Can a Half-Ton Truck Tow a Fifth Wheel RV?


Tucker Ballister

Favorite Trip

5 Months Solo on the Road

Home Base

Hendersonville, NC

Favorite RV

2008 Fleetwood Bounder

About Contributor

Tucker Ballister is our Content Strategist. He’s a lover of the open road and the proud owner of a 2021 Sunlite Classic travel trailer (his 3rd RV to date). Check out more of his RV adventures, gear reviews, and outdoor advice at

Fifth wheel RVs offer many advantages thanks to their unique towable design. The fifth wheel hitch provides RVers with additional floorplans, amenities, overall length, and much more. But there is one glaring barrier to entry with fifth wheel RVs — most require a heavy-duty pickup truck.

Heavy-duty pickups are large and powerful machines. They’re also expensive, which dissuades many potential fifth wheel owners. Many buyers simply can’t afford to buy a heavy-duty truck, such as a Ford F-350 or a Chevrolet Silverado 3500, in addition to the cost of a fifth wheel (even if you buy a used fifth wheel).

Can You Tow a Fifth Wheel RV With a Half-Ton Truck?

Photo by Camping World

Fortunately, fifth wheels are designed to be towed by certain light-duty half-ton pickups, like an F-150 or a Toyota Tundra. If you already own a half-ton truck, you don’t have to settle for a traditional travel trailer if you’re set on a fifth wheel floorplan. Though you need to be able to answer: how much does a fifth wheel weigh?

Not all half-ton trucks can or should tow all fifth wheel models. Use a tool like Camping World’s Towing Guide to calculate your truck’s towing and payload capacities. Understanding weight ratings is vital to selecting the right travel trailer or fifth wheel your truck can tow safely.

A base-level half-ton pickup may not be able to tow all fifth wheels. But half-ton trucks with high enough towing and payload ratings have the ability to tow many. With that in mind, let’s look at half-ton fifth wheels and the trucks that pull them.

The Half-Ton Payload Problem

Dog on black pick up truck back view

Regarding fifth wheel towing, half-ton pickup trucks have limitations that heavy-duty trucks don’t have. It usually isn’t just towing capacity — it’s payload capacity.

Simply put, payload capacity is how much the truck can carry. This refers to the amount of weight the cab and bed of the truck can handle. In terms of fifth wheel RVs, many half-ton trucks can’t or can just barely handle the hitch or pin weight of a fifth wheel RV.

This is true even with many of the fifth wheels marketed as half-ton models. Always check your vehicle’s tow ratings. We’ve made this easy with an instant Towing Guide Calculator.

Common Half-Ton Payload Capacities

half-ton Truck With Custom Grill

Exact specifications will vary depending on trim level, packages, and other equipment. But these are some payload ranges for common half-ton pickup trucks:

  • 2022 Ford F-150: 1,310 to 2,238 pounds
  • 2022 Chevy Silverado 1500: 1,480 to 2,300 pounds
  • 2022 Toyota Tundra: 1,575 to 1,940 pounds
  • 2022 RAM 1500: 1,225 to 2,325 pounds
  • 2022 GMC Sierra 1500: 1,360 to 2,270 pounds
  • 2022 Nissan Titan: 1,311 to 1,711 pounds

Keep in mind that these payload ratings are for newer trucks. An older model may not have as high of payload capacity.

Hitch Weight

Photo by Camping World

When purchasing a fifth wheel, you must consider the hitch weight — how much weight the fifth wheel will exert on your vehicle’s frame where it connects to your truck (in the bed). Manufacturers disclose this in their specifications for the model. 

Please note: the listed hitch weight is a dry rating which means the trailer is not loaded. As you load your trailer, your hitch weight will increase which you need to account for.

For example, according to the company website, the Jayco Eagle 27.5RLTS has a hitch weight of 1,560 pounds. This is one of the lightest fifth wheel models out there.

If your truck’s payload far exceeds the loaded hitch weight, you should be fine to tow the fifth wheel. Remember to ensure the tow rating also aligns with the trailer’s weight. However, if the fifth wheel RV hitch weight is right at the truck’s payload capacity or barely under it, you shouldn’t push it right up to the capacity limit.

When you operate your truck at or near the max payload capacity for long periods, you put excessive strain on the drivetrain, suspension, brakes, and all other truck areas. You’re asking for problems over time.

Technician Tip: The weight of yourself and your passengers and cargo within the truck must be factored into payload capacity. If you only have 200 pounds to spare between hitch weight and payload capacity, you will go over once everyone piles in the vehicle.

What About Half-Ton Truck Fifth Wheel Towing?

