Deep Dive: Ford’s Stowable Loading Ramps for the F-150
If you are ordering a new F-150 from the factory, one of the options you’ll be presented with are stowable loading ramps for an additional for $595. So what do you get for your six Benjamins? Is it an option you should check, or should you look at other options for loading your toys into your bed? Let’s take a look and you can decide for yourself.
What do you get for your money? Well you get two extendable loading ramps. Each ramp is designed to hold 800 pounds and they fit in a slotted channel at the end of the tailgate. This channel, more or less, prevents them from sliding off the tailgate and causing damage.
The tailgate itself gets a metal plate at the top of it to handle the extra stresses of loading and unloading items via the ramps. You can still get the optional tailgate step even with the modifications to the tailgate for the loading ramps, but the tailgate is heavier with the extra metal on the tailgate.
Additionally, you get a cable to secure the ramps to the side of the bed on the special ramp supports. You also get a pair of BOLT Locks to secure the ramps from theft. The ramps are secured to the side of the truck with four bolts that screw into the ramp supports attached to the bed.
Our test truck that includes the ramps, while lacking the tailgate step that most press trucks seem to be equipped with, does have the factory spray-on bedliner installed. Like the other accessories that support the F-150’s BoxLink system, the ramps support other factory options from Ford.
Using them isn’t the absolute easiest process in the world, but it is logical. First, you remove the BOLT cable locks. Then remove the cable towards the cab of the truck providing extra security for the ramps. Then, locate each bolt that has a lever on it and unscrew them. Then you can lift the ramps out of the truck.
For me, I found that the next step should be sliding the end of the ramps into the channel on the tailgate. From there, you pull a tab with a ring on it and you can extend the ramps. If it’s a one person operation, it’s easier to extend the ramps when they’re attached to the tailgate.
Simply reverse the process when you’re ready to put them away.
When driving around with the ramps secure, you do hear them bounce a bit when you hit bumps. No matter how tight you tighten the bolts, there’s still a little movement that’ll make noise, but it’s nothing unbearable.
Other drawbacks include losing a bit of bed space. Also, depending on how wide the object is that you have in the bed, it might be more difficult to reach the bolts to secure or remove the ramps.
So should you get them? I think if you’re only using ramps once or twice a year, or don’t always need to have them with you, I’d pass on them. Though I’ll admit Ford has gone to great lengths to make them safe.
If you frequently haul ATVs, bikes, or even lawn mowers I’d strongly consider them. Or, if you have a Raptor and find yourself off-roading a lot, you just might find them useful to have with you.
The downside is, it’s difficult to try them before you buy them. It’s highly unlikely that a dealership is going to stock a truck with these installed. Hopefully this breakdown helps make the decision a bit easier.
What do you think?
Let us know in the comments below or over in the forums!