Is it Better to Tow a Fifth Wheel With a Flatbed or Regular Bed?

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When it comes to towing the 5th wheel trailer, there remains confusion about whether one should use a flatbed or regular bed truck. Many people believe in flatbed trucks, while others prefer a regular pickup truck bed. So, what’s the difference, and which one is better?

Flatbed trucks are a better option when it comes to towing on a commercial or professional level. You should use it if you are going to tow heavy loads on 5th wheel trailer. However, the regular bed trucks are a good option for routine towing work and help in towing small loads.

The regular bed trucks offer versatility, and you can use them for traveling, as well as for towing. In today’s guide. I’ll take a closer look at the pros and cons of both options, so you can make an informed decision about the best way to tow your fifth wheel.

Related Article: Is It Possible to Put a 5th Wheel Hitch on a Flatbed Truck?

Regular Bed vs Flatbed Truck – Which One is Better for Towing?

You will be able to decide the best option only when you know the perks, and pros that these two methods offer. Let me differentiate the pros that you get with these two flatbed, and regular trucks.

A flatbed truck is a commercial vehicle that is designed specifically for hauling heavy loads. It provides a level, flat surface that is ideal for towing large recreational vehicles, such as fifth wheels. But the regular bed trucks are quite different in front of them.

A regular pickup truck bed is not designed specifically for towing. It’s about specialization – and flatbed trucks win here. However, it is a more versatile option, since it can be used for a variety of tasks, from hauling construction materials to transporting camping gear. 

Keep in mind that both trucks can be used are being used for towing purposes. With the right hitch and other equipment, a regular pickup truck can be used to tow a fifth wheel, but it will never be as stable or secure as a flatbed truck.

So, is one option clearly better than the other? Flatbed trucks are better as they are made for towing purposes. You can transport the heaviest of loads from one place to another safely. But there are many restrictions when it comes to the regular bed trucks as they don’t have very strong towing capabilities. 

But stop, as I’m going to give you some more benefits of both flatbed and regular bed trucks that will help you know more. After reading the below section, you’ll be able to make an informed decision. 

Also Read: How to Reduce Tongue Weight on a Trailer?

Advantages of Towing with a Flatbed Truck

You’ve already got basic information about the flatbed truck. Now, it’s time to go into more advanced details as I am going to give you the benefits of towing with flatbed trucks.

1- Stable and Secure Towing

One of the biggest advantages of towing a fifth wheel with a flatbed truck is stability and security. Flatbed trucks are designed to handle heavy loads, and their level, flat surface provides a stable base for towing. 

One more thing that you should know is that the lower center of gravity of a flatbed truck also helps to ensure that the load is evenly distributed, which further improves stability and reduces the risk of accidents or mishaps.

The regular bed trucks don’t offer ideal stability and you cannot drive them at speed when towing 5th wheel trailer. But, due to the lower center of gravity, the flatbed offers stability even if you drive at some speed. This is where the flatbed trucks get the marks. I

2- Improved Handling and Maneuverability

Apart from stability, towing a fifth wheel with a flatbed truck also offers improved handling and maneuverability. The flatbed provides a level surface for the fifth wheel, which makes it easier to control and steer. Whenever I drive flatbed trucks, I feel more comfortable, and confident while making moves in tight spaces or challenging road conditions.

3- Lower Center of Gravity

The low center of gravity of a flatbed truck is another major advantage when it comes to towing a fifth wheel. This design feature helps to keep the fifth wheel and truck level, reducing the risk of tipping or rollovers. It also makes the towing experience smoother, more comfortable, and safer. 

4- Professional/Commerical Use

Due to better stability, the driver feels confident and tow heavy loads easily. If you have noticed, many companies use flatbed trucks for the transportation of their goods. They are very much capable for towing the heavy loaded 5th wheel trailers with ease.

5- Better Ground Clearance

Last, but not least, flatbed trucks have a higher ground clearance, which can be useful for off-roading and navigating rough terrain. Even if you drive these trucks in the rainy season, you won’t feel that your vehicle is going out of control when towing the 5th-wheel trailer.

