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Recommended Clearance Between Trailer Loft and Truck Bed Rail When 5th Wheel Towing

Question:

Expert Bob G states, “ Our recommendation for safe towing, no damage to truck bed rails or underside of trailer loft is 6 inches. If you have at least 6 inches of clearance with the trailer level you should be alright in all but the most severe pitch and roll situations, like entering a steep drive or going through a deep dip”. My question is, what angle in degrees is considered most severe pitch. I’m looking at getting a fifth wheel and my current TT pad has a pitch when entering my driveway. The greatest angle at the top near the driveway edge seems to be about 10 degrees, but thought I would see what is considered “severe”. Thanks

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Expert Reply:

The ideal clearance between the top of the bed rails on the truck and the bottom of the loft on the trailer is indeed around 6". This will allow for clearance between the truck and trailer during most normal driving encounters such as bumps in the road, steep driveways, etc. In regards to a specific angle, this, I cannot provide as there are several factors at play that would vary for each setup. The best advice I have would be to just use common sense when you are out and about. There's really no need to measure slope for any one hill, just keep an eye on the trailer when you feel you are putting yourself into a situation where it may be close and you will be fine.

Please note, the hitch head height is adjustable for most fifth wheel hitches but you may need to adjust the pin box on the trailer as well to account for the recommended 6".

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Conner L

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