Below is a list of positives and negatives to dually trucks. The list was originally created by Flashman and has gone through a few revisions.
1) Increased safety factor over SRW for hauling heavy TC’s
2) More pleasant to drive with a big TC than an overloaded SRW (no white knuckle driving)
3) Reduced suspension upgrade costs for load carrying capacity (vs SRW)
4) Greatly reduced sway and increased overall stability due to wider rear tire platform
5) Rear tire blow out - still have one tire supporting the vehicle/load
6) Truck has certification for greater weight load
7) Greater capacity to handle extended trailer hitches and heavier trailers
1) Doesn't fit in some garages
2) Harder to park
3) More difficult to maneuver in areas like very small downtown areas w/ narrow roads
4) Width issues on narrow roads, gates, bridges, etc.
5) Off road – requires wider path, like between trees and rocks
6) Off road - rocks get stuck in between rear tires causing damage fenders
7) Sand / Beach driving is more difficult
8) Tire rotation difficult, some vehicles require tire dismounting from wheel
9) New tire cost - six instead of four
10) No short bed models available from Dodge or Chevy
11) Changing to oversized/larger tires can be very difficult
12) Towing – some smaller trailers are difficult to see (very problematic when backing)
13) Some neighborhood covenants don’t allow dually trucks
14) TC swing-out jack brackets required
15) Initial truck cost is slightly higher for a dually
16) Decreased fuel mileage (partially due to lower axle ratio, 4.30 / F-450 & 4.88 / F-550)
17) Potential to strike something with extended wheel wells (gas pump, bollards, etc)
18) Problems with some drive-thru’s (ATM’s, McDonalds, auto car washes, etc)
19) Snow can build up between rear tires causing traction problems
20) Increased insurance and taxes cost on F-450 & F-550.
Note 1: Some of the above negatives only apply when you are not hauling a camper and don’t apply at all when you are hauling a TC. For example: You ain’t going through a drive-thru anyway with a TC in the bed of a DRW or SRW.
Note 2: These two lists are in no way intended to promote an SRW over a DRW or visa versa. It is only intended to be a starting point for folks who are considering what type of truck they need to haul a particular truck camper, or for folks considering what type of truck camper they can haul with a particular truck.
Note 3: Some of these issues come down to personal preference based on ones particular situation and by no means apply equally to everybody.
Note 4: These issues are not listed in any particular order and some are obviously much more important than others.
Note 5: Just having a dually does not in itself guaranty safety. Safety comes from many things like driver skill, speed, road conditions, other drivers, etc. Some truck campers are safely carried by SRW trucks. Some truck campers absolutely require a dually to be hauled safely. Some truck campers require DRW trucks larger than a 1-ton F-350 dually, like an F-450 or F-550. Be safe, err on the side of safety.
I have driven some type of dually for 20 years always in snow country, and never experienced or heard of a "build up of snow between the tires" problem.
You haven't seen me then.
A few months after I got my '03 dually we had a 6-8" slushy snow storm up here. I drove home in it ok, but I backed into my spot at home through fresh slop. The next morning after a few hundred yards I thought the read-end was going to vibrate off! The slop had frozen into a block of ice between the duals. To make matters worse the temp stayed very low for the next week. I had to pull the truck into the garage at work to get the thawing process started.
I was a rolling hazard what with all the chunks of ice spitting out like fist sized rocks from between the duals. No sidewall damage and thankfully the ice rattling around between the wheels didn't shear off any valve stems.
USE UP FOREIGN OIL BEFORE WE USE OURS. (leave it under our soil until they're out of it)
The World is a book and those that do not travel read only one page.
I have driven some type of dually for 20 years always in snow country, and never experienced or heard of a "build up of snow between the tires" problem. Where did this one come from?
The first time I heard it was from the Caribou/Elkhorn factory rep. I was looking at his factory provided SRW truck on which he hauled a big 11' Caribou TC. The TC looked too big for an SRW truck to me. I asked him why he didn't drive a dually and he said that he had driven duallys and he could have a dually if he wanted it. But he said that he drove a lot in the upper midwest during the winter. He said snow build-up between the dually tires was a real problem for him. I've read it elsewhere also.
Good lists Brad,
For me however it comes down to the camper and/or the total load you need to tow. In other words I don't need a dually so I don't have one. Though my dislike of dually’s would have kept me in a tent had my camper required one. Can anyone but me remember how handy a REGULAR cab pickup is when the camper is not on it?