Towing from the bumper

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by rogdogg, Mar 14, 2007.

  1. rogdogg

    rogdogg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    I just replaced my old 91 F-350 with a 2000 F-150, 4.2L 6cylinder. The bumper says right on it it can pull 5,000 and 500 tongue wgt. Everything appears to be attached and strong. Is there any downsides to towing from the bumper? I have an enclosed 6x10 trailer w/ 48" wb, weedwackers,push mowers,blowers,the usual stuff,nothing too heavy. Can I get by well enough without buying and installing a tow hitch?
     
  2. Duncan90si

    Duncan90si LawnSite Member
    Posts: 207

    You should be fine. With a trailer that size I don't see a major problem as long as everything is solid: bumper, brackets, ball etc. I personally would look into getting a hitch if not now sometime down the road when you have some extra cash just for the extra assurance of safety.
     
  3. rogdogg

    rogdogg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    Thanks,and i welcome any other input as to why a hitch is superior. If everything feels alright, i may run off the bumper. Unless i see my bumper sag or the level of the trailer is off....
     
  4. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 841

    Having a hitch gives you a couple of advantages.

    1. You can get the correct receiver to unsure a level trailer. Proper ride height and level is important for trailer towing.

    2. Because the tounge of the trailer is not sitting in the bumper diviot, you will have a better turning radius. Due the the receiver I have, my ball is about a foot off the back bumper. I can almost jackknife my trailer to 90 deg from the truck without causing damage.

    3. Everything is attached, steel to steel. There are no brackets to slip if you have a heavy load and hit a bump causing extra forces on the bumper.

    I know what the ratings are on the bumpers for towing, and I see alot of people use the bumpers, but I have never been a fan of it. I have seen way to may bumper brackets bend or slip when carrying loads that the bumper "SHOULD" be able to handle.

    For the extra safety and piece of mind, I would go ahead and get you a good hitch. I have seen 7,000 lb, 700 lb tounge weight hitches for around $100-$125. I got my 15,000 lb hitch for $165. Pretty cheap for good sound piece of mind.

    Also, be sure you put something (padlock, bolt w/ nut, or couple pin) in the coupler while towing. In our state (maybe even a US DOT regulation) it is illegal to tow without something to keep the couple from comming loose. I have seen runaway trailers that have come loose before, it is not exciting watching one come toward you.
     
  5. rogdogg

    rogdogg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    haha,yuh, my trailer bounced off of my old truck going 5mph,left a nice groove in the crete (it was empty) chains kept her there,and we were outta there. Turning radius is something i hadn't thought about,thanks. I'll see how it feels/goes, probably get a hitch, but could use the money now,as i just got the rig,and need start up loot for spring season,been a long snowless winter.
     
  6. Duncan90si

    Duncan90si LawnSite Member
    Posts: 207

    I agree with 100% of what Total Lawn Care said. I just picked up a Valley 7500lb hitch for $130. I suggest inspecting your bumper and brackets every once in a while to make sure they aren't bent or cracked. Happy towing. burn.gif

    burn.gif
     
  7. rogdogg

    rogdogg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    Yeah, i'm goin straight for the hitch after all,do it right.The trailer is not level with the bumper ball, which i know results in a unsmooth bouncy ride. Anybody have any cheap reccomendations for hitch shopping? E-trailer looks best so far, but i'm always down for a bargain.
     
  8. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 841

    Be sure to check with your local trailer companies. The one I got I let a local trailer company get it for me. They get a volume discount from Reese and they only charged me actual cost shipping. If you order one online, you will pay about $140-185 (if you are luck) for the hitch and then another $30-50 for shipping.

    If that does not work, etrailerpart.com will probably be your best bet. I just am not sure about their shipping costs.
     
  9. rogdogg

    rogdogg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    99 cent shipping on all orders over 150 on e trailer. The hitch is 138,so then i'll buy the electrical for 20 whatever bucks. Only way I'll beat that ,that i can see, if my friend still gets his x- employee/friend discount at u-haul,haha.cheers.
     
  10. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 841

    Sounds like the best option. Good luck. Oh yeah, if you get the right one, then the 45 minute install time is about right. I did have to drill two holes for mine, but that was after I got it bolted to the frame.
     

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