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Old 09-06-2020, 01:43 PM   #1
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New 5th Wheel Driver

Hey Y'all,

Ive got a 2011 F350 4x4 SWR with a 6.7 Turbo Diesel. I am looking to tow a 5th wheel RV trailer with it. My question is in order to improve the overall tow of the 5th wheel is it best to replace the factory suspension with air suspension or should I look at replacing the factory shock absorbers with something better or should I do both?

Overall, my goal is to make sure expected bumps in the road do not cause issues with the trailer or my truck.

Let me know.

BeelFam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-2020, 07:38 PM   #2
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If you don't overload the rear axle capacity, new shocks usually are a good addition. Adjustable air bags can help a lot also. Remember, 2 normal truck tires have a total load capacity of about 7000-7500lbs.

When you say 'replace the factory suspension' what exactly do you have in mind?

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Old 09-07-2020, 11:32 AM   #3
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Good morning, Beel. I have a 2012 which is basically the same platform as yours. If your suspension is still oem, you definitely need shocks. I replaced the Ranchos on mine within the first couple of months. Air bags with an onboard compressor and WiFi/Bluetooth are really nice to have. As wing advised, check your tires. My 20's were rated at about 3600 pounds each; I replaced them with a higher capacity tire that gave me 4080 for each tire. Again, if yours is as mine, it is rated to tow 15,700 pounds with a GCWR of 23,500.
'17 36RSSB3///2012 F350 KR, LWB/SRW, Bilsteins, antisway bar, Bilstein steering stabilizer, Airlift air bags, wireless compressor, 295/20 tires at 4080 pounds each, oversized finned aluminum diff and trannie pans, synthetic fluid, KEM, PIP, & Tyrant tunes w/SCR4 programming, Edge CTS gauge monitoring, G37 2017 turbo, ATS Stage I transmission.
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Old 09-14-2020, 06:23 PM   #4
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You didn't say if your F-350 was a LB or SB. I can say I owned a LB 2012 F-350 4x4 that towed 15k gvw 34' Teton just fine. I did have air bags on it. I also towed a 39' toy hauler that in a strong side wind would move the truck around if doing over 60 mph. So keep the length in mind when looking for a 5th wheel.
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Old 09-14-2020, 06:33 PM   #5
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Greetings Beelfam.
If you look for the yellow sticker between the door posts on your truck you will see the amounts you can carry. Near in mind that your hitch, the fuel on board, the people in he truck and even that soda in your console detracts from the weight you can carry. Refer to the dealer specs for your specific truck to see how much weight you can tow safely. That is dependent on your engine, transmission and setup of your truck.
Btw, airbags do not increase the amount you can tow or carry they are used ONLY for leveling. If your truck needs more capacity there are several options such as adding a leaf spring and re-curving your existing leafs.
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