2019 Keystone cougar half-ton

Modern half-ton trucks can usually tow somewhere around 9,000 to 10,000 pounds. Not all of them can do that, but many come equipped for serious towing duties.

Here are the listed towing capacities for common half-ton trucks. Always check your specific make, model, and year in our Towing Guide Calculator to be sure:

  • 2022 Ford F-150: 5,000 to 11,300 pounds
  • 2022 Chevrolet Silverado 1500: 8,900 to 11,000 pounds
  • 2022 Toyota Tundra: 8,300 to 12,000 pounds
  • 2022 RAM 1500: 6,120 to 8,280 pounds
  • 2022 GMC Sierra 1500: 8,800 to 9,400 pounds
  • 2022 Nissan Titan: 9,040 to 9,320 pounds

Again, the exact towing capacity of your truck may vary based on the engine, tow package, etc. Before you head out and buy just any fifth wheel that says it’s designed for half-ton pickup trucks, remember that the vehicle’s tow rating must be higher than the RV’s gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR).

The Jayco Eagle 27.5RLTS fifth wheel has a GVWR of 9,995 pounds. That means if you have a half-ton truck with a towing capacity of 12,000 pounds and a payload capacity of 2,000 pounds, you could technically tow this Jayco Eagle model with your truck.

However, we can’t overstate the importance of avoiding towing at or near your truck’s max towing and payload capacities. Going that close to the line will put a lot of stress on your tow vehicle and likely leave you with expensive repairs down the road.

So, Can a Half-Ton Tow a Fifth-Wheel RV?

Photo by Camping World

The short answer is yes but with the proper amount of caution and research. Sometimes, a fifth wheel and half-ton pickup truck may not go together.

There are exceptions where a half-ton pickup truck’s payload and towing capacities can easily handle tow vehicle duties for lightweight fifth wheel models. Still, most half-ton trucks will be better off towing a different RV type. Plenty of RV towing accessories will outfit your vehicle as needed. Consider adding suspension enhancements if you plan to tow at or near the truck’s capacity.

If you only have a half-ton truck and can’t or don’t want a heavy-duty full-size pickup (like a Ford F-250 or F-350, a Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD or 3500HD), then you are likely better off with a travel trailer RV. Small trucks and SUVs can even tow some of the most lightweight travel trailers.

A lighter trailer may be the perfect RV for you because it puts less stress on your truck, allowing your tow vehicle to last longer and allowing you to haul your RV on longer trips safely. If you do plan to tow at or near the truck’s capacity, consider adding suspension enhancements to help improve the ride.

Lightweight Fifth Wheel RVs

Here are a few lighter fifth wheels that your truck may be able to tow. Again, check the specs for your truck and the specific model you’re interested in, and consult our Towing Guide to ensure you can safely tow your fifth wheel of choice.

Jayco Eagle HT 27RL

Photo by Camping World

Fifth Wheel Specs

  • Dry Weight: 8,610 pounds
  • Hitch Weight: 1,520 pounds
  • Length: 31’7″

Shop Camping World’s selection of Jayco Eagle fifth wheels.

Forest River Arctic Wolf 261RK

Photo by Camping World

Fifth Wheel Specs

  • Dry Weight: 7,773 pounds
  • Hitch Weight: 1,325 pounds
  • Length: 30’7″

Shop Camping World’s selection of Forest River Arctic Wolf fifth wheels.

KZ RV Durango 230RKD

Photo by Camping World

Fifth Wheel Specs

  • Dry Weight: 7,110 pounds
  • Hitch Weight: 1,090 pounds
  • Length: 26’9″

Shop Camping World’s selection of KZ RV Durango fifth wheels.

As always, your local Camping World is available if you want to sell or trade-in your current RV for a new motorhome or a 5th wheel.

Which fifth wheel RV are you considering, and what truck do you plan to tow it with? Leave a comment below!

  • Comment (100)
  • Paul says:

    I have a 2012 F150 4×4 Supercrew with the 3.5 Ecoboost, 3.73 Electronic Lock RR Axle, 157” wheelbase and the Max Trailering package. The Ford truck brochure said this engine can tow 11300, but the GVWR sticker on the truck door says 7700. Which is correct?
    I’m looking at the new 287BH Fifth Wheel Ultralite by Arctic Wolf. UVW is 8368 with a CCC of 3157 for a GVW of 11525. Do I need to get a larger truck for this trailer?
    Trailer salesman says “No”. Truck salesman says “Yes”

    • Jeff says:

      The GVWR of 7700 pounds is the maximum weight your vehicle can weigh when fully loaded with a trailer’s tongue weight, gear and people. Another important weight is GCVWR. This is the combined weight of your tow vehicle and the trailer. Other important weights are your front axle and rear axle weights. All of these should be weighed on a scale to make sure they have not been exceeded.
      Your trailer weight exceeds your max towing capacity of your truck. Your truck is too small for this trailer. It would be unsafe and your truck’s transmission and suspension would not last. Never trust a salesman.

