The F-250's are a popular choice for people who want a little more pulling power when it comes to pulling a trailer. I was quite surprised to see just what the towing capacity for the F-250's was for some of the newer models and even more surprised to see that some of the earlier models had such low ratings.
Overview of the Data For the F-250's:
Engine Choices: There was a range of different engine options available for the F-250's over the years. The engine that was equipped was the largest determining factor when it came to the capacity numbers overall for the F-250 trucks.
Configurations: There were also a lot of different configurations that the F-250's came in and each of these did affect the maximum weight rating to some extent, some had a small impact on the numbers and others had a much larger impact.
The two variables that had the largest impact was the engine that was equipped in the truck and whether or not you had an automatic or manual transmission equipped, which could account for several thousand pounds of capacity.
Things that affected the capacities on a smaller scale were 2wd vs 4wd models, axle ratios and cab configurations.
Towing Capacity: The capacity range for the F-250's over the years ranged quite a bit, starting at 6,800 pounds for earlier models with manual transmissions to modern trucks capable of pulling 22,800 pounds!
The higher capacities were usually achieved using a 5th wheel hitch, in general.
Some of the highest towing numbers came from trucks with larger engines (diesel or gas) and had automatic transmissions equipped. The lowest ratings
In order to figure out your F-250's SPECIFIC capabilities, you will need to know: what engine you have equipped, what axle ratio your truck has installed, the cab configuration (regular cab,super cab or crew cab) and whether you have a 4wd or 2wd configuration.
Some of the F-250's below have similar specs that may only differ by a few hundred pounds, due to the fact that they have the same engine configurations.
I grouped model years by engine configuration and listed the appropriate charts for the model years below, so you can get the most accurate numbers for your specific F-250.
Be sure you read the owner's manual's information as it is the best resource you have at your disposal.
The 2020 Ford F-250's had a pretty massive gap when it came to towing capacity that ranged from 12,200 pounds and went up to a maximum weight of 22,800 pounds.
These were the ranges for both conventional and gooseneck towing though, so keep that in mind.
The conventional and 5th wheel specs for the 2020 F-250's were very close to each other, with the 5th wheel specs having a higher end total of roughly 2,800 pounds but some of these specs required having the high capacity tow package installed though which is noted in the charts.
The 2019 F-250's had a significantly lower maximum trailer weight capacity on the higher end of the spectrum but still had a towing capacity range of 12,200-18,500 pounds.
The conventional specs and the 5th wheel specs were very similar, only varying from 100 pounds on the lower end to 500 pounds on the higher end.
Some of the specs for the 2019 F-250's did require a tow package in order to achieve those higher ratings, but the charts did not specify which tow package that was.
2018 and 2017 Models:
The 2018 and 2017 F-250's had similar specs to the 2019 models and in fact the range was the same... ranging from 12,200 pounds and going up to 18,500 pounds.
The differences between 5th wheel and conventional specs were pretty substantial in most cases, so be sure you look and compare similar engine types.
In the 2018 and 2017 towing charts for the F-250 it states that an optional 9,900 pound GVWR package and/or a tow package will be required to achieve some of the higher capacity numbers. I have included both charts for both model years below (2018 and 2017) one for conventional specs and the other for 5th wheel specs.
The numbers for the 2018 and 2017 F-250's were very close, only differentiating 100-600 pounds from certain configurations.
F-250's made from 2016-2011 had almost identical specs because of the same engine options that they came with, which was the 6.2l or the 6.7l engines.
The overall towing capacity for F-250's made from 2016-2011 ranged from 11,800 pounds and went all the way up to 16,800 pounds and was for both conventional and 5th wheel hitches combined.
The F-250's that had the diesel engine (6.7l) had significantly higher ratings than the gasoline engine models. The regular cab models fared better as well too, along with the 2wd models in general with minor increases in weight capacities.
The 2010-2008 model F-250's had a slightly lower overall trailer weight capacity when compared to later model years due to the fact that there were manual transmission models, which always have lower tow ratings than automatic transmission models.
The 2010-2008 Ford F-250's had a general towing capacity range of 8,200 - 16,500 pounds, which included all models in all of the charts listed below.
The 2010-2008 F-250 tables are a little different than the later model years because they are divided into automatic transmission models on the top and manual transmission models below that. Everything else is the same though regarding engine options, axle ratios, cab configuration and 4WD vs 2WD models.
For the 2007-2004 model years, the F-250's had three different engine options: the 5.4l motor, the 6.8l motor and the 6.0l (diesel) motor.
The average towing capacity for F-250's made from 2007-2004 ranged from 6,800 lbs. and went much higher than that, up to 16,500 lbs.
F-250's equipped with the 5.4l engine had some of the lowest numbers on the charts, while the 6.8l engine and 6.0l diesel engine had pretty close specs in general. The 6.0l diesel engine did come out on top for '07-'04 F-250's though, having some of the highest numbers on the charts.
The 2003 F-250's had a unique chart compared to previous and later model years because of the 6.0l AND 7.3l diesel engine options that were available.
The towing capacity for the 2003 Ford F-250's ranged from 6,800 pounds and went up to a whopping 14,100 pounds, depending on a few different configurations.
The 2003 model F-250's that had the diesel engines equipped (6.0l and 7.3l) had the highest capacity numbers compared to all other engine configurations. The 6.8l V10 engine was a close second for most configurations and the much smaller 5.4l engine had some of the lowest ratings.
The charts for the 2002-2000 Ford F-250s were a little different in 2001 due to the oddball 6.4l engine that was used for some trucks.
The main engine options for F-250's made from 2002-2000 were the: 5.4l, 6.8l and the 7.3l engines.
The towing capacity range for F-250's made from 2002-2000 ranged from 6,900 pounds and went up to 14,500 pounds, which is quite the gap! The lowest numbers on the tables were for trucks equipped with the 5.4l engine and a manual transmission and the highest numbers were from the 6.8l engine with an automatic transmission equipped.
Regular, Super And Crew Cabs...
There was also three different cab configurations listed in the towing charts I found for the F-250's and the capacity numbers did slightly differ depending on which cab configuration you had. Becoming familiar with what each cab style looks like will help you decipher the charts.
Do I Have A Tow Package Installed?
Some of the charts for the F-250's did state that a tow package was needed in order to get some of the specified figures. Some charts just referred to a general optional package while others specifically stated a certain tow package (535).
It is hard to know if you have a factory installed package equipped on your truck and it is usually best to take it to a dealership to see if they can confirm this for you. A lot of time a tow package consists of a hitch, 4 pin/7 pin connector, a larger radiator in some cases, a transmission cooler, etc.
What Axle Ratio Do I Have On My F-250?
In all of the F-250's charts, you will have to determine what axle ratio was used in the rear end of your truck in order to get an accurate figure. This is easily achieved by opening the driver's side door and looking on the jamb for a manufacturer's sticker that has all sorts of useful information on it.
The section you need to look for will be labeled "AXLE" and below it you will see letters , numbers or a combination of the two. You will then take that "code" and decipher which axle ratio you have installed. There is a post on blueovaltrucks.com that has these codes listed for you to make things a bit easier.
Resources For I Used:
For all of the information you see in this post, I used Ford's Towing Guides to get all of the information for the F-250's, which I have linked to below. The charts in the Towing Guide's are shared for the F-250 and F-350's though so keep that in mind when looking through them.
Last updated on May 7th, 2021 at 12:57 am