Towing Capacity: What Boats Can a Ford F-150 Pickup Truck Tow?

What Boats Can a Ford F-150 Pickup Truck Tow?

If you own a Ford F-150 and love boating activities, you may be wondering about its towing capabilities. Luckily, you have a wonderful towing vehicle for your needs.

This article is structured to inform you about the towing capacity of your Ford F-150 and which boats are the best for you. 

How Much Weight Can a Ford F-150 Tow?

Compared to some of the small SUVs that are sometimes used for towing, your truck is rated for much more weight. However, there is still a limit, and you should be very careful never to exceed it if you plan to tow a boat. Exceeding the recommended towing capacity could cause significant damage to your vehicle.

There are six different engines available for the F-150 pickup truck, and each of them comes with its own towing capacity.

  • 2.7L Turbocharged EcoBoost
  • 3.0L Power Stroke Turbo Diesel
  • 3.3L TI-VCT V6
  • 3.5L Eco Boost
  • High-Output 3.5L EcoBoost
  • 5.0L TI-VCT V8
What Boats Can a Ford F-150 Pickup Truck Tow? [20+ Examples]

2.7L Turbocharged EcoBoost

This engine offers 325 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. It has a 10-speed transmission. The towing capacity is rated at 9,000 pounds.

3.0L Power Stroke Turbo Diesel

The diesel engine has 250 horsepower and 440 pound-feet of torque. The transmission is an automatic 10-speed. It can tow as much as 11,500 pounds.

3.3L TI-VCT V6

With 290 horsepower and a torque level of 265 pound-feet, this engine has the lowest towing capacity at 7,700 pounds. The transmission is a six-speed automatic.

3.5L EcoBoost

This engine has the third-highest horsepower of the six engines with 375 and the second-highest torque with 470 pound-feet. The transmission is a 10-speed. It can also boast the highest towing capacity at 13,200 pounds.

High-Output 3.5 EcoBoost

The high-output engine has 450 horsepower, the highest of these six engines. The torque level is 510 pound-feet and the transmission is a 10-speed automatic. 11,100 pounds can be towed by your Ford F-150 if it has this engine.

5.0L TI-VCT V8

The last engine has 395 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque, as well as the same 10-speed transmission as many of the other engines. It has the second-highest towing capacity at 11,500 pounds.

So, if you wish to tow a boat with your truck, you should first know the engine that your Ford F-150 pickup truck has to know how much weight you will be able to tow. These capacities will give you lots of boat options, but you should also figure in the weight of the trailer, as well as any passengers and other items you will be carrying along, like life vests and fishing gear. 

If you would like to see some specific boats that would work well with the Ford F-150 towing capacities, read on for some suggestions.

Types of Boats That a Ford F-150 Can Tow

Compared to other vehicles that can tow, the F-150 weight limit is high. This gives you many more options to pick from. Here are some general examples.

Type of Boat Average Dry Weight
Cabin Cruiser 8,700 pounds
Ski Boat 3,500 pounds
Sailboat 8,800 pounds
Speed Boat 8,000 pounds
Pontoon Boat 3,100 pounds
Fishing Boat 1,700 pounds

Cabin Cruiser

These are rather large boats that have the appearance of a small yacht. They generally have a cabin with a sleeping area and a small bathroom. Some sleep up to 10 people, but those probably will weigh a little more than you can tow. You are left with some options, though.

  • Bayliner 285 SB – 8,000 pounds
  • Rinker 301 Express Cruiser – 12,000 pounds
  • Larson 274 Cabrio – 6,000 pounds

Any of these would be great for anything from a romantic getaway to a day out on the water with family.

Ski Boats

Ski boats give you the option for speed and fun all in one. They are used for skiing, of course, but that’s not all. They can also be used for water tubing and wakeboarding. Here are some that would work with your Ford F-150. 

  • 2020 Campion WS 23 – 4,037 pounds
  • 2015 Moomba Mobius LSV – 3,801 pounds
  • 2018 MasterCraft Prostar – 3,300 pounds

Sailboats

Sailboats are not powered with a motor. They are propelled by the wind that fills the sails attached to the boat. Sailing is a sport in and of itself. So, if you’re looking for a good day on the water, this might be a good option for you, and many of them could easily be towed behind your Ford F-150.