  • Ricky o Fitzgerald says:

    I have a 2020 Ram 1500 with a HEMI 4 x 2. Can it tow a 5th wheel.

  • Anita,L Barnes says:

    I have a 2021 ram 1500 eco Diesel Laramie 5.5 box 3.21 ratio 4×4 can I tow Grand design 150 series 260rd

  • John says:

    I pull a 295RL Montana High Country with a 2018 Platinum F 150 crew cab max tow package 3.5 eco boost. It has air bags and E rated tires. It does fine and stays the course even with a 30 mph cross wind. I’ve pulled fifth wheels coast to coast and north to south over mountains and desserts. In the estimated 100,000 miles of travel we have never had an issue with performance. I’ve had 350 s and 250’s in the past, but the F 150 does very well when properly equipped. I usually put between 140,000 and 180,000 miles on the F 150’s with next to zero mechanical problems. Pulling any fifth wheel requires common sense and skill. Ford puts an extra heavy frame on the max tow crew cab model. My current F 150 is rated higher than my previous vintage 1984 F 350. I don’t like the ride of the 3/4 or above trucks so I stay with what works for me. My F 150 costs about the same as a F 250 or F 350.

  • Penny says:

    We have a 2008 Dodge Ram Lariat 1500 We just bought a 5th wheel that is 7200 lbs dry. Any advice? Should we not try to tow it with the truck we have?

  • Garry Luttman says:

    I have a. 1977. Chevy c 10. Long wheel base pickup. With a 500cui eng turbo 400 trans. And larger size brakes. What size rv do you recommend towing

  • Kenneth Schwartz says:

    I tow a Open Range Light 5th Wheel, 9k empty, 11k GVWR with my 2018 F150 Heavy Duty Payload – Max Towing package. It has a 2600lb Payload capacity and the pin weight of my 5th Wheel is 1250lbs. I’ve towed it all up and down the east coast from Maine to Tennessee, and through the Great Smokies to the coast of NC. I’ve had no problems. I get about 10MPG when towing.

  • Pico says:

    Could you give us a clear formula for “pin” weight? None of the trailers we’ve seen list that anywhere. Thanks!

  • Graham says:

    I have a 2020 Ram Rebel 4×4. I am looking to by a Fuel gooseneck toy hauler. Which fifth wheel should buy? Truck has the 5.5 ft bed I believe. Can my 2020 Ram Rebel 1500 4×4 handle this fuel toy hauler?

  • Richard says:

    I’ve an 06’ Silverado 1500 with factory tow pkg, owners manual says “7700lb trailer wt and 1041lb cargo wt. I am considering a 22’ Komfort 5th wheel with a GVW of 5500lb, i’ve no other specs yet on trailer, wondering off hand if my truck would safely tow it

  • Ben says:

    is there a easy way to fine out what rear in I have in my Dodge 2017 1/2 ton

  • Sharelle Ryan says:

    If you have a 2016 dodge ram 1500 with a hemi n a 5 1/2 ft bed can you pull any fifth wheel and is there any year fifth wheel that you can pull and be safe.

  • Tom says:

    I am thinking of buying a Dodge Ram 1500 with towing capacity of 11,680lb and a payload day of 1770. Can that pull a fifth wheel that weighs 7500 dry weight and gross vehicle weight of about 9500lb. The hitch weight of fifth wheel is 1300

  • Tom says:

    Iam looking at buying a Dodge Ram bighorn with towing capacity of 11490lb and payload capacity of 1,770. The gvwr of the fifth wheel is 9,495 lb with a hitch of 1,222. We that work out ok

  • Rivers says:

    We tow our Keystone Cougar half-ton fifth wheel with a 2010 Toyota Thundra -(8 cylinder 5.7).
    150,000 trouble free miles.

  • Cheryl says:

    There is a reason that RV delivery drivers are required to have a 3/4 or full ton trucks. Think about it. It’s always better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it….

  • Gary Davis says:

    I have a 2020 Ram 1500 5.7 Hemi with tow package and air suspension. I am looking at a Rockwood Ultra Lite 2622RK fifth wheel. Dry weight 7909 and a pin weight of 1230. Do you think my Ram will be able to handle it? It’s just me and my wife as passengers with our Yorkie.

  • Reno says:

    Just being able to tow it doesn’t make it legal. Take it to a scale loaded then go get a bigger truck.

