Originally Posted by jdubh
All this information is great but I have one big question for you...what is the max length of a trailer we should tow with a tacoma?
I really love camping and rving and I bought my Tacoma as an in between vehicle for the next 3-4 years until I can afford a dually as a dedicated TV, keeping the Taco for me. So I'd like to get the most out of my Tacoma. There are dozens of ultralight trailers that fall dry below 4500lbs but some reach 27-33ft in length, would those lengths affect towing as long as a good w/d and sway control hitch were being used? I don't expect my loaded weight to go beyond 5500lbs but I'm worried about length.
Also you made it sound as if hitch weight wasn't part of the tow weight. For instance if I had a trailer that weighed exactly 6500lbs and a tongue weight of 650lbs then I would be okay even though the trailer by itself would way 7150lbs. Is the tongue weight included with the payload on the truck and excluded from the trailer weight/axle weight? Thanks!
Tiger mostly covered it, but just to re-inforce what he said.
I wrote it up like I did to try to prove the point that everything you add to or put in a trailer effects all three weights, tongue weight, trailer weight, and GCVWR. Once you go over on any
one of them it is a problem.
To use your example from above, if the trailer weighed exactly 6500lbs, then the trailer weighs exactly 6500lbs regardless of the tongue weight. The tongue weight is still a part of the trailer weight, and is not figured in with the payload of the truck. Payload of the truck is just what is physically in the truck, ie what's in the cab and what's in the bed.
To answer your other question as far as trailer length goes. So long as you are within your tow rating, tralier length really has no bearing as far as the safety of your truck goes. Now what trailer length does affect is your turning radius, your center of gravity, and your approach and departure angles. So depending on where you want to camp you may want to take some of that into consideration. For example, if you want to camp off the beaten track, and will need to haul your trailer down some trails that are in less than good repair, you run the risk of bottoming a longer trailer our and or high-centering it. So you'll want to take that into consideration when purchasing your trailer. The other thing you will want to consider is that the longer the trailer the more porpusing that you'll be asking the Weight Distribution and Sway Controll system to over-come, so your ride quality may suffer some with a longer trailer. This is just a personal comfort kind of thing though. Any good RV dealer will let you go out for a test tow. Take advantage of that and see if you are happy with how the truck handles the length, and make your decision from there.