Related: How to Install a 5th Wheel Hitch on a Flatbed Truck?

Advantages of Towing with a Regular Truck

Now that you’ve understood the advantages of a flatbed truck, it’s time to go back to the counterpart and see what it offers when you use it. 

1- Versatility and Ease of Use

One of the most prominent benefits of towing a fifth wheel with a regular pickup truck is versatility and ease of use. Keep in mind that pickup trucks are not specifically designed for towing, but they are more versatile than flatbed trucks, so they can be used for a variety of tasks which surely increases your productivity.

Imagine yourself in a condition where you cannot afford two vehicles – one for your family travels, and the other for specific towing. In such conditions, you can buy a regular bed truck, and use it for traveling and towing quite easily. Thanks to their versatility.

2- Less Expensive

Another advantage of towing with a regular pickup truck is affordability. Flatbed trucks are commercial vehicles that are specifically designed for hauling heavy loads, and they are very expensive to purchase. 

A common man cannot afford to buy a well-maintained flatbed truck. Regular pickup trucks, on the other hand, are much more affordable and accessible. From the price point, regular trucks are a better choice for those who want to tow their fifth wheel without breaking the bank.

3- Better Fuel Efficiency

Apart from affordability, regular pickup trucks also offer better fuel efficiency than flatbed trucks. Since flatbed trucks are designed to handle heavy loads, they are typically less fuel-efficient than regular bed trucks, which are optimized for a wider range of tasks.

Note: The flatbed trucks need more power as they carry heavy loads so they require more fuel.

Few Factors to Consider When Choosing a Flatbed or Regular Bed for Towing Fifth Wheel

Towing a fifth wheel with either a flatbed or a regular bed truck both have their advantages and disadvantages. However, choosing the one utterly will come to personal preferences and needs. In the below sections, I will give you some factors that will help you understand what you need for what purpose.

Also Read: Is the Andersen 5th Wheel Hitch Short Bed Truck Friendly?

1- Budget

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing between a flatbed and a regular pickup truck is budget. To be honest, many people before making a decision, keep their budget in their mind and then start thinking about different options. Flatbed trucks are typically more expensive than pickup trucks, so if you have a tight budget, then you can go towards a regular bed truck. 

2- Towing Capacity

Another important factor to consider is the towing capacity of the vehicle. The regular bed trucks are not specialized for towing: and they are good for just mid-range towing tasks. Their towing capacity is limited, and you won’t get maximum output from them.

On the other hand, Flatbed trucks are typically designed for heavy towing, so you may have more options to choose from if you opt for a flatbed. You can use the flatbed trucks for the commercial level, and you won’t get any issues at all.

3- Use and Purpose

The purpose and frequency of your towing will also play a role in your decision. If you only plan to tow your fifth wheel on occasional trips, a regular pickup truck will be a more practical and affordable option.

However, if you plan to tow your fifth wheel frequently or for long distances, a flatbed truck will be a better choice, since it will provide a more stable and secure towing experience. I don’t recommend you use the regular truck for heavy towing as well.

Our Verdict: Flatbed vs Regular Pickup Trucks

For towing, a flatbed will be perfect for towing a 5th wheel. The reason is that they are powerful, offer better road experience, and help you tow heavy loads with ease. The regular trucks are suitable for mild towing.

In the end, I would say that personal preference will play a role in your decision. Some people prefer the versatility and ease of use of a regular pickup truck, while others prefer the stability and security of a flatbed truck.

I’ve explained everything about the perks, and purposes. End of the day: the decision is going to be yours. Read this guide carefully, and analyze your usage. Choose the one that fits your needs, and requirements.


The decision between towing your fifth wheel with a flatbed or regular pickup truck will be yours, But I would suggest you go with a flatbed truck if you want to tow the fifth wheel with ease. I hope that this guide will add value to your decision-making process. With the hope of goodness, I’m leaving you here.

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