Originally Posted by ncotton
The truck has a stock hitch but I am unsure of what the capacities are.
Depending on the weight of the empty trailer, it sounds like you'll probably max out the weight capacity of your F-250 and it's receiver hitch.
Towing 10,000 pounds or more is serious business, especially over mountains, so don't try to get by without the right equipment.
It's posssible your loaded trailer will gross less than 10,000 pounds if it's a light-weight trailer with tandam 5000-pound or 6,000 pound axles and not more than 20' long. You need to know the empty weight of the trailer.
Crawl under the rear of the tow vehicle and find the embossed area with the weight capacities stamped into the frame of the receiver. The big number will probably be 1,000/10,000 WD. That means your max receiver capacity is 1,000 pounds hitch weight and 10,000 pounds gross trailer weight provided
you have a weight distributing hitch.
So rule 1 is do not
try to tow 10,000 pounds unless you have a weight-distributing hitch.
If your empty trailer grosses more than 3,000 pounds, and if your receiver is rated 10,000 pounds WD, then you don't have enough receiver for the job. So replace your receiver with a Reese or Drawtite Tow Beast class V receiver, which has a WD capacity of 14,000 pounds and costs about $300. Click here
then scroll down to the Tow Beast.
If you don't already have a weight-distributing hitch for that trailer, then you can get one from any RV or trailer hitch store - even from a U-Haul store. Be sure you get one for a hitch weight of at least 1,000 pounds. Click here
for one on-line source. Note that the "shank" is probably separate, but you have to have one that matches the rest of the hitch and receiver. The shank is the part that fits into the receiver.
So with the proper receiver and weight-distributing hitch to tow a 10,000-to-12,000-pound trailer, your next concern is the tranny.
You shouldn't have any tranny overheating problem towing a 10,000 pound trailer over the mountains provided
you can keep the speed up over 40 MPH. But if there's any chance the road is too crooked or slow for you to maintain over 40 MPH, then I wouldn't try it without an aftermarket tranny temp gauge. Put the sender in the pressure port on the side of the tranny, and don't allow more than about 225º or 230º tranny temp. If the tranny temp exceeds 225º for more than a minute or so, then pull over and stop, put the tranny in park or neutral, and elevate the idle RPM to 1,200 or so until the tranny temp gauge shows 210º or less.
If you add a tranny temp gauge, then you want one with clear markings around the red line of 225º. I like the ISSPRO Enhanced Visibility gauge. Click here.
I regulary tow a 6k travel trailer but one time fully loaded with water, fuel, and 4 peoples gear I overheated the tranny and it released tranny fluid.
Then I hope you replaced all the tranny fluid shortly thereafter. If not, then do it before
you try to tow 10,000 pounds over the mountains. Buy 20 quarts of MERCON or MERCON V ATF, and follow the procedures in the '99-up FAQ to replace virtually all the ATF. Click here
for those procedures.