The 80% rule is a ‘rule of thumb’ in towing that states, “You should aim to tow 80% or less of your total towing capacity”.
The purpose of this rule is to give you some ‘wiggle room’ for safety to ensure you don’t go over your maximum towing rating when you’re towing in heavy wind, when you have to suddenly apply the brakes, or if something large or heavy in your rig shifts suddenly.

An example of this rule is, if your maximum tow rating is 10,000 lbs at the bumper, then you should aim to tow no more than 8,000 lbs from the bumper.
You can also use this rule when towing a fifth wheel or gooseneck trailer, though most trucks can tow more from the bed than from the bumper. You’d still use the same 80% of the total capacity no matter which connection you’re using.

While this isn’t a requirement by any means, it’s certainly a great practice for new drivers, and one of the many things that can help keep your camping experiences more on the fun side!


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