  • David LaBrenz says:

    International 4400 medium duty truck 16000 pound cameo 5th wheel I like to feel safe towing

  • John says:

    What is the best half ton truck set up for a thirty foot fifth wheel? (9500gvwr)

  • Chris says:

    I have a 2004 Forest River Wildwood 29bhss travel trailer that is being towed with a 2018 Ram 2500 6.7 diesel. The truck is absolutely fantastic.

  • Skip says:

    I have pulled a Jayco eagle 30rks with a dry weight of 8900 lbs with a 2006 gmc 4×4 factory towing pkg and 5.3 engine from Canada to Florida several times with no problems at all. Now have a 2016 GMC Sierra Kodak 4×4 factory max tow pkg,
    With 5.3 and handles it in cruise control.

  • Dennis Melvin says:

    In my comments above I failed to mention that he max towing package in 15 and 16 had a 3.73 gear ! Huge difference over the 3.42! The extra leaf spring resulted in only two inches of squat. Extra cooling capacity in trans. radiator resulted in needle never lifting over the center and transmission never got over 197 ish! I hauled fish for twenty five years in live wells with baffled tanks so I have experienced sway a few times on secondary roads that a crowned! I have no issues with my grand design 150 series at all! Just keep the water to a minimum.

  • Tracey Tan says:

    Hello, I have a 28’ ( 32’ ) Cougar fifth wheel and a 2017 Dodge Ram 1500 5.7 hemi. Can or should I be okay with this setup ? I was using a Ram 2500 diesel prior. Thanks!

  • Chuck says:

    I have a 2012 dodge ram 1/2 ton with 5.7 hemi and 3 92 rear end. Will this pull a 2020 29 ft cougar 5th wheel camper ?

  • Dan B says:

    Hi Wade, I just bought a 2019 Chevy Silverado 1500 with 5.3 engine, 8 speed transmission, 3.42 rear end and the Max towing option with a 2300 payload and 11,600 towing capacity. I bought this to open up more options with trailer choice.

    Now I am looking at the Grand Design Refection 150 series, specifically the 230RL (approx 1,200 pin weight) or 260RD (approx 1,325 pin weight). Would prefer the 260RD. Both have a GVWR of around 9,500. Will my truck handle this ok?

  • Jacob says:

    I have a 2018 Chevy 1500 and pull my 2008 aspen it’s 32ft and 11000 pounds dry but I still send it

  • Glenn says:

    Not a camper yet but have a 2017 1500 supercharged 5.3 with 6piston Brembo’s 3.42. I am considering ride rite bags, trans cooler. My tire load rating keeps me at 10k and options aren’t there at my rim size. Am I overlooking anything and should I be ok if I keep under 2200 payload/10k tow? Aluminum wheels also have limits

  • Chuck Cagle says:

    I have a 2019 Dodge Ram 1500 Hemi 5.7. It’s a short box and from what I have been reading here I can not tow a 5th wheel period.

  • Dennis says:

    When i was shopping for a 5th wheel, i was very adamant about the pin weight. The salesperson thought i was out of my mind, but quickly proved to him he has been selling rv’s that are over wieight for the vehicle. I ended with a 2018 KZ Durango. With a 2150 pound pin weight is well under my pin limit and max tow weight. Truck is Ram 2500 diesel.

  • Mopartech says:

    Look at older 5th wheels, I have an 89 mallard that weighs 3500lbs with a gvwr of 5k. I tow it with a v8 dakota with the heavy suspension and towing package. It not only pulls it great it stops it great as well.

  • Tom says:

    I have a 2018 F150 with max tow and 3.5 Ecoboost. I tow a 2898 ks Rockwood fifth wheel that is 36′ long. Dry pin weight of 1450 and camper dry weight of 9400. My max tow is 13000. It handles the camper great. If its windy out with side wind I feel the camper back there but nothing unstable. always can hold the speed limit of 65 to 70. If I was a full time Rv person I would own a 3/4 ton. But since I only camp in the spring, summer and fall and my truck is my daily driver, the F150 works out excellent for me. Also I do have a pair of super spring overloads on my truck on the lightest setting. I had them from a earlier truck that had a lower payload and I was pulling a camper with a heavier pin weight. Not sure If I need them since my payload is 2200. I haven’t tried towing this new camper and truck combination without them.

  • Pat says:

    I have a 28 ft Keystone Cougar with a 7000 pound dry weight. I had a 1996 Sierra 2500 to pull it with and had no problems but I moved and the person that was going to buy the camper backed out after I sold my old truck. Can a half ton handle my camper

  • Danny Linton says:

    We recently purchased a 2018 GMC 1500 SLT (5.3L engine, short bed) and have a 2016 EZO (48 volt) Golf Cart. We want to select the best and maximum capacity option for a 5th-wheel/toy hauler purchase. Any suggestions? This will be our home and office for the next 5 years as we tour the U.S. Please assist. Thank you!

