Trailering with rental pickup?

Ann Glavan - her columns were the first thing I thought of when I opened this thread. I think @Texarkana used to do this too.

The availability of suitable trucks at your local U-Haul may vary, and is worth checking out. I rented a fully-loaded Chevy Silverado from them that I would have loved to tow with, but I can’t imagine too many U-Hauls have a lot full of 2018 Silverado 3500s just waiting to be rented. If you can’t get a similar truck setup every time, there are a lot of variables to control for.


I found an Enterprise Truck Rental in my area that has a fleet of brand spanking new F250s (one I drove had 300 miles on it!) that are well suited for hauling my 2 horse BP. The only thing I had to do was to purchase a ball mount with a longer drop because the newer trucks ride higher off the ground. I thoroughly researched what comes factory standard, and independently verified it was suitable for my setup. For the few times a year I go out, this has been a good option for me.


You might need an adapter, a lot of factory hitches don’t have the 7 way plug. As has been said, you have to rent a 3/4 ton with the integrated brake controller.

Several people have mentioned the COTHer that did this through Uhaul, but she also mentioned that she never had working trailer brakes, which I think is stupidly unsafe.

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Yes!! I remember reading a blog post from someplace, but couldn’t recall where - certainly not who!!! Thanks for confirming I’m not crazy! LOL

That’s great to hear. I’m in Maryland, so I see similarly HD trucks in fleets as well.

Thanks. Yes, definitely looking at lighter (Euro or 1 horse) trailers with lower tongue weights. I’m only scoping out places that rent 4WD and 3/4 ton pickups and or bigger because I’d don’t trust the capability of the 1/2 tons to get me up the hill at Loch Moy or the 4x2s to get me out of the field at Waredaca after it rains! Thankfully Enterprise at the airport seems to have both in abundance. Thanks for the tips about the trailer brake and the hitch!

Thanks. Good to know about the ball hitch sizes and the heights. Yes, definitely will need a brake controller - good reminder. Borrowing someone else’s rig would be great, but in my experience high eventing season is also high show season in other disciplines as well so anyone with a setup is often using it on the same weekends I’d like to. But we’ll see - again, I won’t be doing this this season. Down the road I’ll bite the bullet one way or the other, by getting a vehicle that can do both and losing out on the fuel economy :frowning: or buy buying another vehicle. But finances will likely make that a long term play.

Thanks to everyone for sharing their thoughts and feedback - I appreciate it! Feel free to keep them coming. :slight_smile:

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Thanks for starting this thread. I will be making a five hour haul in April and am concerned about my current tow vehicle making that trip. I have only hauled locally with my truck. The idea of renting a bigger and newer truck is very appealing!

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Sure! Glad to know I’m not the only person who’s considered this. :slight_smile:

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I had both a Honda CRV and a Ford diesel 250 4 wheel drive. I love my truck so much that I wound up driving it everywhere and letting the CRV sit. I had to put brakes on it, it sat so much. My truck drives like a sports car compared to the CRV. So, first I lent, then gave my CRV to someone who desperately needed a car. The truck is sometimes harder to park, but I’ve never been sorry about the car. OP, you might find you love the truck!

Almost 30 years ago we hauled my 2 horse steel BP and my 2 big horses from CA to MO in my 1977 Chevy 1/2 ton truck. It had a 400 small block engine and I had a different radiator put in as well as a tow package when I bought it used, but it pulled them through every situation like a champ.

With 1 horse and a lighter trailer you should have no issues hauling with a 1/2 ton. There are so many decent used trucks around have you explored the option of an older one to buy and outfit for your needs? Even if it sits( mine does) most of the time, it is sure nice to know it is there when you need it.

Good to know! I’m still a ways out form purchasing and I’m told the proper order is “horse > trailer > tow vehicle”, so I haven’t truly ruled out anything yet because I haven’t locked in on the trailer. I am leaning towards those with lighter tongue weights so maybe in the end a 1/2 ton will be fine for rentals. But if I’m not familiar with the vehicle, at the moment I’m thinking a bigger truck will be safer (though with some of the the lighter trailers I understand it is possible to have too much truck to make it comfortable for the horse).

I’m still doing preliminary research so I’ve been exploring a bunch of options. Ideally yes, I’ll buy my own truck, but I don’t know that it will be financially feasible right away, so I’m considering options for the interim. Of course, if I luck out and can find a used trailer that meets my needs, then I’ll have more $ to buy a truck.

Most of the newer trucks have brake controllers built in, so check with enterprise on that before buying your own. I know for sure the Chevys do.

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The F250s I’ve rented through Enterprise do have the trailer brake installed. There is a slider on the dash to adjust.