Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: F150 3.31 gears vs 3.55 gears
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 > F150 3.31 gears vs 3.55 gears

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plasticmaster

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Posted: 08/15/22 03:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I accidentally posted this in the wrong section earlier, but please indulge me in 1 more question. I sort of asked this in another thread, but wanted to devote a thread to this particular question. My current truck is a 2014 Silverado 5.3L with payload capacity of 1638# and 9700# tow capacity as I have the 3.42 gear ratio. I tow a TT that's close to 9500# loaded and it tows it very comfortably. I'm looking at getting a 2015 to 2020 Ford F150. The payload capacity of the F150 will be greater than my Silverado, so I'm good there, but the tow capacity will either be 9100 or 10100 depending on whether I get the 3.31 gears or the 3.55 gears. Do I really need to be that worried about which gear ratio? Would it really make that much of a difference towing my camper? Please refrain from telling me I need a 3/4 ton or 1 ton truck as I'm looking for the answer about the gear ratio. Thanks.

MitchF150

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Posted: 08/15/22 03:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Depends... I think after 2018, the F150's came with the 10 speed trans as opposed to the 6 speed trans..

So, if that's the case, get the 3.55's if it's 6 speed.. I think from 15 on, that's all you can get in one, except if you find a HDPP (Heavy Duty Payload Package), but those are like Unicorns in the wild. (not very many, and if you find one, will cost lots of $$.. )

For the 10 speeds, I think you could get away with the 3.31's.. But, I'd still want some 3.55's with the 10 speed too, if you are going to be towing that heavy..

I have 3.73's with a 13 F150, but that's a different apple compared to the 15 and up F150's, so can't really compare, other than the Ecoboost and the 6 speed trans for the most part.

Oh, I see you are looking for 5.oh no's... Okay, I don't have any experience with those, other than they are not the 'top' engine option for the F150's in general... [emoticon]

Good luck! Mitch
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2013 F150 XLT 4x4 SuperCab Max Tow Egoboost 3.73 gears #7700 GVWR #1920 payload. 2019 Rockwood Mini Lite 2511S.

KD4UPL

Swoope, VA

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Posted: 08/15/22 04:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'd always get the lower gear (3.55) for towing.
My 2500 Suburban has 3.73 and I wish it had 4.10. I've found if I put it in 5th gear instead of 6th it just tows a lot better, both up hill and down hill.

Lwiddis

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Posted: 08/15/22 04:31pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I agree with Mitch…3.55 if the F150 has a six speed transmission.


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MitchF150

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Posted: 08/15/22 04:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yep... Even with my 3.73's I always lock out 6th gear.. and that's just cruising on the flats..

Up the grades, it likes 4th. Even just some of those gradual inclines, I'll manually shift to 4th.

Since I have the Ecoboost, if you give the engine some beans, the boost goes WAY UP. If you are only chugging along at <2000 rpms, you can be pushing some 10+ psi of boost and not even see any speed increase! Plus, the temps start to rise pretty fast..

Bump it into 4th, and the boost goes down to arouund 5 psi and you actually pick up speed and keep temps in check and actually get better mpg's..

That's why running in 5th is better than 6th when towing. Going the same speed, there is at least a +- 4 psi boost difference running in 6th compared to 5th and temps increase and mpg's drop running in 6th. (while towing... )

I didn't find any of this out until I got an ODB2 plug in and phone app to monitor a ton of sensors that the dash does not even come close to showing you...

Anyway, the OP wants a 5.O V8, so a different beast than my Ecoboost, but I would not want that 5.0 towing my little #7000 TT.. [emoticon]

Mitch

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Posted: 08/15/22 04:52pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Now, you're looking for as old as 2015 models? 6 speed will not cover up the higher gearing as well as the newer 10 speeds.
And the older model will have a few less ponies.


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theoldwizard1

SE MI

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Posted: 08/15/22 07:15pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I can not say for all model years in question, but Ford Trailer Tow Packages usually come with an upgraded radiator and transmission cooler. IMHO, those a key to engine and transmission longevity.

You would definitely be better off with the 10 speed transmission.

theoldwizard1

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Posted: 08/15/22 07:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MitchF150 wrote:


I have 3.73's with a 13 F150, but that's a different apple compared to the 15 and up F150's, so can't really compare, other than the Ecoboost and the 6 speed trans for the most part.

Depending on the engine and payload package some F150s still come with 3.73.

theoldwizard1

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Posted: 08/15/22 07:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MitchF150 wrote:


Anyway, the OP wants a 5.O V8, so a different beast than my Ecoboost, but I would not want that 5.0 towing my little #7000 TT.. [emoticon]

Properly equipped, a F150 with a 2.7L EcoBoost and 3.73 rear axle, has a max tow rating of 10,000 lbs ! The 2.7L max only 10 less lb-ft of torque (400 vs 410) as the 5.0L and at a lower RPM (3000 vs 4250).

lane hog

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Posted: 08/15/22 07:58pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Here's another vote for the 3.55... My 3.5 Eco+MaxTow with the 3.55 pulls 9,000 lbs of trailer fairly well. We've got 11% grades on gravel roads at my brother-in-law's property in TN, and the Ford handled that with no hesitation or slippage.



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  • 2016 F-150 3.5L MaxTow (had Ram 2500 CTD, Dodge Durango)
  • 130W solar and 2005 Honda EU2000i twins that just won't quit



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