't blink an eye at max capacity on one of the local dirt roads doing 25 mph.

In looking around, it looks like trailers have improved as well. Not just in brakes, but in better balance and stability. Unfortunately, the price of trailers has nudged me out of the market. I've pulled stock trailers with my friend's truck. Let's just say he doesn't sweat a lot about rated capacity - but he's been a professional driver hauling 130,000 pound trucks filled with coal, so his skills may allow him to get away with more than I could. I've only driven them on dirt roads.

I am well aware of all this. I would not pull a trailer that did not have electric brakes, but systems fail. I still want a truck that has enough to stop a trailer.
I was a relief driver on a bull wagon so I have driving experience as well. I would FAR RATHER have more truck than I need, than not have enough. Things happen, and when you're on the road, you see those things.
 
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I pull 53 footers and sets of 28 footers every day. I'm perfectly comfortable with my f150. It's not a big truck that keeps you safe it's the person in the driver's seat that refuses to overdrive, tailgate, etc. We routinely hook onto trailers that are bad need of a brake adjustment or repair. In a large fleet it's going to happen. The response is to drive accordingly until you can write it up for repair.
 

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I'd say is truck has enough power to do what you want to do. But if you're concerned with the wear and tear on the engine, I would suggest you test the condition of the engine before buying. Try to find a mechanic, or someone with the proper tools, to do a compression and leak test on the engine.
 
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