  • Joyce Gentry says:

    We have a 2010 Ford F-150 Lariat Crew Cab 4×2 with a 5.4L engine & the towing package on it. We recently switched out the rear axle to a 3.73. Also, we had installed an air bag suspension kit that increases the load support by 5K lbs. Our towing capacity is now 11K lbs. It’s just my husband and I and our camping gear/equipment to add to the load of the truck. The payload is right at 1,700 lbs. The 5th wheel we’re considering is the Jayco 27.5RLTS. It has a GVWR of 9,995 lbs. The UVW on different units we’ve looked at ranges from 7,400 – 7,900 lbs. (depending on dealer-installed options). We’ve got a 5.5 bed & know that we’ll need a Sidewinder hitch pin box. Will we be okay to tow this Jayco RV? Thx!

  • Mike Schofield says:

    When I traded my Tahoe in on a diesel, I was looking for an LTZ package. The dealer only had one diesel with the LTZ package, it was a 3500HD. I bought it thinking that if I ever wanted to upgrade to a larger trailer I could get just about anything I wanted. Now that I have driven this truck for almost four years I have come to realize that it’s not just the powerful diesel engine or the massive towing capacity, it’s also the transmission. That Allison transmission has spoiled me. It not only does thinking going up the canyons but also a lot safer coming back down.

  • I overbought my Dodge 3500 it rides like crap gets bad fuel mileage and I wish I could get a half ton gas instead of the diesel says:

    I overbought my Dodge 3500 it rides like crap gets bad fuel mileage and I wish I could get a half ton gas instead of the diesel

  • Dennis Melvin says:

    I going with a half ton max tow Chevy . Pin weight on unit is 1270 . My sticker on my truck say 1897. Total gross is 16700. The unit weighs 8270 with total weight on fifth wheel at 9995 lbs I just don’t get the nay sayers on this combo. Don’t forget on half tons two occupants and trailering equipment is figured in! Some of you guys need to catch up with the latest information on newer units! Grand design 150 series with under 1300 pin and 8300 unit weight with 1000 lbs of cargo tows easy! Way under 167000 total gross and hundreds under pin max!

  • Jerry lane says:

    I have a k1500 HD CREWCAB with a 6.0 it came with 3/4 ton axles I’m getting ready to buy a 28′ – 31′ 5th wheel will this be enough truck?

  • J says:

    If your vehicle says half ton or 1500 , that means light duty!!! Why do you thing larger trucks say 3500 or heavy duty?? The new half ton trucks ratings give you a false sense of capability stretching the limits of the vehicle. Manufactures sugar coat the top end of these trucks because 75% of trucks are half ton . R.v. Manufactures are taking advantage of the maxed out ratings of the light duty trucks so they can sell more trailers.

  • Donald H Walker says:

    I have 2008 1500 Silverado I tow my camper is 6400 pounds so far no trouble

  • Rebecca says:

    We tow a 40ft 2008 Jayco toy hauler with our 2013 F350 6.7 Turbo dually.

  • Gary White says:

    I have a f150 eco boost with towing package. I have a 2018 wildcat with a dry weigh of 9200 lbs. The hitch weigh is 1500 lbs. my load capacity is around 2700 lbs. I feel like I may be pushing it a little on. Hitch weight.

  • Bob says:

    I pull a 40 foot flat bed gooseneck trailer with a mgvw of 25,000 lbs with a 2015 f-350 with the 6.7 diesel! Does an excellent job. Electric over hydraulic brakes!!!

  • Foster says:

    38’ Forest River Quad Slide 13,500lbs towing with a 2007 F350 6.0 with a lot of work done to it. However I used to tow with a 96 F350 7.3 that was for the most part factory and it did great! Prior to trading campers last year my other camper weighed in at 17000lbs and I pulled it with the 7.3.

  • David says:

    I tow a Cougar 29RLI Xlite with a Sierra 1500 with the Max Trailering package. The door sticker says I can load 2122 pounds and the GVW for the truck is 7,600 pounds. I took it to CAT scales and found out that I was 300 pounds overweight. The pin weight was 1740 pounds.

    My neighbor’s diesel Ram 2,500 has a load rating of about 2,050 pounds. 2,050 minus 1,740 equals 310 pounds so that means either my wife or I have to stay home if we had the Ram.

    Having said all that, pay attention to the sticker on the door jam. I’ll bet there are hundreds of 2,500’s and 3,500’s over their weight limit.

