towing capacity vs. engine longevity vs. gas millage

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by cgessel, Jul 12, 2007.

  1. cgessel

    cgessel LawnSite Member
    Posts: 3

    Hello fellow LCO's
    I am considering purchase of a new truck for work and I am intrested in hearing your opinion on the best truck for my business. This will be my 3rd year at mowing lawns, and my equipment weights about 1600 lbs. I am not sure of the weight of a 6 X 12 trailer. My accounts demand about 300 miles of driving a week. The dealer said the milliage difference is only 2 miles a gallon between the F-150 V6 vs. the V8. My thought is that the milliage difference pulling a trailer is closer to 4-5 miles a gallon. My question is might it be more cost effective to get the smaller engine or will I risk not having the power to haul all my equipment from point to point? Many Thanks
    Jacksonville FL
  2. Greybeard

    Greybeard LawnSite Member
    Posts: 132

    Here's our experience with the Ford trucks: we've rented vans with V6 and V8 engines, and whenever we load up the V6 heavy, it gets worse mileage than the V8 loaded heavy. And the performance is way slower.
    On our own F350 the 5.4 V8 is about to hit 100,000 miles with no repairs. I've replaced the serpentine belt and the spark plugs, and that's it. And it has not had an easy life. We've towed some heavy loads, up to 15,000 pounds, Bobcat excavators, air compressors, etc. But I change the oil at 3,000 miles, and the other filters, etc. regularly.
    If you're just starting out, it's tempting to save the $ and go light-duty. We've learned over the years that heavy-duty is cheaper in the long run, in small equipment and trucks. You may burn a little more gas every day, but you'll spend less on repairs. And the day when you need to go bigger or pull a heavy chipper or something, the V8 will handle it.
  3. Focal Point Landscapes

    Focal Point Landscapes LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 401

    Greybeard is right on , imo . Suspension system is another biggie. I pull heavier equipment on larger trailers , but even with a Z and a single axle trailer , the 1500 works noticeably harder than my 3500 - much more so when towing a heavier load . If it were me , I would choose a 2500 diesel - you will spend less money over time .
  4. cgessel

    cgessel LawnSite Member
    Posts: 3

    Thanks for the info. I don't know if I'll every get into that heavy equipment and weight, but the cost of repairs vs. extra daily miillage expense is worth noting
  5. Lawnworks

    Lawnworks LawnSite Fanatic
    from usa
    Posts: 5,407

    I agree w/ focal point.... but I would tell the dealer to kiss my ass... I don't see how you can afford a new truck just to beat the hell out of it. I would get a used cummins diesel 2500 w/ 100k for $12-13k.
  6. springover

    springover LawnSite Member
    Posts: 38

    Lawnworks that is exactly what i was thinking...a 2500 dodge '95 gets 16mpg and the trailer is never unhooked...

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