Originally Posted by Intrepid Travelers
I am truly appreciative of the information and of the planning guides but using them has left me highly confused. I plugged in the numbers from my sticker using the Cargo Carrying Capacity and by the time I filled in the approximate weights for the rest of the fields in the Towing Capability Calculator I came up with some extremely unreasonable numbers. With only passengers (weighted accurately) and other cargo inside and in the bed the loaded trailer weight estimate was less than that of a boat and trailer. I am totally shocked that my truck supposedly cannot pull even a boat adequately.
Unforunately, that's the reality of it. My 1500 has the exact same payload capacity as my wife's minivan. They're not quite the workhorses we're lead to believe. Plugging my numbers in with the family and travelling comforts I shouldn't even be pulling a pop up. It doesn't stop me from towing though. Even though I'm over on payload, I'm still within pulling / stopping capacity. The difference is that I'm aware
I'm over on payload. Because I'm aware I pay more attention when towing than I did the first few times I towed. I watch my speeds, I do more to avoid bumps, potholes. I'll take the longer route to avoid gravel roads that can be rough on suspension, etc... And I've ended up getting a lot better ride out of it. Before I learned about this I used to have some bad sway issues. By shifting my loads around and changing my driving style I don't have those same kinds of issues.
And the biggest thing is I don't expect the truck to last as long. Being constantly over the payload is putting more stress on the frame and suspension, so this is where I'm keeping an eye out for issues. Does probability state they are more likely to fail? Yep. Will they fail? I don't know.
As I said, all of this doesn't stop me from camping though, and you shouldn't think it has to stop you either. Just go out, have fun, but now you have the knowledge to help you also be safe.