  • Sunfish – 120 pounds
  • C&C 27 – 5,180 pounds
  • Ericson 28.5 – 7,500 pounds

Speed Boats

With a sleek build meant for speed, you can expect to glide quickly through the water with a speed boat. If you are into going fast, this will be the type of boat you will want. Luckily, some options would work well with the towing capacity of your truck.

  • M35 – 9,250 pounds
  • Cigarette 38 Top Gun – 9,000 pounds
  • 32 Thunder Cat – 5,400 pounds

Pontoon Boats

Pontoon boat on the lake ready for fishing and family fun on the lake

A Ford F-150 is perfect for towing these rather large boats. Pontoon boats are often used for water recreation. If you want a day on the water skiing, fishing, or swimming, a pontoon boat is for you. They are equipped with ladders for easy access to the water, as well. Some of the pontoon boats seat as many as 10 people. Here are a few models that you may like.

  • 2016 Cypress Cay 230 SLE – 4,200 pounds
  • 2015 Harris Flotebote Crowne 250 – 3,858 pounds
  • Sun Tracker Party Barge 24 DLX – 4,361 pounds

Since pontoon boats are big, you will have to exercise extreme caution when towing them. They can be bulky and maneuvering them around takes talent.

Fishing Boat

If fishing is your thing, you will be pleased to know there aren’t many fishing boats that can’t be towed behind your Ford F-150. Here are some options for you to consider.

  • 2017 Nitro Z18 – 1,700 pounds
  • Charger 210 Elite – 1,900 pounds
  • Bass Cat Jaguar – 2,150 pounds
  • 2017 Tracker Pro Team 175 TF – 1,010 pounds
  • 2018 Tracker Pro 170 – 878 pounds

Many fishing boats come with great amenities for fishermen, such as built-in coolers to store your caught fish in.

What Boats Can a Ford F-150 Tow

A Few Things You May Want to Know

In addition to knowing how much weight you can tow with your Ford F-150, there are some other things you may want to consider.

Remember to do a safety check before you tow a boat behind your truck. You should make sure that there is no rust on the towing gear or the boat trailer. Chains should be properly placed in case the trailer detaches. Make sure the lights are functioning properly so that other vehicles see when you are turning, stopped, or backing up.

Another important thing is to make sure your tongue weight equals 10 to 15 percent of your load. If it doesn’t equal this amount, it could cause your trailer to sway while you’re driving. Swaying could make you lose control or flip the boat or vehicle.

Equally distribute your weight throughout the boat if you place your gear or other items in it while towing. Uneven distribution of your cargo could cause a dip in the tongue area that will be dangerous for you and anyone else in the truck with you.

You should also check the laws in your state and any state you plan to travel through to see if a braking system is required. Should you need to purchase a braking system, there are a few different types available.

  • Surge Brakes
  • Electric-Over-Hydraulic (EOH) Trailer Brakes
  • Electronically Controlled Brakes

Watch your speed while towing, especially if you choose any of the boats that are large or that weigh more. Crosswinds can cause problems, but a slower speed will give you better control. It is wise to avoid using cruise control while towing.

Once your boat is in the water, you should consider wisely where you park your truck and trailer. Whenever possible, vehicles with trailers should not be parked on a grade. However, if it is necessary, place wheel chocks under the trailer’s wheels to keep it from rolling. Make sure you park in an area that is going to be easy to exit.

Closing Thoughts

With a Ford F-150 pickup truck, your boat options are not very limited. In fact, it might have been easier to list the boats that can’t be towed. The boats mentioned above are just a few of the options that fit the Ford F-150 pickup truck towing capacity. There are many more that would also be fine to tow. But, these options will give you a place to start as you consider which type of boat best suits your purposes.

Remember to check your engine type and its towing capacity before purchasing a boat. They are not all the same, and it would be a shame to purchase a boat that isn’t a fit with the engine in your truck.

Make sure you are fitted with the proper towing equipment and that it is all attached right before taking off with your boat. Follow all of the tips for safely towing a boat, and you will be good to go.

Towing Capacity: What Boats Can a Ford F-150 Pickup Truck Tow?

Kern Campbell

Kern is a life long boater who finds great happiness sitting at the helm of a boat running on the open water. When he's not running the boat, he's likely anchored up along the beach with his wife, kids and good friends enjoying a great day at the coast.

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