What weight/length require load levelers?

Discussion in 'Talkback' started by 4play, Aug 1, 2003.

  1. 4play

    4play New Member

    I'm picking up a new trailer this Saturday. Overall length is 25.5',it weighs 3600 lbs empty & the tongue weight is 362 empty. The GVWR is 5761. Will I need a load leveler hitch or sway control with a 1/2 ton pick up? I pull my 16' car hauler with a 2900# car fine without one.
     
  2. BarneyS

    BarneyS Senior Member

    What weight/length require load levelers?

    Yes, you will need a WD hitch and a good sway control. There is a big difference between towing a car hauler and a slab sided travel trailer. In addition, your overall weight and tongue weight is going to be much higher than the "empty" weights you mention. It is very common to add over 1000lbs to the empty weight of a trailer by the time you put your Propane, gear, clothes, food, bedding, etc into it.
    Best thing to do is take it to a scale when you have everything loaded ready for a trip. You will be very surprised at the result!

    I would suggest getting the Reese "Strait-line hitch which combines weight control with sway control. I would not recommend getting a friction sway control as they do not do a very good job and the cost difference is not very much. Here is a link to the Reese Hitch.
    http://www.reesehitch.com/Strait_Line_weightdist_high_trunnion.html
    Good luck.
     
  3. 4play

    4play New Member

    What weight/length require load levelers?

    Thanks, I wound up buying a bigger trailer than I had on hold :)
    We pulled it back with a bud's F250 without a load leveler & it pulled great behind his truck (with air bags), but my 1/2 Chevy I'm sure will not be as happy.
     
  4. BarneyS

    BarneyS Senior Member

    What weight/length require load levelers?

    4play,
    I stand on my post above on the need for WD and sway control. Even though it pulled "great" with your friends F250 doesn't mean that the setup was safe! When you put the weight of a trailer on a hitch, you are not only putting weight on the rear axle of the truck but you are unloading the front steering axle because of the pivot point at the rear wheels. Air bags do nothing but raise the rear of the truck and do nothing to help distribute the weight. This can lead to some scary handling problems at times.
    Picture yourself coming down a long 6% or 8% hill with a curve coming up. Someone pulls out into the road ahead of you. Now you have to go around or slow down, and you have 6-8000lbs of trailer pushing on 5-6000lbs of truck. Yes, you have trailer brakes but the tendency to sway or get out of control is very real. Without WD and a good sway control, your chances of making it thorough that scene are considerably diminished. The cost of a good WD hitch and sway control is very little compared to the rest of your rig and the safety of yourself and those around you. I would strongly encourage you to get both items and set them up properly.
    Congratulations and good luck on your new rig.
    Barney
     
  5. 4play

    4play New Member

    What weight/length require load levelers?

    Thanks, I intend to. I was impressed with the F250 crew cabs ability to handle this trailers 700 tongue weight & 5000 total (empty) weight. I've got some HD rear tires & load leveler on my shopping list.
     

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