Towing with a 4.6l?

Discussion in 'Towing & Hauling' started by johnd393, Nov 29, 2017.


  1. johnd393

    johnd393 New Member

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    "4.6l" is too short for a search term.
    I'm looking at a 2003 Expedition EB 4.6l RWD.
    Why this one? It's available, RWD, affordable, one owner, near enough, and appears to not be abused.
    Depending on where I read it the towing capacity is 5000 lbs, or 6050 lbs.
    I get it that the 5.4l would be better, I wanna know what the 4.6l can do.

    I want to tow a camper.
    Prefer something bigger than a popup, with hard sides, needs to sleep 2 tall people, 6'2'' and have a decent sized bathroom/shower.

    Anyone have experience towing a camper with a 4.6l?
     
  2. ApacheJohn

    ApacheJohn New Member

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    John, I am from NW Indiana too. Valparaiso/Chesterton area. The 4.6 should be fine for what you are doing. Sounds like a trailer that you are looking for would not overtax the truck. I have a 2001 Ford Expedition 4.6 RWD and I actually will be towing a 7x16 enclosed trailer loaded with our home up to NW Indiana this week. No issues with it towing. I did install Firestone Airbags into my coil springs which helps the ride on mine. I am pretty good at changing the fluids out when needed and taking care of my truck. If you are like me, I don't see an issue.
     
  3. 07xln

    07xln Full Access Members

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    The 4.6 is a dog. Ive owned two of them and there is no way they can tow even close to their max capacity

    I most recently had a 2000 model and I pulled a 6x12 utility trailer with my SxS on it. Total weight was 2700lbs and I had to stand on the gas pedal any time I hit any sort of slight incline just to maintain speed.

    You'd be MUCH better off finding a 5.4. Theyre a dime a dozen. You shouldn't have any problem finding a good one
     
  4. Bedrck47

    Bedrck47 Full Access Members

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    The tow rating for a 2003 4X2 or 4X4 with 4.6 engine is 5000 lbs That info is straight from the owners manual.

    The 5.4 4X2 is 8950 lbs. and 4X4 is 8650 lbs

    I also have owned Expeditions and towed with the 4.6 and the 5.4 And just my opinion is I will never tow with a 4.6 again. You may be OK on flat ground as long as you are below the rated weight capacity but you will have to stand on it to maintain speed on any steep grades.

    Go with the 5.4 you will be glad you did
     
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  5. rjdelp7

    rjdelp7 Full Access Members

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    This powertrain is not ideal, but it is a truck. It will get the job done, just may struggle a bit. My Expedition came with a tow package and has 4.6l. People tow with them all the time. A 5.4l only has about 40-50 more hp.
     
  6. rollinstone

    rollinstone Full Access Members

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    I started towing my 3000 lb camping trailer with my 5.0L '97 Explorer. Did OK. Upgraded to my 5.4L '14 Expy, and OMG, what a difference! Only 0.4 liters difference, but I also have a 17 year difference in technology, etc... Go big!
     
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  7. johnd393

    johnd393 New Member

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    Thanks all for your response. The ad is now 25 days old. There may be a reason it's unsold. I've spoke with & texted with the owner and the info seems positive. There is not enough support for towing with the 4.6l for me to make the 60 mile drive to look at it. If it can't tow a decent size camper and tow it well, it has no advantage over my minivan.
     
  8. 1997SCEBFEX

    1997SCEBFEX Full Access Members

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    ++ on a 5.4L.

    Yes, I too am biased. Hauled this car-hauler and cargo coast-to-coast loaded several times relocating on Navy orders.

    I'm retired now, but ole Red (Gen 1 '97) still tows, occasionally, for the hunting camp (lime buggy; trailers loaded with golf carts and wheelers etc.) Let the torque do it's job and watch vital fluid temps.



     

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