There are so many posts about the need to keep on top of your weights, GVW, CGVW, weight per axle (which I hear is what the DOT worries about), and tongue weight etc.
One point my dealer (and others) have made is that when sitting on level pavement, the trailer and truck should be level. The hitch should not press down so much that it creates a bit of a "V" with the front of the truck, and rear of the trailer higher than the mid point (hitch point). My truck sits nice and level.
Too much payload + tongue weight on the rear axles can reduce the weight on your front axle, which is bad because it reduces control when steering.
I've driven onto one of those self serve scales we have here and there in Alberta. Measured each axle separately (well the trailer axles were weighed as one). I had 1600 kilos (3595 lbs)on the trucks rear axle, 1540 K 3395# on the front axle and 2920K (6427#) on the trailer axles. So 13417 pounds CGVW (combined Gross Vehicle Wieght). The truck alone was 5786, so our loaded trailer was 7631 pounds.
My Dodge axles are each rated to a max of 3900, so we are within the DOT specs for axle wieghts. Trailer axles are 5211 (each) the weight on those axles was 6427 total, so well within scope.
The GVWR for this trailer is 8079 so we are close the the max weight we can put in the trailer with just 448 from the max. We were on our way out, so the trailer was dry, but propane full & all supplies, including a full fridge & pantry, gas tank full. We would rarely drive with full water tanks. This is for the two of us with our three little dogs. We were in the truck when it was wieghed.
The 09 RAM specs from Dodge.com Towing shows:
Towing: 5000lbs - std 8750 lbs max
Payload:1610 lbs - max
At another site I found the following for an 06 Dodge RAM (no data past 06?)
With 3.92 Axle Ratio Axle Ratio [i] You Can Tow 8350 lbs
Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) [i] = 6700 lbs (we were 5786)
Payload [i] = 1214 lbs
Curb Weight [i] = 5486 lbs
Curb Weight Front/Rear = 3198 lbs/3198 lbs
GAWR Front/Rear [i] = 3900 lbs/3900 lbs (we were under on both)
Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR) [i] = 14000 lbs (Gosh over 500# to spare!)
As for upgrading to a 2500:
09 2500 RAM Specs show
Towing:11700 lbs - max
Payload:3650 lbs - max
From the other website (which stops at 2006)
A 2500 RAM, 4x4, QC, Long box, hemi gas engine.
With 3.73 Axle Ratio Axle Ratio [i] You Can Tow 8600 lbs ( ? ? ? )
Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) [i] = 8800 lbs
Payload [i] = 2543 lbs
Curb Weight [i] = 6257 lbs
Curb Weight Front/Rear = 3608 lbs/3608 lbs
GAWR Front/Rear [i] = 5200 lbs/6010 lbs
Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR) [i] = 15000 lbs
This is better, but not as by as much as I thought. But I guess, going from a half ton (1000 pds) to a three quarter ton (1500 pds) is only an increase of 500 pounds of payload.
The site I used was
Another site of interest is:
But the chatter I pick up on the forums is that those who have upgraded to a 250/2500 are happy with the improved power. Those who have gone diesel will not look back (still pondering that upgrade).
Ah, aren't you glad you paid attention in math class now?