Best minivan for hauling 4x8 sheet goods?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Coffee Lounge forum

Forum topic by DaveClark posted 08-23-2014 08:12 PM 30182 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View DaveClark's profile


3 posts in 3218 days

08-23-2014 08:12 PM

Hello fellow LumberJocks!

Recently my beloved Mercury Sable was totaled in an accident & I am looking for a replacement vehicle. I told myself if I ever bought another vehicle, I’d give serious consideration to a pickup or SUV so I can haul plywood & the like. However, after comparing prices, gas mileage, & insurance rates of SUVs, pickups, & minivans, I’ve come to the conclusion that a minivan will probably best suit my needs. I would like to know if any minivan owners out there have tried to load 4×8 sheet goods in a minivan, & will it fit with the back door completely closed? Are the rear seats removable? Are the seats difficult to remove & reinstall? I’m seriously considering the Honda Oddysey & the Toyota Sienna, so if anyone has experience with those two vehicles in particular, I’d love to hear from you. Please post the make, model, & year of your minivan, & your opinion of it.

Thanks in advance!

9 replies so far

View BJODay's profile


526 posts in 1966 days

#1 posted 08-23-2014 08:19 PM

4×8 utility trailer.


View DaveClark's profile


3 posts in 3218 days

#2 posted 08-23-2014 08:28 PM

Haha, trailer is not an option, or I would’ve had one on my Mercury. Thanks though!

View Hopdevil's profile


220 posts in 3109 days

#3 posted 08-23-2014 09:50 PM

My Odyssey did that and carried many sheets (over many years) As I recall, you could only get about 4-5 sheets of 3/4 plywood in due to the trim on the back of the front seats. Also, the seats had to be all the way front, so it wasn’t comfortable, but it worked. Mine was a 2000 model, so I am sure there have been many changes.
I would recommend you stop by a dealer and ask. When we bought ours, that was a specific question I had and the dealer was happy to affirm that it would indeed hold them.
I know some folks smirk at mini vans, but we use ours for hauling so much crap, I don’t know what we would do without one. I recently hauled several hundred board feet of Sapele in our current Grand Caravan (which I am not a huge fan of, but it works.)
Good luck!

-- Buzz ---- Of all the things I have ever lost, I miss my mind the most.

View DaveClark's profile


3 posts in 3218 days

#4 posted 08-23-2014 10:09 PM

Hopdevil, thanks so much for the info!

View Redoak49's profile


3279 posts in 2012 days

#5 posted 08-23-2014 10:30 PM

My Dodge Grand Caravan hold a full sheet with hatch closed.

View ddockstader's profile


156 posts in 3285 days

#6 posted 08-23-2014 10:35 PM

Same with my Toyota Sienna. I do have to put 2 2×4x6” pieces next to the rear wheel wells. For whatever reason, they stick out about an inch on each side at the bottom and won’t let the plywood down to the floor. The 2×4’s fix that. Also, I think I’m limited to about 5 sheets for the same reason as the Odyssey.

View Elizabeth's profile


817 posts in 3166 days

#7 posted 08-23-2014 10:42 PM

I have a 2010 Honda Odyssey. The back row of seats folds down into the bottom of the van effortlessly. The two captains chairs in the center are removable. I can’t take mine out easily right now because they both have child seats installed in them. But I did buy a half sheet of plywood at a sale a few months back and I am pretty sure it laid flat. If you like I could go take some measurements.

I used to have a mercury sable wagon, got a TON of stuff into that thing, including three lengths of 10 foot, 6” metal ducting for my shop, and in a separate trip an entire SawStop table saw in its packaging. That one astonished the Woodcraft guy. But it was too much of a hassle when the kid carseats got to a certain size so we swapped for the van and it’s been great.

View paxorion's profile


1107 posts in 2069 days

#8 posted 08-24-2014 02:59 AM

Sorry to hear about your car.

My wife and I just recently bought a 2014 Honda Odyssey and YES you (still) can. With the 2nd row taken out and the 3rd row down, you can fit full sheets of ply. I’ve only hauled a few boards (I think 3 stacked up) so I can’t speak to the total amount you can hail.

-- paxorion

View Redoak49's profile


3279 posts in 2012 days

#9 posted 08-25-2014 03:14 PM

One of the best investments that I have made is a 5×8 trailer. Used it a lot when kids were in college moving stuff back and forth. It is great for wood, mulch.

I bought it for about $750 new and it will hold almost a ton. It has a fold down rear gate for loading equipment. Insurance and license plates are very low. If you have a place to store one and a vehicle that can tow it, they are absolutely great. It is a better option that buying a big car just to carry wood.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics