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Hello everyone, I have a question about aftermarket class 3 hitches for my 2017 King Cab 4X4 SV. When I bought the truck new in 2017, I purchased a Draw-Tite class 3 hitch that's rated for 5,000lbs without WD and 8,000lbs with WD. At the same time, I had installed a trailer brake controller box (and painfully learned the hard way I was a victim of the reversed brake/charge wire issue some of these trucks have - don't ask about that ruined camping trip horror story) I've never had to tow over 5,000lbs until now - I've recently purchased a 3.5ton dual axle dump trailer. My question is, if I am towing this trailer down back roads at no more than 45mph, no more than 10 miles in distance loaded and properly distribute the load in the trailer, can I tow it without the WD hitch at about 6,500lbs total weight? I have Timbren bump stops to prevent excessive sagging and will try to avoid front loading the trailer for excessive tongue weight. (Won't go too far back to induce sway though) The reason I want to avoid the WD setup is I am making a road through the forest to access my property and it is somewhat rough going to dump the gravel loads until the road is well established. I have seen how sketchy it can be to "off-road" with a WD setup and would prefer to avoid it. I am wondering if the hitch rating is meant to match the owner's manual in saying anything over 5,000lbs needs WD for safe handling while towing and is not about exceeding any physical limits of the truck/hitch?
 

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2021 Frontier SV CC 4x4; 2018 Frontier SV KC 4x2
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I’m no expert, but if you’re towing that much weight over ground so uneven you don’t want to use the WD set-up you already have, it might be time for a bigger truck.
 

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2022 Nissan Frontier CC 4x4
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930 Posts
6,500 lbs? 15% of that will be tongue weight. That's 975 lbs. You're already way over limit.

If you're going to go over maximum weight ratings, I would at least use a WD hitch to prevent damage to the frame of the truck. And yes, I've seen several trucks with frames bent just behind the rear of the cab because of excessive tongue weight.
 

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2012 CC "S" 4x4
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You are exceeding the hitch, and everything else
 

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2010 Nissan Frontier XE
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6,500 lbs? 15% of that will be tongue weight. That's 975 lbs. Then let's assume you weigh 180 lbs. And let's assume a special lady goes with you and she weighs 140 lbs. Now you're at 1,295 lbs. of tongue weight, which is DOUBLE the maximum allowable for these trucks. And you haven't even added the weight of gear, tools, etc. in the bed of the truck.

If you're going to go 100% or more over maximum weight ratings, I would at least use a WD hitch to prevent damage to the frame of the truck. And yes, I've seen several trucks with frames bent just behind the rear of the cab because of excessive tongue weight.
Why would you add passenger weights to the tongue weight? Pretty hard to drive while you’re standing on the hitch…
 

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2010 Nissan Frontier XE
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I am wondering if the hitch rating is meant to match the owner's manual in saying anything over 5,000lbs needs WD for safe handling while towing and is not about exceeding any physical limits of the truck/hitch?
I expect it’s more about physical limits, than handling. Without the WD, as you bump your way up a hill, that ball is doing ALL the work under the weight of that load. Might pry it right off.
 

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2022 Nissan Frontier CC 4x4
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Why would you add passenger weights to the tongue weight? Pretty hard to drive while you’re standing on the hitch…
Yep I meant payload and I was typing late at night while on cold medicine. Lol. I should revise what I typed.
 
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