  • Arthur says:

    You can haul a Scamp 19 5th wheel with a small pickup that is less than a real 1/2 ton. 19 feet 2300 lbs and a tongue weight of less than 450. I have towed mine with a Ranger & a Dakota.

  • Tim says:

    My TT weighs 7050 lbs dry weight and I pull it with a 2013 Chevrolet 2500HD gasses.

  • Capt Mike says:

    I tow a 295RL grand design with my 2019 ram 1500 4 x 4 crew cab and it performs perfectly. I am very close to its cargo capacity so I am careful to not load anything into the bed or truck when towing.

  • Jerry says:

    Did you add heavier coil springs. I also have a 2019 Ram big horn 4×4 crew cab with the short bed thanks

  • Doug says:

    Hi Mike, do you have a slider hitch? We are getting a 5th wheel and I just had a reese slider installed in my 2020 Ram 1500. in the slider forward position, it sure is close to the cab. my concern in turning radius? thoughts?

  • Nanci says:

    I really like that RV. Out cargo capacity is 1851 and towing capacity is 14000. We have a 2021 Ford F 150 3.5L eco boost with maximum towing package. What is your cargo capacity and do you think we could tow that 5th wheel?


    Looks like I have the same 2019 Ram Laramie 4×4 -6’4″ bed, tows 11.3K payload 1780 lbs. Were looking into buying the 295RL. Have you towed the 295RL up elevation and how did the Ram perform. We will be going to Denver and there is some elevation to consider while towing. We appreciate any info you have with this truck/ 5th Wheel combo. Thank you

  • Randy Scott says:

    I just bought an Arctic Wolf 291rl fiver, dry weight 8400 and hitch weight 1255. My 2019 Ram 1500 quad cab, 4wd, Hemi and 3.92 axle has pulled it well, even up long climbs. I also put AirLift5000’s in and I’m perfectly level with just 35lbs of air. So far I’m really happy!

  • Tom says:

    Have you pulled the fifth wheel around the country and in the mountains?

  • Jason Bouck says:

    I tow a 2009 rockwood signature ultra light 8315BSS , tongue weight is #855 and GVWR is #8550. I tow it with a 2019 RAM 1500 quad cab 4X4. 5.7 HEMI. I have added 30% over stock rear springs, 285/60R20 10 ply tires. The truck does a great job. I live in central NY, plenty of hills. I’m considering a 1/2 ton towable 5th wheel. I’m leaning towards a artic wolf or Flagstaff. My payload is #1960 and tow max is #11,600

  • Larry Marten says:

    Mike we have a 2019 RAM 1500 limited 5.7hemi and are investigating how it would pull the Grand Design 295RL Your post indicates you have this setup. Please let us know how good it tows highway, hills, sway. also what hitch do you use

  • Mike Smith says:

    I tow a Lakoto 3horse slant load with 8′ short wall living quarters. 9800 curb weight 14,000 GGVW. I tow with a Chevy HD3500 dually with the Duramax. The truck is licenced combination weight 23,500 at a registration fee of over $500.00 per year.

  • Wade Thiel says:

    Hey Paul, just because the engine can tow up to 11,300 doesn’t mean the chassis can handle it.

    That said, your tow rating and your GVWR are not the same. Your truck and trailer each have their own GVWR. GVWR isn’t just the weight of passengers and cargo but also the vehicle itself. The tow rating is different.

    What you need to do is determine if the fifth wheel hitch weight of the trailer is going to put you over the truck’s GVWR, which includes all the people, the hitch itself, and cargo you carry along, too. If you’re under the GVWR with the hitch weight (and passengers and hitch and cargo) included in your calculations, then you should be good. Typically, the tongue weight or hitch weight of a fifth wheel is 20 percent of the trailer’s weight, so you’re looking at a tongue weight or hitch weight of about 1,673 pounds. From there you’ll have to factor in all of the other things like the weight of the vehicle, passengers, cargo, etc to get the true GVWR. My gut says you’ll be right on the edge.

    Typically with fifth wheels I always tell people they will be happiest with a heavy-duty pickup like an F250 or F350. Those trucks were designed for heavy loads and towing like this. There are a lot of “half-ton” fifth-wheels out there, and those can only be towed by the highest towing spec half-ton trucks, and even then, you’re usually pushing the envelope. There are plenty of people who tow smaller fifth wheels with half ton trucks, don’t get me wrong, but if it were my money, I wouldn’t buy a fifth wheel without a heavy-duty truck.

  • Wade Thiel says:

    It depends on the fifth wheel but yes, in some cases.

  • Jason Bouck says:

    Your new 5th wheel is 7200lbs dry. Add food, clothing and other supplies, say now your at 8000. Weight wise you should be ok. You need to see what the pin weight or your 5th wheel is vs trucks payload capacity. Remember to figure in the weight of your hitch and anything else in your truck. After looking up 2008 ram 1500 tow ratings, I personally would consider a newer 1500 “2017 to 2020” or a 2500. Just to be safe,

  • Wade Thiel says:

    Hi Penny, I don’t know the specific tow rating for your truck. If it’s high enough, then you might be fine to tow that.

  • Mike Bluteau says:

    David, I have a 2017 Cougar 29RES fifth wheel, (8,020 dry; 10k loaded) and Id like to know more about the 1/2 ton truck you use to pull yours..(Year, make, model, engine size, etc..) I have a 2011 F350 diesel that I use, but looking to downgrade vehicles and still want too be able to pull my trailer.. Thanks in Advance!

  • Zach says:

    How does your 1500 do pulling it

  • Darrel says:

    What Grand Design fifth wheel are you pulling? I’m looking at a 295rl. I have a 2019 GMC 1500 Sierra.

  • Art says:

    Thanks for this info/update. I just came from an RV show in Daytona. I have a 2019 Chevy LT double cab. We were really looking at travel trailers. Guy says you guys can handle the 150Series 5th wheel in that truck. I had never heard that so, I started doing the research. I will still do more research, but this info definitely helps. Thanks.

  • says:

    Yes I have Toyota Tacoma & I can pull up to 24 ft lite
    Wt, I had one that size, but hard to find now

  • Mike says:

    Everything I’ve read said air bag suspension does not increase capacity. The axles rating are still a limiting factor.

  • Wade Thiel says:

    Hi Joyce, it sounds like you guys should be okay with what you have. You’ve made good upgrades. However, I would definitely talk with someone at Jayco to be sure. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

  • Jon in Mpls says:

    I am pulling my Scamp with my Chevy S10 Crew Cab, rated at 5,200 for towing and 1,111 payload. The tow weight of the Scamp around 3,000 lbs or so is not a problem. The tongue weight of 400 or 450 is putting me close to payload when we are all in the Crew Cab! I guess that was the point of the article.

  • Bill MacDermod says:

    One of the sticky points with 1/2 tons and 5th wheels is brakes which I haven’t seen mentioned. The brakes on a half ton may not be capable of stopping an overloaded truck. In case of an accident the insurance company could decide to cover you

  • Chris says:

    I wouldn’t buy a half-ton, so may people I hear get limited from having not enough truck and having to much camper. Id hate you to be limited on where you can go even when you start throwing climbing hills and mountains in the mix. 3/4 tons and 1 tons are heavier, more payload, and meant to pull. In August 2019 I traded my 04 Chevy 2500 8.1 off for a 18 Ram 2500 6.7 diesel because of the 8.1 gas was working way too hard and using way too much gas on our 8500 lb 35 ft travel trailer. It is better to be safe and have too much truck then not enough, resulting in lack of towing or tow vehicle breaking down or even worse not stopping or catching a horrible side wind and flipping both units.

  • Nick Angone says:

    I have a 28 ft travel trailer. My truck is rated at 7500 lbs. I only tow it to close camp grounds due to trailer being to heavy. So if u have a 8000 lb trailer I wouldn’t get a half ton truck. I’m looking into upgrading to a 2500 truck now.

  • Wade Thiel says:

    Hi Pat, it depends on the half ton. If you buy one of the brand new models with the right towing package and correct axles and whatnot, you should be able to. However, if you plan on towing it often, I’d opt for a heavy duty like a 2500.

  • Chip Register says:

    agree with what you are saying! one thing that blows my mind that people don’t consider is the variable of the wind. wind has a huge impact on suspension, and 1500’s aren’t built to take that as well. i feel they need to have some way of putting that into the towing specs. a lot of difference from pulling a 10,000lb flatbed trailer to the same in a RV, which the wind greatly affects.

  • Steve says:

    Keep in mind the hitch weight published is dry weight. 5th wheels can have up to 20% of their gvwr on the Pin when loaded

  • Dave says:

    As long as you stay on the east side of country – don’t go west with it. Unless you like your engine running up to 4000 5000 RPM.. just turn the radio way up..
    But hey that Dooley rear-ens will be

  • Wade Thiel says:

    Jerry, I’m not sure what the towing ratings are for that particular truck. I’d check the owner’s manual. If you can’t find it there, go and speak with a dealer to find the specific numbers for your particular truck. Then you can start looking at a fifth-wheel.

  • Dan B says:

    Thanks, appreciate the input. Def going to get the Grand Design then.

  • Michael Martin says:

    I tow the Grand Design Reflection 150 230RL with a 2019 Silverado Club Cab with the factory towing package installed. Even loaded for travel we are well under GVWR ( I have taken to scales twice to double check); the handling has been superb, mpg suffers as expected but the engine does not struggle at all. I have been very pleased!

  • Wade Thiel says:

    Hi Chuck I’d go in and talk with someone at a Camping World dealer. One of the people working there should be able to help you determine that. My first instinct is no, but it might be okay.

  • Wade Thiel says:

    I would think so. Just make sure you’re not over the GVWR with all your gear and the people in your truck. You have some leeway, but you might be cutting it close at times. Just be concious of your weight. The truck will be working, but it should be able to get the job done.

  • Michael Martin says:

    Just a follow up, I bought the Grand Design Reflection 150 series, 5th wheel. I took it to the local CAT scale and the GCWR was more than 2000lbs UNDER the max rating of my Chevy Silverado 1500 LT Club Cab, 2WD. It tows like a dream, only gets 2 inches of squat when connected in towing configuration. and the gas mileage with my 5.3l engine is quite acceptable. I did my research, you folks helped ALOT and I have a great set up now. Thanks everyone!!

  • Michael says:

    Thanks Dennis, I have a 2019 Silverado and am looking to purchase the Grand Design 150 series as well, it appears to be good to go on the numbers. Did you get much “squat” with your set up? Wondering if a AirLift kit is going to be needed. Have you towed much? Any feedback would be great, thanks!!

  • Zach says:

    How does you truck do pulling your trailer? I have a check 1500 2017 and want a 5th just not sure how it will tow.

  • Wade Thiel says:

    Glenn, it sounds like you’re doing what you need to do, but make sure you adhere to all the limits. It might be worth it to talk with your mechanic or service technician and see what he or she thinks too.

  • Tom says:

    I was towing a 9000lb fifth wheel camper with my 2011 f150 with a 5 1/2 ‘ box. Put on overloads and got rid of the “p” tires. Towed like a champ. I did install a “sidewinder” pin box on camper. The camper then pivots on the camper instead of the fifth wheel. Therefore you can make sharp turns without camper hitting cab of truck

  • Wade Thiel says:

    It depends on your truck’s specific towing rating and the fifth wheel you choose. Some lighter weight fifth-wheel trailers might work with your truck. There should be a sticker inside the driver’s side door of your truck that tells exactly how much it can tow. From there you can go about finding a fifth-wheel that will work. If you can’t find one, there are tons of excellent travel trailers out there that you should have no problem towing with a new Ram 1500.

  • Wade Thiel says:

    Hey Dennis, Pin weight is definitely important.

  • Tom says:

    In my opinion no. A lot of campers are made with aluminum . The size camper I have that is a 2020 would weigh a lot more 10 to 15 years ago. They have come up with a lot of ways to make them lighter. Maybe they are cheaper. Lol

  • Joyce G. says:

    So, in general, are you saying that older 5th wheels weigh less than ones made in the last 10-20 years?

  • Danny Linton says:

    Thank you, Wade.

  • Wade Thiel says:

    Hey Danny, You need to look at your truck’s specific towing capacity and hitch weight, etc. and then find a RV that fits your weight specifications. You might have limited choices. Most toy hauler fifth-wheels exceed the towing capabilities of a 1500 pickup. However, depending on how your model is equipped, you should have a few options. It really depends on your specific truck’s equipment and specifications.

  • Anonymous says:


  • Wade Thiel says:

    Hey Mike, yep the diesel is nice, but the transmission is arguably more important. Getting in the right gear at the right time lets the truck utilize the engine’s power. Without a good transmission, the engine wouldn’t be able to do its job well.

  • Wade Thiel says:

    Sounds like the perfect truck for the job, Mike.

  • Wade Thiel says:

    The Scamp is a perfect choice for someone with a smaller truck. Definitely not too heavy.

Leave Your Comment

Shop By RV Type

Your Adventure Awaits

Join our email list and stay up-to-date on the latest news, product innovations, events, promotions, and lots of other fun updates.
By checking this box, you expressly authorize Camping World to send you recurring automated promotional marketing text messages (e.g. cart reminders) to the telephone number entered, which you certify is your own. Consent is not a condition of purchase. Reply HELP for help and STOP to cancel. Msg. frequency varies. Msg. & data rates apply. View Terms & Privacy.
By checking this box, you expressly authorize Camping World to send you recurring automated promotional marketing text messages (e.g. cart reminders) to the telephone number entered, which you certify is your own. Consent is not a condition of purchase. Reply HELP for help and STOP to cancel. Msg. frequency varies. Msg. & data rates apply. View Terms & Privacy.
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Scroll to Top